The act of upcycling diverts items destined for our landfills and gives them a second life. The art of upcycling reincarnates those items into eco-chic designs for everyday life. Upcycled art is the newest trend, taking the notion of simplicity and conservation to new and greener pastures.
Upcycling is distinct from recycling. We’re not talking about melting plastic bottles into park benches or morphing newspaper into environmentally friendly paper towels. It does not involve changing the original items into a new form, rather, it gives them a new lease on life by upgrading to another purpose entirely than that for which they were created.
I love to see the reaction of people when they view my designs for the first time. The puzzled frown that eases into a smile when the object is recognized by its contents is wildly gratifying. There is something really poignant about creating from other peoples castoffs. Any upcycle disciple will concur; a blue bag of recyclables is a source of free materials that can be persuaded into eco-chic designs that are easy on the pocketbook .
Artists and craftspeople have been doing this for years. We’ve all seen the dress made out of beer can pull rings and hand bags fashioned from old license plates, but this is different. This eco-chic upcycling philosophy aims at form and function instead of notoriety and shock value. Here are some of my favourite designs along with fellow upcyclers – guaranteed to bring a smile to even the most sceptic consumer.
An estimated 500 billion to 1 trillion plastic bags are consumed worldwide yearly. The solution? BYOB. Bring Your Own Bag fashioned from recycled bubble pack and an old pair of jeans. The Art of Upycle, absolutebodo.com
Magazine editing at it’s best.
Approximately 8 billion hangers are purchased every year and only 15% are recycled after use. This eco-friendly version repurposes recycled items commonly found in your trash and alleviates the need to purchase new hangers.
Skate the stairs and get stoked.
Skate Sturdy House
Up to 100 million bottles are tossed out yearly and will hang out in landfills for the next 7 decades. Grab some basic tools and morph PET’s into retro pendant lamps that would make Austin Powers drool.