Upcycle Your Home with Style
Dan Levenson August 28, 2020
Take another look at your recycling bin. Reconsider hiring someone to haul away items you are tired of, bored with, and simply take up space. The Age of Upcycling has arrived, and savvy citizens are finding creative new ways to use their throwaways. Upcycled home decor items are spot-on for the shabby chic style that hit the scene in the 1980s and is now known for its coziness, comfort, style.
If you have an old window, or find one at a garage sale, imagine it hanging on one of your walls. Could it be a picture frame? A place to display an interesting mixture of fabrics? A shadowbox for a collection of relatively flat items such as dried flowers and waxed leaves? You may have to paint the frame, but the original one can be interesting because of its obvious age and weathering. If it is a single pane window, visualize it framing a painting of an interior scene. It will appeal to the window peeper in all of us. Or, frame an outdoor scene. You can have an ocean beach in your Midwest dwelling.
Buying a new rake does not mean you have to throw the old, rusty one out. Hang it in the garage and use it to store tools so they are in plain sight and not lurking in a toolbox you have to rummage through. Or take that old rake inside, turn it upside down and see how practical — and unexpectedly stylish — it can be. Put it beside the front door and use it to hang coats, shopping bags, and keys. Put it in the kitchen for dishrags and potholders. Nail it to the wall in a bedroom for colorful storage of items that get lost in the closet such as ties and scarves, even long necklaces. In a child’s bedroom, a rake hook is sturdy enough for backpacks.
As for that old, wire tomato cage, bring it inside, pot and all, and use those old clothespins to attach mittens, washcloths and wet rags, and anything else that needs rooms to dry. In a bedroom, use it to attach socks by pairs to save searching through drawers for matching socks. (No, the dryer does not eat them.) Add a low, green plant to the pot. Anything dripping will simply water the plant.
Mason jars, any glass jars, are finding new life as candle holders, vases, desk organizers, toothbrush holders, party tumblers, dessert containers, herb planters, even chandeliers. As for that old cutlery, which is fairly bendable, turn the utensils into hooks and drill a hole for each into an old plank of wood. Hang it in the kitchen for utensils you use frequently but tend to get lost in drawers. Or hang a collection of antique or unusual utensils for visual interest.
As for furniture, a boring bookcase can become an haute hutch with a coat of paint and wallpaper. Put your colorful collections and treasures on the shelves. Use old wooden shutters to make cabinet doors. Wood crates do not have to be scrapped. They can be stacked in infinite configurations for a humble storage unit in the mudroom or a classy storage area behind a sofa. Consider the possibility of making an entertainment center out of crates or using crates beneath a large screen TV. All you need to create furniture out of crates are large binder clips.
If you’re thinking of tossing an old chest of drawers, consider turning it into a storage and food prep space. Paint it to look good in your kitchen, add castors so you can roll it around, and screw on a towel bar or two. If the handles are too battered, try replacing them with leather belts.
Upcycling is limited only by your imagination. If you have difficulty thinking of a new use for an old item, search online. Hundreds of ideas are added every day. You may want to add yours!
No matter how you decorate your home or business, we know you love your place. Please contact us for affordable ways to protect your dream.