Home Decor

5 Upcycling Ideas for Winter

Upcycling is a great way to create something new from something you’d normally just throw away. When people think of upcycling, they generally think of spring and summer projects, but there are plenty of things you can do in the winter too to create new items to decorate your home with in the colder months.

Put That Old Toboggan to Good Use

Supplies needed:

  • An old toboggan
  • Wood cleaner
  • Danish oil
  • Console table or other materials to use as legs
  • Screws
  • Drill with a screwdriver attachment

If you live in a place that gets snow, you might have an old toboggan in your garage just collecting dust. Instead of getting rid of it, turn it into a bench. This DIY toboggan bench makes the perfect piece to put at the foot of your bed or to use as a coffee table for your living room.

sled toboggan

First, clean the toboggan with the wood cleaner and apply a coat of Danish oil to really make the wood pop. Then measure your console table or other materials you are using for legs and have it cut down to the height you want the final table to be. Attach the table or legs to the toboggan with screws. Let the new table sit for 24 hours so the oil is really dry before you bring it in the house.

Turn Empty Frames into Art

Supplies needed:

  • Old picture frames
  • Spray paint
  • Spray adhesive
  • Glass cleaner
  • Scrap paper
  • Snowflake stencils

Empty frame

You can create a pretty winter scene of snowflakes falling using old picture frames and some spray paint. These snowflakes in frames are a great way to decorate your mantle or add some winter-themed décor to your walls.

First, paint the frames with silver or gold spray paint and let it dry. Next, spray the stencil with a little bit of spray adhesive. You want it to be barely sticky so it sticks to the glass when you put it down. Put a few sheets of scrap paper around the stencil on the glass so you don’t get paint on the glass. You can use frosted glass, flat white or a mirrored effect for beautiful snowflakes.

Once the snowflakes have dried, put the glass back into the frame and admire your work. Hang them on the wall or sit them on a shelf.

Make Unique Shelves from Old Drawers

Supplies needed:

  • Old drawers from a dresser, nightstand or other furniture
  • Paint
  • Air compressor with a sander
  • Wrapping paper
  • Glue
  • Nails and hammer

old wooden drawers

Drawers from an old dresser or nightstand can be turned into many different things. If you don’t have any laying around, go to your local thrift store and see what you can find. This is a great winter projects because you can do it in your garage away from the cold.

First, sand the drawers. Use an air compressor with a sander to give the drawers a finer, more even finish. Next, if you want to paint the drawers, apply 2 to 3 coats and let it dry. Cut your wrapping paper to fit inside your drawer and glue it in place. Hang the new shelves with a couple of nails and put them to good use.

Tin Can Candle Holders

Supplies needed:

  • Empty tin cans
  • Spray paint
  • Stencils

metal can

Instead of throwing away your cans after you have a warm bowl of soup, clean the can and remove the paper wrapper. Get some paint and stencils and turn them into beautiful tin can candle holders.

First, clean out the can and remove the paper wrapper. Use spray paint and paint the entire can in one color and let it dry. Using another color of spray paint and a stencil, paint a design onto the can to make it decorative. Let it dry and put your creation to use. You can group the candleholders together and even stack them up to create varying heights.

Cozy Sweater Lampshade


  • An old sweater
  • Scissors
  • A lamp shade
  • Hot glue

If you have some sweaters you don’t wear anymore, you can use them to create new lampshades that have a nice winter feel.


First, take the lampshade off of the lamp and fit the sweater over it. You want to have the body of the sweater over the lampshade so you can cut the neck and the armholes off. Leave yourself a half-inch to an inch on both the top and the bottom to fold over the lampshade and create a finished edge. Then you just apply a line hot glue to the top and the bottom and press the sweater into place.

You can use any color sweater to match your decor, but a white one is more versatile and is something you could use for more than one season. A beautiful cable knit sweater with a design gives a modern and interesting look that you won’t accomplish with a plain sweater.

Now you don’t have to spend the winter waiting for warmer months any longer. You can choose some of these projects to upcycle some of the items you have around the house and create beautiful new items to enjoy all winter long.

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Megan Wild enjoys finding easy and low-stress ways to improve your home. In her downtime, she enjoys flipping flea market finds, hanging out with her dog, and writing on her home-themed blog, Your Wild Home. She's passionate about sustainability and environmentalism, and you can find her tweeting about both @Megan_Wild.

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