Test Strip Art

Back in the summer I was having a little fun bemoaning the trail of all those used test strips that seems to follow me everywhere I go. Well, a number of you got all over my case for not being more organized, by planting some strategic “TS repositories” around the house. So guess what? I took your advice. And here’s what’s come of it:

The Kitchen Repository:



The Upstairs Repository:



My 10-year-old’s Artistic Take on What To Do with Them:


(I swear the motif was her idea! Sagacious kids these days…)

More Test Strip Art (from the literal art movement)


Now I must admit we didn’t count them all up, but there must be about $1,500 worth of test strips here. Anybody interested in purchasing some framed TS Art wall prints? Maybe I should sell them on eBay.


24 Responses

  1. Albert
    Albert November 16, 2007 at 9:15 am | | Reply

    I wonder if you can calculate the total amount of blood that was used in all those strips!

  2. Nelson
    Nelson November 16, 2007 at 9:23 am | | Reply

    I see you are using a FreeStyle meter, while you seemed fairly enamored with the OmniPod during a DiabetesHealth intervew some time ago. As a parent of a fairly new 10 yr old T1, I’m always curious how public presentation of diabetes translates into actual personal choices and living day to day. Any thoughts to help us with. Thanks.

    P.S. I love the art, and I would think some might be worth quite a bit at a charity auction.

  3. Elinor
    Elinor November 16, 2007 at 10:23 am | | Reply

    Really creative. I love it!!!

  4. Scott K. Johnson
    Scott K. Johnson November 16, 2007 at 1:01 pm | | Reply

    Wow! It is AMAZING how many test strips build up!

    Mine are all over everywhere. Even found some (that means more than one) at the bottom of the locker I usually use at the YMCA!

    I think it’s about time for another contest…

  5. Sarah
    Sarah November 16, 2007 at 2:37 pm | | Reply

    LOVE it! Lol! I have to get me one of those “repositories”. I currently have one test strip stuck to my cell phone, and another 5 under my pillow (it’s the best place to keep my tester for those 3 am “I think I’m low” tests).

    It makes me shrudder to think about how much money we spend just to LIVE…our piles of test strips reflect that.

    Thanks for making me feel “normal” for once. :)

  6. Linda B.
    Linda B. November 16, 2007 at 2:52 pm | | Reply

    I would try Ebay just for the fun of it. People bid and pay for string, dryer lint, and all other kinds of crazy things. heck, you might generate enough income to pay for more test strips. give it a whirl.

  7. mcityrk
    mcityrk November 16, 2007 at 4:59 pm | | Reply

    Hi Amy–

    Why not send one of the strip artwork prints to Dr. Kahn at the ADA?? Maybe he would put it on ebay to round up some contributions??


  8. sue
    sue November 16, 2007 at 10:02 pm | | Reply

    Not to be a pain, but creative as the artwork is, it is still contaminated by blood products and should be in a sealed container for safe disposal–sorry, it’s the nurse in this diabetic, just can’t think outside the strip container. Sue

  9. Michelle
    Michelle November 17, 2007 at 6:30 am | | Reply

    ok, when people start putting their used tissues in a “contamination” place then I’ll be on board with Sue’s comments.

  10. AmyT
    AmyT November 17, 2007 at 9:09 am | | Reply

    OMG, Sue, you do know I was KIDDING about selling them on eBay, right?

    When in doubt, you can assume I’m being sarcastic here ;)

  11. whimsy2
    whimsy2 November 17, 2007 at 4:19 pm | | Reply

    Well, I think it’s a cool idea; making art out of used strips. Contamination? No one’s going to get AIDs from test strips! So why not?

  12. Amylia
    Amylia November 18, 2007 at 7:09 am | | Reply

    awesome! this post made me laugh. i hate the little test strips, which is stupid b/c they are such a part of our lives, but I can’t stand finding the strays everywhere. they gross me out, and my battle with them is always lost. oh well.

  13. JasonJayhawk
    JasonJayhawk November 18, 2007 at 11:57 am | | Reply

    The FreeStyle strips claim to need 0.3 microliters of blood, but we all know how we need to milk more than that out, so let’s say that Amy is really good at just squeezing just a little more than she needs: 0.5 microliters.

    If she has just over $1,500 worth of strips, we can guesstimate that she probably has about 1600 test strips laying around.

    1600 strips * 0.5 microliters = 0.8 milliliters of blood.

    Wow, that’s not much! Thank goodness for diabetes technology!

  14. Charles
    Charles November 18, 2007 at 1:34 pm | | Reply

    I put mine in empty water bottles, but you have so much more creativity.

  15. Rachel
    Rachel November 18, 2007 at 6:09 pm | | Reply

    Reminds me that we should really take a picture of our repository from the recent road trip!

  16. madeline
    madeline November 18, 2007 at 8:50 pm | | Reply

    I love you, love your blog but this is like a collage made of used Band-Aids, no?

  17. AmyT
    AmyT November 18, 2007 at 9:32 pm | | Reply

    Yup. See above about the KIDDING part, Madeline.

    Geez, did anybody really think of selling anything made of USED test strips on eBay? Hmmm, I guess stranger things have happened :)

  18. Dave
    Dave November 19, 2007 at 10:07 am | | Reply

    I’m almost embarrassed to ask this…but after reading all this it’s made me think that just tossing the TS and the (protected) lancet, wrapped in a tissue or paper towel, in the trash is a big no-no or worse. Am I wrong?

  19. mollyjade
    mollyjade November 19, 2007 at 12:06 pm | | Reply

    Dave, I think a healthcare employee would tell you that used test strips are a biohazard and should be disposed of carefully. But I think any person with diabetes would tell you that in practice that’s not likely to happen. When you’re testing multiple times a day and in multiple locations, you’re lucky if they all make it to the trash.

    You might want to be a little more careful with that lancet than with the used test strip. Most communities have rules about how to dispose of “sharps,” or lancets and syringes. Where I live, I’m supposed to put them in a hard container like an empty milk or soda bottle and seal the container well before I throw it out. You should be able to find guidelines for your city on the city’s Web site under trash removal.

  20. Suzi
    Suzi November 20, 2007 at 1:04 pm | | Reply

    I love them. But do you know about Zoe Darling? She’s an artist with Type 1 whose art will probably flip Sue out what with the whole “biohazard” thing and all.

    http://www.zoedarling.com for more info…

    Look for “Daily Pricks” in the Gallery part. Anyway, enjoy. And get going on your artistic career. :-)

  21. Brian
    Brian November 25, 2007 at 6:35 pm | | Reply

    This got me to thinking that I usually worry over the contamination factor of the lancet, I hardly ever think about the strip. Probably need to start thinking about disposing of those more carefully. Anyway, got a nice laugh out of the art, especially the waste one.

  22. Phil
    Phil November 27, 2007 at 11:20 pm | | Reply

    This is awesome, never seen anything like this before!!!

    I think you should definitely sell it on ebay

  23. Cesar
    Cesar December 5, 2007 at 11:51 am | | Reply

    Amy I think people think that you should really sell that on eBay. You could make good money. :) lol Think about it. Cesar

  24. Stick Me Designs
    Stick Me Designs April 9, 2008 at 6:52 pm | | Reply

    Hi Amy, I know this is an old post but I thought it was something that people are looking for ways to dispose of those strips most times. I had another idea for when you’re out on the go. Check the blog and see, :)

    I too like your Ebay idea* *wink*

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