Decorating: 10 Creative New Uses for Leftover Materials
Don't throw out your wallpaper offcuts and opened tins of paint. Put them to good use with these mini projects
A bold wallpaper can turn simple shelving or a plain bookcase into a room’s most striking feature, and creates a pretty backdrop for framed photos and ornaments.
Add some va-va-voom to plain, flat-fronted cabinets with a panel of wallpaper across the front. Here, the damask design chosen for the dining room has been repeated in the adjoining kitchen, creating a clear link between the two spaces.
Leftover fabric can easily be turned into smart drawstring bags for laundry, kids’ sports kit or toy storage. Not enough material? Make mini drawstring bags, stuff them with lavender and tuck them in your chest of drawers to keep clothes smelling fresh.
Colourful chairs lend a cheery, laid-back feel to a kitchen or breakfast room, so this is a great place to use up old tins of paint. The bigger the mix of colours, the merrier.
If you’ve made blinds, curtains or cushions for a child’s bedroom, turn the fabric offcuts into matching bunting. It’s quick, easy and will give the room a co-ordinated finish.
Got several wallpapers to use up, but no more than a metre of each? Give the traditional technique of papering below a dado rail a fresh twist by lining up panels of different - but complementary - designs for a cute patchwork effect. Perfect for a boho-style bedroom.
See more bedrooms that have star quality
Offcuts of fabric or wallpaper in the accent colours of your scheme look smart mounted on a white border, framed and hung in a group.
Use scraps of wallpaper left over from other rooms to paper the risers of your stairs. This neat trick links your hallway to the rest of your decorating schemes, setting the scene for what’s to come as soon as you step through the door.
See 10 steps to a smarter staircase
For the ultimate in no-waste decorating, paint the tin itself and give it a new lease of life as an outdoor plant holder.
Share your ideas for using up decorating materials in the comments below.