Unless you’re a devoted follower of Marie Kondo’s KonMari method of living a minimalist lifestyle, then you’ve probably encountered a box or two of clutter and detritus in your house. It might not be a full episode of “Hoarders” yet, but it may soon be if you don’t get rid of it. However, getting rid of things isn’t the best thing you can do for a world that’s being wrecked by climate change, so you might want to think twice about just chucking everything in the trash.
Aside from being conscious about your purchases and those single-use materials, you can also reduce clutter by repurposing some old items you have just lying around. It’s taxing to take on a project like creating new flooring using broken plates or turning your old benches into a planter, so here’s a list of extremely easy repurposing projects you can take on to reduce clutter and environmental waste one small step at a time.
From jars or cans to storage containers
Since remote work started, I decided to fill up my personal inventory of office supplies. After nine months of online shopping, I have too many pens, clips and sticky notes that I’m pretty sure will last until the end of next year. Using old jars as penholders help me organize my work from home space. A few identical jars that used to hold chili oil now hold the makeup I haven’t used since quarantine started. Since I’ve been ordering a lot of food for delivery, I make sure to reuse those containers and jars: for food storage or transport (when you’re sending food to friends and family).
Scratch paper into gift wrap
Eliminate the hassle of looking for the perfect gift wrap and be environmentally friendly by using scratch paper as wrapper and gift cards. Finally, those old readings from your college days won’t go to waste.
Wine bottles into water pitchers
We’ve all had our fair share of drinking moods and over the past nine months, you’ve probably amassed a few empty bottles as proof of your e-numans and self-care days. Hydrate and wash out the alcohol from your body by turning these wine bottles into water pitchers. As long as you wash the bottles thoroughly before using, water from these glass containers are usually better than those from plastic, since glass bottles are chemical-free and won’t give off a weird taste.
Shower curtain into drop cloths
Re-painting your room is a messy enough activity without worrying about stray paint droplets that you have to clean up after. Unearth those shower curtains from when you re-decorated your bathroom and spread them on the floor as drop cloths when you start painting. If they’re wide enough, you can also use them to cover furniture or materials you don’t want to get paint splattered on, like bookshelves or appliances.
Old clothes into new ones
I love to shop as much as any other person but it’s been really hard to justify buying new clothes when I don’t go out as often as I used to. So I’ve been going through my family’s chest of old clothes and repurposing them to suit my video call and occasional grocery trips. Trends are cyclical so there’s always something in style for me to find and if not, I can always send them out for alteration to make them cool again.