Choose Reuse: Give Items a Second Life…

  • Repair It. Check out I Fix It for free repair manuals for thousands of items.  They even review items based on their ability to be easily repaired.  Attend one of our free community Repair Cafes to help people get in touch with the value of their consumer goods.
  • Upcycle It.  To “upcycle” is to take an item that was previously garbage and turn it into something of higher quality and different purpose.  An example of this is creating new home furniture from old barn siding lumber, or funky pouches from fused plastic bag trash.
  • Donate It. Donate unwanted items to charity.  Go to Find a Reuser/Recycler to learn where to reuse.
  • Sell ItCraigslist and eBay are reuse in action, providing people easy ways to sell, buy, or trade used goods. Consignment stores now exist for clothes, outdoor gear, books,furniture and decor to make some money for your unwanted items.
  • Give It.  Give unwanted items to friends, family, neighbors, or check out Freecycle for freebie reuse opportunities.
  • Redo It. Repurpose, refinish, or reclaim outdated items.  Often it takes just a fresh coat of paint or turning something upside down to see it in a new way and find a new use for something.


Choose Reuse: Instead of Disposables BYO…

  • Water bottle. Find or purchase a durable and refillable water bottle for staying hydrated with our delicious Central Oregon tap water.
  • Coffee mug. Use a travel mug for your coffee and other beverages while also saving money. Coffee shops usually give a 5 or 10 cent discount for bringing your own cup.
  • Shopping bags. Say neither to paper or plastic with reusable, washable cloth bags for grocery shopping.
  • Produce Bags. Once you get into the bag habit, it’s time to think about ALL the bags you use at the grocery store. Reuse bread or produce bags or buy/make smaller bags for your produce or bulk needs.
  • Bulk Containers. Forgo plastic altogether and reuse your glass jars to fill up in the bulk aisle.  Stores will weigh containers while empty so you just pay for what you put in them.
  • To-go Container. When dining out, bring your own reusable to-go container for any leftovers you don’t finish.
  • Growler or Growlette. If it’s one thing Central Oregon has a lot of it’s beer, and the best way to package it is in your own reusable growler or growlette.  In addition to all our breweries keep an eye out for the growler refill stations popping up around Bend.


Choose Reuse: Before You Buy New…

  • Tools & Equipment. Before buying higher end items that you don’t plan on using everyday, can you borrow it from a neighbor or friend?  The sharing economy is upon us with online tools popping up all over to help strangers and neighbor share, rent, borrow.  Check out this page on Collaborative Consumption listing known share sites and let us know if any one in particular gains any traction here in Central Oregon!
  • Building Materials. Construction and demolition materials make up a large portion of our overall waste. By reusing things like lumber, doors, windows and fixtures, we can keep things out of the landfill. Check with your local Habitat for Humanity ReStore or find one at the Find A Reuser or Recycler.
  • Sporting Goods. When getting into a new sport its best to test out gear to make sure you like it.  This is especially key for children as their growing bodies lend themselves to updating every year.  Check out local resale gear stores, Bend Craigslist, and yard sales to keep up your need for outdoor gear.
  • Clothing. Styles change with the season, but clothing doesn’t have to go to waste. Shop consignment stores, hold a clothing swap with friends or give them new life by hemming or altering. Old clothing can be made into rags or even upcycled into fun accessories. Form a Facebook group with friends to post items you are ready to part ways with.



Single Use Plastics and their Impacts. Can we change it?

Plastics are a problem Is the image of a sea turtle with a single use straw up its nose or a beach completely blanketed in plastic trash burned into your brain like it is in mine? No need to stab the fallen. But seriously: plastic (especially the single use variety) is a problem. And sometimes […]

DIY Halloween Costumes

  Using some fuzzy math, I figured I have 30 kid Halloweens under my belt. That’s adding up each Halloween, times the three kids who are now teenagers.  Although in recent years I’ve had less and less costuming to do, when the children were younger, creating their Halloween costumes was an important annual tradition.  It […]

Your Old Clothes: Too hole-y, even for church? Or lots of life to live?

What do you do with your old clothes? There are lots of ways to make more space in your closet without throwing clothes in the trash. According to the Oregon DEQ, Americans throw away over 32 billion pounds of textiles a year, but over 90% of clothing and shoes are recyclable. Textile recovery is an […]