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5 Top Tips For A Sustainable Renovation – Zero Waste Week

Renovating can be hard work, even more so when trying to be conscious of waste. Luckily, we’ve been through it a few times before so let’s talk through some simple tips for a waste reducing renovation. Here are our top 5 tips to a sustainable renovation.

A large empty, beige room sits derelict and empty as if awaiting a makeover.

Shop Second Hand

A great way to live zero waste is to shop second hand. making use of items which have already lived a life reduces the need for more products to be made, sold, and distributed.

When looking for a specific item, try searching for sale sites like Facebook Marketplace to find out who is selling something similar locally. By saving searches, you’ll be notified when matches appear. It always feels like a lottery win when you find what you are looking for, and what’s more, its usually for a much lower price.

Unsure where to start? Look into the age of your home and search for furniture from around that period. It’ll really compliment your space.

Plan, Plan, Plan…

Keep measurements of your rooms and spaces in your bag. you never know when you’ll come across a preloved treasure, but they don’t stick around – so be prepared. Have what you’re looking for in mind, be open but don’t be distracted. Keep an eye out for local markets and car boots and plan to drop in to as many as you can.

Painting the walls never happens as early as you’d hope, but colour is the first thing we think of when it comes to redecorating. The great news is most paint now is water based, however, there are still brands out there who really put sustainability first.

Earthborn were the first UK brand to carry the EU Ecolabel. Now, many up and coming paint brands like Coat, YesColours, and Lick have set their focus on sustainability. Coat offer a closed loop recycling system, zero waste production and local focus. Lick also offer a made to order production method and for every 2.5l paint sold, remove 18g of plastic from the ocean.

If designer sustainable paint is beyond your budget, take a look at clearance section in DIY shops where you’ll find a bargain that would otherwise be disposed of. A great way to discover colours you’d never have considered. Another great way to find paint sustainably is to head to a second-hand paint supplier like community repaint.

Choose Eco Paint

a plain off white background has a torn piece of white paper fixed onto it with tape, ready for some DIY. In the foreground is the leaf of a fern.
an image of a gplan cabinet with legs added. The bottom 10cm is painted black and the rest is a walnut colour.

Reuse and Repurpose

Throughout a renovation, you’ll often dig into boxing in, whilst reworking your home. but can you reuse the wood? For us, an old shed that was beyond saving has made birdhouses, new garden storage and greenhouse racking. Before throwing anything out, consider its potential. One project we cannot wait to get stuck into is the mosaic we have planned with the old bathroom tiles.

before you throw something away, take a closer look. could it become something else? Just as clothes can be cycled down into painting gear and then cleaning cloths, consider this with things like storage or packaging boxes which can work their way into the garage or shed. Containers can make great plant pots providing a zero-waste way to start growing your own food.

Upcycle

Make use of what you already have and make it work for your new home. Family and friends often have furniture they no longer need, can you make it work in your space? Upcycling is the most rewarding way to get an original piece that fits your space.

Wooden furniture such as drawers, chairs, tables, or shelving can look beautiful with a new coat of paint and choosing the paint colour means you can make anything work in your home! Take a look on Pinterest for some inspiration. You’ll even find feeds dedicated to IKEA ‘hacks’ full of the best ways to find new uses for those pieces that you no longer love.

So far, our favourite upcycle project has been a G-plan unit bought second hand and upcycled into a bathroom vanity using clearance varnish and a sample tile. But an upcycle can be simple too. The sad looking greenhouse which was sitting in our new garden has been painted black and now looks incredible – all ready for homegrown veg!

a close up of a box full of broken green tiles removed from a wall

So, there we have it, you’re armed with the best ways to reduce waste in your reno. Which of our top tips for a sustainable renovation will you be taking away? Ultimately, renovating is all about having fun, so enjoy the process and take your time. Follow our top tips and you’ll have an original and individual home for a fraction of the cost and environmental impact! What a win!

For more real-time inspiration, make sure you’re following Abi here.

Meet The Author: Abi Arnold-Michael She/Her

Meet The Author: Abi Arnold-Michael She/Her

Co Creator Of Esperanza

Abi Arnold-Michael is the joint creator of Esperanza.

Having grown up with a series of health problems, Abi has always created her own way. After renovating her first home, Abi who lives with her wife Emma, best friend Andy, and dog Tia, plans to move into a home large enough to adopt and foster children and animals. Abi currently creates flatlays for small businesses and her goal is to establish a more sustainable and ethical shopping experience by encouraging customers to shop locally and with independent businesses.

