Upcycle it: Breathe new life into old things

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Written byClaire Hunte

It’s spring, so naturally, for many, we begin the season of light and flowers by cleaning. It can also make you ponder whether it’s time for a new look for your home. Thankfully, that doesn’t have to mean buying something new since a refresh works as well. Making minor tweaks like repainting, reupholstering, or repurposing can all achieve the same goals with the added benefit of being good for the environment.

Having recently downsized, I needed to find a way to make some of my furniture work in a smaller space. And my new home needed a new look without a big budget. Not to mention, I didn’t want to spend a day at IKEA coming away with either one item, probably something for the kitchen or 20 things that weren’t on my ‘pretend’ shopping list. So upcycling seemed the best option for me.

In the Ludlow area, it’s so easy to do. You can pull out the stops and get a local expert (upholsterer, carpenter or curtain-maker) to turn your old things into something new. Or, head to the many charity or vintage shops and browse! Don’t worry; we’ve pulled together a local upcycling guide to give you some ideas.

1. Do it with charity

Gift your unwanted stuff and find something new Photo: iStock

While you’re spring cleaning, there are bound to be household items (including working electricals) that you no longer want, which you can gift to the many charity shops in Ludlow and Leominster or equally have a browse for something unique. Here are some of the charities.

Blue Cross
12 King St
0300 777 1885

Forest Dog Rescue
1 Lower Galdeford
01299 269181

Hope House
9 Castle St
01584 879007

Cancer Research UK
3 Castle St
 01584 878293

3 Bullring
01584 875990

Sue Ryder
13 Tower St
01584 872993

2. Give your furniture kerb appeal

Sometimes all it takes to give new life is to replace those old curtains. I had some material I brought from India that was languishing in my loft remade into curtains with the help of a curtain maker. You may have a piece of furniture you cannot bear to part with but think it could do with an update but don’t trust your DIY skills? Then it’s time to contact an upholstery service. It could be quite an outlay since you’re paying for their time and the materials, but at least you’ve given something you love a new lease of life. Read on for upholsterers and curtain makers (call ahead for appointments) in and around our area.

Ludlow Upholstery and Pepper House
Pepper House, Pepper Ln
07527 838057

J D B Upholstery
Burway Trading Estate
01584 877 744

Draycott & Charles Interiors
The Georgian House, Castle Square
01584 873 100

Andrew James Upholstery
29 Etnam St
07813 656 710

Wenlock Upholstery & Furnishings
Smithfield Road, Much Wenlock
01952 727269 

Curtain & blind makers

Karen Roberts
Neat Pleats of Ludlow
‭01584 823228‬

Maries of Ludlow
29 Henley Road

Ludlow Curtain Company
The Stables, Station Drive
01584 875533

3. Have a go and Do-IT-Yourself courses

Not the way to decorate Photo: iStock

Ah, the satisfaction and fulfilment that comes from hanging or using something you made with your own hands in your home! Nothing beats it. I have made curtains, pillows and reupholstered furniture through workshops and classes. OK, so it’s a bit longer term having to attend a class but at its conclusion not only did I get a special piece but I also made life-long friends because it’s so easily social. Of course, the best way to find out what courses are coming up is to visit our events page or follow us on Facebook as we share posts of any upcoming classes. But here are a few places that tend to offer arts and craft and furniture making courses.

Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre

Westhope College

Herefordshire & Ludlow College

There you have it, a list to help you

Visit our events page for other courses or why not join our community of businesses and list your services on our Directory.