Updated: Jan 27, 2021
Friday night is takeaway night at the Moore's and sometimes the only thing that hits the spot is a kebab. Yes, yes, if I knew the truth then I wouldn't go within 3 feet of a doner but that's another story.
You'd have to go a long way to describe me as an eco warrior but when I look at the greasy polystyrene box destined for the bin I always feel a bit guilty. I mean, you can't recycle it, you can't re-use it to store food, so off it goes to landfill, right? Not so fast!
You can use the polystyrene to make printing plates that you can use again and again to print greetings cards, wrapping paper, gift tags and original prints for your home.
Give it a go this weekend
A clean polystyrene takeaway box
Grease proof paper
Acrylic or poster paint
Here's how to do it:
1. Cut out a piece from the polystyrene box big enough to draw your design onto.
2. Draw your design onto the grease proof paper using a pencil.
3. Turn the grease proof paper over and place it face down onto the piece of polystyrene that you cut out.
4. Trace over the back of the design to transfer it to the polystyrene. (Alternatively you can draw straight onto the polystyrene, just remember to create your design in reverse. This is especially important if you're printing text).
5. Remove the grease proof paper and go over the design on the polystyrene with the pencil making sure to leave an impression.
6. Using a paint brush evenly paint over the design making sure not to overload polystyrene.
7. Turn the polystyrene over and place it face down onto the card. Rub the back of the polystyrene firmly with the back of a spoon.
8. Lift the polystyrene off from the card and you have made your first print.
9. Reload the paint and reuse the polystyrene plate and over and over again. If the design starts to loose its clarity then wash and dry it before loading with paint again.
If you're not partial to a kebab then politely ask your friendly kebab shop owner if you can have an empty box, they're usually more than happy to give you one or alternatively you can use polystyrene party plates.
Use any off cuts from the polystyrene box to make smaller prints for gift tags or create your own logo and use them to sign off your cards and letters.