Creative and fun alternatives to plastic

plasticfree #toiltetrolls #recycle

This week we found an artistic idea.

The wall art above looks fabulous, right? Would you believe it, it’s made out of cardboard toilet rolls. I think we can all agree it looks brilliant!

The How-To Gal ‘s creative work is something that you can get the whole family involved in making too.

Read more

Here’s what you’ll need:

Toilet Paper Rolls- the number depends on how large your creation will be
Tacky Glue
Spray Paint
3M Wall Mount Squares
Patience 🙂

Let’s get creative!

Gather toilet paper rolls. I used about 28 rolls for this project. Paper towel rolls count for approx. three regular sized rolls.

Squish your rolls.

Cut slices of the roll to desired thickness. I cut mine into varying 1/2-inch slices and was able to get 12 slices from each roll.

Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you have enough pieces.

Begin gluing pieces together. I tried to put most of my glue on the tip of the piece.

Attach slices together in the form of a four-petal flower.

Your finished flower should look like this. Repeat step 6 until you have five completed flowers. Let dry.

Beginning attaching flowers together. The toilet paper rolls are pretty pliable at this point, so attempt to line the petals up exactly to form perfect circles.

Attach five flowers together to form a row and then repeat steps 6-9 until you have as many rows as you want. Then glue those rows together. I glued four rows together at a time to create a 5×4 flower grid and ending up making five grids. Finally, I took them out to the garage and spray painted them!

Stand back and admire your art.

For more fun ideas, check out the How-To Girl’s website

For more inspirational toilet roll projects take a peek at Pintrest

If you have any photos of your wall art creations send them to and we’ll share them on our blog.

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You Rock!

The weather this year has been fantastic for most of the UK, with long hot summer days. But there’s still plenty of summer days left. So, fingers crossed the sunny weather stays with us.

If you’re wondering how you can keep the family entertained throughout the holiday season, here’s a fabulous idea that kids of all ages will enjoy.

Rock Painting

Rock painting is a craze that has been sweeping the country for a many years and is still gathering momentum. The principle behind it is you paint a rock and hide it somewhere in the local community for someone else to find and re-hide. Some rocks have been known to travel the world!

Lots of local communities have their own Facebook pages so you can take a photo of the rock you create or find, post it to the Facebook group and let people know you are going to hide it somewhere else.

Getting Started

Here’s a list of what you need to get started.

• Rocks of different sizes (usually ones that can fit into your hand)
• Acrylic paints of various colours (either tubes of paints or paint pens)
• Paint brushes
• Container to rinse your brushes
• Water
• Plasti-Kote sealer

Paints: You can find acrylic paint suppliers online or try your local craft shop. Acrylic paint pens are a bit more expensive but much easier and less messy to use if you have tots or you want to try drawing fine lines. You could also try using felt tip pens but be aware that the colour may run if you spray this type of ink with a sealer.

Rocks: Collecting rocks can be great down by the river or from the beach. Get the children to look out for weird shaped rocks like the kite and heart shaped ones in the photos below. Take a hessian or canvas bag to put your finds.

Do be aware of the dangers of being by a river and the beach with young children, and also only take a few rocks you are going to use, without disturbing the natural environment.

Painting Rocks: Wash the rock and allow to dry thoroughly (best overnight) before painting otherwise the paint won’t sit well. Adding a base colour to the rock will make it much smoother to use paint pens or brushes for your designs. If you are not sure how the designs will look, use chalk to draw out your design on the rock first as it can easily be washed off. If you are struggling with a particular design you wish to copy from a book, trace it out on tracing paper then turn the pencil side over onto the rock and rub the other side of the tracing paper using a pencil. This should give you a faint outline to work with.

Allow each colour to dry before adding another colour next to it or on top of it, otherwise the paints will run into each other.

Once you have finished your rock, allow it to dry and then spray it with a clear sealant. This will keep the paint new looking for a much longer time.

If you have found your local Rock Painting Facebook group, post an image of your rock on their page, and let everyone know you have hidden it. Beware! Rock painting can become addictive!

We’d love to see your rock art. Send us a photo to and we’ll pop it up on the blog. Happy painting!

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Afternoon Tea

Summer holidays are coming and are the perfect time to make memories for the family which will be talked about for years to come. How about organising a special afternoon tea. If the sun is shining, why not make it into an outdoor event, and invite round some friends and neighbours to enjoy the tea party. You can get the children involved in the preparations.

Here are some ideas for afternoon tea.

