Upcycling your Christmas “excess”
The frantic busyness and hangover of Christmas is over and the house may be a little messy from all this Christmas fallout. As expected, the kid's old toys are out, and the new ones are in, Christmas cards are piling up and it’s time for a New Year clear out. A perfect time for Upcycling?
Maybe it’s a generational thing but I have not been part of the upcycle culture….up until now…. but now I do. Upcycling is the process of reusing/recycling old ‘things’ and giving them a better use and/or purpose, ideal for those of us who have the creativity. Upcycling has most definitely come back into the fold with the importance of the environment, saving the planet and making use of the resources we already have. Rosara is already a big fan of upcycling, you just have to take a look at our Kadai range which upcycles steel oil drums from India. It has worked for us, so we thought we would help you out and give some creative suggestions on how to reuse your Christmas clutter.
1) Christmas Cards: This is a major part of Christmas and I get it, during the holidays this Christmas expression of love between family and friends is great! However, post-New Year’s, cards start to be like litter! Instead of just whacking them into the recycling bin, you could re-use them in a different way. Top results are Christmas bookmarks or Gift Tags or even next year’s decorations. With the simple use of some scissors and glue, you could be all set for next year!
2) Old Toys: The post-Christmas clear out of the kid's toys is quite possibly the best (and easiest) time to get rid of those toys cluttering up the house. But this year why not try to make those toys into drawer knobs, a toothbrush holder or my personal favourite, the Dino iPhone tripod – what a shame I don’t have kids!
3) Bad Clothes: Although you always love the thought and care put into a gift, sometimes as much as you want to love them, it’s just not going to happen. Clothes often can hang around in the back of the wardrobe and tend to stay there until a clear out a year or two later. Why not use this clothing creatively and make into something unique and wearable all year round. There are countless options from skirts to t-shirt tank tops right up to hats and scarfs, the options are limitless! Why not check out the Sewing Loft ‘100 ways to upcycle’.
An alternative that isn’t really upcycling but a way to give back to the local community is donating these toys and clothes to a good home. Below are my top 3 places locally pop down and donate.
1) Salvation Army – As one of UK’s leaders in supporting and caring for those who are struggling. By the simple donation of clothes, it can make a real difference to those who need it.
2) Oxford (Children’s) Hospitals Charity – As the charity helping the JR, it plays a vital part in supporting staff and children. Just like Helen & Douglas House, the Children's Oxford Hospitals charity is always on the hunt for new toys.
3) Helen & Douglas House – One of Oxford’s best and most important charities. All children love to play and for those being helped by Helen and Douglas house, it is all the more important.
4) Helen Hodgkins Trust – As a relatively unknown charity, Helen Hodgkins Trust has been providing clean drinking water to 1000’s of Ghana’s over the past 5 years. They have a special emphasis on helping children and any toys or clothes will go to a good cause.
And just saying if you are given a Bridget Jones like Christmas jumper – can you send it my way?
Written by Chris Ash (Nicholsons’ best coffee brewer)