Rubble, Rubble, Toil and Trouble

Unique Ways To Make Use Of Your Renovation Rubble

When I first started my research into this I quickly realised that you can pretty much recycle, reuse or repurpose anything in your home which, whilst thrifty and exhilarating, would have made for a tedious and long article to read. So I narrowed it down. Whether you are building an extension, remodelling the spare room or constructing a decked patio, there will always be leftover materials that, if not salvaged, will only go to waste (or gather dust in the garage – I’m talking to you, half empty paint tins and useless scraps of wood). So let’s do something with them. If you are planning a renovation or extension then read on, we’ve put together some great suggestions that have us reaching for the leftover bricks otherwise destined for the dump.

1.  Doors & Windows

If you are building an extension it is more than likely that in doing so you will be rendering some perfectly well conditioned doors and windows useless. Save yourself the hassle of disposing of these bulky items and consider using them as decorations – internal or external. I have seen some truly inspiring ways to create wall art (and walls themselves) out of old doors and windows; attach some vintage hooks and make a unique hat and coat stand, hang on the wall and insert photos for a one of a kind photo frame, repaint in bright, vibrant colours and place outside with an abundance of flowers, attach shelves and make yourself a drinks station, or turn them into dressers. The list truly is endless.

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2.  Bricks

There isn’t anything new or revolutionary about using bricks for fire pits, but why fix what isn’t broken? Disused bricks lying around in gardens or sheds are an eyesore and a safety hazard so why not turn them into a timeless design feature. Check with planning or the fire department before constructing if you are unsure how ‘big’ you can go. Firstly, you want to make sure that your bricks are relatively level so they stack nice and neat. With evenness in mind, ensure that the fire pit is going to be on a flat area in your garden (clear it of any grass / flammable materials first). Once you have your location and your bricks to hand, start constructing the first level of your pit with the bricks i.e. the outline of a circle, a square, or whatever fancy shape you are going for. Our advice here is keep it simple – the most attractive fire pits have a simple form and aren’t fussy. Then, begin to construct. Don’t stack the bricks straight one on top of the other – this isn’t structurally strong. Instead follow a simple placement like the image below and continue to the desired height, remembering to add in one or two ‘airholes’ to let oxygen reach the fire. Line the base inside with gravel and you are good to go.

Face Brick Pattern.html

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3.  Tiles

If you are revamping your bathroom or kitchen then think twice before hurling the old tiles into the dump – there is some magic to be made here. Release your inner artist and get creative. Generally speaking, tiles aren’t going to stay in pristine condition as they are removed from the wall, but embrace the breakage and use the leftover mosaic pieces to jazz up plain flower pots, make a unique table top or, if you have lots of tiles and patience, line an outdoor path.

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4.  Paint

The fact that I hadn’t thought of this idea before researching this topic baffles me, it is that simple. Once you’ve finished painting your room don’t even consider throwing the dregs of leftover paint in your tin away, just because there isn’t enough left to be useful. How very wrong you are. If you’ve repainted a room but the existing furniture no longer matches the new colour scheme, use the dregs of paint to help your furniture fit in. Repaint plant pots, chairs, tables, bookshelves, anything. Once you’re done and the tin is nice and empty, put some soil inside and use it as an outside planter (and if you still have paint leftover, consider painting the paint tin itself).

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5.  Wood

Scrap wood is one of the most versatile materials going, and best of all, it’s free. Another material with an endless list of possible DIY projects, so here are just a few of my favourites. With just an old floor board and an array of different hooks make some one of a kind coat hooks for the porch or hall. If you are a lover of candles, make your own candle sconces by cutting your scrap wood down to size and combining two pieces to make a backing board and a small shelf (although we should remind you that wood + open flames aren’t a good combination, so make sure the candles are artificial or in a container). Take your creativity outside by using old floor boards or long sections of wood to make a garden walkway – this idea is perfect if you want to recreate a Japanese garden. Or finally, how about getting some tools out and making yourself some book shelves or storage units – with just a few nails and glue you can have something quite spectacular.

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Produced By;

Kelly Priaulx

The information in this Coffee Break article is intended for guidance only. The authors cannot accept any liability for any loss or damage which may result from the use of this article.