One of the most fun and frugal activities when it comes to DIY for the home is upcycling furniture. It’s a trend that has really taken off in recent years and there are so many great reasons for picking up this practice. Here’s why it’s worth giving it a go.
It’s good for the environment
We live in such a ‘throw away’ society. When something breaks or is tatty, instead of repairing it we’ll throw it away and buy new. Often, people throw things away that are perfectly good just because of they no longer like the style. What this means is more material going to landfill and incinerators which damages the earth, and while some are throwing away items that are perfectly good there are others that can’t afford anything. One way that recycling can help the environment is it means one less item that’s being thrown away. You’re not going out and buying something new (produced in a factory, spewing out pollution and using fossil fuels) and helping to create more demand for them. You’re giving a new lease of life to a perfectly good item. Solid wooden furniture, for example, can pretty much last forever, why would you throw that away and buy some rubbish piece made of mass-produced chipboard instead?
You get customized, one-off pieces
When you upcycle a piece of furniture, you get a truly unique and one-off piece. If you don’t want your home to look just like everyone else’s with the same furniture items, or prefer your pieces to have a little history then what better way to go about it. Go into an antique store and haggle for a bargain or even a junk shop to find what you’re looking for. You have to have a vision here, something that looks ugly and dated initially can really be brought to life with a coat of paint and some new hardware. While you’ll want pieces that are sturdy and free of rot, some damage can be ok if you have the right tools and knowledge to fix them. Sites like straightkerfs.com have information on things like miter saws which can come in useful for all kinds of projects. Drills, sanding machines, and other tools will be handy for just about any project with wood.
Finally, as with anything creative- it’s fun! You get to learn new skills and if you’re new to upcycling it’s a chance to try something different. You have full control so you can make it perfectly match your home (or clash, depending on the look you’re going for). You can let your creative juices flow and really just have fun with it. It’s incredibly satisfying, and at the end, you have a finished item that you can cherish and really put to use.