About Me

Hi my name is Cindy and if you are here, you probably already know that I am a little bit of a trashoholic.  I have this tendency, in part because of my upbringing, but also, as I have gotten older and I hope a little wiser, I see so much excess and waste in my life.  Our culture is ingrained with messages that encourage us to want new and more and better but I believe all too often the pursuit of these things leads us too more debt, too much “stuff” and less happiness.


I started Upcycled Design Lab on January 1st 2011 with the idea of focusing solely on making projects that incorporate reusing, remaking and restyling items that have outlived their original purpose.  Over the years I have posted somewhat sporadically but I have remained consistently interested in studying unwanted items and trying to re-imagine a new use for them.  Sometimes I am inspired to dive in and attempt the transformation. Often the picture in my head looks a lot better than the final outcome, but that is the experimental part of Upcycled Design Lab.

In 2015 I started taking my blog  a little more seriously and was actually able to post regularly once a week.  The video below shows a re-cap of all my projects from 2015.



A couple of years ago I had my 50th birthday and rather than hide my head under a pillow (which was tempting by the way) I decided to have a big party.  I made many of the party decorations and even my dress and shoes from recycled materials.  It was months in the planning a good bit of work and lots of fun.


Pic 19
That’s me in my trashy birthday outfit.  🙂


Recently my dress and an article I wrote were published in the Spring 2016 issue of Green Craft Magazine.  So I guess I have officially been published.  🙂





One of the most amazing experiences I have ever had was a couple of years ago when I hiked Longs Peak.   I wrote more about the 19 hour journey here.


Pic 5


Last year I did something a little crazy, but it was for a good cause.  The event raised hundreds of thousands of dollars and our team raised 6,000 of that total.  The fundraiser is for the St Baldricks Foundation.  They raise money for children’s cancer research.

The long and the short of it (yes the pun is intentional) is the hubby and I started the day looking like this.

Pic 1


And a few hours later we looked like this.


Pic 2


Pic 3


For a short time I felt a little exotic but than there were months of weird hair.  🙂


Pic 4

This is us a few weeks ago.  The hubby is wearing a hat because it is still chilly here in Colorado and he just had his head shaved again.  Me not so much.  Once was enough.


I am excited for the coming year and have lots of ideas for more trashy projects, so if you would like some ideas on how to reuse and re-purpose things you probably already have on hand, I hope you will join me on this journey of re-thinking the things we throw away.  I hope you find some inspiration here. Thanks for visiting.


All my best wishes,