In my dreams

I love the architectural TV show Grand Designs, where every week host Kevin McCloud follows a person or couple who are building a house, from start to finish. Sometimes the houses are ridiculous castles or enormous follies and I watch on with raised eyebrows and incredulous snorts. Other times, when the houses are environmentally-friendly, energy-conscious or built with reclaimed or sustainable materials, I just about weep with excitement and desire.

I have a cherished, secret little dream of building a house out of straw bale or mud brick and recycled everything else. Obviously, now I've put it on the blog, it's not so secret, but it is still very cherished. 

I found this article about a couple who renovated their London flat completely out of found or recycled materials. Everything except the toilet had been used before. I gazed in awe at their photographs. This is upcycling at its finest.

I read the comments underneath the original article and was amazed when someone said, "Ok, it's good for the environment, but it's sooo ugly." I don't think it's ugly at all! It's cool minimalism and it would be made even better by the knowledge that you did something good.

I have no idea if my straw bale house dream will ever come to fruition. At this stage of life, it seems unlikely, but golly gosh, it would be fun.

For now, I'm 'upcycling' on a small scale by purchasing my clothes from the op shop. It's fun, it's cheap and it doesn't matter too much if I buy the wrong thing because it didn't break the bank.

Do you have a dream? And what do you think about upcycling? Would you do it in your home?

Industrious: The couple have made this bed out of reclaimed scaffolding boards and bars to save on buying a new one

Food for thought: Wooden pallets have also been used to make the kitchen cupboards. The couple say the kitchen is where they saved the most cash Lounge act: The window shutters have also been fashioned from wooden pallets, while the furniture was picked up for peanuts or even free