If you are a green-minded person, you already make an effort to cut down on waste by recycling and composting. However, a big part of our waste comes from the items we buy, use a few times then throw away or sell in a yard sale. Many items we frequently replace can easily be repaired or updated to give them a like-new feel, but without having to spend more money on new products and wasting things that could still be of use. If you want to live eco-mindedly and save money, consider these easy ways to refurbish and reuse items before you throw them out.
Money Crashers suggests spreading waterproof glue for detached soles or hand-sewing broken straps and leather pieces. If you don’t want anyone to see the stitch job, add a button, ribbon, or pin to hide it and give your old shoes a new look.
Other signs of wear, such as scuffs, can be masked simply by using a matching permanent marker or polishing to give them a fresh look.
Luckily, some simple fixes can save your glasses for a fraction of the cost of buying another pair. Replacing a scratched or cracked lens is much cheaper than replacing an entire pair of sunglasses.
Sites like Revant Optics have lots of options for whatever brand and style you have. For loose or broken hinges, you can use a cheap hobbyist soldering tool, super glue, and carbon fiber tape to fix them in just a few minutes.
Outdated or Ripped Furniture
Recovering your furniture in new fabric and upholstery is a great way to give it an updated look with minimal time and cost.
Start by studying the construction of the item, such as if it is stitched or stapled and where the fabric part connects to the wood or metal part. Take the upholstered part off the chair or couch and remove the old or damaged fabric.
If the batting or stuffing needs to be replaced, you may need to remove the casing, too. Otherwise, simply recover the original cushion in your new fabric and then reattach. The cost of the fabric will pale in comparison to buying a new furniture set and you’ll have a one-of-a-kind piece.
Repair Falling-Apart Books
Unfortunately, repairing a book is not as simple as wrapping duct tape around the binding.
To conserve your precious book and keep it looking new and sturdy, there are specific tools you can use. This book repair tutorial suggests using craft and paper glues that are acid-free.
Also, bone folders are a useful tool for making sure the crease is correct and there are no glue bubbles or pockets. Wax paper also prevents glue from sticking to other pages.
What items do you like to refurbish rather than throw out?