On a sunny day in Eibelstadt, we embarked on an unexpected adventure, looking for CD racks we had found on eBay. The friendly saleswoman pointed us to a special event in the village: Upcyclingday. "Look next door too," she said, "there's some nice stuff there for free!"

Emboldened by this new concept, we followed her instructions and soon discovered that the whole village had been transformed into a treasure trove of reused goods. There were interesting finds everywhere you looked. With a station wagon full of finds, we returned home.

In the evening, I returned to the village once more. A friendly older couple still had some heavy old wooden barrels they wanted to get rid of. My little son, enthusiastically shouted, "Pirate chairs!" when he saw me coming. His eyes shone with excitement at the idea of his own pirate chairs.

In our eyes, Upcyclingday had only advantages. It was good for our wallet, the climate and, above all, educational for children. Moreover, it brought a cosy atmosphere to the village, where people came together. So an ordinary day became an adventure full of surprises, and many happy children, as well as many happy grown-ups. For children, Upcyclingday turned out to be a real party. The streets were littered with "presents" and they were encouraged to think about sustainability. "Are you still playing with this?" they were asked. "Can this go to another child?" This not only made them more environmentally conscious, but also taught them the value of sharing and embracing second-hand treasures.

When I told my parents about this new concept, they were immediately excited. They had always struggled with the idea of selling through online platforms. The hassle of strangers coming over was not for them. But also sitting at your garage all day for a garage sale, or going on a rug day somewhere is definitely not for them either. But the idea of simply putting stuff on their doorstep and helping others with it appealed to them.

Last year, unfortunately I couldn't go, but my partner went. She came home again with a car full of nice things, and for me she had brought these clothes. Expensive branded clothes, and this was only half of it! It was still neat and clean, it just needs ironing once. Definitely 700 euros worth of nice clothes!

In a world where consumption is often the norm, Upcyclingday offers a refreshing take on revaluing the things we have. This is why we want to support neighbourhoods and municipalities to organise their Upcyclingday.


Weno Geerts