15 Cool Things To Do With Old Ballpoint Pens

The chances are that you have used disposable ballpoint pens at some point in your life. Pens are a part of daily life for many people, but have you wondered what to do with old ballpoint pens when they have run out of ink? If you do not want to cause waste or want to have some DIY fun, there are some cool things to do with old ballpoint pens.

There are a lot of things you can do with old ballpoint pens. Some of the more creative ideas include using the casings for toys for your cat, using the old pens for art, using the pen casings for sewing storage, using the casing for bead storage, or even using your old pen casing as a straw.

There are a million things that you can do with old ballpoint pens if you do not want to simply dispose of them. After asking myself what I can do with mine and looking at some other ideas found online, I have been able to make a list of some of the best and coolest things to do with your old pens.

Using Ballpoint Pens For Animal Toys

One of the activities you can do with old ballpoint pens is to make something animals can enjoy. A couple of very cool ideas can provide fun for your animals by simply using a couple of old pens and a glue gun. Most of these ideas are easy to make and can help you with something to do on the weekends.

Ballpoint Pen Birdhouse:

The first idea to discuss is making a birdhouse out of old pen casings. Naturally, this will take some time, and you will need a lot of old pens to do this, but the process is relatively simple. By laying down old pen casings and gluing them together, you can easily make four walls for a birdhouse.

After the walls have been glued together, you can take measurements to make a roof and a bottom surface for the bird to stand on inside. The process is simple, and if you can use tools like a saw, you can even cut off and sand the sharp points of the pen casings to make the birdhouse look even better. Please don’t get rid of the pointed ends, as you can use them later.

Using Ballpoint Pens In A Birdfeeder:

If you have an extra plastic bottle lying around and have some string and an old ballpoint pen or two, you can make a simple bird feeder for your yard. To do this, simply Attach a rope to the lid of the bottle. Then cut a hole into the bottle. Just under the hole you made in the bottle, make a smaller hole and insert an old pen in the hole.

If the bottle is thin enough, you can push the pen straight through and cut a bigger hole on each side of the bottle. The pen should serve as an area where a bird can stand. Now you can fill the bottle with birdseed and hang it in a tree. You can also spruce up the bottle as you wish to make it look more decorative in your garden.

String Toys For Your Cat:

By Taking out the ballpoint pen’s ink tube and pulling some string through a couple of pen casings, you can make a cute hanging toy for your cat to enjoy. If you feel the need, you can also cut and sand the pens into smaller beads to make the hanging cat toy.

Using Ballpoint Pens For Storage

Ballpoint pens might not seem big enough to store anything inside. However, they make perfect containers for beads or sewing tools such as needles. Naturally, these ideas are not for mass storage but can help you in a pinch or give you something to do if you are away from your proper sewing or beading kits.

Miniature Beading Kit:

Using a pen casing to sort your beads by size or color could help you keep your beads in order and allow you to make a smaller kit that you can use if you have nothing to do. By keeping your beans in a clear see-through pen casing, you can take a couple of beads and maybe even wire or string with you to use if you are bored or enjoy fidgeting.

Sewing Kit Storage:

If you are prone to losing buttons, creating small tears in your clothes, or want to keep an emergency sewing kit with you, a pen casing can help you feel more prepared.

By filling a pen casing with a couple of ready-threaded needles with enough thread to stitch a small tear or sew a button back on, you will be able to always have an inconspicuous sewing kit with you.

You can also use the casing of an old ballpoint pen to store some ready-threaded needles in your sewing kit at home if you wish. This can significantly help you if you are in a hurry and do not have the time to struggle to thread a needle.

Travel Safe Toothpick Holder:

No one enjoys the feeling of something in their teeth. Luckily an old ballpoint pen can serve as a storage area for a couple of emergency toothpicks. By putting a couple of toothpicks in a ballpoint pen casing and placing the cap on top, you will be able to carry some toothpicks with you to use at any time without it looking strange.

DIY Art Projects And Other Uses For Old Ballpoint Pens

There are also ways you can use old ballpoint pens to have some fun or be creative. There are plenty of DIY projects you can attempt, including art projects, making a DIY sprinkler, and even making storage for some of your tools.

Ballpoint Pen Art:

Though this idea might seem a bit strange, you can make some very cool or interesting art pieces by using old ballpoint pens. If you are searching for some inspiration, have a look at “The Pen Guy.”

By laying down a canvas and gluing pens to it, you could make some cool, if abstract, art. If you wish, you can also cut the pens into smaller pieces to allow you to add more detail to your craft.

