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Easy upcycling ideas for your home

By Laura Anderson

As a homeowner, or even if you’re living in rental properties, chances are you’ve accumulated a lot of stuff over the years. This ‘stuff’ almost appears out of nowhere, and could consist of old clothes, broken bits of furniture or things you’ve inherited from friends and family members. 

Instead of having a big clean out and throwing the majority of these items away, you could reuse, or ‘upcycle’, them.

What’s upcycling?

Upcycling is a global trend that has blown up in recent years. It’s similar to recycling, but you’re actually re-purposing an item so that it can be used for something better.

It’s an inexpensive way of using an object that you might have otherwise thrown out, and giving it a new function or purpose.

Whether you’re the owner of a slice of real estate or simply a renter, there are many easy upcycling ideas that you can undertake at home. Here are three ideas to help you get started:

Retro suitcase storage

Got a few vintage suitcases lying around that you don’t know what to do with? Don’t get rid of them – upcycle them instead! Depending on the size, these could make fantastic and retro-looking tables. Simply screw some legs into a hard base at the bottom, touch up the suitcase with some gloss paint and you’ve got a unique hallway or guest bedroom table. Of course, this will only work for hard-shell suitcases.

Retro suitcases are also good for storing smaller items in attic spaces or spare rooms. They’re easily movable and can be stacked on top of one another for convenience.

If you’ve got a furry friend or two, you could even turn the suitcase into a pet bed. Remove any sharp parts, grab a nice, comfy, colour cushion and screw some legs on the bottom.

Glass jar or bottle lighting

Glass bottles and jars are something that we always seem to have plenty of. If you’ve got some fun-shaped or coloured bottles, this idea will be great for you to do with the kids.

Creating bottle lamps is super simple – all you need are some fairy lights and a decent sized jar or bottle. Make sure you take off any labelling and given the bottle or jar a good wash. After that, simply gather all of the fairy lights into the jar or bottle. Leave the top off and connect the lights to a power outlet and you’ve got a table lamp!

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