Keep Your Eyes Open – Simple Things You Can Do With Found Items

by EcoStreet on August 22, 2008

in EcoArt, Recycling

This post was contributed by Heather Johnson, who writes on the subject of green and organic shopping. She invites your feedback at heatherjohnson2323[at]gmail[dot]com.

Have you ever walked or driven by a dumpster and seen perfectly good items just thrown away when they could still be put to good use? This can be frustrating indeed, especially for those who are trying to maintain a green lifestyle. Each day, more people are looking for newer and better ways to greenify their lives and do their part. Reusing found items is another way we can lessen the impact we make on Mother Earth.

Furnish Your Home with Unwanted Items

Sometimes you can come across a true gem, a great piece of unwanted furniture in mint condition. Others, we are not so lucky. However, if you think outside the norm, you may figure out new and unique ways to furnish different areas of the home. An old van seat, for example, could be placed in a TV room or play room for children. Some items can be used for purposes other than which they were intended and turned into furnishings.

Display Found Items as Pieces of Artwork

A new trend in green living is to seek out things that people throw away and turn them into artwork. Design your interior with relics from others’ lives. From old televisions to broken toys and exercise equipment, the display possibilities are limited only by your mind. Take a minute to look at what people leave laying around. Perhaps inspiration is right around the corner.

Create a Unique Patio or Garden Space

In addition to furnishing and decorating the inside of your home, reusing found items outdoors is a great and eclectic way to add uniqueness to your space. Patio furniture is especially common to find, but so is other indoor furniture that can be modified to be left outside in the elements. Look at old items in new ways. Perhaps an old can, pot, or jug can become a planter. Maybe a broken shelving unit can become a storage space for your garden tools.

Donate Found Objects That You Cannot Use

If you see something when driving by a dumpster that you know someone else would use, but doesn’t fit your tastes, pick it up and take it to your nearest donation center. Whether you take it to Goodwill or the Salvation Army, the money earned by these institutions will be put to good use.

Be Mindful of What’s Out There

With some much waste going on in our world, the purchase of new items seems excessive. Newer items are less distinct, and often don’t live up to our expectations. Keep your eyes open and look for things that someone doesn’t want. As the saying goes, one person’s trash is another person’s treasure.

Photo credit: Editor B

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