I love trying to make something new out of something old. Many gifts and home décor projects can be the result of up-cycling.
JEANS - old worn out jeans can be made into all kinds of things. You can make wine bags from the legs, quilts, pillows, lap throws, purses, pot holders, garden aprons, draft stoppers for your doors,cell phone holders, kitchen aprons, etc.. They can also be cut into strips and made into rag rugs. There is really no limit to what you make with old jeans.
cell phone holders
OLD SWEATERS - can be made into mittens, stuffed animals and pet beds. They can also be unwound and the yarn used for a new project.
OLD T-SHIRTS - Can be cut into cute eternity scarves, made into quilts and pillows, pet toys, painting/gardening shirts, etc.. They can also be cut into strips and braided to make rag rugs.
Transform and large t-shirt into a cute and simple skirt. Simply cut below the sleeves - turn down a hem and add elastic - easy-peasy skirt!!!!!
Cut large t-shirts into children's jammies.
ADULT CLOTHES - shirts and dresses, etc. can be cut down and remade into children's clothes, doll clothes, or the material used in quilts.
OLD TOWELS - make wash cloths, bibs, placemats, dish towels, stuffed animals, or bath mat.
CARD FRONTS - recycle card fronts to make gift tags, copy parts of old card or glue onto index cards for home made recipe cards, use in kid's art, copy onto paper to make stationary.
Frame into wall art.
OLD PICTURE FRAMES/WINDOWS - make great accent pieces on walls for family gallery. Paint several frames the same color and use as wall art (they can be empty). Frame advertisements or postcards for art.
Add chicken wire or cork board and use for message boards or jewelry holders
INCOMPLETE PUZZLES OR GAMES - use puzzles pieces or game pieces (like Yahtzee) and glue on picture frames. Puzzle pieces can be left as is - or painted a solid color. Makes for a unique picture frame.
FAMILY PICTURES - copy on paper and decopauge onto lamp shades, bottles, jars, etc. You can add sand and tea light candles to jars to light pictures. Family pictures can also be copied onto transfer paper and ironed onto fabric - for a very personal pillow or quilt.
Make cards or postcards from old pictures.
VINTAGE LINENS - use old linens that have some stains or rips and re-invent them into quilts, pillow, valances, table runners, aprons, even clothing.
ROCKS - this is the newest fad. Paint smooth rocks into animals, or paint sayings or pictures. Can be left at random places for someone to find, can be incorporated into flowers beds or flower pots, can make framed pictures from them, make into magnets or paper weights, etc..
OLD DOOR KNOBS OR HARDWARE - look cool made into coat/clothing racks, added as accents, curtain tie backs etc.
SHEET MUSIC OR OLD BOOKS that are beyond salvage - can be copied into stationary, framed, made into cards, etc.
The same can be done with CHILDREN'S ART.
There is just no end to the things that can be up-cycled.
We all use normal household items in different ways. Keeping containers to give leftovers away, using jars and such for storage, foil covered eat trays for candy/sweets gifting, etc.
This might give you a few ideas of things you can do around your home to save a few dollars OR gifts that you can make for Christmas, that won't break the bank.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE UP-CYCLE PROJECT?