Thursday, March 24, 2016

10 Ways to Upcycle (stuff you got lying around)

10 best upcycle repurpose ideas
upcycle a watch
ethical fashion blogger upcycle
fashion blogger top knot

Are we loving the topknot or no? Anyhow... you know those days when you look at your wardrobe and have pieces that you have had for almost a decade? Well, that is what happened with this old, ugly (not what I thought when I bought it almost 7 years ago) watch I had. I looked at it and finally asked myself, "Give it away or do something with it." Since I actually liked the face, I decided on the later. So, I cut off the orange strap and looked through my bracelet collection from Latin America. I came upon this sweet anklet which I got (comes with each purchase) from Mipacha that is made from wool, dyed and braided by a indigenous women's group in the Cuzco mountains in Peru. I ended up throwing the old strap away, which yes is waste, but I had not other use for a cut up watch strap.

As for the shorts. Well, they use to be long jeans. While I was in Guatemala I was (un)pleased to find out that during my stay there they had adopted two nice sized wholes on both legs right beside the crotch. Lucky Me! -.- Instead of throwing them away, I cut off the legs, used pieces of the legs to sew up the wholes, and vuwala! I ended up throwing away the extra pieces of fabric because I didn't want to bring them back to the states with me. However, in the past I have used this extra fabric to make headbands, small traveling purses, and pencil cases.

So, I have scoured the internet (really it only took me 40 minutes) to collect some simple yet creative upcycling ideas for things that most of us end up throwing away or letting sit around (like pieces from jeans you have made into shorts, old magazines or those rubber bands that come around broccoli). I have done some of these before, and the great thing is that you can upcycle something of yours and give it to someone else as a gift! Tell me what you think of these ideas. :) Do you have any upcycling tips or experiences to share? Leave me a comment below on how you repurpose/upcycle!

10 Ways to Upcycle
  1. Take an old magazine, a mirror, some glue and a hook and create a contemporary mirror frame
  2. Sew up the bottom of a tshirt, cut out the arms and neck and make it into an eco reusable bag 
  3. All you need is a pair of scissors to turn old credit cards into guitar picks
  4. Turn old picture frames and scrap fabric or paper into serving trays/ jewelry trays
  5. Hang it horizontally and turn an old ladder into a bookshelf
  6. Use scrap fabric, cardboard, a needle and thread to make a fruit or pencil basket, you can use this as gift wrap as well!
  7. Use scrap fabric, a sewing machine and some fluff to make a tic-tac-toe game for kids (or adults)
  8. Make old magazine pages or newspaper pages into unique envelopes, and send a letter to someone who needs encouragement
  9. Use binder clips to organize small wires for those of you on-the-go, to organize wires at your desk, or even organize cans or bottles in the fridge
  10. Reuse rubber bands to anchor down your cutting board or wrap a rubber band vertically around a paint can to wipe down your paintbrush

Bonus Project: Add some fluff and legs to an old suitcase, and make it into a vintagey looking chair

Remember, to be more sustainable it means consuming less and discarding less. It's tough, well at least for me. But conscious decision making even with clothing and food choices are what make the difference. :)

fair trade blogger giveaway
Also, don't forget to enter my handmade artisan bundle giveaway. From this, the coco powder packaging can be reused for planting or a pencil case, and the shipping box you will receive it in can be recycled. :) (Open to U.S. and Canada only.)
Click here to enter!

Think Simply but Get Crafty,


  1. Christine, I think it is tough for most people... I have been wanting to downsize for a while... lately it has become number one on my list... it will have to start with Valentina though because until she understand she does not 'need' more clothes or stuff... basically she has to give away a lot of her clothing she no longer likes or uses... I want to become a minimalist... I have no need to have so many things anymore xox Have a really great long weekend xox

  2. Love your hair, and I love downsizing!

    God bless,

    XO, Claire


  3. now these are some great ideas! x
    just followed you, would love it if you could do the same back! xx

  4. Whoah this blog is great i love reading your articles. Keep up the good work! You know, many people are hunting around for this info, you could help them greatly.


Thank you for the lovely comment. God bless & stay Be-you-tiful!