5 Top Tips For A Sustainable Renovation – Zero Waste Week

Renovating can be hard work, even more so when trying to be conscious of waste. Luckily, we’ve been through it a few times before so let’s talk through some simple tips for a waste reducing renovation. Here are our top 5 tips to a sustainable renovation.
A large empty, beige room sits derelict and empty as if awaiting a makeover.

Shop Second Hand

A great way to live zero waste is to shop second hand. making use of items which have already lived a life reduces the need for more products to be made, sold, and distributed.

When looking for a specific item, try searching for sale sites like Facebook Marketplace to find out who is selling something similar locally. By saving searches, you’ll be notified when matches appear. It always feels like a lottery win when you find what you are looking for, and what’s more, its usually for a much lower price.

Unsure where to start? Look into the age of your home and search for furniture from around that period. It’ll really compliment your space.

Plan, Plan, Plan…

Keep measurements of your rooms and spaces in your bag. you never know when you’ll come across a preloved treasure, but they don’t stick around – so be prepared. Have what you’re looking for in mind, be open but don’t be distracted. Keep an eye out for local markets and car boots and plan to drop in to as many as you can.

a plain off white background has a torn piece of white paper fixed onto it with tape, ready for some DIY. In the foreground is the leaf of a fern.

Choose Eco Paint

Painting the walls never happens as early as you’d hope, but colour is the first thing we think of when it comes to redecorating. The great news is most paint now is water based, however, there are still brands out there who really put sustainability first.

Earthborn were the first UK brand to carry the EU Ecolabel. Now, many up and coming paint brands like Coat, YesColours, and Lick have set their focus on sustainability. Coat offer a closed loop recycling system, zero waste production and local focus. Lick also offer a made to order production method and for every 2.5l paint sold, remove 18g of plastic from the ocean.

If designer sustainable paint is beyond your budget, take a look at clearance section in DIY shops where you’ll find a bargain that would otherwise be disposed of. A great way to discover colours you’d never have considered. Another great way to find paint sustainably is to head to a second-hand paint supplier like community repaint.

Reuse and Repurpose

Throughout a renovation, you’ll often dig into boxing in, whilst reworking your home. but can you reuse the wood? For us, an old shed that was beyond saving has made birdhouses, new garden storage and greenhouse racking. Before throwing anything out, consider its potential. One project we cannot wait to get stuck into is the mosaic we have planned with the old bathroom tiles.

before you throw something away, take a closer look. could it become something else? Just as clothes can be cycled down into painting gear and then cleaning cloths, consider this with things like storage or packaging boxes which can work their way into the garage or shed. Containers can make great plant pots providing a zero-waste way to start growing your own food.

an image of a gplan cabinet with legs added. The bottom 10cm is painted black and the rest is a walnut colour.

Upcycle

Make use of what you already have and make it work for your new home. Family and friends often have furniture they no longer need, can you make it work in your space? Upcycling is the most rewarding way to get an original piece that fits your space.

Wooden furniture such as drawers, chairs, tables, or shelving can look beautiful with a new coat of paint and choosing the paint colour means you can make anything work in your home! Take a look on Pinterest for some inspiration. You’ll even find feeds dedicated to IKEA ‘hacks’ full of the best ways to find new uses for those pieces that you no longer love.

So far, our favourite upcycle project has been a G-plan unit bought second hand and upcycled into a bathroom vanity using clearance varnish and a sample tile. But an upcycle can be simple too. The sad looking greenhouse which was sitting in our new garden has been painted black and now looks incredible – all ready for homegrown veg!

a close up of a box full of broken green tiles removed from a wall

So, there we have it, you’re armed with the best ways to reduce waste in your reno. Which of our top tips for a sustainable renovation will you be taking away? Ultimately, renovating is all about having fun, so enjoy the process and take your time. Follow our top tips and you’ll have an original and individual home for a fraction of the cost and environmental impact! What a win!

For more real-time inspiration, make sure you’re following Abi here.

Meet The Author: Abi Arnold-Michael She/Her

Meet The Author: Abi Arnold-Michael She/Her

Co Creator Of Esperanza

Abi Arnold-Michael is the joint creator of Esperanza.

Having grown up with a series of health problems, Abi has always created her own way. After renovating her first home, Abi who lives with her wife Emma, best friend Andy, and dog Tia, plans to move into a home large enough to adopt and foster children and animals. Abi currently creates flatlays for small businesses and her goal is to establish a more sustainable and ethical shopping experience by encouraging customers to shop locally and with independent businesses.

Rethink Regifting: Let Us Tell You More!

Rethink Regifting: Let Us Tell You More!

Make sure to plant a tree next time you buy gift wrap. Not a fan of digging? No problem, we plant a tree with every bag sold! Rethink Regifting with us!