Recycling or Repurposing Used Cassette Tapes

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How to Reuse Cassette Tapes

When technology introduced us to compact disks, an age old problem was solved: no more worn out sounds from the tape player. No longer would children be attracted to the ‘shiny string’ in those little cassettes, and pull it all out before it could be grabbed away. For each die-hard vintage music lover still admiring and playing their eight-tracks and music and video cassettes, there are thousands out there ditching the old ways for the much more efficient compact disc technology. For someone who is environmentally conscious and weeding out the old cassettes from their collection, not many options are available for responsible disposal.

Get Crafty

Old cassette tapes can be torn apart and the individual parts used in craft projects. Use the tape in place of fiber in many different ways. If the tape is used in conjunction with another fine yarn, it can be used to knit, crochet or weave a durable and waterproof rug or tote. Some ingenious artists are using portions of the case as belt buckles, buttons and pendants.

Give Them to an Afficianado

Some people still regularly listen to music on tape, and would be glad to have someone’s unwanted collection. If a cassette music lover cannot be found in your area, donate them to a thrift store where they will quickly be snapped up by those who will give them new life. A quick online search will produce a few charities that erase the contents of the tape, record a variety of information on them and then give them to the visually impaired.

Repurpose Them

The tape in cassettes can be used in virtually any way that string is used. Wide video cassette tape makes good garden twine, and will last all season or longer. The tape makes good and unbreakable kite string if tied with a half-hitch knot. For a great ‘rockabilly’ Christmas tree, use the tape in a music cassette as garland or tinsel.

Just because that favorite 80’s hair rock band tape is stretched beyond all recognition does not mean that it has to go in a landfill and forgotten forever. With a little imagination, it can live on and on.