Upcycling and Repurposing

Creating a second life for our things is a great way to conserve waste, save money, and get creative. There are thousands of ways that we can re-purpose various items in fun and creative ways, and though there are far too many for us to list here, there are plenty of great resources on-line that can guide you.

In the meantime, here are few ideas we love:


Re-purpose and old ladder into a:Ladder Planter

  • Bathroom towel rack. Add a bamboo box to the top or bottom rung for storage space.
  • Hang the ladder on brackets
    off the floor and against a wall or standing up upright and leaning against a wall.
  • Flowerpot holder. Great for either inside or out, ladders are a fun way to display potted plants and flowers.
  • Light show. Wrap an old ladder with twinkle lights for a cool lighting display inside or out.
  • Lean a small ladder next to your bed for a unique bedside ‘table’. Add a small piece of wood to make a shelf, add a clip-on reading light, and maybe even a dream catcher.


Wine Bottles:

There are so many fun and easy ways to reuse wine bottles:

  • Water it down. Add a cool stopper or cork and use as a water bottle for the dinner table or while entertaining.
  • Hang it. Turn a wine bottle into a lamp with a lighting kit.
  • Write it. Create a cool vase by painting a bottle with Chalk Board Paint. Then mark it with a poem, the names of the flowers, or just a love note.
  • Light it up. Add battery or solar twinkle lights to the inside of a clean wine bottle for a pretty lighting effect 

Wine bottle lights


Wood Pallets:

concrete wall interior handmade trendy decor with modern black lamp and round rugYou can usually find wood pallets for free or dirt cheap and there are so many things to do with them:

  • Fence it in. Brace strong wooden pallets together to create a privacy space for your backyard.
  • Table it. Turning a pallet into an outdoor coffee table is as easy as adding legs! Fast, simple, and easy.
  • Sit on it. It’s also almost as easy to create matching couches. Stack two and secure together, then add a third pallet to the back for a backrest, then repeat for the size couch you are looking for. All that’s left is to sand it and paint it!
  • Plant it. Vertical gardens are easy to create inside a wooden pallet with the help of chicken wire, soil, and seedlings.


There are thousands of ideas out there so get creative and have some fun by re-purposing items throughout your home.


For your vinyl, plastic, stone, or metal surfaces, restore the original color by using Rust-Oleum Recolor by Wipe New!


Thankful Tree

When the holidays come rolling in, it’s easy to get consumed by the stress that comes with it. Preparing for a Thanksgiving dinner can be all-consuming, but it’s important not to lose sight of what is really important, and what all the hard work is for.

Some families have traditions: maybe it’s cooking together, playing football in the back yard, or maybe a hard-won game of team charades. This year you might enjoy shaking things up a little while getting to the core of the holiday with a Thankful Tree.

This gives everyone in the family and their thanksgiving dinner guests an opportunity to say what they are thankful for writing it on a tag and hanging it on a small tree. It won’t be long before your little tree will be filled with notes of love and gratitude.

How to

There’s no wrong way to do this, so make it your own! You can put a pretty tree branch in a vase, find a small fern tree, or create a 3D paper tree! Anything goes.

Then have a stack of blank gift tags for your friends and family to fill out. Lastly, tie a festive ribbon through the gift tag and hang it on a branch. And you can have anyone stopping by during the holidays add a note of thanks to the tree.

When the season is over, collect them in an envelope and date it. It’s a nice keepsake for years to come.

View this project on HGTV http://www.hgtv.com/design/make-and-celebrate/handmade/new-thanksgiving-tradition-create-a-thankful-tree

Photo source: HGTV
Photo source: HGTV

Reviving Memories (And Decorations)

Let’s face it, when we pull out the holiday decoration boxes and dust them off for the new season, we can’t help but reflect on memories from years past. Old decorations, handmade ornaments, holiday villages, and stockings fill us with nostalgia, and as hard as it is to see our old faithful front yard Santa looking so run down, somehow we can’t bring ourselves to toss him. But luckily, we don’t have to! While it’s important to replace our holiday string lights every few years, the same does not go for most of our other treasured decorations.Holiday Decoration

Old plastic candy canes that proudly line the walkway, and Rudolph with Santa propped up on the roof or prancing on the yard, are welcome sights. This year, make them look brand new with Rust-Oleum ReColor by Wipe New! A simple wipe will take years off while holding on to fond memories a good while longer. As you unpack your treasures, set aside all the ones that could use a little upgrade, like the star or old decorative balls and plastic signs, and then revive them with a quick wipe down with ReColor.

