The Art of Upcycling

We live in a time in which people have become increasingly aware of waste, and, how to reduce it as much as possible. Recycling has helped immensely, but there is another, creative way that we can help even further: upcycling!

What is upcycling? Unlike recycling, which breaks consumer products down to their basic elements for transformation into a variety of NEW PRODUCTS: upcycling has you keep or find existing products and refashion or decorate them, giving them a NEW PURPOSE.

And, it’s FUN! A great way to be creative and bring the family together with a project.

One classic example of upcycling is a tire swing. Instead of  tossing the busted tire into the garbage, drill a few holes, hang it up and give kids hours of enjoyment.

When you upcycle, you’re not only helping to reduce the amount of waste in our landfills, you’re also reducing the amount of time, energy and water used to break down materials in the recycling process.

Here are a few ideas to get you started thinking about what you could upcycle:

  • Clean and paint up an old metal trash can and turn it into a unique, outdoor flower pot.
  • Take an old dresser and turn it into a nice, decorative entertainment stand.
  • Child outgrow their crib? Convert it into a desk for art or a new bench.
  • Have some memorable old t-shirts? Turn them into a quilt.
  • Embellish an old wine bottle, creating a unique vase or centerpiece.

The possibilities for upcycling are endless. Try doing a Google search or browse Pinterest and you’re bound to find thousands of cool, interesting upcycling ideas for any skill level. And, with spring being the time for yard sales and spring cleaning, you never know what treasures you will find!