The Upside of Upcycling

Upcycled Piano Staircase  (Image credit:


Upcycling is the process of converting old or discarded materials into something useful and often beautiful. You can think of it as a sexier, sometimes greener version of recycling. When something is recycled (or "downcycled"), it's broken down into something of lesser quality – a process that consumes energy. Upcycling adds value by transforming or reinventing an otherwise-disposable item into something of higher quality. It's the ultimate in reuse – and a whole new industry sector is shaping up around it. 

If you haven’t already incorporated this growing trend in your home, the repurposing, refurbishing, reusing and upcycling of aged objects is a popular trend in home styling and home décor.

We think Real estate professional Karla Huitsing has nicely summed up 5 great benefits of upcycling on her blog:

5 Benefits of Following the Repurposing and Upcycling Home Decor Trend

One of the most interesting aspects of the repurposing home decor trend is its ability to work with and complement many different personal styles. Whether you gravitate toward mid-century modern, traditional, country, art deco, industrial or craftsman style, you can always find furniture and other decorative pieces that fit every style and are ready to be refurbished!

Mixing found objects of different styles and repurposing them in creative ways not only brings these aged items back to life but also brings your personal style to life in every corner of you home. Bringing your personal style to life is only one advantage of upcycled look. Here are another 5 benefits of following the repurposing and upcycling home décor trend.

1. It’s Economical – I dare you to think of a more affordable way to redecorate and furnish your home than repurposing. It’s quite a challenge! Whether you are on a budget or just love a good deal, repurposing and upcycling is the way to go. You can find well-constructed used and aged items for incredibly affordable prices at yard sales, estate sales, consignment shops and donation centers such as Goodwill and St. Vincent de Paul.

2. It's Environmentally Friendly – Using and recycling someone else’s “junk” as your own treasure helps reduce future waste and reduce excessive production.

3. DIY Pride – The most satisfying part of decorating with the repurposing trend is probably looking at the before and after images of any refurbished piece. Having the imagination to take an aged piece and update it is rewarding, however, showing off your do-it-yourself skills to everyone who comes into your home is the ultimate satisfaction!

4. It's a One-of-a-Kind Piece – Repurposing objects in new ways and adding your personality to it guarantees your repurposed home décor will be uniquely you. By embracing the upcycling trend, you will have unique pieces that you won’t find in of your neighbors’ homes.

5. It's Meaningful Décor – Incorporating the repurposing trend into your home décor requires some searching and gathering to find the right items for your space. Whether this process includes a weekend of vintage and antique store browsing, rediscovering some of your relatives castaways or refurbishing an outdated item from your own basement, the pieces you finally choice will likely have meaning and a story behind them by the time they are finished and placed in your home. Without doubt, these upcycled and repurposed objects will become more meaningful to you than other mass-produced objects.

For these reasons and more, we at October Design are big fans of the upcycling trend. Stop by often and check out our website, Facebook or Instagram pages – we’re constantly adding more wonderful found upcycled objects to our design collection! And if you’re looking for something in particular, drop us a line and we’ll see what we can find/make for you!





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