Earth Day: Don't throw it out - Repurpose or Refinish it

by Keith Lobo

Every spring it seems to increase in volume - people put their less-loved furniture pieces to the curb, banished to the garbage dump. The finish has lost it's luster, a leg is broken, a handle lost, the upholstery torn and out of date. And yet if it's solid wood, I'm bound to snatch it up and give it new life, either by refinishing or repurposing - or both, as I did with our bathroom sink base. When we moved into our home 8 years ago, like many older Toronto homes, there was no bathroom on the main floor. We did a little redesign, and found a little space - but there was only room for something small.  Not wanting to resort to a pedestal sink (I wanted storage) I found a vintage cabinet that had been used to store vinyl records. After a little love and refinishing, we ended up with something unique and beautiful. Something that was destined for the landfill found a new home.



Many items can find new life by being re-purposed - an old door turned into a desk top; old picture frames clustered together to create visual art; old crib railings turned into a towel rack in your bathroom.  The possibilities are endless - all you have to do is look online, on sites such as Curbly to get a few ideas. But of course, many of us don't have the time to be crafty or simply do not have the space.  So instead of throwing your items to the curb, try taking them to the Habitat for Humanity ReStores where someone else can find a new use for it. Or better yet, contact us to get a quote on eco-friendly refinishing in Toronto. In honour of Earth Day - before tossing it in the trash - consider refinishing, re-purposing or donating your furniture.            

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