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How to recycle vinyl lp's into art

Updated on July 12, 2010

A Great and Easy Art Project for your Home That Also Recycles!!

How to make old vinyl lp record albums into a piece of art!

I am going to show you a great way to recycle an unwanted vinyl lp record, one of the 33-1/3 speed, into a great piece of wall art for your home. You could even make this into a clock if you wish. I will explain the steps below: You will need-

  1. An old, large vinyl record that you no longer wish to listen to or use
  2. A bundt pan like you would cook a bundt cake in, or any shape of pan as long as it is oven proof.
  3. 1 can of spray paint, the color of your choice
  4. Acrylic paints in the colors of your choice for your design
  5. 1 can clear acrylic spray paint, either glossy or matte finish, depending on how you want yours to look. I prefer the matte or satin finish, as it seems to really let the design show through better
  6. OPTIONAL: 1 set of clockworks. These can be found at craft stores or online, and are not expensive, They come complete with the two clock hands, stick-on numbers, and the part for the back where the batteries go.

Step One

How to Begin

Take your bundt cake pan and turn it upside down from what you would use it to make a cake. Take the vinyl album and lay it on top of the bundt pan, being careful to center the record over the pan. Then turn your oven to the LOW setting for baking. Set the pan, with the record centered on top on the top shelf of your oven. As your oven is heating, the record will begin to soften and eventually droop down the sides of the cake pan in a wavy pattern. Be sure to keep a close watch while this process is going on, as it doesn't take long for the record to begin to soften and droop. You don't want the vinyl getting too hot and dripping onto the bottom of your oven.

When the record has achieved the shape that you want, VERY CAREFULLY remove the pan and record from the oven with baking mitts on both hands. To make removing the pan and record even easier, you can set them on a cookie sheet or pizza pan before putting into the oven. This makes it much easier to insert and remove and I would suggest doing it this way so you don't burn yourself, even though the temperature of the oven is on low. It is still hot enough to burn you, so be very careful.

Set the hot pans and record on a hot pad to cool. Don't remove the record from the bundt pan until completely cooled, which should take about 20-30 minutes. After the record is cooled, remove from the bundt pan, and set the record somewhere where you can safely spray the inside of your now wavy shaped record with the spray paint of your choice for the background. You can also spray the outside of the record too if you wish, or leave it black as I did. It is up to you and your preferences.

Once the background color spray paint is dry, you can paint whatever design or picture you wish on the inside of the record. I just went with some abstract squiggles, since this was an experiment, and actually, I like how it turned out. Once you are through with your design and it has dried, then spray the design (and the outside also if you chose to paint it) with the clear acrylic spray. This will protect your design, and make it semi-waterproof. If you wish to make it into a clock, you would insert the clockworks through the center hole and stick on the numbers according to the instructions that come with the clockworks. You could even leave the record flat and not melt it if you wished, then paint and seal it as I described.

Step Two

Decorating Ideas for Your New Art

These make great wall hangings, using the center hole to hang it with a nail. You could also use these for candy dishes or chip dishes at a party. They are great for a kids craft, with adult supervision, and I have even sold a couple of these I made. The great thing about art is you can do anything you wish and it is great therapy. I love to take old things and recycle them into some art form instead of throwing them away! They seem to be great conversation pieces, as everyone who comes over notices them and asks about them. I have three of them hanging on my walls now. They also make great personalized gifts, and are inexpensive to make, so get started and have a great time making your new art! Not dishwasher safe, but can be gently wiped out with a damp sponge.

If you have any questions about the process, please feel free to email me and I will help you any way I can.  I just want you to enjoy making something new out of something old!


Finished Artwork!

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    • profile image

      Dave 3 years ago

      Have you seen what can be done with cutting out old LPs?

    • profile image

      sarah 6 years ago

      I made these as a Girl Scout 55 years ago, and had forgotten about it until I saw some in an art gallery in New Mexico last month. Thanks for giving the how-to.

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 7 years ago from the short journey

      My mind is wandering over the possibilities. Have you ever tried to shape them while they are warm?

    • Laura Thykeson profile image

      Laura Thykeson 7 years ago from Central Texas

      All great ideas!!

    • profile image

      Jeannie 7 years ago

      I made these into flower pots~ complete with drain hole. I Great idea on painting them!

    • lcbenefield profile image

      lcbenefield 7 years ago from Georgia

      I've made several of these and never thought about painting them. Great hub!

    • Laura Thykeson profile image

      Laura Thykeson 8 years ago from Central Texas


      Thanks for your comment! All of the instructions that you need should be here, in this hub. If you have any further questions, contact me through my profile or post another comment.

      Have fun!

      Laura T.

    • profile image

      juliana 8 years ago

      This looks great and tons of fun too make i bet. could you tell me how to make them? my email is

    • Laura Thykeson profile image

      Laura Thykeson 8 years ago from Central Texas


      No problem! Glad you enjoyed it-Sorry for the delay in responding. I had to switch computers for some reason for my responses to comments to show up...Thanks for stopping by!

    • stefmac profile image

      stefmac 8 years ago

      Great Idea! Thanks for the directions!