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Upcycling Guide

Fri 13 November 2015

Upcycling Guide

Upcycling has taken the nation by storm over the last few years.  It’s a great way to re-use and recycle old unwanted items that is kind to the environment and could save you, or even make you, a bit of money.  If you like the sound of Upcycling but aren’t sure where to start, here are a few hints and tips on projects for beginners.

Start Small

First of all, don’t launch into a huge project if you’ve never tried anything like this before.  Upcycling can take some patience and attention to detail, so it might be best to see how much you enjoy it on a smaller project first. Pinterest is full of great ideas for beginner’s projects; from reinventing old lampshades to what to do with unwanted clothes. 

Use what you already have

It’s a good idea to look around your home and see what you have to hand that you might like to work with.  Do you have some bedside tables that could do with a new lease of life or maybe some lampshades or curtains that are looking a bit dated? Using things you already have in your home will save you a bit of money and a bit of time. If you want to start from scratch with something you don’t already own then sites like Gumtree or eBay are great places to look as they often have bargains on clothes or furniture.

What type of project would you like to do?

Next, think about the type of Upcycling project you’d like to do, and think about what your skills are.  If you’re not great at sewing then don’t start with a re-upholstery piece, but if you’re a dab hand with a paintbrush look for something that involves painting.  Upcycling often sounds like it has to be a massive project, but sometimes it could be something small like tuning glass bottles into cups or candle holders.  Doing a bit of research and planning before you start will hopefully make your Upcycling project a lot more enjoyable.

Think seasonally

We’re well into the autumn now, so why not think of projects which will be useful and fun during autumn and winter.  This could be making scarves and hats out of old clothes or making candle holders to add to the warm, cosy atmosphere of winter.  If you want to be really organised, you could start looking at projects you could give as Christmas gifts or turn into Christmas decorations – here are some great examples.


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