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6 Cheap One-hour Furniture Upgrades

This post comes to from Erin Vaughan of Modernize. 


DIY home and furniture upgrade tutorials can seem so helpful, yet sometimes they just come up short.


Whether it’s a timesaving fix that takes a whole weekend to assemble, or a penny-pinching project that requires you to spend truckloads on your supplies, it can often feel like it wasn’t worth the effort.


Just because you’re busy working hard for your money doesn’t mean that you have to go without polished home decor! If your surroundings are feeling more lackluster than lustrous, there are ways to get a budget redux on a dime without spending a whole afternoon in the process. In particular, your old side table, ratty dresser, or stool can make the perfect candidates for a little shot of decor energy.


Here are six different furniture upgrade techniques you can use for a super-quick spiffing-up that can be bought for next to nothing.


Cheap furniture upgrades edges

Via HomedIt

Add Some Bling

You’d be surprised what a new set of drawer pulls can do for an aging bureau. It may seem like a minute detail, but a lot of the best decor boils down to the tiny touches, so don’t discount what can be accomplished by refreshing the hardware on your older pieces. Brass corners can add a certain polished patina to a set of drawers without breaking the bank. They also look great attached to the edges of a table. The best part is that it requires little more than a drill!

Cheap furniture upgrades bench

Via She Knows

Get an Update in a Can

Just one can of spray paint is all it takes to give a scuffed-up end table or bench a colorful makeover. Have you always felt drawn to magenta? Chartreuse? Vermillion? The beauty of spray paint projects is that you can experiment with bold colors without feeling like you’re investing too much in the way of money or effort. So go for that canary yellow shelf you’ve always dreamed of! It may just add the perfect amount of punch to your home’s entryway.



Cheap Furniture Upgrades Fabric

Via Some Kind of Lovely Ride

Fabric is the New Paint

If you’re a hardcore design or DIY addict, then you know the joy that is browsing through the fabric section of the craft store. So many patterns, colors, and styles! Literally any design you could ever dream of is available in calico, so why not use it to give a table a little personalized pep? This tutorial has all the details for how to turn ordinary fabric into a tabletop mural with modge podge adhesive and nail trim.

Cheap Furniture Upgrade Paint

Via Brit+Co

Just Paint the Legs

Sometimes the key to decor is to think outside the box. While you might normally paint an entire piece top-to-bottom, the two-toned look can really add some surprising visual interest to a boring stool or coffee table. Wood grain paired with bright colors is very on trend right now—plus, if you want to save extra dollars, try scoping out the “oops” paint section at your local hardware store. You can scoop up some cans of accidentally mixed paint for a steal.

Cheap Furniture Upgrades Stencil

Via Live Love DIY

Use a Stencil

Paisley, mandalas, honeycomb—stencils have come a long way since you were in grade school. Due to their rising popularity among the DIY crowd, you can now find a stencil for almost any geometric pattern. And they can definitely add a customized touch to a drawer face or even your kitchen cabinets. Don’t have time to fool around with a can of paint and a stencil? You can get the same effect with a unique furniture decal.

Cheap Furniture Upgrades Crown Molding

Via Small Space Style

Add Crown Molding

Give a tall bookcase some built-in burnish with a little crown molding applied to the top edge. It will definitely make your IKEA furniture look like it belongs in the pages of House Beautiful—and it’ll be a little secret between you and your wallet.


These furniture upgrades are the perfect weekend activity. And with decor this great, you certainly won’t mind staying home every once and awhile. Your finances will definitely thank you for that!


About the Writer

Erin Vaughan is a blogger, gardener and aspiring homeowner. She currently resides in Austin, TX where she writes full time for Modernize, with the goal of empowering homeowners with the expert guidance and educational tools they need to take on big home projects with confidence.


Tags: Budgeting, My finances, Spending

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