Homemade bunting: Cut out some large triangles of the same size out of stiff paper or old wallpaper and get the children to colour in each triangle. String the triangles together with a length of string and tie around the garden or room where you will be having tea.

Make hats: Why not have a theme and ask everyone you invite to make a hat to wear to the tea party. You could have a small prize for the best hat.

Homemade cakes: Get the children involved in making and icing some cakes for the tea party. Add some sprinkles to make them extra special

Homemade doyleys: Get the kids to cut out some doyleys to display their cakes. Here’s how

Cake plates: Check out charity shops for serving plates and cheap teas sets if you don’t already have one. You can mix and match one of tea cups and saucers to give your tea party a quirky look.

Bake homemade bread: This is a fabulous way to make your tea party special. Let the children have a go at making bread. You don’t need fancy bread maker and it can be great fun kneading the dough! Here’s an easy recipe

Invitations to the party: Get the children to design and make some tea party invitations. This is great hand writing practice and they won’t even know it! They can cut out pictures from old magazines or draw their own designs. Remember to put the day, date and time of the tea party and it’s always nice to out the name of the person you are inviting.

Arrange some outdoor games: here are some super-fun ideas you can adapt for your tea party

Lastly, have fun and enjoy yourselves! Send us some photos of your afternoon tea party. We’d love to see them –

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International plastic bag free day

We don’t normally blog about things that are seen as contentious, however, soon it is International Plastic Bag Free Day and I think most of us have seen the harrowing pictures that have been shown on TV recently about the effect that plastic has on or sea life. Something that was once marketed as a really useful object has become one of the worst problems the world has seen.

Here are a couple of facts you may not know about plastic carrier bags.

  1. On average, a plastic bag is only used for 25 minutes
  2. On average one million plastic bags are used around the world per minute!
  3. It can take between 100 – 500 years for plastic bags to disintegrate

On a lighter note, we can all do something about it, and indeed we do here at Layhead. We are firm believers in using alternatives to plastic bags (and bottles) and if you’ve stayed at one of our cottages, you will have mostly likely seen our hessian shopping bags with our friendly owl displayed on the side.

Unfortunately, it isn’t just plastic bags that are the problem. Everyday items we take for granted include plastic. Did you know that even some teabags have plastic in them?

Here are 5 easy (and relatively cheap) ways to cut down on the use of plastic.

  1. Carry a canvas bag for shopping, or if you’re crafty, you can make your own from scraps of material.

2. Carry a re-useable water bottle / coffee cup. My PA has a refillable water bottle with a unicorn on, but we won’t go into that!

3. Use an alternative to your usual detergent sold in plastic bottles. You could either find a shop that provides detergent refills or, you could try a total alternative – Soapnuts. Never heard of them? Read more

4. Buy a bamboo toothbrush.

5. Use an alternative to clingfilm – yes, there is one. Bee Wraps. Find out more

If you have any fabulous (or not so fabulous but they work) ideas about how you have cut down on plastics and you’re willing to share, email us at with the details and a photo. We’d love to hear from you!

For more information on International Plastic Free Day CLICK HERE

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#5 Ways to Celebrate the Summer Solstice

The Summer Solstice (or longest day of the year to you and me) is today (21st June). This is when summer officially begins – woo hoo!

Here are 5 ways you can celebrate.

  1. Plan to travel
    Consider spending the summer solstice at one of the key destinations where the summer solstice has been celebrated for centuries, or at the site of a solstice festival. Many countries, such as Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden hold summer festivals in which people dance around a midsummer Maypole and decorate their homes with greenery, flowers, and tree branches.
  1. Watch the sunrise from a mountain top
    Make the most of the longest day (especially as it’s the end of the week) by climbing a mountain and watching the sunrise. Layhead is the ideal base for climbing one (or all) of the Three Yorkshire Dales Peaks Ingleborough, Pen-y-Ghent or Whernside. All perfect peaks to sit and watch this spectacle.
  1. Make a solstice feast.
    Have a feast! Invite your friends and family to come celebrate the solstice with you. Ask them to bring a dish they’ve made to share with everyone. Go to local farms shops or markets and choose fresh ingredients for your feast. Make dishes using items the colour of the sun, like lemons, squash, papayas, corn, oranges, bananas, carrots, peppers, peaches, apricots, cantaloupe, pumpkin, mangoes, grapefruit, and sweet potatoes.
  1. Just enjoy the Day
    Find somewhere quiet to sit and give yourself some time just to enjoy life.

Got any sunrise or sunset photos, or images of your fabulous feast? Send them to and we’ll share them on our blog.

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