Upcycling Otherwise Trash Into Something Beautiful

Let's make Upcycling be known! What will you create?

For the past three years there has been an upcycling contest at Harvest Fest with dram containers. It's been wonderful to see what others have saved from ending in Earth's landfills over all the years! Inspiration is truly powerful; the possibilities that you can create are endless!

Over the past two years, my family and I have been collecting random items that normally would've ended in our local landfill. Instead, they were able to be repurposed into an amazing "Out of This World", "Nothing Like You've Experienced Before" art install for Harvest Fest 2021 & 2022. Don't worry, I'll be bringing it back for future years but with a different twist each year to always keep your festival experience spectacular! :)  I hope you get to experience this one day whether it's through what I create or what you do!  Curious what all was upcycled for 2022?

First, I brought back the colored nets cut up from a volleyball net and transformed them into a multi-colored canopy. The flying keys were just a special touch I wanted to add, they weren't repurposed but did make for a great keepsake for my camp members who wanted one. :)

This year I cut up and spray painted plastic water bottles to create a special design that captured eyes as they bounced in the wind.  I would recommend this one to anyone looking for an upcycling project!

Can you guess where all the straws came from?    HempARillos!     A lot of different flavors to say the least, but nevertheless, Hemp wraps are as close as you can get to a "stick" without having issues! :) I couldn't help but make the horrible but truthful statement that they are healthier than a tobacco wrap for me but they are worse on the environment due to the extra plastic and straw inside. If you look up straw crafts, there are many amazing things you can create on any skill level and budget. There's even a specific art form called Himmeli from Finland, it's quite fascinating and beautiful! If you decide to save used drinking straws, clean them right after use, or they will become a future science experiment. 

Besides straws and plastic bottles, soda cans were another household item we were going through. Did you know you can cut them up surprisingly easily and safely? One of the many items they can be upcycled into is a metal flower. With a little paint, it's spectacular how beautiful it becomes instead of trying to take 80-500 years to fully decompose depending on the aluminum and environment.  

Time was of the essence for this year's upcycling art install but that is okay because if you were looking closely you discovered upcycled cassette tapes and parts to the inside of a hard drive being used as wind chimes throughout the Community Camp.  I can say this regarding 2023's Community Camp, it is going to be absolutely musical on top of being bright! Speaking of bright, did you know the lighting at the camp was solar? The times we are living in regarding technology and harnessing natural resources are turning in a positive direction! :) Now just to figure out what to do with the batteries and panels... One day soon there will be a solution to it all if we just keep trying.

When we bought our 1st house there was some fence that was no longer needed, but we never threw it away. After it sitting off to the side for a while, I got to thinking about how easy it would be to make a mile marker for the festival. This barely ended up fitting in our vehicle for the 3-hour drive but I found a way to do it safely and legally too. If you were to do this project and needed it shorter than a regular size fence post I would suggest cutting the bottom section off to become a cube. At this point, you would have created a giant die with a little paint and some sealer.  

Umbrellas hanging in between the trees were a huge hit within the art installation. Each one was broken in some way or another but given new life and purpose!  

The fabric used around the camp from the cube to the curtains was all upcycled. With a little creativity, the possibilities are truly endless for what you can create!

Did you know that the items from the Metal Garden were also upcycled? Just because it's someone else's trash doesn't mean you can't transform it into your treasure! Remember to follow local laws and be respectful! If you don't know if an item can be taken, just ask.


How to get involved in Harvest Fest:

Reach out to Kristy via email at [email protected] or visit their website https://www.campcopperheadspavinaw.com to learn all of the fabulous ways to participate! 

Camping with Canna-Love LLC:

If you would love to join this Community Camp, come join! Would you love to do a collaboration? Let's have a chat to see how we can truly support the community and enhance everyone's festival experience positively. 

Are there other festivals like this?

Absolutely! Did you know that Camp Copperhead hosts a variety of festivals throughout the year? Make sure to follow along for more festivals too! 

Over the next few years, Canna-Love LLC will be going to more festivals all over, not just in Oklahoma. If there's one you would love to have us at please let me know! :)

What are some best places to start when upcycling?

Google and Pinterest are number one for inspiration, there are even groups on social media to follow as well! When looking for materials look around your living quarters or ask those around you. It's amazing what can be discovered and transformed on a very low budget!

I would love to see what you create! Show off your upcycled project using the #CannaLoveLLCInspiration on social media or send me an email with pictures to [email protected] 


Kimberly Inge

Canna-Love LLC

*Harvest Fest's 2021 & 2022 Community Camp Winner*

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