There is a growing movement to buy second-hand and recycle, upcycle, reuse and recreate! At Rumage we are passionate about giving old items a new life. We believe that second-hand should be a way of life and there should be fewer disposable items bought, less new mass-produced items filling our homes and a little more sparkle in life. We’ve been looking about for ideas we can all have a go at and here are some of what we’ve found and tried out. Some are ideal for personalised and unique gifts, others are interesting ideas for pieces that will make your home sing and give it a twist that no one else has.
Vases and Jars
Most of us keep interesting jars and bottles to use another day – often they just sit in a cupboard waiting. But, why not use them if you want to create a country-themed scheme? Small interesting shaped vases and jars are easy to upcycle, the perfect gift that can add a decorative touch to the home. Wrap your glass items with twine, old lace or sheer fabrics then use a glue gun to secure loose ends. Fill with flowers from the garden or faux flowers to creative a unique and pretty look. Something the kids can do easily with a little glue help.
Give a lamp a face-lift
As the nights draw in lamp light is a lovely way to soften the evening rather than the overhead lights always being on. Make sure your home stays bright and beautiful with a a new lamp – that you have created. You can get kits to recover a lampshade with fabric or use any that you have we used this video to help us make-over an existing shade. If you have a painted turned-wood base you can easily change the colour with chalk paint so it matches (or clashes) with the shade.
Make seed packets a feature
A positive of lock-down was that Britons got back the in the garden. I found some beautiful seed packets that were just too wonderful to bin after the planting was over. A lovely idea for your home or for a special gift is to frame them and make a display. I also found some photos of vintage seed packets online or you can frame up new ones by simply neatening off edges or using pinking shears. Next all you do is mount them on card before popping into your chosen frame. Match the frame to the seed packet style for some chic ideas.
Or you can use interesting fabrics or wallpapers to create an eye-catching feature – again a cute gift. Position your fabric or wallpaper in the frame (make sure to use the best part of the repeat) and hey presto – you’re done. Use different fabrics in the same colourway to creative an impactful and different wall – a talking point in the room.
Using old crockery
We all have odd bits of crockery knocking about so why not give it a new life – even if it’s chipped. One idea it to drop some gravel in the bottom, add some compost, then re-home a favourite houseplant. Herbs are ideal to pot in miss-matched teacups – often a steel in a charity shop if you don’t have any. Arrange them on the windowsill for a display that’s both practical and pretty. As a gift they are perfect and they save you money and wasted herbs – who doesn’t want a pretty herb garden?
Another lamp idea is to use an old silver coffee pot and wire it up for a fantastic lamp that no-one else has. You might need electrical help for this one but you have the ideas and ask others to help make them possible.
You can have so much fun turning old into new. Little projects that are fun to do, can be used for gifts and above all add that little sparkle to your home. Using Rumage you might just find that next upcycling project!