As consumer consumption continues to grow, it is becoming increasingly important to think more environmentally about what we purchase.
There are some encouraging statistics on the quantity of recycled materials and the number of products now available made from recycled materials.
Here’s a look at some of the materials being transformed into useful and beautiful items for the home.
Paper and cardboard are one of the most recycled materials in the US. Both homes and businesses are getting on board.
The process of recycling card begins with collection. You can collect card and paper in a few different ways: perhaps from a curbside collection box or perhaps from a baler hidden away in a factory somewhere (you can find more about that from the balingwiredirect.com experts), before it goes through sorting, shredding, pulping, filtering and finishing.
There are some amazing products made from recycled paper and cardboard now available, from lampshades to clocks, tablet stands and pen pots.
Some innovative artisans are even upcycling cardboard to make statement furniture pieces which are far more durable and attractive than you might first imagine.
If you feel like making your own cardboard masterpiece, check out Pinterest, which has heaps of creative ideas for re-using your card before it hits the recycle bin.
Glass is infinitely recyclable with no loss to quality, so it presents the perfect material to be recycled over and over again. However, it is reported in 2018, that only 33 percent of all glass food and beverage containers in the US were actually recycled. Perhaps an increase in demand for recycled glass itemscould drive that number higher.
Just like card, glass recycling needs collecting before it can be sorted and separatedby color. Compared to making new glass, recycling conserves raw materials and reduces energy consumption.
Options for recycled glass homeware are varied. You can choose from the ordinary like jugs and wine glasses or the more extraordinary such as chandeliers and pieces of art.
Not only can you buy recycled glass items designed by someone else, you can even have a go at making some of your own artwork with classes springing upwhere no previous experience is required.
When it comes to recycling textiles, the important thing to ask first is, can it be re-used? If an item of clothing, for example, still has life left and can be worn by someone else, this is the best option to improve that garment’s carbon footprint.
Once fabrics are no longer reusable, they can be recycled. The exact process will depend on whether it’s a natural or manmade fiber. The textiles will either be pulled apart or shredded before being cleaned and either re-spun or compressed to make filling.
The uses for recycled fabric are endless; literally, anything you make using new fabrics can instead be made with recycled alternatives. So as well as the obvious clothes, bags and shoes which spring to mind when talking textiles, what uses does it have in the homeware department.
There are makers using recycled textiles in the stuffing for sofas and mattresses, for upholstery and other soft furnishings, rugs, and even towels and bedlinen.
With this increase in choice, there should be something to suit all design tastes if you’re prepared to do a little searching for recycled homeware.