Tangerine Upcycling

Do it yourself instruction

You like to eat tangerines? Then this DIY project is perfect for you!
We show you how to make sustainable decorations from tangerine peel.
The best thing is that you don't produce any waste. In fact, you'll actually be recycling garbage into beautiful winter art. As an added bonus they smell great and are perfectly suited for all sorts of decorations.

You want to learn more about sustainability?

Are the things we throw away really just waste or can they sometimes still be used?
What is sustainability and why is this topic so important?
Below you will find additional information about the (re)use of resources and links to information material that we have found online on the topic!


  • Suitable for age group: 6 years and older

  • Especially interesting for: creative minds, decorators

  • Preparation time: 10-30 min


  • You need:

  • Tangerines (or any other peelable citrus fruit)

  • Cookie cutter (preferably a smaller one)


  • Additionally useful:

  • A metal biro

  • Parcel string

  • Scissors


Step 1: Peeling your small snack properly

Try to peel your tangerine in such a way that you get the largest possible pieces of peel. This requires some sensitivity and patience. It is best to peel a little slower than normal, then it usually works well.

As a reward you get a delicious tangerine. Enjoy it.


Step 2: Cut out

Use a cookie cutter to cut out pretty shapes from the tangerine peel. Try to save space, just like when you cut something out of paper. It is best to start from the edge.

Step 3: Use for decoration

Hard to believe, but after cutting you are already done! That was fast.
In the following we have collected a few ideas and thoughts for what to do with your tangerine pieces.

Idea No. 1
A nice, simple idea is to place the cut out tangerine peels on the edge of a plate. You can also put them in a jar and they will give off their soothing scent in the room. Also on the window still or on the kitchen table your tangerine cookies will be quite an eye-catcher.

Idea No. 2
You can also make a nice garland, hang them on gifts or make small pendants from them.

Tip: How to easily cut out holes

Use a metal biro. If it is not extended, you can use the opening in the front for cutting. After cutting, it is possible that the tiny piece of peel is still stuck in the opening. You can get it out easily by extending the biro.

For threading you can use, for example, parcel string.

Of course there are no limits to your creativity, so try it out and have fun!

Maybe you are still wondering how long the whole thing will endure. Your cut out tangerine peels will dry out more and more after a few days. They'll change their appearance slightly and become hard. However, they will still look very nice and it is the drying out that will make them last for a long time!

Have fun
and go crazy!

Learn more!

We hope you enjoyed the crafting. But why is it so great that the decoration is sustainable and what does that actually mean?

What is sustainability?

The term sustainability originates from forestry and describes the principle of not cutting down more trees in a year than will regrow. This idea can be applied to all resources available to us. Roughly speaking, we should not take more than the earth can give. Unfortunately, this does not work out very well.
Therefore it is even more important that we learn to use our resources better and more carefully. By doing so, we also treat our environment with care.

Is rubbish really useless?

Not at all! In many cases, what we throw away can still be used for one purpose or another. And that's exactly what you did today with your tangerine peels! You have given something that you probably would have thrown away normally, a new, decorative function!

Why is sustainability so important?

The topic of sustainability is enormous and extensive.
It includes not only how we deal with waste (avoiding, recycling, upcycling), but also many other areas such as energy production, food and agriculture, mobility, water management and many more. But why is this so important? How we live affects our environment and that's why sustainability encompasses every aspect of our lives! Living sustainably is also climate-friendly! You contribute to the preservation of our nature.

Naturkundemuseum Bayern
Botanisches Institut
Menzinger Str. 67
80638 München, Germany


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