If you are looking to change things up a little this year, there are loads of fun ways to decorate using everything you already have, just in a new way! Some things are traditional and should remain so, but if you are willing to mix things up a little, here are some fun ideas:

  • ReColor WreathIf you have an old wreath that’s seen better days, consider spraying it with white frosting spray paint.
  • Take a handful of pretty ornament balls and place them in a glass vase or bowl to create a beautiful centerpiece.
  • Take the garland you might normally place around the fireplace and let it line a doorway instead.
  • Add pretty ribbon to ball ornaments and hang them in a group of varying lengths.
  • Find a pretty branch, place it in a vase and hang small decorations and candy canes, or tie a festive ribbon to the branches.
  • Fill a clean and empty wine bottles or glass vase with battery or solar mini twinkle lights for a gorgeous effect.
  • Create a centerpiece by laying an old wreath flat a large plate or tray, and then place a group of candles of various heights inside of it.

Wishing you and yours a safe and festive holiday season!


Rust-Oleum ReColor by Wipe New and a DIY Bird Bath

DIY bird bath ReColor by Wipe New
Source: Home Stories: A to Z

The sparrows are chirping!  The cardinals are showing off their shades of red and orange!  Robins are looking for some worms while the finches are making their nests!  Spring is here!

Now is a perfect time to create something special for your flying backyard friends.  This DIY Garden Planter and Bird Bath is just the thing!  What a great way to show off some of your favorite flowers AND create a new water source for your birds.  The birds will love you for it!

The step-by-step directions are available on Home Stories: A to Z.  After painting your pots make sure you preserve and protect your new creation with Rust-Oleum ReColor by Wipe New.  ReColor will make those colors really shine and it can help protect your colored pots from the elements.  One coat is all you’ll need!

DIY Kitchen Shadow Box

Source: Better Homes & Gardens

Do you have a desk or dresser that you’re about to junk?  You may want to hang onto a drawer or two for this nifty DIY shadow box idea.

Simply paint one of the drawers to match the color scheme of your kitchen and then treat it with ReColor by Wipe New to help preserve and protect your new shadow box.  Place decorative wallpaper, shelf liner paper, or scrapbooking paper inside the drawer.  Hang the drawer on the wall (knob facing up looks the best) and place a favorite item or two inside your new shadow box.

Outdoor Winter Holiday Decorations and ReColor by Wipe New

Wintertime may mean longer and darker days, but is also means scenes of bright and colorful lights!  Winter is a season filled with holidays that shine!

Celebrate the holidays this year by considering these outdoor holiday decorations ideas:

  1. Porch Corner Display: Make the most of sheltered porch corners with an impressive and simple display of candles and greenery. Grab a small table and make a display with some holiday fabrics, battery operated candles, lanterns, and pinecones.   Use a bit of ReColor on the metal lanterns to help make them shine and to help protect them from the weather!
  1. Candy Cane Holder: This is a classic look and looks great by your front door.  Fill a white planter with store-bought plastic candy canes.  Wrap a red, weather-treated ribbon around the planter to tie things together.  Are you plastic candy canes looking dingy?  No problem.  A simple wipe of ReColor can help to bring them back to life!


  1. Matching Garland and Door Display: Dress up your entryway with a festive garland that you customize with ornaments that coordinate with your door color. Position the garland outside the door frame and secure at the top and sides with self-adhesive hooks or brick clips.  Wrap some lights around the garland to brighten up the nights.  Give your ornaments a new shine with some ReColor and watch them glisten and sparkle in the light!


  1. Porch Bench Display: Give your porch bench some holiday spirit with an arrangement of greenery, pinecones, and ornaments. Spray the greenery and pinecones with a light dusting of fake snow, shine up your ornaments with ReColor, add some lights and you’ve created a wonderful – and welcoming – holiday display.

