Today’s sustainability culture is (rightly) taking over the world. From reducing, reusing and recycling waste to lowering carbon emissions, sustainability is the biggest movement across the globe right now.
One element of this movement that continues to gain popularity is ‘upcycling’. The aim of this process is essentially to take an old, damaged or disused item and transform it into something of higher use or value. Upcycling is particularly appropriate for household furniture, especially as Brits have been shown to throw away a staggering 22 million units per year. Considering this, there is massive potential for furniture upcycling, both as a way to save money and reduce waste.
What furniture can I upcycle?
The great thing about upcycling is that it gives you complete freedom to create, fix or modify anything you want. Whether you have an old cabinet that could benefit from some new hinges and a fresh coat of paint, or a coffee table that could be modified and repurposed as a TV stand – you are free to express yourself creatively and come up with innovative solutions for your own needs.
As with any DIY project, you will need some basic items to help your cause. Read on to find out some essential items to help you get started.
What items do I need?
Basic hand tools
Many upcycling projects can start with simple repairs to worn or damaged furniture. A screwdriver set, hex keys, pliers and claw hammer will help to tackle light tasks like tightening or removing loose screws, or replacing broken brackets. Additional items like nails, screws and bolts will help to replace old or missing fixings.
Often a simple repaint will give a piece of furniture a whole new lease of life or allow it fit in with a new style in your space. Painting supplies like brushes and furniture paint, as well as preparatory items like sandpaper, primer and paint stripper will give your upcycled furniture a clean and smooth finish. It is important to remember that quality is key when it comes to painting furniture, so avoid buying cheap or you will not end up with the finish that you desire.
More specialist equipment
If you are going for more advanced or creative furniture upcycling, then more specialist equipment may be required. For example, converting furniture for a completely new purpose may require cutting and deconstruction, or adding new parts and functionalities. In this circumstance, cutting tools like saws or holding equipment like clamps may be needed to help your project.
What old or disused pieces of furniture have you got in your house that could be upcycled into something more useful and beautiful?