Recycling Mardi Gras beads: Get creative

Published 7:00 am Thursday, February 19, 2015

Fat Tuesday has passed, so now the question is, what to do with all those throws?
One of the draws to Mardi Gras parades involves the throws, parade goers catch as Krewes roll down the streets.
But now that you’ve brought home bags of these colorful trinkets, you may want to find a better use for them than cluttering your closet or garage.
There are several avenues that will provide those throws with a second chance at functionality.
Several organizations in Louisiana collect and recycle beads. One of them is the Arc of Greater New Orleans. The organization collects, cleans and then resells the used beads to Krewes for use in the next year’s parades. Profits from those sales fund continued operation of the group.
Living so close to New Orleans means that the Big Easy’s style tends to show up in Pearl River County homes. Beads and other items caught at parades can find a new use as decorations or crafts to liven up your decor. They can bring color to the frame of a picture or painting, or even decorate a tree in your home during the next carnival season. For the particularly artistic the beads can be used to make a mosaic, a curtain can be fashioned out of beads, or they can add flair and color to existing light fixtures.
For those especially handy with a sewing machine, Mardi Gras beads can be incorporated into your wardrobe.
If you’re looking to make some extra cash, you can sell your catches on a bidding website. Sites such as eBay allow people to purchase what you caught at a parade for a nominal price. Just don’t expect to get rich quick from the sales.
Other ideas seen online include turning particularly unique medallions in to refrigerator magnets. All you would need is some weak magnets available at any craft shop, and some hot glue.
Or you could let your imagination go wild and come up with your own ideas.

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