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What's My Repurpose?

Repurpose: The meaning of life is a toughie, and we don’t have time today to skim the surface. Let’s pretend though for a mo’, that OBJECTS have a meaning, and that meaning is their purpose.

Running with that idea, is it possible to change an object’s purpose? What if a snow shovel was better at being a sled, or a water bottle made an awesome scoop? You see, the meaning of life for an object can also be a complex thing… so today we’re going to look at our household items in a new light.

Going back to before Covid-19 hit the UK, we looked at the ‘Three New R’s’… Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. But by the end of the post we realised there are actually more of these special ‘R’ words. Words that focus our minds and help us cut down the amount of waste we throw out. So, allow us to introduce a fourth musketeer, Repurpose.

Now, we know what it means to reduce the amount of rubbish we make and the positive impact this has on our environment. We also know of the importance of reusing and recycling on the environment. But how is repurposing different from reusing and recycling? It’s a good question and an easy one to answer:

REUSING is just that. It’s taking an item that may have otherwise reached the end of its life and refreshing it in some way. Either that or deciding to stick with it for longer than you otherwise would.

RECYCLING an item is different. By recycling an item we break it down into its component parts and then use those parts to create something new. It’s a great alternative to ‘conventional’ waste disposal as it can save materials. In turn this can help lower greenhouse gas emissions.

REPURPOSING is the act of taking an existing item and altering it in such fashion, for use with a NEW purpose. As a new, inclusive kind of biz, one that takes recycled water bottles and transforms them into super comfy sustainable duvets… we definitely like the idea of repurposing too!

So, in honour of the Forth New ‘R’, today we’re going to look at three new ways to repurpose items before recycling them. Or worse, before they find their way to landfill (by those unfamiliar with the importance of our 3 musketeers: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle):

  1. Colanders make great planters

Sure, colanders are ok at removing water from pasta, but when a new one appears don’t throw its predecessor away.  Colanders have all the properties desirable in a hanging garden. They are a good size, they are the right shape and they even have drainage holes built-in. Pack it with compost, plant some seedlings and hang them wherever you like.

  1. Old cutlery can have multiple uses

Don’t throw away your old silverware, instead get creative. You may have already come across jewellery made from old cutlery. Silver spoon bracelets and the like are often staples at craft fairs and with good reason. These stylish trinkets are attractive and easy to make. There are many ways to make new treasures from your utensil drawer and they all begin with a bang. To start, you’ll need a big hammer, some old material and patience. After you’ve flattened your treasure, you can move on to the vice. Oops, did I forget to mention? You’ll need to be a slightly more dedicated DIYer, with the right gear to get into this level of repurposing ;). Anyway, as you’ll see from the video, the process is very simple, and you’ll be knocking out works of art in no time. Check out: How to Make Spoon Bracelets.

  1. VHS (Video / Recorder) Toaster

Well, if you were expecting a CD soap dish or a fruit bowl made from an old LP, you’re aiming too low. This next project definitely isn’t for beginners, but it does go to show how far we can take repurposing when we try. We’re not even going to try to summarise this project, so follow the link: How to Make a VHS Video Toaster… and good luck! Yes, it will take time and effort. But imagine how rewarding it will feel when your morning crumpets pop out of the slot!*

*But guys, we’ve got to say, we haven’t tried this at home. We just found it on YouTube and thought it looked… intriguing. Should you decide to proceed, please use it outside so you don’t burn your house down :-0. Just saying! We are NOT responsible for your actions. Remember, our speciality is making super-soft, cruelty-free, eco-friendly duvets !!

We hope you’ve enjoyed our roundup of repurposing and remember it’s always nice to share.

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