16 Recycled, Reclaimed, Repurposed Products
Standout products that are as easy on the eyes as they are on the earth
There's more to remodeling your home with sustainable finishes than filling it with modern-looking bamboo and LED lighting. To prove it, we embarked on an extensive search for green goods—from mirror frames salvaged from old Thai fishing boats to cabinet knobs hand-carved in India from fallow mango trees to made-in-the-USA recycled cotton fibers—to find a handful we felt would be worthy additions to any classic This Old House–style home. Our final selections hew to that time-honored DIY tradition of giving old things new life, as they're made from recycled, reclaimed, or repurposed materials. To find something that fits with your old home, read on.
From: Stardust Glass
Made of: Recycled pre-consumer glass.
Use it: To gussy up a backsplash or as a border in the bath.
Eco bonus: Kiln-firing means less energy consumed and fewer emissions than furnace pouring. From $27 per square foot; stardustglasstile.com
From: Fireclay Tile
Made of: Clay made with recycled materials, such as curbside waste glass; coated with lead- and VOC-free glaze.
Use it: To bring a splash of color and Spanish Revival style to your fireplace surround.
Eco bonus: Made in a day-lit, sustainable factory. From $24 per square foot; fireclaytile.com
Made of: Recycled high-density polyethylene plastic processed into lumber.
Use it: To perk up a dull patio or porch and keep a good read or cup of tea handy.
Eco bonus: Though some plastics can't be reused, these soda bottle polymers are infinitely recyclable. $89; 3rliving.com
From: Sunburst Knobs
Made of: Reclaimed mango wood, and bones collected from the ground by nomadic herders in India.
Use it: To set off a dark-stained wood sideboard or chest of drawers.
Eco bonus: Employs local artisans who craft them by hand. $8–$10 each; sunburstknobs.com
From: Avenue Mosaic
Made of: Teak reclaimed from old Chinese fishing vessels.
Use it: To warm up the walls in a study or as a rustic note underfoot in a den.
Eco bonus: The antique patina is real—no dyes or stains used.
From $29 per square foot; avenuemosaic.com
Made of: Salvaged driftwood.
Use it: On a porch post or in a nearby tree, where you can enjoy its rustic charm.
Eco bonus: The wood's natural patina means no smelly finishes for birds to turn up their beaks at. $60; velocityartanddesign. com
From: Mission Metalworks
Made of: Recycled copper or bronze.
Use it: To boost your cottage's curb appeal.
Eco bonus: Sand-cast with domestically produced alloys. $20–$35 each; shop4classics.com
From: Mio Culture
Made of: Cork scraps from a manufacturer of wine-bottle stoppers in Portugal.
Use it: To fashion a graphic runner for a long hallway.
Eco bonus: The puzzle-piecelike form extends the flooring's life: Ruin a section? Just pop it out and replace. $95 for 12 square feet; mioculture.com