How can I reuse or recycle baby stair gates and play pens?

We’ve had an email from Karen:

How can I recycle a baby cot, stair gate and play pen?? Cant bear to throw them away but seems difficult to give away!!

It doesn’t have to be difficult to give them away – join your local Freecycle/Freegle group, post an “offer” message and chances are someone will come to collect it from your house, at your convenience, within a few days if not hours (or post an ad on GumTree [like Craig's List in the UK] or on eBay – if your goal is to get rid of it, start it at 99p and mark it “collection only” and it’s almost sure to go).

Or give them to a charity shop – it might have to be a furniture focused charity or charity shop but there should be one of those near you – and some places even collect furniture donations. The NCT also regularly organise local “nearly new” sales – for parents to pass items onto new parents in need.

As for reuses, we covered baby cots a few weeks ago – some nice ideas on there including making the cot into a bench seat/sofa for the growing kid’s bedroom. Stairgates are also used by people with dogs as well as babies, to keep pesky mutts in or out of certain places – if you know anyone with dogs (particularly small ones), they might be interested. Ditto a play pen to some extent – they’re useful for penning in all sorts of small animals, not just baby humans – someone who breeds cats or puppies might like to use it for a birthing area, or it could be used as a temporary run for ill/pregnant/new rabbits or chickens.

If they’re still in good condition, it would definitely be best to pass them on – any other suggestions for how to pass them on easily? Or for reuses/recycling ideas?

(Photo, which illustrates my doggy point, by ewen and donabel)

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8 Responses to “How can I reuse or recycle baby stair gates and play pens?”


  1. anna says:

    See if anyone with puppies, kitties or other fluffy animals would need one.
    Maybe the local animal shelters could find good use for them.

  2. Petra says:

    From 3 sides of an old babycot, I made a fence that is already used in many different ways. To protect the children from the stove or to climb a staircase. To change into a playing tent. And at the moment, we use it as an extra cage for one of the chickens to isolate her, when she is trying to brood empty eggs again. :-(
    Very multi-functional, and very handy that it can stand on its own.

  3. janet says:

    Put the baby gate over the bath, and use it to put your wet washing on.

  4. Melinda says:

    It can be offered to an organization that briings children to foster homes, either public or private. Their work is often short notice and they may need such items to accompany a child to a foster home.

    They can also be used for garden trellises

  5. Stair Gates says:

    You can block unsafe windows with it too.

  6. mali marsh says:

    How about having another baby. .. ? If not, I’m sure someone down the line will be able to put it to good use. Nothing like a useful present.

  7. Amazing blog! Is your theme custom made or did you download it from somewhere?
    A design like yours with a few simple tweeks
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  8. Olia says:

    Trellis in a garden.



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