About Repurposing

Since I opened the doors to the Hillbilly Housewife Club, we’ve been talking a lot about repurposing in the forum there. I never really thought about it all that much until then, it was just something I did automatically. But let’s back up here for a second. What exactly is repurposing?

According to dictonary.com repurpose means “to use or convert for use in another format or product.”

People used to repurpose all the time to turn old dresses into quilts, or turning an old pillow case into a sun dress for toddler. If you’ve come across the homemade sanitary napkin article, you’ve seen that old flanel shirts can be turned into reusable feminine pads.

Here are a few other things we repurposed lately at our house.

1) My old t-shirts become nightgowns for my daughter. When they are getting too thin or torn for that, they are used as dusting and cleaning rugs, eventually making their way into the car washing and outdoor use pile.

2) Large cylindrical oatmeal containers hold various flours, mixes and homemade granola.

3) CDs and DVDs are turned into coasters. We’ve also made some cute wind chimes and mobiles with them.

4) Yogurt cups of all sizes with lids on them become new storage containers. I use the larger ones for leftover soups and stews. The smaller ones become new yogurt or pudding containers for lunch boxes.

5) CD spindles are perfect for organizing cables and such.

6) Plastic bags from the grocery store are cut and turned into “Plarn” (plastic yarn). I’ve been crocheting mats and bags out of the plarn.

7) Old socks that lost their mates are turned into puppets.

8) The blanks from our old outdoor steps have recently been giving new life as a play house for our daughter.

9) Old baby blankets are cut up into wash clothes (I stitch around them in a zig-zag stitch to keep them from fraying).

10) Old baby clothes (soft material) are now polishing rags for my husband. He uses them on the car.

11) We keep all jars (from pickles and jelly for example) and use them to hold various small items from buttons to coins. Some of them also become temporary residences for various bugs and small creatures for our daughter.

12) We use egg cartons as seed starters, to separate buttons, or small office supplies (like staples, paper clips etc.) We also use them for quite a few kids art projects.

13) Magazine pages make great wrapping paper, and they are great for crafting. We’ve made magazine beeds, or use them to cut out things for collages.

14) A pair of old speakers that no longer worked become a new coffee table. You could also turn an old door into a table this way.

15) Since my husband is a pretty good carpenter, he reused most parts of an old wodden swing set and thurned them into a garden bench.

16) I’ve torn old towels into strips and then used the strips to knit a new bath rug.

Now it’s your turn. What do you repurpose?

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