Why Reuse?

The ReUse PeopleBy Shannon Barnes
We often feature creative ideas on The Velvet Crowbar to show how materials can be reused, and there seems to be no limit to the creativity and cleverness that abounds when people decide to make reuse their goal. From creating something incredibly functional, such as boxed toilet paper rolls used to organize cables and electrical cords, to something incredibly artistic, such as an old bike reused as a sink stand, it seems there isn't anything that CAN'T be done with used materials. Reuse often stems from being thrifty—not wanting to spend money on something new—but it can also result from the urge to create something that doesn't already exist and therefore cannot be purchased.

The people I chat with about reuse seem to fall into three basic categories—those who love reuse and get excited just talking about it, those who haven't given it much thought but who would consider reusing, and those that are not at all interested because reuse involves more effort than buying new. People in the first category are so enthusiastic about reuse that they often act as reuse ambassadors, telling others why reuse is great, detailing the many cool things you can do and make, and describing the fun of shopping in reuseThe ReUse People and architectural-salvage stores. Their passion is undeniable, and they often end up arousing the interest of folks who are not so involved. The third group isn't as easily swayed, and their point is a good one—it DOES take more work to reuse. Yes, it's more expensive to buy new, but you may also be buying more time for yourself. I can understand that, especially in today's busy world where there never seems to be enough time.

We spend so much time racing around, trying to fit more things into our busy schedules, living by the clock and never getting to fully relax. We constantly feel stressed, rushed and pressured to do more. This takes a huge toll on our bodies and quality of life. According to a recent article on CNN ("This is your Brain on Knitting"), over 35 million people worldwide have some form of dementia. The increased focus on dementia-prevention has revealed that not all solutions are in pill bottles. Engaging in creative activities can be immensely effective.

The ReUse PeopleFor example, recent studies are beginning to show the therapeutic value of crafting. Focusing on an enjoyable project that requires planning, creativity, and repetitive motions can help block out stress and anxiety, and create a state similar to meditation. This can help reduce stress hormones, blood pressure, and anxiety, and also releases dopamine, a natural antidepressant. Because creative activities often involve many different parts of the brain (executive power, logic, inventiveness, focus, movement), they seem to stave off cognitive decline. If going to the gym is exercise for the body, then creative activities are exercise for the brain.

Reuse offers a perfect avenue to creative activity. There is no end to what you could do. Create something functional, create something artistic, make a statement. If you don't consider yourself a creative person, browse ideas on Pinterest. A simple search on the word “reuse” turns up a seemingly ceaseless stream of photos illustrating different types of projects. Need a more narrow scope? Search "reuse door,” or "reuse window.” I think the possibilities might truly be endless!

Not only can reuse projects have a positive effect on your health, when showing those projects to family and friends, you can say with pride, "I did that!". Hey, they might even catch the reuse bug, too.


Special Event Reminders

October 23 – 25, 2014 Reuse Alliance’s Reuse Conex Conference and Expo, Austin, TX. For more information, visit http://www.reuseconex.org/

Specials of the Month

At the Oakland warehouse we are featuring plumbing fixtures. Receive 25% off the price of any sink, tub, or toilet through June 30.
The ReUse People Specials
The Los Angeles warehouse is featuring doors. Receive 25% off the price of any door through June 30.
The ReUse People Specials

New Inventory

The Oakland warehouse warehouse has received several vinyl dual-pane, single-hung windows in sizes 2x3, 2x4, 3x4 and 3x5.


Deconstruction & New Materials Update

Visit the TRP website for a complete list of current deconstruction projects and inventories. Just click on “Retail Sales” and scroll to the bottom of the page.

Location and Contact Information

TRP ReUse Warehouse - Oakland
9235 San Leandro Street
Oakland, CA  94603
(510) 383-1983; toll-free 888-588-9490
Hours: Mon-Sat 9:00-6:00 Closed Sunday

TRP ReUse Warehouse - Los Angeles
3015 Dolores Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90065
Hours: Mon-Fri 10:00-5:00; Sat 10:00-4:00

Please visit our partnering warehouses:
Habitat for Humanity ReStores, Orange County (two convenient locations)
The Home Improvement Store That Builds Homes
1656 West Katella Avenue, Anaheim, CA 92802
(Euclid and Katella Avenue)
(714) 434-6266
Mon-Fri 9:00 am- 8:00 pm;
Sat 9:00 am- 6:00pm;
Sun 11:00 am- 5:00 pm

The Home Improvement Store That Builds Homes
1400 Village Way, Santa Ana, CA 92705
(McFadden Place Shopping Center, exit 55 Freeway at McFadden)
(714) 434-6266
Mon- Sat 9:00 am- 6:00 pm;
Sun 10:00 am- 5:00 pm

Habitat for Humanity ReStore, Kansas City
4701 Deramus, Kansas City MO 64120
(816) 231-6889
Hours: Mon-Fri 10:00-6:00; Sat 9:00-4:00; closed Sunday

The ReUse Warehouse
1400 East Geer Street
Durham, NC 27704
(919) 219-4913
Hours: Mon-Fri, 2:00-6:00; Sat, 9:30-5:00

Second Chance Building Materials Center
1423 West Grove Street
Boise, ID 83702
(208) 331-2707
Hours: Mon-Sat, 9:00-6:00; Sun, 12:00-5:00

Roaring Fork Valley Habitat for Humanity
7025 Hwy 82
Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
(970) 945-7733
Hours: Mon-Fri, 10:00-5:30; Sat, 10:00-5:00; Sun, 11:00-4:00

Stardust Building Supply
3901 E. Thunderbird Road
Phoenix, AZ 85032
(602) 459-9803
Hours: Mon-Sat, 8:00-6:00; Sun, 10:00-4:00

Habitat for Humanity ReStore, Salt Lake Valley,
1276 South 500 West
Salt Lake City, UT 84101
(801) 263-0136
Hours: Mon-Sat 9:00am-6:00pm; closed Sunday

Habitat for Humanity ReStore, Summit & Wasatch Counties
6280 N. Silver Creek Drive, Silver Summit, UT
(435) 487-9015
Hours: Wed-Sat 10:00-6:00; closed Sunday

Recycle Utah
1951 Woodbine Way Park City, UT 84060
(435) 649-9698
Hours: Mon-Sat 8:00-5:30; Sun 10:00-4:00

Reuse Depot
2711 Washington Blvd, Unit E
Bellwood, IL 60104
(708) 240-4910
Hours: Mon-Fri 10:00-5:00p; Sat 10:00-4:00

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