We have heard a lot about new ideas to recycle, especially when it comes to items throughout the kitchen. One method of recycling had long been known to be called repurposing, but now is better known as ‘upcycling’. When it comes to your aging household cookware, here’s how you can recycle when you’ve acquired new kitchenware.
What Exactly Is Upcycle?
Just like that old blockbuster hit from decades ago- it seems, there was a movie that had a positive message everyone could understand. This movie was “Pay It Forward” and had that little kid from A.I. acting beside that evil politician actor who also played Frank Underwood in the House of Cards’ series. Yea, this is the movie that started the idea up upcycle. It’s basically the same premise except instead of doing a favor for yourself, you do it for another.
Hence, the Pay It Forward’ notion is to select three alternative ideas of making the world into a better place whereas the upcycle concept is capable of multiple alternative ideas for a used or old object. Actually, upcycling is not a new concept and was kicking around since 1951! Now, as if this wasn’t enough, the concept back then was born as Cradle to Cradle’ and is one of the founding concepts of Americanism that came from European influence.
Unlike the ideals all throughout America, Europeans simply don’t continue collecting and storing everything they own. Old items are repurposed and used in a new way to save space and not clutter their very modestly sized homes. This was passed down as a concept from one of the book’s contributors ‘Michael Braungart‘– a German-born chemist who is considered a visionary environmental thinker.
All of this brief history aside, finding a good use for something that gets old or worn out shouldn’t hinder your ideas on what to do with old cookware that you can’t use anymore. These items are perfectly fine for repurposing or in this case- upcycling’.
Great Upcycle Ideas For Your Old Cookware
Rather than send your old pots and pans to the curbside, we’ve got some great ideas on what to do with these items instead. Here are our best picks for what to do with these odds and ends:
Use Them As A Kitchen Decoration
This is a popular choice for farmhouse and country kitchen décor when you have older and vintage pots or pans, but not limited to old-looking cookware that’s certainly nostalgic. When select pots with decorative images on the sides are displayed on open shelving or along the top of hanging cabinets, this leftover cookware can become excellent art pieces among your current kitchen decoration theme.
The same goes for any kind of utensils or accessories that are interesting looking when these are hung together in a group. Even a collection of interesting pot lids or unique griddles are always charming when they are hung on the wall in your kitchen.
Make Them Into Planters
For those who like having potted plants all around your home, reusing old boiling pots or shallow saucepans is perfect for grouping on top of a garden display table. Indoors or outdoors, these are also an ideal method to store your plants inside since they won’t leak water out from an existing pot that they’re potted into. Smaller plants are more cheerful when you group three or more budding plants into a spare pot.
There is also an old-fashioned country feel to storing potted plants this way giving an ordinary potted plant more decorative appeal. Cast iron pots won’t be so great for being outside however the more rustic these pots can appear, is often a plus for getting more visual impact.
Play Kitchen Items For Kids
Little kids are always entertained when playing in their kid-sized kitchen. It’s not just a little girl’s domain since the kitchen is universally for anyone to feel creative about making food. If you have pots and pans or smaller-sized utensils and accessories that they feel comfortable playing with, these make great real-life toy props. It also gives them more realism in a playtime world whereas most toy kitchen stuff is plastic looking and not so realistic at all.
The selection process might be a bit more conservative than what you should give to your kids, so make sure these items aren’t oversized or too heavy to lift. It also allows your kids to get a feel for how the real Mommy and Daddy kitchen cookware can enhance their little play kitchen setup.
Organizers For Storage Bins
Some older cookware accessories such as muffin trays and ice cube trays are excellent container trays for the garage or home office. Store all of your pushpins, screws, nails, bolts, and virtually anything small in these convenient bins. These readily stack together making them optimal for putting in a drawer or on a shelf. You’ll never lose track of these spare items for those times when you need a spare screw to hang a picture on the wall.
For home offices, these bins also make the perfect place to put paper clips, rubber bands, and even spare change you can further organize. These are also perfect for knick-knacks of all sorts and become easier places to store excess tidbits that you would otherwise store in your drawer tops anyway.
Arts And Crafts
Making a craft bin is always a lot more fun when you use older Tupperware and plastic bins for storing paints and art supplies. Older pots also are perfect for use as wax melting vessels if you have a spare hot plate. As for pottery and jewelry making, little leftover spice bottles are excellent for keeping beads and jewels in so they don’t get lost in a bigger container. Old Tupperware tops also make handy paint mixing palettes likewise.
There is one thing to be said about arts and crafts, and literally anything in your kitchen can be used for cooking or preparing food is an outstanding choice to use in your arts and crafts collection.
Use Them For Camping
Some folks will spend a ton of money on buying camping cooking gear but the real best-kept secret is using old cookware to bring with you instead. Have a whole camping cookware setup stored in a plastic storage bin. This will keep everything you need ready to go the next time you decide to go camping and is just as easy to transport and move into your campsite. Another advantage is feeling more at home using kitchen cookware you know already.
Just because your cookware is older, doesn’t mean it doesn’t do a good job. Unless it’s partially broken, cracked, or has some chips and defects, it can still be used to some degree while camping.