Upcycling is a process of using waste materials and useless products to create something useful and have better value in the environment. The upcycling concept was the title of the German book written by Gunter Pauli in 1997. It actively prevents potential waste generated on a daily basis. Upcycling is the opposite of downcycling, which is the other half of the recycling process. Downcycling involves converting materials and products into new materials of lesser quality. Most recycling involves converting or extracting useful materials from a product and creating a different product or material.

At breaking rules and thinking different is the motto. Upcyclista celebrates art, artists, designers and ideas out of the box. Upcyclista is a project run by ClearWorld Media, based out of Beijing, China. ClearWorld Media is a not-for-loss social media enterprise with a mission to inspire the world to transition to a sustainable, more equitable and fun place to live. They strive to create a better world and encourage people to upcycle, hence help in reducing the carbon footprints and lessening waste that goes into landfills. Check out their website for some of the most innovative ideas from artists and giving temporary things a permanent life.




Artist Spotlight: Dish It Out!


Uh Oh.

There goes your absolute favorite, timeless, one-of-a-kind ceramic dish that has been passed down in your family for ages. What can you do with it now that it can no longer serve it’s function as a dish, but you love it so and still wish to keep it for sentimental reasons? Why not take a page from jewelry artist, Holli Brown’s book?


Based in Austin, Texas, “Holli Brown is inspired by old and forgotten ceramic items; anything that has faded or broken.
Everything she makes in the studio incorporates vintage, found, or re-purposed ceramicware. DISHES!

Example of Holli Brown's beautiful work!

Example of Holli Brown’s beautiful work!


She loves re-purposing things that have outlived their first purposes. She hopes that her work will be loved by people who imagine the adventures all these plates, vases, cups and bowls had before they reached their hands and that they might take them on some of their own adventures! Holli hand cuts and sands each necklace. Creating a very soft and smooth edge.


Holli hopes that the pieces feel like they have a personal history, secrets and stories from the time before they became yours.” ( Holli Brown: Dish It Out website )

More examples of Holli's jewelry at Creatures Boutique in Austin, TX.

More examples of Holli’s jewelry at Creatures Boutique in Austin, TX.


   How Creative and Beautiful! with one plate she can create multiple pieces of jewelry that have a style all their own, no one piece can be exactly alike!

This picture was taken in Downtown Austin, TX where Holli sells some of her art at Creatures Boutique .





Yard Dog

Yard Dog Art, located in Austin is a store with upcycled and sculptures made with reuse materials. – The husband and wife team combine wire, vintage ceiling tin, watch parts, vintage fabrics, and architectural salvage to create their unique sculptures.  They also feature works from various artists who follow similar lines of creating magic from materials that can be reused.  Yard Dog is also known for its contemporary , fine, funky and pop art, they feature various pieces from artists like Eddie Arning, Deborah Baker, Lisa Brawn etc.  They are open from Mon-Fri 11-5, Sat 11-6, Sun noon – 5 and are located at 1510 S. Congress. For more information about their gallery exhibits visit their website at


Summer Yard Sale was a Success!

Our Summer Yard Sale on July 13th was a major success! We had 175 visitors and raised over $1,000 for Austin Creative Reuse. Even more importantly for Rebecca, we were able to clear out a bunch of material in her garage.

Austin Creative Reuse Summer Yard Sale Austin Creative Reuse Summer Yard Sale

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July 2013 Board Meeting

July 9, 2013 at 7pm
Directors Present: Rebecca, Harley, Angela, Kaci, Katy, Cindy

East Austin Studio Tour – Coordinator Volunteer Needed

EAST is just around the corner and we’d love to participate this year! We need a coordinator (that’s you!) to plan and organize our craft and volunteers. Think you might be interested? Get more information at

Upcoming Events

July 13 – Summer Yard Sale
August 24 – Fabric Sale at Fabriker
October (TBD) – Educators Material Drive


Austin Upcycle Challenge Recap

On June 15th, we partnered with Goodwill Austin,  Austin Zero Waste Alliance and to challenge the Austin community to make something creative out of Goodwill’s “end of the line” items.

It was a great event!

June 2013 Board Meeting

June 11, 2013 at 7pm
Directors Present: Rebecca, Harley, Angela, Kaci, Katy, Cindy

Austin Creative Reuse Annual Report

We’re very pleased to release our FY2012 Annual Report. You can find the annual report and our other 2012 highlights on our Community Impact page.

Upcoming Events

June 15 – Austin Upcycle Challenge
June 20 – Craft Night Meet Up at Recycled Reads
July 13 – Summer Yard Sale
August (TBD) – Fabric Sale at Fabricker

Austin 5th Graders Create Mosaic with Reuse Materials

5th graders at Forest Trail Elementary recently finished a mosaic service project in which they used tile, plates, and bowls to create a beautiful mural!

Austin Creative Reuse was delighted to donate the plates and bowls to their project! They did such an amazing job!

Thank you for giving us the colorful plates and bowels. The kids had a blast breaking them up into pieces! They incorporated the donated Austin Creative Reuse tiles within some of the butterflies, flowers and birds. It helped bring interest to the piece.

This is one of those brilliant ways teachers are reusing items in projects to educate kids about art and reuse. We’re really excited to help them with gathering materials for the project.

Isn’t the finished piece beautiful?

IMG_5795IMG_5798Forest Trail Elementary 5th graders create reuse mosaic

Plastic cap mural at Clayton Elementary

Second through fourth graders at a Clayton Elementary after-school program found a way to keep plastic lids out of the landfill and beautify their school at the same time. Using multicolor and various sizes of lids, they are in the process of creating two murals for display at their school.  Art teacher Nancy Hallmark says the entire school community has been contributing plastic lids for this project. Great work, guys!

Plastic Cap Mural by Clayton ElementaryPlastic Cap Mural by Clayton Elementary Plastic Cap Mural by Clayton ElementaryPlastic Cap Mural by Clayton Elementary

May 2013 Board Meeting

May 14, 2013 at 7pm
Directors Present: Harley, Kaci, Katy, Cindy
Visitors Present: Leslie

Bean Bag Donation from SXSW

SXSW donated about 20 large bean bag chairs to Austin Creative Reuse! We’ll be using a few in our center and providing a few to teachers and after school programs. Thank you SXSW!


2005 Wheless Lane, Austin, TX 78723
Tel: (512) 375-3041