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Upcycle your old furniture to make it look new and unique!

What is Upcycling?

It means Creative Re-use. We can transform anything that could become waste into new materials to keep them from being thrown way. Upcycling is another method to increase circular economy.This reduces your waste and extend the life cycle of your furniture.

Why Upcycle?

According to the British Heart Foundation (2019):

  • Just under a third of people (30%) have thrown away furniture, electrical items and home-wares in good enough condition that they could have been re-used, sold or donated
  • A fifth of 16-24 year old (19%) ‘don’t know’ how to recycle or donate
  • Over 55’s were far less likely to get rid of items than those age 16-24 (21% vs 45%)

There are many reasons why communities should start upcycling. Reducing waste is definitely a motivation for re-using and re-vamping your furniture. We ultimately want to lessen the amount of stuff that goes into landfills.

What Furniture Can I Upcycle?

There is no limit! If you find potential in any of your furniture, go for it! You can upcycle good furniture that you think needs a bit of touching up, where some people upcycle second hand furniture they bought.

Upcycle furniture that is durable enough to revamp. It can be any large object or something that is also small that you may have in numbers. It can be metal, wood, or plastic. 

  • Sideboards
  • Chairs
  • Tables
  • Cabinets
  • Jars
  • Containers
  • Picture Frames
  • Old Bikes

How Can I Upcycle Furniture?

There are so many ways you can upcycle your furniture.

  • Painting – If your furniture is lacking colour or maybe you can see it fading. Re-painting your furniture can make it look new and it also coats the fibres on furniture (especially wood) to protect it and make it last longer.
  • Making something new – Something broke off, split or snapped? If the main body is still in tact, don’t worry! This does not mean it is useless, it just means it is open for change.

What Can I Create?

Photo Frame to a Jewellery Holder. We upcycled an old photo frame into a jewellery holder! 

More Upcycling Ideas

Large-sized Item Ideas!

Recovered Chair. Changing the cushion and ripped fabric is not that complicated! Here is a How-To on how to revamp your chair.

Materials Needed: 

  • New foam – high density, 2″ foam
  • Adhesive glue
  • Polyester wadding
  • Fire Retardant calico
  • New fabric
  • Tools: Staple gun, staples, tack remover, hammer, wooden mallet
  • Paint (Chalk Paint is best)

What to do:

  • First, remove the drop in seat, the old foam and fabric
  • Paint the wooden structure of the chair and let it dry for a day (chair above is painted with Autentico Chalk Paint – Belgian Stone)
  • Then time to recover the seat pad. Cut the new foam and waddling to size of the drop-in seat, use an adhesive glue to fit the foam. Then add the polyester waddling on top of foam
  • Cut the fire retardant calico so this is correct size for drop in seat (keep an extra 1-2 inches to make sure you have enough). Then fit the calico by pulling and stapling at the bottom of the board. At the corners, make sure to neatly pleat/fold the brackets properly 
  • Cut the fabric so this is the correct size for the drop in seat (keep an extra 1-2 inches to make sure you have enough). 
  • Place the fabric over the calico, pull tight and staple underneath the seat 
  • Put the cushion back on the chair, and you are done!

Clothing Rack.

Materials needed:

  • Two wooden ladders
  • 4-foot wooden rod
  • Two pipe brackets
  • Two wooden planks (one about 4 ½ feet, one 4¾ feet)

What to do:

  • Paint the planks, rod, and ladder and set aside to dry.
  • Attach the planks to the bottom two sets of rungs using a drill and screws. Be sure to set the lowest shelf forward to make room for tall boots.
  • At the top of the ladder, centre the two pipe brackets on each top rung and attach with screws.
  • Slide top rod through, and you’re done!

Have you upcycled anything?

If you’ve tried your hand at upcycling, send us a photo and well add it to this page to show off your achievement and inspire others to give it a go!