7 Reasons to Love Upcycling

Belinda with power tools upcycling furniture for her first pop up space7 Things I Love About Upcycling

My love for upcycling is no secret and to some in the family, it is a source of amusement while for others it's all about having fun giving life to old pieces.

I've been reading a range old novels and have come to realise that upcycling is simply our modern term for what has been done for generations over thousands of years - just think of the Time Team discovering the foundations of Roman villas and talking about how the stone was robbed out to create new buildings.

Making something useful for today from something old is a practical solution for many and a joy for others.

7 Reasons to Love Upcycling

I love upcycling because it:

  1. Is about getting out and about to hunt for particular pieces is loads of fun. We have Council Clean Up days and they are a endless source of hope and discovery but op shops are lots of fun too and your money is going to keep moving in the local community and doing good.
  2. Let's my creative spirit out to play with imagining what is possible for the discovered treasure.
  3. Gives me the perfect excuse to play and shop at the local hardware store for everything from sandpaper to paint to drill bits and everything in between.
  4. Has me dressing up in old overalls, goggles and gloves to tackle a new discovered piece of furniture.
  5. Let's me learn new skills like handling a circular saw (that was a great day!) or painting furniture as I did for my first pop up space.
  6. Is about giving a second life to something that already comes with stories, if only I could hear those stories but my imagination is exercised instead to fill in the blanks about people who have come before.
  7. Has me make something that has a healthy dose of my creativity and practicality and is sustainable and hopefully beautiful.
Handmade bird brooches and necklaces by Creatively Belle

I always tend to have something in mind to do. As I write this on my tablet I am sitting in my sunroom on a chair that is one of my favourite finds waiting to be revamped. I have the fabric for the covering already and am looking forward to doing an upholstery course. Happily it is quite a simple chair for this beginners project and I think I'm getting just about as much enjoyment thinking about what I'll do as I will have in the finished product.

As a maker I find upcycling very satisfying, recycling bits and pieces that I find in my travels must be connected somehow to that instinct to hunt and gather. It feels like it is connected to my love of gardening, growing my own veggies and herbs and maybe it is.

Whatever drives us little bower birds to get out there and gather treasures from others has me wishing I had a garage or a shed to do more!

5 Great Courses for Recyclers

Five courses that would be lots of fun to do for us recycle and upcycle girls

  1. Furniture upholstery
  2. Working with power tools
  3. Restoration skills
  4. Decorating techniques
  5. Selling online

When I was looking for chairs for the pop up business centre I found some sellers online with a creatively eclectic range of chairs, usually in groups of 10 or 12, that had been themed either by style, colour or size. These looked to be Council Clean up wooden chairs that had been given a good clean with some groupings being painted.

I loved this approach, grouping chairs together that didn't perfectly match but had similar characters and then selling them to those who didn't have the time or inclination to go hunting themselves: a wonderful form of recycling furniture.

Again I was wishing for a garage so I could set up a similar thing - a great way to make some money from doing something fun and environmentally responsible and who knows where such an endeavour could lead to? Potentially to a healthy business that brings a lot of joy?

I know upcycling isn't for everyone but for creative recyclers like myself and others it is something that we will always enjoy getting stuck into. Now what could I find to build myself a workshop?

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