Check out these simple Ikea hacks for upcycling budget-friendly furniture into unique, statement pieces
If you don’t want to splurge on new furniture, but equally aren’t a fan of budget-friendly pieces that will result in you having a carbon copy of your friends’ living room, bedroom or home office, take a look at these striking Ikea hacks that are cheap and easy to do.
With a little bit of upcycling and personalisation, you can transform simple Ikea pieces into unique and expensive-looking features in your home.
Read more: Upcycling projects to try at home
1. Give a desk a glam makeover by spraying it rose gold
Give your home office a stylish feminine makeover by spray-painting your desk with rose gold paint. Remove the glass top from your desk, and take the frame to a well-ventilated area. Clean the frame with a damp cloth, then leave to dry. Spray with primer, leave for four hours, then spray with metallic spray paint. Leave to dry for 24 hours, then place the glass back on top an admire your brand-new desk.
2. Use furniture wax to transform a simple desk organiser
Give an untreated wooden desk organiser a luxe makeover by staining it with finishing wax. Give the drawers a wipe over with a damp cloth and leave to dry. Using a paint or wax brush, apply finishing wax all over the item, then immediately wipe away any excess using a clean rag. How much wax you remove is up to you – we applied plenty to give a lovely deep colour. Leave to dry, and then buff to a soft sheen.
3. Paint the frame of a metal office shelving unit for a style upgrade
Cover the shelves of the unit with newspaper and tape down with masking tape. Wipe down the frame with a damp cloth and leave to dry. Spray with a metal primer spray, then spray with a metallic spray paint. Leave to dry before applying a metal sealer.
4. Turn a boring pine chest of drawers into a beautiful piece of storage
Simply cover the chest of drawers in a wallpaper of your choice. Begin by painting the sides and top of the chest of drawers with a furniture paint that has a chalky finish. Next, remove the drawer handles and cut your chosen wallpaper to fit flush to the edges of each drawer front. Use a ready-mixed wallpaper paste to stick the wallpaper onto the drawers. Finish it off by adding smart ceramic knobs.
5. Update a headboard to match your new chest of drawers
Choose a fabric in a co-ordinating shade to the wallpaper you used to transform your chest of drawers. Measure the height and width of your headboard, double the amounts and add 2cm more on each side to allow for a hem. Cut your chosen fabric to size and machine-sew a 2cm hem. Fold it in half widthways, then sew fabric or ribbon ties a third of the way from the top, and then the same again from the bottom. Slip the cover over the headboard and tie at the sides.
Ideal Home newsletter
Sign up to our newsletter for style and decor inspiration, house tours, project advice and more
Read more: Bedroom decorating ideas
6. Turn a plain shelving unit into an attractive kitchen island with shimmering mosaic tiles
Cover the back of a freestanding kitchen unit with sheets of mosaic tiles. Fix mosaic sheets to the unit using a waterproof wall tile adhesive. Measure and cut a section from a wooden worktop or an old table top so it will extend out beyond the existing unit top on all sides, with enough overhang at the back to form a breakfast bar. Use a cordless drill to make holes in the table top and screw it to the top of the shelving unit.
7. Paint wooden stools in two colours to match your upcycled island unit
Give wooden stools a dipped effect by painting them in two shades. Sand the stool all over, then clean it thoroughly to remove all traces of dust. Apply masking tape around the legs where they meet the struts. Paint the top part of the stool white and leave to dry. Turn the stool upside down and remove the tape. Apply fresh tape to protect the new paint, then paint the bottom part of the stool in a mid-grey shade and leave to dry.
Watch our video for this hack.
8. Turn a basic sideboard into a coastal-style piece using a statement wallpaper
Use a plank-effect wallpaper to give a sideboard a weathered look. Remove the sideboard’s handles, then sand it down all over. Wipe away the layer of dust, then use a ready-mixed wallpaper paste to stick washable wallpaper onto the sideboard’s front, sides and legs. Apply a decorator’s varnish to protect the wallpaper, then leave to dry. Stick laminate flooring to the top of the sideboard with a high-strength contact adhesive. Paint the sideboard’s original wooden knobs to match your chosen wallpaper and screw them back onto the sideboard.
Watch our video for this hack.
9. Give a coffee table a distressed look to match your reinvented sideboard
Video Of The Week
Cover this simple coffee table with textured laminate planks. Choose a pale laminate – you’ll need at least six planks. Measure the table top and shelf, and cut the planks to size. Lay the planks on the table top and on the shelf below to work out how to arrange them to fit. Stick the planks down using a high-strength contact adhesive.
Feeling inspired? Check out these DIY makeovers that anyone can do
Had a go at any of our hacks? Let us know how you got on in the comments box.