New Year, New You, New Life for Unwanted Items

The New Year often brings fresh inspiration and the desire to begin something totally different. This year, as well as making all the usual resolutions to pick up a new skill, you may also be resolving to live more sustainably in light of the growing awareness of climate change. Discover tips on how Gumtree can help you do both – you can reduce waste and save money by buying your hobby equipment second hand. Whatever your resolution, here are some ideas for how to get started cheaply and sustainably.

Find your inner artist

Get moving

The physical and mental rewards of starting a new sport mean it’s well worth it. But sometimes you don’t know whether you’ll enjoy it until you’ve actually given it a go. This makes buying second-hand sports equipment a great way to save money and reduce waste if you’re not 100 per cent sure. Gumtree is full of Good Finds, such as preloved sports gear that will see you right as a beginner. Plus you could save a fortune. According to the data from the Gumtree Carbon Calculator, people save an average of £71 per item on second-hand sporting and leisure equipment – what’s more, the carbon savings are equivalent to an astonishing 31 days’ home heating. So whether you’re hoping to take to the waves with a surfboard or perhaps find some skates to join the local roller derby, there’s always a sustainable bargain to be had. Best of all, if you change your mind, you can always relist your item and try something else.

Pick up an instrument

If your 2022 New Year’s resolution is to learn a musical instrument, it’s worth bearing in mind that it will take some time and dedication to make progress. Buying a beginner’s instrument and the relevant accessories second-hand gives you the chance to find out whether it’s a hobby you’ll be able to stick with before you spend a fortune on kit. We recommend doing a bit of research if you’re a complete novice. Once you know what you’re after, Gumtree has lots of options so you can find the right guitar to help you fall in love with the learning process without breaking the bank. If the piano is more your thing, why not consider an electric keyboard to get those fingers moving?

Books and reading

Read me

If your New Year’s resolution is to read more, swapping and sharing books instead of buying new ones is a simple way to make your hobby sustainable. It’s also a lovely excuse to engage friends and members of the family by discussing plots and favourite characters. Finding second-hand books in good condition is easy to do on Gumtree as people rarely have the time to read a book twice, or the space to hold on to ones they’ve read. Data from our Gumtree Carbon Calculator has also revealed buying second-hand leads to a carbon saving of almost two weeks’ heating per book. Who knew? You can finally start getting through all those John Grisham novels guilt-free!

Ready, set, bake!

Ready, set, bake!

With a few more months of winter still ahead, baking delicious cakes and treats is a lovely New Year’s resolution to keep you entertained indoors. It’s not only a hobby that you can share with family and friends, it can also be a wonderfully sustainable life skill to learn. With tons of baking equipment on Gumtree, you’ll be spoilt for choice. You can find yourself lots of Good Finds, such as the perfect whisk and cake tins as well as the all-important scales and rolling pin. Then it’s time to get creative and perhaps become a Star Baker – just try to avoid that soggy bottom!

Crafts and upcycling

Crafting has to be one of the most rewarding sustainable hobbies out there. From decoration and gifting to furniture upcycling and sewing, it’s hugely satisfying to create or transform something with your own style. Most crafting can be done from materials you already own, which is a bonus. Gumtree is also full of items for cheap craft projects and easy upcycling, including preloved sofas that are in need of some creative TLC and sewing kits that are perfect to start repairing home fabrics and clothes. Crafting and upcycling are also great projects to do with kids and can help develop their eco-consciousness, too. With the right know-how, most things can be repaired and reused – and often turned into something even better!

Find your inner artist

Find your inner artist

Taking up painting or drawing can be both relaxing and creative. Buying your initial supplies second-hand is a low pressure way to get started. Gumtree has plenty of choice when it comes to art equipment, which is often sold in bundles that are great for beginners. There’s a range of pencils and pens on Gumtree if drawing is where you’d like to start, or perhaps you’d rather experiment with watercolour paint with a view to creating your own masterpiece for your wall. Whatever style of art you hope to create, one thing you should know: your expression has no bounds!

The need to reuse and recycle is becoming more urgent, but it can be a challenge to stay conscious of this when taking up new hobbies. With this in mind, we can all do our part for a waste-less winter by buying second-hand, especially when it comes to the appliances and equipment that our favourite pastimes seem to involve. All it takes is a few small changes and we can reach the recently established COP26 goals together. Why not have your say and consider signing the petition to create new recycling and reuse requirements for local authorities, too? And once you’ve sorted your new hobby wish-list, check out our guide on buying safely on Gumtree before you start shopping.