It’s time to bring a new look to your home, but maybe you’d like to do it in an environmentally conscious way. Luckily, there are several ways to reuse, recycle, and upcycle items from elsewhere to create beautiful new furniture, decorations, and fixtures. Review the following recycling ideas for home décor and commit to bringing beauty to your living space without hurting Mother Nature.
Reclaimed Wood Furniture
Love trees? Reclaimed wood furniture helps bring a second life to long-gone trees by reusing lumber from old buildings fences and other structures. Reclaimed wood furniture dealers go out into the world searching for soon-to-be-demolished buildings, collapsing barns, closed factories, immense warehouses, and other buildings built in the past century. Older buildings were constructed from old-growth forests, which means you can use woods that can no longer be harvested. Reclaimed wood is strong and sturdy, and it has plenty of character as well.
If you’re handy at bricklaying or working with mortar, reuse all your glass or plastic bottles in uniquely beautiful bottle walls inside or outside your home. First, save many bottles in many different colors or just one color. The number you need depends upon the size of the project—some folks build walls; others build buildings—so calculate one bottle brick for every two inches. Clean and strip the labels from the bottles, use a tile saw to cut them in half, then tape two bottle bottoms together as one brick. Then, start laying and stacking. Binding material can be mortar, cement, adobe, plaster, clay, joint compound, or stucco. When it solidifies, sunlight streaming in or an electric light shining behind the walls can create a beautiful effect. And almost any heavy glass item works as glass brick, too!
Plastic Caps and Other Items
Plastic is the bane of the environment. Used once and then throw away, it takes literally thousands of years for it to break down. While isn’t quite a permanent solution, upcycling plastic at least takes it out of the ecosystem for a little while. Naturally, you don’t want stacks of plastic in your house. However, plastic-colored container caps make a wonderful media for producing murals and mosaics, whether as a kid’s project or an installation in your basement. You can nail or glue caps in place and hang them on the wall. Let your imagination soar with other plastic items and a tube of epoxy.
Renewing Old Furniture
When considering recycling ideas for home décor, know that you don’t need to get rid of what you already have. If your furniture or hardware looks a bit banged up or tacky, give it a new lease on life. Sometimes, a good sanding, new upholstery, and a few coats of paint can add charm and usefulness to an old piece. Refinish and repaint a small bookshelf to store shoes in the foyer. Sand and repaint an old window to turn it into a picture frame. The possibilities are endless.