Upcycling is just a new way to say, “Waste not, want not” or “Use what you have”. In older days it was common practice to use everything and to use it over and over. When items were used, another use was soon found for them. Things were saved, because as my husband would say, “You never know when you might need that”.
Our grandmothers and grandfathers saved everything: old jars, small wood pieces, fabric and ribbon scraps, and more. I remember many times searching through my grandmother’s button jar or ribbon scraps. She let us learn to hand-sew with scraps, and we thought it was the best thing ever! There’s nothing better than a doll dress made from scraps!
Think about the hours of entertainment that can be found in a bag of empty toilet paper rolls. Egg cartons are famous for childhood crafting projects. And, what toddler won’t love playing and creating make-believe worlds with a few cardboard boxes.
Upcycling can be as primitive or sophisticated as the imagination of the creator. Because many of us don’t have an upbringing with a resourceful grandmother, it’s helpful to learn from those who have had practical experience. And, for the artistic endeavor, there are tons of ideas to be found on blogs all over. I’m sharing some of my favorites in this post.
So, if you haven’t already, start saving all those jars, scraps, and little objects. Then, get creative! You can create things with your husband’s help, your grandchildren’s eager hands, or a group of friends. Let’s learn to recycle things in a new, fun, and practically frugal way!
@2020, copyright Lisa Ehrman