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Upcycling is becoming more and more popular as people are realizing just how eco-friendly it is. Reusing and finding new purposes for old items is a great way to preserve the environment.

Recycling is important, obviously. But upcycling takes it one step further by avoiding the extra energy and resources used in the recycling process.

According to, “Upcycling is an even greener way of recycling…It’s all about taking disposable things and creating something useful from them.”

All you need is a little creativity. So to get you thinking, I gathered a few of my favorite ideas. Hopefully they will inspire you!

  • Repurpose an old sweater into a cute throw pillow. First cut the arms and the collar area off. Then sew and stuff the sweater squares, and there you go! You have a new throw pillow for your family room couch. You could even use the remaining sweater sleeves to make a pair of leg warmers.

  • Take an old furniture item and make it into a new piece! You can repurpose an old bookshelf into a little girl’s dress up closet or turn an old coffee table into a bench. You can even use a crib mattress to create a cozy daybed!

  • Spray paint aluminum soda cans or glass mason jars to make flower vases. If you want a more decorative look, use metallic spray paint.

  • We all have that pair of shrunk jeans thanks to too many laundry cycles. Instead of getting rid of them, cut them into shorts. You can also use the extra denim pieces to create other objects, like change purses or even dog toys. Use your imagination!

As you can see, there are endless ways to repurpose used items to avoid throwing them out or recycling them. When it comes to upcycling, the sky is the limit. So take the time to find new uses for objects. The environment will thank you!

Source: (2011, February 4). Why Upcycle? Retrieved from