30 Ways To Upcycle And Save

Upcycling is just a new way to say, “Waste not, want not” or “Use what you have”. In older days it was common practice to use everything and to use it over and over. When items were used, another use was soon found for them. Things were saved, because as my husband would say, “You never know when you might need that”.

Our grandmothers and grandfathers saved everything: old jars, small wood pieces, fabric and ribbon scraps, and more. I remember many times searching through my grandmother’s button jar or ribbon scraps. She let us learn to hand-sew with scraps, and we thought it was the best thing ever! There’s nothing better than a doll dress made from scraps!

Think about the hours of entertainment that can be found in a bag of empty toilet paper rolls. Egg cartons are famous for childhood crafting projects. And, what toddler won’t love playing and creating make-believe worlds with a few cardboard boxes.

Upcycling can be as primitive or sophisticated as the imagination of the creator. Because many of us don’t have an upbringing with a resourceful grandmother, it’s helpful to learn from those who have had practical experience. And, for the artistic endeavor, there are tons of ideas to be found on blogs all over. I’m sharing some of my favorites in this post.

Home Decor


Spare Socks

Egg Cartons

Everyday Items

Photo from HomeyOhMy.com


Candle Jars

Vintage Junk


Tin Cans

Plastic Bottles

Cabinet Doors

Candy Wrappers

Old Baking Pans


Red Wagons

Picture Frames


Industrial Decor

Lots of Thrift Up-cycles


Toilet Paper Rolls




Farmhouse Designs


T Shirts

Photo from @ Bark Post

Summer Things

Things for Pets

So, if you haven’t already, start saving all those jars, scraps, and little objects. Then, get creative! You can create things with your husband’s help, your grandchildren’s eager hands, or a group of friends. Let’s learn to recycle things in a new, fun, and practically frugal way!

@2020, copyright Lisa Ehrman

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Lisa Ehrman
Lisa Ehrman
Lisa has been blogging since 2013, and loves sharing resources and ideas for living a simple life. To get free printables, bonus words, and more - sign up for the newsletter.

37 thoughts on “30 Ways To Upcycle And Save”

  1. People have become to quick to throw thing out today. That old say “Waste Not Want Not” comes to mind. Thanks for the article.

  2. We were raised with this and have saved more than our fair share of things we may need some day. The biggest problem is eventually using it all so that you don’t accumulate too much and cause a lot of clutter.

  3. I tend to be a hoarder because I was also raised to “reuse, repair. recycle” and it really does come in handy when I I don’t have to run out and spend money on something new.

  4. This is wonderful!! I am pinning this for easy find, because I always have something I know I can reuse it int something beautiful! Thank you

  5. I save a lot of stuff, but also give a bunch away when I don’t need it any more. Then I have to find stuff that I’ve saved. (where did I put that???)

  6. So many great ideals. I don’t do it as much as I used to but I still stop and look at stuff before I trash it.

  7. These are awesome ideas, thank you so much for sharing! My kids are masters of upcycling, and will make things out of just about anything.


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