What Is Upcycling?

Upcycling is taking something that’s considered waste and repurposing it. The upcycled item often becomes more functional or beautiful than what it previously was. That’s why it’s called upcycling, because the value of the item is increased!

The Difference Between Recycling and Upcycling

Recycling and Upcycling have different processes. In the recycling process, items are broken down to be reused. Paper is shredded and turned into pulp, plastic is shredded and melted into pellets, glass is smashed and melted to be recast. This downcycling is an essential step in the recycling process, but it does degrade the value of the materials. 

Upcycling is a creative process where waste is looked at as a resource. Materials are reused in a clever new way, giving them a second life and function. Think of a pallet coffee table. Upcycling transforms the pallet into a lovely piece of furniture.

Both recycling and upcycling are important as they reuse materials instead of throwing them away. Less landfill waste has a positive impact on the environment.

How to Upcycle

Anyone can be an upcycler! We have 2 different ways that we like to upcycle. You can either think of something that you’d like to have, like a lamp, or you can think of something that you’d like to use, like glass jars. These 2 ways of looking at upcycling are categorized on Upcycle That according to ‘Make That’ or ‘Use That’.