Saturday, July 5, 2008

Paint Recycling

When we bought all the paint to redo this house, I was not aware that we had any truly green options. While I can't say whether or not there are any recycled paint options that would hold up to the rainy PNW weather over the long-haul, interior recycled paint would certainly have been an option. There are companies (some even local) that recycle unused paint into colors and quantities that are useful to the homeowner. Unfortunately, we'd already purchased all our paint!

So I've been kind of randomly kicking myself for this little 'sustainable' error on my part. I can't exactly not use this paint as that would be the ultimate in wasteful. I can't return it as it's all custom colors. I had resigned myself to donating the unused paint to either a local drama club, habitat for humanity, or some other local operation that could at least put it to good use. I'm even considering researching the companies that recycle paint to see if they need donations.

What I am also finding is that I was actually really good at estimating quantites. For the three rooms where we changed the colors pretty drastically, we have very little paint left over. In one case, less than 1/4 inch in the can. My plan is to put this leftover paint into glass resealable jars for touch-up use over time. The cans I plan to dry out and either recycle them if our local place will take them...and if not, I'm going to make things from them. Planters for decorative plants (with a liner as paint is toxic to plants, too), storage bins for non-food items...etc. I heard of one idea where the cans were stacked in a pyramid (on their sides), painted or covered with contact paper, and then used as storage for office supplies or other non-food items. Sounds cool, huh?

Anyway, with all these ideas rattling around in my head, I feel a little better about using new paint to renovate our home.

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