Image courtesy of AlicePennors / Wikimedia Commons
Upcycling is an offshoot of recycling. However, rather than simply reusing an item or its ingredients, an upcycled article morphs into a thing of beauty or practicality - better than what it was originally.
Have you ever tried upcycling anything - or have seen some cool examples of what other people have done?
I am not very arty but I do like a good re-use of things like butter containers for seedlings and such. I collected a whole pile of plates and hung them on my wall in an abstract pattern and felt quite clever for a minute. I was in an antique type of store where they did a lot of upcycling and the most fascinating thing there was a piano body hung on the wall and turned into shelves - it was wonderful . . !
I have seen examples of such things at the markets. I have seen those beautiful cake stands that Jonaj described. I have also seen flattened beer cans made into clocks and wind chimes. I have also seen jewellery made of old bits and bobs, and bags and wallets made from old jeans. I have also seen old records used as clocks and wind chimes. Some jewellery made out of old sheet music. Beautiful !!! Some people have great imaginations, I'm envious !!
I saw the most delightful idea on Pinterest and you have jogged my memory. It was a wine bottle with a page from an old book pasted onto it to make it look very old. It was just lovely and would be a sweet gift. I can just imagine receiving a nice bottle of wine and reading a page from Emma or Sense and Sensibility. Nice.
I have seen old wine bottles squashed down to make delightful cheeseboards, Rice. Lots of interesting things at markets. I saw a lady painting with coffee. The most delightful pictures of animals. I love tigers and leopards. She captured the light and shade so well, with simple coffee 🍵
Yes. I do it a lot. Turn old jeans into gardening aprons or use nice paper on tin cans to hold pens, brushes etc in my studio, a plastic bottle cut down to become a pet food scoop.I picked up an old chest of drawers that had busted drawers, from the side of the road. The feet are decorative and the top plain. It is mounted on my wall upside down as shelves. I cover the boxes my tea bags come in and use as drawers for my bits and pieces. They are the bottom four in my picture. I constantly assess anything that is getting thrown out for it's potential as something else.
I've tie dyed clothing to cover stains (like on baby onesies) or just because I didn't like the colour. I use yogurt pots and jar lids when crafting (as water containers and glue dishes respectively) with the kids. Just basic stuff like that. A friend of the family turned some old adult clothes into gorgeous clothes for my kids (little pairs of trousers out of old shirts). I envy her skill.
Heh I don't use the yoghurt tubs for water when the kids paint, or that happens to them too. Paint is a little better if it's acrylic or something because it weighs it down a bit. Jar lids work well for glue because they're flat so you can't tip them over. I put a bit of craft glue on them and give the kids a q tip to apply it with. Heaps less messy than them squeezing glue everywhere from the bottle.
From a child, until in my 20's, I would make Note Books from leftover feint-ruled exercise books, or Diaries'. Cut paper to size wanted. The cover would be cardboard, decorated with a pretty picture from front of an old card. Two holes atop, thread with used ribbon.
Used to cover tins with wallpaper from 'sample books'. Mostly used to store pencils, & Biro's, but also could be a Vase, spoon holders in Kitchen, scissors, leather punch, ruler holders. The uses' would be endless!
I did enjoy this 'hobby', but then life, read: husband, & home, then kids', took priority.
Nowadays, I just use small, out-of-date Diaries', for my shopping lists.
I use the small Masterfoods mustard jars with the red lids, for dried fruits & nuts. I use the fruits & nuts diced up on my 3 Wheat Biscuits (from Aldi's) every morning.I use all of our old envelopes for writing notes onto, & for writing out online recipes. I now think these are re-cycled, not up-cycled; I mean what i've been doing!