How does upcycling work? –

Around the world, people are increasingly concerned about the environment and expect brands to use more ethical production and resource management techniques. As well as influencing the fashion industry and affecting the way products are made, it is also becoming more prevalent inside homes and workplaces.


If everyone has already understood recycling, what about pre-cycling, down-cycling and up-cycling? Pre-cycling, as you might have guessed, is a sort of processing approach that involves using paper bags rather than plastic ones. Due to technical challenges, downcycling refers to the recycling of high quality materials into something of lower quality. Making park seats and spindles out of used turbine blades is a vivid illustration of this (you can’t do anything else with them anyway). Upcycling is the latest and most intriguing thing. It is the reuse of the finished material without trying to recycle it.

Products created from recycled materials are environmentally friendly and, in addition, their existence significantly reduces the amount of waste.

Recycled materials can be used to produce anything since the characteristics of recycled raw materials are almost as good as those of primary raw materials.

The eco-trend has swept the design world in a high wave. Currently, many companies are engaged in the production of furniture forms from recycled materials. Designers and architects around the world use different types of recycled materials in their work.

patch fashion

Recycling things is familiar to people from ancient times. Since ancient times, our ancestors sewed clothes and knitted mats from scraps. Recycling was not due to fashion or concern for the environment. The fabric was expensive, and its production was complicated.

Designers today are not turning to recycled fabrics and other materials due to scarcity. Conscious consumption comes first. In many countries, environmental awareness has become fashionable. Unsurprisingly, fashion designers have picked up the trend. An additional interest is to work with vintage and unique fabrics.

A limited edition of dresses made from rare fabric samples from the 60s and 70s, kimonos made from sewn vintage handkerchiefs, jackets with patches, and more. Vintage fabrics are more about aesthetics and exclusivity than ecology, but it’s also upcycling.

“House of many colors”?

There are no laws or regulations when it comes to upcycling. And that’s the main thing that allows us to use it everywhere!

With the advent of recycling technology, it is even possible to build entire houses in addition to creating unique furniture and interior decoration. Most of them are not luxury villas, of course, but they still managed to occupy a particular niche in the housing market.

Container houses are no longer something special, but a Buddhist temple made of beer bottles has been built by Thai architects, who have gone even further. Who came up with the idea of ​​using such an unusual material to build a sacred space is unknown, but the idea was quickly executed and proved successful. The temple was constructed from several thousand glass bottles with corks, the corks being used for the distinctive mosaic inside the temple and the brown and green glass bottles being used on the exterior walls to give the place its original appearance.

Good old interior design

As far as interior decoration is concerned, upcycling is particularly used in the vintage style. From jewelry to interior items. Even a luxury sofa set could be made from recycled materials. Add caskets, bracelets, vases and lamps which can transform any boring and ordinary bedroom or hall interior into a vintage mansion with exquisite and comfortable atmosphere.

Even modern offices are affected by the trend:

The design studio Jens Praet from Belgium has created a collection of Shredded paper furniture. The name suggests where the designers get the materials: shredded paper from the shredder is mixed with rubber resin and pressed. The result produces a composite material that is as strong as wood. This is how the company creates office furniture – where the raw paper comes from. An average day in a large office “produces” 3-5 kg ​​of scrap – enough to create a chair.

Your new old place

From its cost-effectiveness and fantastic opportunities for creative activity to its positive effects on the environment, upcycling has many valuable benefits. This eco-trend is gaining acceptance and appeal at a rapid pace for this purpose.

It includes comparable artistic endeavors like quilting, cardboard, lampwork, or fine art plastic.

And you can create each of them yourself:

Small hangers made from pitchforks or a larger rack created from a bicycle, chandeliers made from glass bottles, rugs or shoe coasters made from bottle caps, pennies – glasses made from coat hangers and mirrors made from badminton rackets can all be handcrafted for minimal the price.

The future of upcycling

For many years, many environmental organizations have been trying to increase the level of environmental responsibility around the world and promote green lifestyles. Young people understand that the problem of garbage is becoming more and more serious and must be solved as soon as possible. This is why upcycling ideas will become more and more developed over the years and we hope that our article has succeeded in inspiring you to reuse old things for upcycling.

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