A Minimalist Approach on How to Repurpose Unwanted Gifts

Receiving a gift makes us happy, but sometimes it can turn unpleasant. Sometimes, a gift can be something that doesn’t quite fit our lifestyle or...
A Minimalist Approach on How to Repurpose Unwanted Gifts

Receiving a gift makes us happy, but sometimes it can turn unpleasant. Sometimes, a gift can be something that doesn’t quite fit our lifestyle or is something that we already own; in both cases, these gifts can leave us feeling conflicted. 

While our instinct may be to declutter and move on quickly, there is a more mindful approach we can take—one that respects the thoughtfulness behind the gift and aligns with our minimalist values.

Instead of simply scrapping it or letting it pile up in your storage room, you can try these steps - minimalist methods - to take care of unwanted gifts in a more conscious way:

1. Never forget the intention behind the gift

Every gift, regardless of its usefulness to us, carries with it the intention of the giver. Never forget the effort put into a gift.

The minimalist mindset urges us to take a moment and appreciate the thought and care that went into selecting the gift. This will help you detach from the materialistic aspect and focus on the sentiment, preparing you to part ways more positively. 

2. Consider regifting

What didn’t work for you could very well bring a smile to someone else’s face. It’s a double-win shot with a single gift.

Consider regifting if the gift is in good condition and you know someone who would genuinely appreciate it. This not only ensures that the gift finds a meaningful home but also reduces waste—a core minimalist principle. 

3. Donate to someone it would matter

There is no greater happiness than knowing what you did was good. And there is no greater good than donating to someone in need. The key to keep life simple is in doing simple things.

When you are unsure of what to do, donating the gift is your best shot at making something useful. Look for an organization in need or a group that accepts donations or is actively looking for charity for a cause. Research and find the one where your gift would make the most impact and find usefulness. 

Knowing that your unwanted gift benefits someone else in need is one of the simplest ways of finding happiness in the mundane—a minimalist blessing, you could say!

4. Taking a bold step and getting creative

Take a leap and turn on your creative side to upcycle your gift.

If you are one of those who love challenges, then you could turn your unwanted gift into a wanted (and likable) piece of decorative item. Upcycling (a minimalist gem of a strategy) will ensure minimum wastage and allow you to infuse your personal touch into the item.

Some ideas for you to explore:

Mug to Planter: 

Transform that unused mug into a charming planter. Simply fill the mug with soil and plant any small indoor plant, adding greenery to your room or balcony.

T-shirt to Pillow Cover:

  • Cut the tee to the desired size.
  • Sew the edges.
  • Insert a small pillow or foam/cotton for the desired fluffiness.

You could use it as a cushion for your sofa or simply a cuddle pillow for your bed. 


5. Finally, be mindful

Now that you have found one or the other way of taking care of unwanted gifts in ways that support a minimalist mindset, it is essential to put into practice the learning.

Yes, it is time to reflect on your own gift-giving practices.

Consider adopting a minimalist approach to gift-giving, focusing on experiences rather than material possessions. This can lead to more meaningful and mindful connections with people that matter.

Remember, living with a minimalist approach requires intention more than perfection. Keep life simple and practice a lifestyle that focus on intentions and gestures more than the glamour and trends. 

By approaching unwanted gifts with mindfulness and compassion, we can not only declutter our physical space but also cultivate a deeper appreciation for the things that truly matter in our lives.

So, which of these would you want to try?


This blog post was written by Ayesha Mollah; a professional blogger who writes to give her thoughts and imaginations a meaning! You can find more blogs from her at