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Looking to inject a little personality into your living spaces, but don’t have the budget to splash out on abstract items? Take a look around your room instead.

Those outdated or worn out items that were heading for the skip have the potential to transform into unique upcycled masterpieces, and all it takes is a little confidence and expert advice. Best part is, it’s also a great way to practise sustainable living!

Here are some of our favourite upcycle projects.


Create delectable decorations for your exterior spaces by transforming old kitchen colanders into colourful hanging baskets! Here’s everything you need to know:

Equipment needed for this DIY project

  • Old colanders (whatever colour you like).
  • Potting soil.
  • Landscape cloth.
  • Hanging-basket flowers such as fuchsias or verbenas.
  • Heavy duty and durable string or thin rope.


  1. Measure the circumference of your colander.
  2. Cut a circle from your landscape cloth a little bigger than the above measurements.
  3. Place it in the colander. This will stop water and soil from seeping out of the holes.
  4. Add your flowers before topping up with potting soil.
  5. Cut your string to your desired length. Tie a knot around one handle, before looping back to do the same on the other side.
  6. Hook your hanging basket in your desired spot and marvel at your inexpensive yet incredible creation!

Create delectable decorations for your exterior spaces by transforming old kitchen colanders into colourful hanging baskets.


Depending on brand and size, shelving units can be a costly addition to any room, and with many products lacking in pizzazz, parting with a large chunk of your decorating budget makes it that much harder.

Instead of settling for second best, put those old wooden crates to good use and try your hand at creating a shelving unit full of impact.

Tools required to pull off this project:

  • Desired number of wooden crates.
  • Sandpaper.
  • Paint colours or varnish of your choice.
  • Nails (if grouping together).
  • Drill.
  • Hooks.


  1. Sand down your wooden crates.
  2. Wipe away excess dust before applying varnish and paint, and leave to dry.
  3. Think about how you want to organise your crates.

Ways to arrange your crates

Here are a few possible ways to display your crate creations:

  • If you’re wanting to group crates into a cluster, play around with your arrangement before nailing together. From here, you can nail directly into the wall if wanting to elevate above ground level. Bear in mind that this will need to be a stud wall, not jib.
  • Don’t want to secure to a wall? You can still create shelving units! Simply nail your crates into your desired arrangement and place tightly against your wall. For this purpose it’s better not to go too high to avoid your unit from tipping over. Instead, a height of around two crates works well, especially with a wider base.

From here, add your favourite knick-knacks, such as frames, ornaments or vases to bring your shelves to life!

Put old wooden crates to good use and try your hand at creating a shelving unit full of impact.


This DIY bathtub tray is an amazing example of how easy it is to transform a piece of reclaimed wood into a rustic decor piece. Here’s how you can create your own.

What you need for this upcycling project:

  • A piece of reclaimed wood.
  • Tape measure.
  • Sandpaper.
  • Hand saw.
  • Drill.
  • Nails
  • Waterproofing agent.
  • Paintbrush.


  1. Using your tub as a guide, measure and mark a 1.5 cm overhang on either side of your reclaimed wood. For example, if your tub measures 35 cms, measure 38 cms.
  2. Cut away excess wood with the handsaw and sand down until smooth.
  3. Use the excess wood to make underside slats by measuring and cutting two pieces at 4 cm widths. These will prevent the board from sliding over the edge of the bath.
  4. Place your tray back onto the bath. Where it meets the tub wall, make a mark on the underside. This is where the slats will sit.
  5. Secure the slats with drill and nails before sanding the whole piece until smooth.
  6. Using your paintbrush, add a layer of waterproofing agent to ensure your tray remains durable after multiple uses. Leave to dry.
  7. From here, you can keep the board as is, or for an added touch, try your hand at making a wine glass holder.
  8. Do this by cutting a small ‘L’ shape from the edge of the board into the centre. Use a small piece of sandpaper to smooth edges to make sliding the wine glass in and out a lot easier.
  9. Place tray over the bath and enjoy the convenience of having the perfect area to store your favourite bath time treats.

With a little confidence and the right tools, you too can create DIY masterpieces. What will you design next?


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