7 DIY Tips to Upgrade Your Furniture

You’ve got the dream home, and now it’s time to furnish it. But you’re also probably trying to minimise extra costs. Rather than buying all new furniture to fit your new aesthetic, try these tricks to update what you already have.

Contact paper

Contact paper is the unsung hero of DIY furniture rehab. It can upgrade old or cheap furniture quickly and at a minimal cost. You can also get a variety of looks, whether you want to make an IKEA piece look like a marble-topped console table or give a nightstand a modern, metallic look. You can use cut out shapes if you’re going for a minimalist vibe.

Hello Lidy

Keep it fresh

It might sound pretty obvious, but a fresh coat of paint can completely change a piece of furniture. If the piece is damaged or even if it’s just old and you’re sick of looking at it, just give it a new colour and watch yourself fall in love with it all over again. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even sand the piece to give it some more texture or use painters tape to mark off a pattern or design.

Centsational Girl

Give it legs

Give your basic IKEA furniture an Anthropologie upgrade by giving it legs. You can buy legs for almost any IKEA style at http://www.prettypegs.com (they ship worldwide). Lifting it off the ground can give furniture a more custom, polished look. Add them to your sofa (with a new cover if you’re sick of the colour as well!), bookshelf, bed, nightstand, etc.

Ikea Hackers

Cut Add corners

Adding brass corners to relatively plain pieces gives them a vintage feel you would normally pay big money for. You can order them via Amazon, and they’re simple to install. Whether it’s a coffee table, drawer fronts or your desk, this industrial era DIY will bring some life back into your furniture.

Little Green Notebook


Have a look at what’s lying around your house, and try to look at it in a new light. Got some empty jam jars? Give them a new purpose in life, and use them as brush or cutlery holders. You can even spray paint them to match your décor. Maybe you have a suitcase that doesn’t get any use? Make it into a side table. Kids outgrown their crib? Get a glass pane and make it into a desk, or break out the saw and create a bench that has sentimental value. Using what you already have to fill a need can save you a lot of money in the long run.

A Diamond in the Stuff

Make it metal

You’d be surprised how much of a difference a can of metallic spray paint makes. A simple metal and glass shelf frame can immediately get a custom look, instead of the ‘everybody-has-this-IKEA-piece’ look. This is also an easy way to re-vamp a piece that you’re repurposing.

Dream a Little Bigger

Make a hard(ware) change

This can be a slightly more expensive option depending on what kind of hardware you go for, but it still shouldn’t cost as much as replacing the furniture completely. You can find plenty of options on Etsy or eBay, from vintage glass to brass pieces. Alternatively, you can make your own drawer pulls! You can create simple but gorgeous leather pulls for drawers without built in hardware, and all you really need is an old belt, scissors, a hammer and nails.

Sugar & Cloth

DIY projects can seem daunting to some, but these are all relatively simple options that you might even be able to do without leaving the house! When buying a new house, it’s important to minimise cost wherever possible, whether through these cost saving ideas or by utilising a mortgage broker to make sure you get the best loan for your needs.

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