What can be reused and recycled
- String lights are recycled for the copper in the wires, so you can drop them off at a recycling depot — including Metro’s transfer stations — free of charge. Leave small bulbs on, but remove and toss into the garbage large bulbs.
- If you can’t reuse your tinsel strands (“icicles”), those go in the garbage.
- You can save gift wrap for use next year, or it can go in your home recycling if it isn’t foil or plasticized. Remember to remove bows and ribbons.
- Reuse bows to save a little money; otherwise they go in the garbage.
- Tissue paper can be reused; otherwise it’s recyclable.
- Save foam packing peanuts to use again or check with packaging stores who may reuse them; otherwise they go in the garbage.
- Most types of plastic packaging, as well as plastic bags, cannot be recycled at home but some depots accept many types of plastic free of charge. Otherwise, it's trash.
Next year, plan ahead and cut back on what you use – and cut your costs!
- Avoid gift-wrap that isn’t recyclable or reusable. Reuse wrap, bows and gift bags, or make your own from paper you already have, like old maps, the Sunday comics or paper bags.
- Consider giving experiences like concert tickets, a dinner out, or items that aren’t packaged and will endure, like a plant.
- Remember to shop for one-of-a-kind items at vintage shops and resale stores: Check out Resourceful PDX’s website for ideas, tips and a map of community-based, not-for-profit organizations that help residents reuse, repair and share tools, building or art supplies, household goods and other materials.