Re-using, recycling and re-purposing around the house is not only trendy and thrifty, it’s fun and environmentally responsible! For avid DIYers, repurposing functional pieces for a new use is as rewarding as it is fun.
While the possibilities are endless… Today we’re going to discuss 5 ways you can re-purpose old windows. Finding value and beauty beyond your windows’ given lifespan takes creativity, but can actually be very easy. Whether it’s for function or fashion, you’re guaranteed to create something unique you can’t find in any store!
If you’re down to get creative with your home’s “waste,” read on:
1. Picture Frame
This one is almost TOO easy. Next time you’re at a yard sale, flea market or antique shop, look for an ornate true-divided light window. These are the windows with small panes of glass divided by thin strips of wood. You can mount your photos behind the glass, or remove the glass and clip a photo to suspend within each square (like the photo you see here!) Also, staining or painting the wood to match your decor is easy & cheap! For additional functionality, attach a few hooks along the bottom for your car keys, umbrella or coat! This makes a great, unique gift as well. (wedding photos/new baby photos + old windows go together like peanut butter + jelly) Check out Pinterest for more ideas!
2. Chalk Board
I know I said the picture frame project was almost TOO easy, but converting a window into a chalkboard may be even easier. No matter the size or style of the window, if it’s still got its glass intact, it can be a chalkboard! Chalkboard paint is extremely cheap and readily available at any craft or home improvement store. Paint the glass and you’re done. Seriously! You can even find magnetic chalkboard paint to up the ante with functionality & fun. This can be used in your home office, child’s room, kitchen, garden… anywhere you need to keep a list, write a reminder, leave a note, or be creative… this will come in handy! More ideas available on… where else? Pinterest!
3. DIY Greenhouse
Not the easiest project, but oh so worth it! If you’re replacing old, inefficient windows because they’re letting in too much heat… don’t throw them out! One man’s garbage is another garden’s treasure. We’re loving this DIY greenhouse constructed by Anne at DesignDreams by Anne. Using storm windows, she was able to create this adorable storage area in her garden for plants in need of a little boost of heat and sun. She also managed to make a larger version of this greenhouse with old doors + windows. For more information on how to build a cold frame, or greenhouse similar to Anne’s with old windows, check out Pinterest.
4. Coffee or Side Table
Reusing an old window or two to create a coffee or side table is both decorative AND functional. Whether the window is simply used as a tabletop, or hinges are used to allow it to open and close, it looks great. What an inventive way to create unique storage in your home! While this project does take a bit of know how and elbow grease, as with the greenhouse it’s oh so worth it. Maryann at Domestically Speaking has a wonderful post titled, “For the Love of Old Windows,” where she’s shared transformations of old windows into headboards, shadowboxes, and our favorite… a coffee table! For more tutorials on similar projects, visit Pinterest!
5. Don’t forget the shutters!
Shutters are replaced more often than windows… but they’re no less worthy of being upcycled! Old shutters don’t deserve a trip to the dump, they’re great sturdy pieces of wood that can be transformed into really… anything! Pinterest lists a number of projects ranging from easy to difficult, straight decorative to fully functional pieces of furniture for your home or garden. Our favorite comes from a blog called The Cottage Market who repurposed large shutters to grow succulents out of. What a beautiful use for an otherwise mundane piece of wood. Succulents need little soil, water, sun or even room to prosper… so filling a set of shutters with these unique plants is an easy project that will create a gorgeous decorative backdrop to any patio!
What are some of your favorite ways to repurpose and reuse old “junk” around the home? Comment below!