We also want to encourage you to keep things safe during the holidays by following these guidelines when using lights outside:

  • Before using lights outdoors, check labels to be sure they have been certified for outdoor use.
  • Check each set of lights, new or old, for broken or cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires, or loose connections. Throw out damaged sets. Always replace burned-out bulbs promptly with the same wattage bulbs.
  • Only use outside lights that have been tested for safety by a recognized testing laboratory, such as UL or ETL. This indicates conformance with safety standards. Use only lights that have plugs containing fuses.
  • If using an outdoor extension cord, make sure it is rated for the intended use.
  • Fasten outdoor lights securely to trees, house walls, or other firm supports to protect the lights from wind damage. Use only insulated staples (not nails or tacks) to hold strings in place. Or, run strings of lights through hooks (available at hardware stores).
  • Stay away from power or feeder lines leading from utility poles into older homes.



DIY Tutorial: The 2×4 Turkey

You‘ve likely have seen these 2×4 turkeys online or around town.  There are popular DIY craft for Thanksgiving and they’re a fun way to celebrate the day of thanks.

2×4 turkeys are easy to make and are created with a square 2×4, craft sticks, the end of paint mixing sticks, some paint, and some fun items to help decorate and embellish your turkey.  Here’s one great tutorial from U Create for this 2×4 turkey.

Source: U Create

Once you’re done with your 2×4 turkey place it outside your front door to welcome all of your guests.  Use some ReColor by Wipe New to give your masterpiece a great shine and to protect it from the elements.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!


Celebrate Thanksgiving with DIY Corn Stalks and Faux Fruit Displays

Source: Iowa Gardener Magazine

Every year Americans spend billions of dollars on holiday decorations, but not every holiday requires brand new decorations.  With ReColor by Wipe New there are plenty of ways to refresh and restore those old and dingy holiday decorations!

There are also creative ways to use old – or inexpensive items – to celebrate holidays.  Consider, for example, these 2 DIY ideas to celebrate Thanksgiving that come from Iowa Gardener Magazine.

Source: Iowa Gardener Magazine

Both Thanksgiving displays are created with corn stalks, ears of corn, and faux fruit.  Give the plastic fruit a great shine by treating it with some ReColor by Wipe New!

ReColor and DIY Crafts: Fall Picture Frame and Outdoor Lantern Display

Autumn is here!  It’s time for crisp apples, bright orange pumpkins, mums of every color, and falling leaves.  Celebrate this fall by getting crafty with one (or both) of these DIY Fall projects from Midwest Living.

Fall Picture Frame

Filling an empty Fall-colored picture frame with some brightly colored fall leaves is a great way to decorate your fireplace mantel.

Hang leaves on S-hooks or pin to a ribbon. Put nails in both sides of the frame and suspend the ribbon loosely across the center, tying it to the nails. Attach your favorite fall leaves to the ribbon using an adhesive.  Add to the display by spreading a branch full of brightly colored berries across the length of the mantel.

Source:  Midwest Living


Autumn Lantern Glow

Sometimes simplicity is the best choice.  If you’re looking for a way to show some warmth this autumn simply place a lantern on your entryway and surround it with an arrangement of pumpkins.  Be sure to use a battery-powered candle if the lantern will be unattended.

Source:  Midwest Living

If your picture frame and/or lantern are looking a bit worn don’t fret.  Use Wipe New ReColor to restore that shine on your picture frame and to protect your lantern from the elements.   Learn more about Wipe New ReColor.


Wipe New ReColor and DIY Crafts: Pumpkin Flower Pots

Jack O'Lantern Flower Pots ReColor Wipe New
Source: Frugal and Fun Mom

While most people think of falling leaves during autumn there are a number of plants that blossom during fall.   What better way to show off your flowers then with these pumpkin flower pots from Frugal and Fun Mom

They’re super-easy to create – check out Frugal and Fun Mom for the how-to! Jack O’Lantern Flower Pots Tutorial

After you’ve painted your scary faces on the pots, simply place in one of your favorite fall flowers.  Mums would be a great choice!  If you don’t want to use flowers, place a battery-operated candle inside the flower pot and let them light up those scary Halloween-season nights.