Whether you’re working within a tight family budget or you just want to make your home redecoration a little more eco-friendly, choosing recycled home furnishings rather than brand-new pieces is the smart way to go. At Modernize, we know that these factors are important to homeowners.
Upcycled and vintage items can add character to the home, while DIY projects give you a sense of ownership and satisfaction with reused materials. The next time you’re thinking of redecorating your home, check out these tips for a successful recycling experience.
Before you spend hours trawling the Internet for expensive, flat-packed furniture, consider stopping by your local antique stores, yard sales, and flea markets. These places are full of hidden gems and, if you’re willing to take the time to look, you are bound to find something that will fit in with your own home decor at a fraction of the cost.
Yard sales are especially useful if you’re looking for something with little to no work required, as quite often people rush to get rid of old furniture when they’ve ordered something new or are moving house. If you check out a few sales a week and see the potential in every item, you are bound to find something to suit your own needs at home.
Some furniture and decorative items may contain unacceptable levels of lead. You can find more information and lead testing swab kits at Lead Safe America. You can actually take the kits with you to the store to be sure what you’re buying is lead-free.
If you have unused furnishings in your home but can’t bear to throw them away, consider repurposing them throughout your house. Old bookcases and dressers can be easily converted into storage units and play furniture for the children, and nearly every home has leftover wicker baskets that can double as storage space in your existing units.
Once you’ve exhausted the opportunities in your home, head out to the thrift shop or flea market for some fixer-upper pieces. With a coat of paint and some reupholstering, you can breathe new life into most items and slot them effortlessly into your living space. (Just be wary of the possibility of lead paint or other harmful materials on older pieces of furniture, which may have been used in the decorating or finishing of some pieces.)
When you feel the urge to create something new and upcycling and antiques just won’t do, consider a DIY project using recycled materials. Local businesses almost always have old pallets lying around, and the Internet is full of ideas for furniture made from recycled pallets.
Other reclaimed wood works just as well for DIY tables, chairs, shelves, and beds; get creative by using weathered barn wood or repurposed doors for extra effect. Adding iron piping to tabletops and shelving units gives your home a rustic, industrial feel and is a relatively easy DIY project. Other unconventional materials such as cardboard, used plastics, and even tree branches have all been used to successfully create one-of-a-kind, alternative furnishings.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to recycling materials for your home; the only limit is your imagination. Once you’ve decided what you’re looking for, it’s time to get scavenging!
- How to Furnish Your Home with Vintage & Upcycled Finds - September 28, 2015