Today in New Delhi, India
Dec 12, 2018-Wednesday
New Delhi
  • Humidity
  • Wind

Trash to treasure: Here’s how to turn discards into fabulous decor pieces

From dried leaves to old books, here’s how to get imaginative and create conversation starter decor items at almost no cost.

fashion and trends Updated: Jun 03, 2018 16:25 IST
Etti Bali
Etti Bali
Hindustan Times
Decor,Home Decor,Interior Design
Turn old and discarded items into pieces of art.(Photo: Sarang Gupta/HT)

Planning on giving your house a makeover, but don’t want to spend a bomb? Then DIY (Do It Yourself) home decor tricks are the way to go forward. Easy, low on budget and personalised, these hacks will help you give a new look to your abode. And there’s no better way to go about it than by recycling old household items. From recycling old ladders and doors, to using pages from your favourite novels as wall decor, there’s plenty to get inspired by. So pick up your tool kit, get some craft supplies and get down and dirty with DIY home decor.


Nothing spells melancholy like an old, abandoned door at kabadi (scrap) markets. A walk through the markets of Mehrauli will lead you to many such doors, which, once beautiful and majestic, are lying in abandonement. You can use wood cleaner and some varnish to clean the door. Then, you can get to work on the door. You can turn it into a table top, a room divider or as a frame for portraits.


While bringing a bit of green inside the house with indoor plants is always a good idea, dried leaves can also be used for decor. “Go through your backyard or neighbourhood park to find big leaves such as peepal, banyan , kosam and sal. Press them between books, and once they have dried, hang them from the roof like a lampshade. You can also paste them in patterns along walls,” says Harinder Singh, designer, 1469. You can also paint them with metallic golds and silvers and frame them.

Dried leaves can be bunched into bouquets and strewn about the ceiling and staircases. (Photo: Sarang Gupta/HT)


Every Indian household has a friendly ladder that has been in the family for generations. The trusted sidekick has taken many a blows, yet stands tall. You can give the humble ladder a quick makeover. “You can paint it in a nice colour, and cover its foot with sutli (thin rope) for a rustic touch. Attach hardboard shelves and use it for various purposes,” says interior designer Manjula Khanna . Keep your books on it hang photo frames, tie scarves and stoles along the rung, or simply thread some fairy lights through the steps.


Flipping through the pages of a well-thumbed novel brings back wonderful memories. And what if we told you that your old books can be turned into pieces of art for your walls? It would be like waking up to nostalgia everyday. Open the books to your favourite page and superglue them to your wall. And while we know parting with old friends is tough, if there is a book that is yellowing and tearing, you can carefully take apart the pages and arrange them in a frame to hang on the walls. You can also make interesting shapes with the pages and hang them from the ceiling.


Skirts, with their bloom of full flares, look good on everyone. You can also use skirts to lend a quirky touch your home decor by using them as table clothes and runners. It works even better on round tables, topped with a floral centrepiece.

Interact with Etti Bali at @TheBalinian

First Published: Jun 03, 2018 16:25 IST