How to Upcycle a Bicycle

By: Nina Hoffman for AllFreeKidsCrafts

If you're looking for a great way to get more mileage out of a hand-me-down bicycle (pun intended!), then follow these easy, step-by-step instructions and learn How to Upcycle a Bicycle. Let's say you purchased a pink bicycle at a garage sale for your son, who doesn't like pink. No problem! With a little bit of time, a few rolls of Duck Brand® Duct Tape, and some creativity, you and your child can transform that pink bicycle into a really cool bike that any kid — boy or girl — would be proud to ride!


How to Upcycle a BicycleHow to Upcycle a Bicycle


  • 1 bicycle
  • Warm, soapy water
  • 2 clean, soft cloths - one for washing, one for drying
  • Assorted rolls of Duck Brand® Duct Tape in your choice of colors and patterns
  • Utility knife
  • Screwdriver and/or rachet set (optional, to take apart bicycle)


  1. Using warm, soapy water and your cloths, carefully wash down and dry off the bicycle.  Take care not to get soapy water on the chain, and don't worry about washing the tires.
  2. Optional:  Take apart the bicycle for easier access for taping.  This step should be handled by an adult.

    How to Upcycle a BicycleHow to Upcycle a Bicycle
  3. It's a good idea to start with a solid base color of tape, if you intend to dramatically change the color of the bicycle.  In our example, the bicycle was pink, and we wanted a black base, so we started there.  For your base, carefully cut strips of your base color tape and apply it in sections to cover all desired parts of the bicycle.

    How to Upcycle a BicycleHow to Upcycle a Bicycle

    If you have taken apart the bicycle, you'll want to take note of where any holes were for brake lines and such.  Once you have taped your base, poke the holes out through the tape.  A pencil or small screwdriver should do the trick.

    How to Upcycle a BicycleHow to Upcycle a Bicycle
  4. Work together with your child to design creative and colorful accents to put over the base.  Using the utility knife (again, an adult should handle the cutting), cut out the shapes and sizes desired and add them to the bicycle in whatever pattern strikes your collective fancy.

    How to Upcycle a BicycleHow to Upcycle a Bicycle

    How to Upcycle a Bicycle
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