Trash to Treasure Creative Upcycling

Ref: C3679096

A practical, online, creative & fun course involving discussion, tutor instruction, demonstration & practical crafting. Explore the value and possibilities of upcycling, sustainability & resourcefulness in craft. Learn about how a few simple adaptations, additions & techniques can transform household waste into fabulous, useful & beautiful items. In session one we will be making beads from paper and considering different ways to use them in jewellery or other projects. Come with your old paper which might otherwise go in the bin - old brochures, magazines, newspapers, paper bags or junk mail - and a few simple supplies to create your own, unique set of beads. From here we will select projects for the remaining sessions according to group members' interests and access to materials. This could include rag rugging, patchworking, woven magazine bags & placemats, plastic bottle vases, coiled paper bowls, tin can lanterns, junk jewellery or cardboard box stationery.

Course aim

To encourage resourceful creativity at home, reducing waste by upcycling junk into useful and beautiful items! The course will introduce several creative transformation projects to practically engage with, whilst considering individualisation.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • You will need your own personal email address so that you’re able to login to the WEA’s digital learning platform: WEA Canvas. You will need to be able to understand how to follow URL links to pages on the internet. If you want to understand more about Canvas please visit:
  • You will need to be able to follow links to join our WEA live video learning platform: WEA Zoom. If you’d like to understand more about our video learning platform, Zoom please visit: and
  • This course is for a group of around 15 students studying in a live video-learning platform conference and an online digital learning environment platform from the comfort of your own home.
  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is for beginners
  • This course is for improvers
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers
  • This course is for students who attend a specific centre only. For more information please call 0300 303 3464

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Identify and discuss at least 3 possible creative re-use methods for specific everyday, raw materials and select projects according to group preferences
  • Demonstrate the safe and creative use of at least 3 different craft techniques or processes in upcycling projects
  • Discuss design considerations in project planning and completion, including: colour, shape, scale, pattern
  • Discuss key terminology relating to upcycling including: upcycle, repurpose, sustainability, recycle and downcycle
  • Successfully complete and present at least one upcycling project, considering finish and usability

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas will be used to provide resources or to support lessons, enable assessment, provide learner feedback and for other activities for individuals away from the course. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit:
  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • You will be able to keep a record of your progress and achievement using photos, audio, text or documents uploaded into the WEA’s digital learning platform, WEA Canvas.
  • Your tutor will provide written, text and audio feedback recorded in WEA Canvas, WEA’s digital learning platform.
  • You will be able to keep a digital portfolio of your work on WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas.
  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning
  • You will be encouraged to consider other students work and give your opinions and suggestions

What else do I need to know?

  • What you need: You will need an internet connection, speakers, a microphone and a webcam so that you can use our video learning platform, Zoom. If you’d like to understand more Zoom please visit:
  • You will need a personal email address to join the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas so that you can receive resources, record your progress and achievement and to work with others and share ideas. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit:
  • You will need simple craft supplies & salvaged, household items to upcycle. For session 1 please bring: Paper-pages from old magazine / newspaper / junkmail are ideal Ruler Scissors Pencil / pen Glue (eg pritt stick) Cocktail sticks / other narrow sticks eg barbeque skewer, knitting needle

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • You will have access to course resources and links to wider learning through the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas:
  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • Become involved with the WEA in a range of voluntary work and other activities including campaigning as a WEA member
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation
  • Access the WEA What Next? booklet here

Download full course information sheet

Trash to Treasure Creative Upcycling

Is this course right for me? Request more information

This course has been cancelled.


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you enrol. Please check the details below to ensure you meet the basic eligibility critiera:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2020
  • You declare that the address you provide is correct and that you will provide evidence of this and your eligibility to live and work in the UK
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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