Home Trust Blog

5 fantastic upcycling ideas for your life at home

Photo of a dresser upcycled as a plant holder

Upcycling, or the practice of taking an unwanted item from your home and re-purposing it into something useful, can help you design a one-of-a-kind creation. But more importantly, it can help divert waste that would otherwise end up in a landfill. It’s one way you can contribute to a sustainable future without even leaving the house. According to Statistics Canada, the total solid waste disposal per person decreased from 768 to 688 kilograms between 2002 and 2016. That’s a result of our concerted efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle!

To help get you started on an upcycling adventure, we selected five projects that are relatively easy to do, make use of materials that you are already likely to have in your home, and can serve a functional purpose once they are completed.

Shelf storage

Before and after photo of a coffee creamer container upcycled for pantry storage
Source and right photo credit: Frugelegance.com

The spout of coffee creamer containers lets you neatly pour dry goods, and in-store refills allow you to skip the plastic bags.

Many pantry items come in plastic bags that don’t withstand the test of time. Coffee creamer or other liquid containers provide you with a spout, allowing you to pour out dry goods like rice or popcorn kernels neatly. If you purchase these staples from a store that permits you to bring reusable containers, you can skip the plastic bag altogether.

Plastic baskets

Photo of plastic bags and a upcycled wastepaper basket made from plastic bags
Source and right photo credit: instructables.com

Get lots of life out of plastic shopping bags with braided baskets. Some assembly required!

While many of us employ reusable solutions for shopping, everybody forgets sometimes, and due to COVID-19, many stores are not currently allowing reusable bags. With a supply of plastic bags and even rudimentary braiding skills, you can turn those bags into a wastepaper or storage basket for your home.

Glasses case sewing kit

Glasses case and upcycled sewing kit made from a glasses case
Source and right photo credit: Super Mom – No Cape

Your old eyeglass case is the perfect size for a mini DIY sewing kit with everything you need for a quick fix!

New glasses usually come with a new case. Use the old one to keep the tools you need for a small sewing project (scissors, needles, commonly used thread colours, etc.) in one place when you need to make a quick fix while at home or away!

Dresser drawer container garden

A dresser and an upcycled container garden
Learn how to make it here: hipgirlshome.com

An old dresser can get a new life in the garden when you take a little time to paint and prepare it.

Container gardening is a great way to grow fresh herbs and vegetables in a small space. Repurposing an old dresser or nightstand can give you a great place to get started without spending a lot of money. If you’re interested in more ideas for gardening in a small space, visit our recent post on the subject.

Bookcase wardrobe for babies and toddlers

Bookcase and an upcycled bookcase as a baby wardrobe
Learn how to make it here: homehacks.co

An old bookcase provides storage space for baby and toddler clothes, letting you keep the closet for yourself a little longer.

Children’s clothes are so small, and it seems a shame to give up a whole closet they won’t need for a few years. Instead, adjusting the shelves and adding a couple of tension rods to an old bookcase can give you extra storage space for many years to come.

Share your upcycling projects

There are endless possibilities for upcycling in your home, and we hope we have given you a few ideas to think about. If you decide to try one of the ideas listed here or have already completed an upcycling project for your home, we’d love to see it. Share a picture by tagging @hometrustco on social media. We look forward to seeing how you are not only getting the most out of your time at home, but doing something good for the environment, too!

Visit hometrust.ca for more ideas for your home on our blog, the latest information on the mortgage industry in Canada, and updates on our products and services.

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