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Repurposing Household Items: Unique Decor Ideas for a Personal Touch

Written by:
Uliana Veremchuk

According to the Environmental Protection Agency in the United States, the average American produces 4.5 pounds of waste a day while globally, we dump 2.12 billion tons of waste every year. While some of this waste is recycled, a lot of it ends up in landfills, either in your backyard or shipped to developing countries to deal with. Reducing our waste is something that everyone should be concerned about, and up-cycling household objects is a simple way of giving old, broken, and disused goods a new purpose in life. 

Read on to discover 5 ways you can repurpose everyday household objects into creative and personalized decor. For more inspiration, check out what other homeowners have done in their apartments via this link, which showcases properties from around the globe. It’s amazing to see how a little bit of creativity can transform what would otherwise be considered “trash” into functional treasure. 

Wine bottles to garden edging

Rather than recycling your wine bottles in a kerbside bin, you can up-cycle them as a colorful garden edge by sticking them in the ground upside down. Once you have collected enough bottles for your project (and removed the labels), dig a trench roughly six inches deep along the edge of the garden bed or pathway. Then simply line up your bottles (upside down) beside one another. If you prefer, you can leave a bit of space between each bottle and just fill in the soil. 

Not only will a wine bottle edge add structure to your garden but it will sparkle magically in the sunshine!

Clothes to cleaning rags

If you’ve got old clothes that are stained or ripped and not in good enough condition to send to a thrift store, you can simply pile them under your laundry sink to be used as cleaning rags. They can be used as they are to dust, wipe and wash or you can cut them up into squares and overlock along the edges. Cotton fabrics are best for use as cleaning rags due to their absorbency while socks can simply be placed on your hands to dust. 

It’s worth leaving a couple of cleaning rags in your car in case you need to check the oil in the middle of nowhere or you want to dry a bench seat for a picnic in the park. 

Window frames to picture frames

If you’re renovating your home and end up with old windows lying around, you can repurpose them into picture frames. It takes a bit of time but is a fun DIY project that will help to preserve your family memories. 

You can leave the frame as is or strip it down, ready to be painted your color of choice, then use glazier points to secure a masonite backboard in place. You’ll also need to secure a couple of hanging hooks to the back of the frame, then all that’s left to do is add your photos! 

If the window glass is broken, you may want to consider using the frame to create a succulent-filled piece of wall art. Simply add a shadow box behind to hold a bit of soil, then add as many succulent cuttings as you please!

Chipped plates/teacups/cookware to planters

For plant lovers, you can never have enough pots, and purchasing new ones from garden centers can get expensive. But there are so many household items that can easily be up-cycled into pot plants, including plates, bowls, teacups, and cookware. Chipped china need not be thrown away when it can serve a useful purpose (and be an attractive feature) in your garden. 

Colanders make ideal hanging planters, with holes already built-in, while teacups are perfect for displaying small succulents. If there aren’t existing holes and you don’t want to screw into the base (and risk cracking the crockery), just make sure you don’t overwater your plants!

Old drawers to extra storage

The humble chest-of-drawers is going out of fashion in favor of built-in storage but that doesn’t mean you have to send your old furniture to the tip. Old drawers can be transformed into storage units that can be rolled under the bed with the addition of wheels. 

It’s a great way of storing shoes, children’s toys, or bed linen while keeping them within easy reach. When selecting your wheel height, make sure that once screwed into the base of the drawers, they will still fit neatly beneath the bed. 

Alternatively, you can up-cycle an old chest-of-drawers into a bookshelf by removing the drawers, adding new shelves, and painting it your color of choice. 

Create a one-of-a-kind home

If you’re someone who shies away from generic decor and cookie-cutter designs, then you’ll understand the appeal of repurposing old wares. It’s a rewarding way of creating a one-of-a-kind home, no matter what your budget is. 

By Liliana Alvarez

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