Why Upcycling is the Coolest Way to Build Your Wall Art Collection



Finding beautiful, unique and affordable artwork for my walls has sometimes felt like an unattainable decorating task. I usually don’t like to buy a piece unless I know I’ll enjoy it for a long time, unless it’s something memorable and timeless. I think it’s the combination of wanting to spend money only on what I really love, and wanting my space to be filled with art that really speaks to me.


So this past year I have been re-vamping my walls with a less-is-more mindset. No more filler art, but the kind of art that makes me happy every time I see it.


One of the ways I have started to build this collection is by up-cycling. I take prints, photos, or graphics from various mediums I have bought, then trim or mat them, and frame them in a new way. 


It started with the framing of an old calendar. Over the years I have saved my favorite calendar pages, waiting for the perfect opportunity to re-use them. I thought this was the time. All I had to do was trim off the bottom of the page where the dates were, and ta-da, I had a print ready for framing! I trimmed and framed two of them for my wall, and gifted another for a friend.


The best part is, I only had to pay for the price of the calendar (about $30 or so) to get 12 beautiful options to choose from. A new print alone would typically cost at least this much. Yay for getting more for your buck! 


But also yay— for having more unique prints on my walls. I love that these aren’t sold on their own as prints, so simply by singling them out and framing them, they are their own unique piece.


Another medium I have upcycled for framing is magazine pages. I am drawn to the stunning photography and graphics of a good magazine, but usually don’t use their beauty beyond flipping through the pages. Lately, I have been cutting out my favorite page spreads from magazines to save for future wall art use. All they need is a frame (and maybe a white mat) and they look like they were bought from a print shop! 


This Vogue magazine cover I found at a farmer's market last summer. There are numerous places to find frame-worthy art that fits your style and budget, just be open to discovering it anywhere!


If you’re like me and you have been saving your favorite magazines, calendars, and cards over time, you’ll have fun choosing from that ready-made collection. But if you don’t feel you have any saved or found artwork waiting for you, don’t worry! All you have to do is browse through your local magazine aisle. Find a glossy, beautiful publication that catches your attention, make sure there are a few pages you’re dying to rip out, and buy it! Go home, put it in an Ikea frame, and you’ve got a new art piece. 


There are so many other lovely ways to use upcycling to create unique, fresh wall art. We'd love to hear the ideas you've tried, friend! 



holl & lil