A milk carton or juice carton - often also called a Tetra-Pack - consists of a composite material which usually has a printed plastic film on the outside, then a paper or cardboard layer and inside again a layer of film. This can consist of plastic or metal. The big advantage of this inner layer is that it is waterproof. Cool upcycling projects can be created from it.

The first thought that came to my mind was that the feature “waterproof on the inside” could be used as a flower vase or flower pot.

Video: Milk carton becomes a flower vase

Only the advertising printed on the outside of the foil is quite annoying, if you don’t want to build disposable pots. But this outer foil can be removed from the paper layer with a little patience. This is not difficult, but it takes time. First I cut off the upper part, the “roof” with the opening and so on.

This is how you find a beginning

Separate milk carton from the foil

Shabby chic

When the outside of the milk carton is freed from the printed film, the design begins. I prefer the ShabbyChic look.

The milk carton pulled out

The slide is off

I crumple up the milk carton to my heart’s content. The only thing I don’t crumple up is the bottom. I want to keep it as stable as possible. If you crumple it, the milk carton becomes unstable and wobbles later.

When I have pressed the carton long enough, crumpled it and pulled it straight again, the next step is easy to take.

Knead the milk carton until soft

Crumple up a milk carton


The upper edge is then folded over. Depending on how high the finished flower vase should be, I can shorten the height a little beforehand and make one or two wraps to a brim. In my video I will show you a trick.

To ensure that the turning over works well, press the lower part of the milk carton slightly inwards. Then you can carefully turn the carton from top to bottom. Make sure that it does not tear at any of the corners. If this happens the first time - it happened to me in the video - it’s not so bad if you want to make a second wrap. Only at the last wrapping nothing should tear anymore, because then the stability of the bag is not so good anymore.

Making the top border

The brim on the milk carton


Even if the advertising has been removed, the milk carton should still be embellished. You can do this with pens, borders, fabric, stickers and anything else you feel like. I have two examples here.

Decoration examples

Milk cartons as flower vase

In the one example I simply took a border and glued it around the brim at the top. Then a cord with a pendant and a little bit of spotting with a golden bead pencil - ready was the first flower vase from a tetra-pack.

Pearl pencils are touch-up pencils that bring such small hemispheres of lacquer onto a surface, which also stick to it in this hemispherical shape. This gives interesting 3D effects.

For the second Tetra-Pack bag I tied a crocheted border around it and painted a few dots with a normal felt-tip pen. Of course you can still do that as you like.

You can find more examples of ideas for milk bag upcycling in my Playlist on Youtube.