10 Cool Upcycling Ideas You Never Thought Of

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Everyday we encounter countless objects that serve their purpose and are then discarded … but couldn’t they be used for something else? Absolutely. Knowing this, we’ve compiled a list of some cool and creative up-cycling ideas – everyday objects that have been transformed into another.

1. Duct tape wallets

Of all of its wonderful qualities, the durability of duct tape is one of its greatest assets and, because men have a tendency to be ultra tough on their billfolds, it makes perfect sense that duct tape wallets have come to be. Of course, most anyone can make these things at home but a shout out to db clay for being a trailblazer in this up-cycled industry with their unmatched duct tape wallets and their screen-printed gaffers tape wallets.

 

 

2. Beer can bracelets

The combination of beer and bracelets doesn’t necessarily seem like an obvious pairing but as you can see in the picture below, it just makes sense. By repurposing any beer or soda can, one can create a pretty radical accessory for a matter of pennies – just make sure to properly bevel the jagged tin edges for safety sake! Learn more at green upgrader.

 

3. Light bulb candles

When your old-styled light bulbs finally burn out, have no fear; an up-cycled source of light is here! Yep, you no longer have to throw away your shorted bulbs because they can easily become an extremely unique and useful fixture in your home, as they’ll provide lighting in a new kind of way.

 

4. Bike Tire Bags

Although rubber is a highly prolific product in our world of manufacturing, once its purpose has passed, it’s nothing but landfill filler. That said, it’s great to see that some creative individuals have put it to work a second time – by using the deflated inner tubes from bike tires and weaving them together, as you can see, a pretty cool little purse or handbag can live on.


5. Shipping Container Housing

This is one we’ve seen before, but must be added to this list on the basis of coolness. As a massive departure from some of the smaller household trinkets and up-cycled fashion accessories, industrial shipping containers are now being re-purposed to create some rather hip new living and office spaces. Brilliant. What would otherwise be a total waste of space and materials has recently become a funky use of space. This idea just doesn’t get old.


6. Bottle Cap Mosaic

Not that bottle caps are the biggest burden on our landfills but ever little bit helps, right? Regardless, we thought this bottle cap mosaic was a very creative way to up-cycle an item that would otherwise be trash, while adding some playful color and quirky design to your home.

7. Wine Cork Chair:

Although the Surgeon General might counsel against drinking the amount of wine it might take to construct a chair like this, we thought it was pretty creative nonetheless. If you can save a couple corks a week and ask your friends to do the same, you just might have enough corks to craft your chair in a couple years’ time.

 


8. Board Bench

While the alcohol related crafts above might suggest that your only hobby is drinking, here’s a clever way to turn your recreational hobby into a functional fixture within your home. Whether you’re a skateboarder, snowboarder or a surfer, any of your old boards can be up-cycled into something that will show your guests exactly what you’re about.

9. Credit Card Guitar Picks

If you’re lucky enough to have paid off your debt and are in the position to cut up your credit cards, consider your shapes. Yep, rather than shredding the plastic card into tiny little strips, these cards are a prime material to be up-cycled and reused for guitar picks. Think about it, what better way to stick it to the man!?

 

10. Rug Dish

If you have any old rugs, mats or carpeting lying around, you might want to pay attention to this idea (rather than throw them away). While this variety of dish will not do the best job at containing liquids, it’s a cool and creative display for fruits, your keys or any other inanimate object that you’d like to store or display.

 

Of course, we recognize that there are endless ideas when it comes up-cycling but we hope you’ve enjoyed this intimate list of cool and creative up-cycling ideas. Remember, beauty is in the eye of the beholder so get creative!

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Comments

  1. Nan Fischer says:

    I love all of these!!!!

  2. Ben says:

    I remember seeing most of this stuff back in the 80′s.

  3. Amanda says:

    Seen and done half of this stuff. Literally. But, nonetheless, all still good ideas.

  4. eva says:

    In what way are the duct tape wallets upcycled if you have to buy new duct tape (plastic, oil-based) to make them? You can hardly make them out of duct tape you have ripped off from some previous use, can you?

  5. Amanda says:

    i think there’s a problem if you have enough wine corks to make a chair….

  6. Rob Jones says:

    That you’re out of wine? ;-)

  7. Rob Jones says:

    Good point, Eva! I guess I just thought that was kind of cool. I was distracted by the cool.

  8. Petra says:

    I would like the skaters to get involved with upcycling their boards to promote going green. Any other skateboard ideas?

  9. Andrea says:

    Thanks for sharing these innovative projects. My favorite is the handbag.
    I shared your article on my Twitter feed and on my blog.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] of up-cycled products becoming garden sheds, this unit might not be as eccentric as a re-purposed bow of a boat, however, [...]

  2. [...] work, they become garden clothes, and eventually they become rags. Give old items a new purpose by upcycling. Find a second (and third!) use for everything that comes into your [...]

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