Things Around Your Home You Can Repurpose for Camping

Article Posted By: Chante LaGon

So you’re headed off to your next outdoor adventure. Maybe you’re an expert at camping with your gear ready to go. Or maybe you’re more the glamping type, with all the essentials plus a few creature comforts in tow. Either way, we bet there are a few things around your home you can repurpose for camping.

Don’t have these items lying around the house? Think of it this way: Make an inexpensive purchase now to take them on your trip, and then put these items to work once you return home.

1. Make sure to set up a nice lounging area at your outdoor location.

If you bring along a garden stool from home, you’ll see that it can serve as a small end table or impromptu seating. Note that the clear stool above has been discontinued, but any other garden stool would serve the same purpose. When you’re packing the car, take advantage of a removable top on the garden stool (if applicable), or put the stools in legs-side-up so that you can transport a couple of pillows or throws inside.

Garden stool as end table

Metal garden stools as seating inside a yurt

2.  Bring a basic bucket or two.

We’re partial to the Homer Bucket! These take on an extraordinary number of uses around the house and around the campsite. Fill one with soapy water and another with fresh water for a mobile dishwashing station.

You can also line one with a trash bag and make it a trashcan. Metal pails do the trick, too, especially for smaller areas or paper disposables that don’t need to be covered with a lid. Place a few of them around your campsite so there’s always one nearby.

You’ll also need something to toss smaller trash items into when you’re cooking. Just like at home, a large bowl to collect scraps and wrappers makes the most sense.

Homer Bucket repurposed as a washbucket when camping

Homer Bucket as trash pail with a trash bag inside

Metal pail as trash can with a trash bag filled with garbage next to it

Garbage bowl used to toss wrappers and scraps into

3. Prepare for emergencies…especially small ones.

We love the idea of stuffing a metal gift card holder with all the essentials for a mini first aid kit. You can make up a few of these and give one to each camper since they fit so easily into backpacks and bags. For ideas of what to include, check out this Ready America First Aid Outdoor Kit.

Gift card holder as first aid kit

4. Use what you’ve got.

Sure, you can hang towels on an over-the-door rack and let the breeze dry them out. But, you can also use the same rack as an easy-access place to put keys, bags and other items you don’t want to lose. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box.

Over the door rack used to hang keys and other valuables

5. DIY works in the woods too.

Some would say that going camping is the ultimate DIY project. So bring along a tool from one of the most doable DIY jobs — a paint can opener that doubles as a bottle opener.

Paint can and bottle opener

6. Bring along some cubbies for your stuff.

Take fabric storage drawers out of their indoor cubbies and bring them outside for an all-purpose container for your outdoor adventures. Try filling them according to their use — one for grilling tools and accessories, another for cleaning supplies, one more for your gear ties and cords. The list can be as long as the number of needs you have onsite!

Fabric storage bin used to corral cleaning supplies on a camping trip

7. Garden tools can be helpful at the campsite too.

Scooping charcoal out of the bag — or dumping ashes out of the grill — becomes less of a dirty task with a garden scoop. We hear that it works well for building sandcastles, too.

Garden trowel used to scoop charcoal out of a bag on a camping trip

8. Spray away.

Maybe you keep a spray bottle at home filled with water for misting your plants. Or perhaps you buy cleaning solution in bulk and keep these handy items filled and stashed around your home to make chores easier. You’ll find them just as handy outdoors, whether you’re cleaning the picnic table or washing your hands.

All purpose spray bottle used to keep campsite clean

9. Mark your territory.

Don’t you just love when you’ve taken a nice, cold drink out of the cooler and set it down for just a minute, only to find it mixed in with a bunch of other folks’ bottles that look just like it? Cable ties to the rescue! They are perfect for marking drinks. Wrap one around the mouth of your bottle, and claim your color so you know which one is yours.

Colorful cable ties tied to mouth of bottle and used to mark drinks

10. Tool bag chic.

Scour the garage for a couple of tool bags that you can repurpose for keeping track of your personal toiletries. They’re like campsite handbags!

Klein tool bag used to store toiletriesHusky tool bag used to carry camping essentials

For more ideas on repurposing items for the outdoors, summer activities and more, follow our Summer Activities board on Pinterest.