Ballpoint Pen Coffee Table:

One more exciting and time-consuming way to use old ballpoint pens is to make a unique coffee table. For this project, you will require a lot of ballpoint pen casings, transparent and hardening resin, some wood, a saw, and a glue gun. You will also need to have some spare time and some woodworking skills.

The first step in this project is to get a wood plank big enough to use as a coffee table. After getting a surface, you can start laying out old ballpoint pen casings into patterns and glue them to the surface. The next step is to make a rim around the surface while leaving at least half an inch of space on the top. You can do this by using polypropylene around the surface.

Now fill up the space above the surface with clear resin until it is just under the rim. The resin will spread between the pens and have some transparent material over the pens to sand and polish to finish your coffee table surface. You will have made a very cool-looking coffee table by adding some table legs.

For more information on how to do this, there are plenty of videos on YouTube.

Ballpoint Pen Beads:

If you do not feel like doing a big project, you might be more comfortable simply cutting up your old pen casings to make beads. This is quite simple by using either a hand or an electric saw. The beads you create can be used for kids to make jewelry or for other smaller projects if you wish.

Making A Ballpoint Pen Sprinkler:

Using a couple of ballpoint pen casings, an empty plastic bottle, and a glue gun, you can make a decent working sprinkler for your garden.

This project is quite simple. Firstly, you will need to cut some pens into smaller parts. We only want the pointy ends of the pens for this project, and we only want them to be about one inch long. After cutting your pen casings to the above specifications, you can make holes in your plastic bottle.

When both the casings and bottle are ready, you can insert the pens into the holes and use a glue gun to ensure they are airtight and no leaks will form. The last step is to attach the bottle to the end of your garden hose and open the tap. The water should fill the bottle and then start spraying out of the pen casings.

Using Ballpoint Pens For Tool Storage:

If you have some woodworking skills and need better storage for your tools, you might be in luck. You can make an easy storage space for your spanners, hammer, and other instruments by drilling some holes into a plank and inserting pen casings into the holes.

You can outline the individual tools and use them as a guideline to drill holes and insert pens to support that tool and keep it in place. Be sure to use glue or a glue gun to secure the pen casings in place to ensure your tools do not fall off.

Once your wooden board has been made, and the glue has dried, you can drill holes and attach it to your garage wall. This will make storing your tools much more manageable, and everything will have its place, making your tools much more organized.

Ballpoint Pens And Gardening:

Another clever use for old ballpoint pens can be to help your gardening. By poking an old ballpoint pen into the ground, you can help tiny plants grow if they struggle to stay up straight.

You can also use old ballpoint pens to make signs in your vegetable garden. By using a sticker or some tape and paper, you can attach the name of the vegetable you are growing in a specific area. You can also use old ballpoint pens to mark where particular crops are being produced and this will help you keep your vegetable garden organized.

Pen And Pencil Holders:

Using an old can, old ballpoint pens, and a glue gun can make a unique and colorful pen and pencil holder for your desk. Simply wash out the can and use the glue gun to attach the old ballpoint pens to your can.

If your pens are too long to go around the can, you can use sandpaper, and a saw to cut the tips off the pens and sand them down. This is a practical and creative way to use old pens for something new.

Making Coasters From Old Pens:

Like the coffee table mentioned above, you can make coasters from old ballpoint pens using resin and a glue gun. 

The very first step you need to do is attach a couple of pens to form a pattern in a circular shape. Once your pens have been glued together, you can use polypropylene to make a container that the pens can stand in and resin can be poured into.

To make the container cut a circle of polypropylene for the bottom of the container. Once you have made a circle, you can use a glue gun to attach polypropylene around the edge of the ring while making sure that your container is deep enough that the pens will be able to stand inside.

Once your container is ready, simply place the pens inside and fill the space in the container with clear resin. Once the epoxy has dried, you will have a cylindrical shape of resin with pens standing in the middle. You will need to cut the cylinder into half an inch thick circles.

Once you have made enough coasters, you can sand and polish the coasters to make them look even better. For an example of how this should look, look here.

Using Pens To Make A Plant Pot:

If you are looking to decorate some of the plant pots you have in your home, you can always use some old pens to do this. By cutting your pen casings into tiny pieces and sticking them to a plant’s pot, you can make a very colorful and esthetically pleasing pot plant holder.

You could even use different pen colors for various rooms if you wish. You can also make pot plants match the theme of your rooms by using similar colors and patterns that already appear in the house.


You can do many things with old ballpoint pens instead of simply disposing of them. If you are creative or enjoy working with your hands, old ballpoint pens can give you something to do while allowing you to create art for your house. It is always important to remember to recycle what you do not use.

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