DIY Furniture & Design

10 Ways to Give Furniture a Fast Facelift

There's no doubt about it—buying furniture can put a strain on your bank account. Instead of blowing your budget on new pieces, give your existing ones a refresh instead, with these 10 simple upgrades that make a big impact.

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Leggy Look

If you’re ready for a new sofa but your wallet isn’t, consider giving your old standby a lift by replacing the legs with a stylish set from Pretty Pegs. The company specializes in unique replacement legs for not only sofas, but also tables, beds, chairs, and more. Try some out on your boring or basic furniture for a potent dose of color and personality.

Related: Reinvent Your Furniture with 9 Colorful DIYs

Fabric Fun

Give an old vinyl chair a new look by adhering a printed fabric to the surface. Using Mod Podge for this project makes it simple and quick—no needle and thread required. Plus, the design possibilities are endless, as you can choose any fabric that works with your decor. 

Related: 5 Minutes Flat – 7 Upgrades You Can Do in Under 300 Seconds

Paper Products

Contact paper or fabric can be unexpected partners in refinishing a piece of furniture. These materials come in myriad colors and designs, and the wide selection makes it easy to add personalized character to virtually any flat surface—like this nightstand, for instance. Just lay the table upside down on the back of the contact paper or fabric, then trace and cut around the edge. Add a layer of Mod Podge to the tabletop, then smooth the fabric or paper onto the surface. Once dry, cut carefully around the edge to get rid of any extra fabric, then seal with three coats of clear, water-based polyurethane.

Related: Believe It or Not – 9 Incredible Faux Finishes You Can Do Yourself

Painted Perfection

Surprising as it may seem, many upholstered chairs and sofas can be painted. This simple DIY adds a pop of color while also covering dirt or stains on dingy old fabrics. A bottle of textile medium, watered-down acrylic paint, and a little patience were the magic combination for these coral chairs, transforming them from a tired-looking arrangement to the statement pieces of the room.

Related: 10 Mini Makeovers You Can Do in Minutes

Tissue Time

Spice up the back of a boring chair by attaching tissue paper to the surface in an interesting design or pattern. Mod Podge is the superhero ingredient in this project, as it’s used as both glue and sealer. An ideal solution for adding color and texture to any room, this inexpensive DIY works great on any piece of versatile furniture that sports a smooth surface.

Related: Color Made Easy – 9 Designer Tips for Working with Color

Pull Power

Handles and knobs lend a great deal of personality to your pieces, so why not swap out the existing hardware for something unique that you’ve created yourself? An old belt and some nails are all you need to craft these modern (and cheap!) dresser pulls that put a brand-new spin on your old furniture. 

Related: Knobs of Note – 16 Ideas for a Cool Cabinet

Stylish Stencils

Stencils are another simple way to add pattern and color to a surface. With an intricately patterned stencil, you can give a table an entirely new vibe, taking it from drab to elegant in no time. Simply tape a stencil to the tabletop, and use a stencil brush to create a detailed design that is sure to make the piece the focal point of the room.

Related: Personalize Your Home with 10 Foolproof Stencil Projects

Pattern Play

Dress up a dull backyard table by adding a painted pattern to the top. Attach strips of washi or painter’s tape to a sheet of wax paper, then cut out geometric shapes from the tape strips. Arrange the shapes on the tabletop in an attractive design, then peel back the tape from the wax paper and affix the shapes in position. Paint the table, then remove the tape to reveal your colorful, eye-catching graphic.  

Related: 8 DIY Pick-Me-Ups for a Plain Patio

Nailed It

Embellish upholstered pieces, such as this padded headboard, with tacks found at your local crafts or hardware store. These sophisticated metallic accents will lend a luxe feel to your furniture, upgrading it quickly and easily. Upholstery nails are available in a variety of finishes, so be sure to consider the rest of the room’s color and design scheme before making your purchase. 

Related: 10 Simple Ingredients for a Very Comfortable Bed

Pillow Swap

Introduce accents into a room to breathe new life into an old couch or chair. Throw pillows and blankets are relatively inexpensive compared with the cost of a new sofa, so consider buying a few different options and swapping them in and out according to the seasons. The change is sure to rejuvenate any space that needs cheering up.

Related: The 7 Room Layout Mistakes Almost Everyone Makes