DIY Repurposing

Trash to Treasure: 10 Upcycled Products We Covet

Inspired by DIYers transforming old discarded materials and objects into something new, we couldn't help but turn the spotlight on these smart upcycled designer creations.

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Recycle and Upcycle

The amount of waste that ends up in landfills every year is daunting—but luckily for us (and the environment!) some designers are aiming to decrease the tires, wood, and plastic bags destined for dumps by incorporating these products into their works. Take a look at some of our favorite pieces of upcycled furniture giving yesterday’s waste a second life!

Rough South Home Pallet Chair

Rough South Home,

Pallets have been a popular DIY material for some time now, whether to create a quick and easy bed frame or as an outdoor planter for the patio. Rough South Home is taking it a step further and elevating the former shipping staples into sturdy chairs. A steel frame ensures the pieces will live a long life in your home.

Grovemade iPhone Back

MapleXO uses leftover material from the production of skateboard decks to craft a plethora of products. The unique striping affect is used to beautify everything from cuff links to a bottle opener, but it was the iPhone back that caught our eye. Protect your phone AND the earth at the same time!

Civic Duty Shoes

Civic Duty transforms former FedEx Tyvek envelopes and work suits into sporty and colorful shoes. Tyvek is a durable material that can withhold a little pounding on the pavement but is still soft to the touch and breathable, making it an ideal material to swath your feet.

Recycled Bag Cushion

These colorful Hipcycle floor pillows are woven from plastic bags and then filled with more plastic bags to give them their poof. Naturally water resistant, they can be used to accessorize your home indoors or out. We think they’d make a perfect poolside companion. Best of all—they’re machine washable in cold water.

T-Shirt Rug by Joedega

Rug company Aelfie creates one-of-a-kind rugs handwoven in India—but closer to home, the Brooklyn-based designers create handwoven rugs from old t-shirts. Each rug is comprised of 30 to 40 worn shirts and provides soft under-footing for the kitchen or bathroom.

Nudie Jeans Rugs

The second rug to make our list rocks a very different look from the first. Nudie Jeans collects destroyed denim to weave into one-of-a-kind indigo rugs. Paired with Aelfie’s rugs, you might find your home’s floors dressed in last year’s wardrobe!

Barique Etta Chair

Barrique is a high-end furniture company specializing in pieces constructed from old wine barrels. Collaborating with nearly 30 designers, the works have a polished look that defies their wine cask origins. Barrique also gives a second chance to troubled youth—they are trained in carpentry and enlisted to work with the designers.

Recycled Light by Castor Canadensis

Though they’re no longer capable of shining on their own, old fluorescent bulbs can be used as a design element for new lights. The Castor Canadensis group used the long tubes to create lighting fixtures for incandescent bulbs. The upcycling of mercury-containing fluorescent bulbs is particularly eco-friendly because they often incorrectly find their way to the trash instead of a recycling center.

Nuxite Walnut Shell Countertops

Hubba hubba! These eco-friendly and good-looking countertops are made from walnut shells suspended in zero V.O.C. resin. Dubbed Nuxite, the material is stain resistant and light-weight. They are also formaldehyde free and don’t emit fumes making them kitchen-friendly.

Steel Ray Table for Hipcycle

The Steel Ray Table by Hipcycle is sure to get your guests talking—the distinct industrial look comes from old farm machinery used in its construction. Hipcycle is a top resource for upcycled products. We definitely like the search by material feature on their website!