The Twelve Days of a Green Christmas – second day

On the second day of Christmas my green friend gave to me…two re-purposed pallets…and a smart ther-mo-stat!

My green friend knows I love up-cycled/repurposed objects that would otherwise be clogging our landfills.”Waste not, want not” is definitely one of my favorite mantras ūüôā ¬†So these pallets were not just pallets, they were now functional items that I will use.

Recycle symbol

Up-cycling is the opposite of down-cycling which completes the recycling process.  Down-cycling is the process of converting materials into new materials where up-cycling is the process of keeping useful items out of landfills by re-using them for another purpose.  The universal recycle symbol came about in 1969 by way of a contest for art students across the country to design a symbol to raise environmental awareness to debut as part of the first Earth Day in 1970.  A 23-year-old college student attending the University of Southern California, Gary Anderson, won the contest sponsored by the then Container Corporation of America (now part of Smurfit-Stone Container) with his Mobius strip (a single-sided looped surface) design.  Although the symbol has many variations it remains similar to the original design.

Picasso’s Bull’s Head – 1942 Photo:

Up-cycling or “creative re-use” formerly was associated with impoverished areas and countries. ¬†That’s not so much the case anymore as up-cycling has been incorporated into the arts, music, industry, gardening and technology. ¬†Many of us own items that have been made from recycled plastic bottles. ¬†Let’s face it, “up-cycling” is not new, ¬†Picasso created his work of art, Bull’s Head, in 1942 using a bicycle seat and handlebar. ¬†The Amish made quilts from scraps of leftover fabric. Simon Rodia constructed the Watts Towers in Los Angeles from 1921 to 1954 using rebar. ¬†Marcel Duchamp created his 1917 “Fountain” from a porcelain urinal.¬†

This new-found awareness by a larger part of our population is now mainstream among artists, builders, crafts people and sought after by consumers! ¬†Old cars are now being restored and are “classic cars”, renovated old travel trailers are part of the “glamping” rage, Earthship houses are part of the eco-friendly housing construction sector that use glass bottles and aluminum cans. ¬†If you are looking for ideas to repurpose an item go to the website and search for that item. ¬†You will find a multitude of ideas and projects, many with instructions.

So, on this second day of a green Christmas, my green friend gave me 2 up-cycled shipping pallets. ¬†One will be new “shelving” for my kitchen and the other will be near my kitchen door growing the herbs I use often. ¬†Share your pallet project pictures to the comments below.

Up-cycled pallet shelf Photo:
Up-cycled pallet for plants



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