Drab-to-Fab DIY Furniture Projects

Have old, boring furniture sitting around? Not anymore. Thanks to these fab makeovers, your tired dressers, hutches, chairs, and nightstands are just a project away from a new lease on life.

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Everything In This Slideshow

  • 1 of 39

    Before: Shabby Desk

    With a beat-up, worn-over-time look (and not in a good way), this desk was in desperate need of a rescue.

     

  • 2 of 39

    After: Sleek and Chic

    Glossy red paint and new hardware redeemed the piece. Go the next slide to learn how to paint furniture like a pro.

     

  • 3 of 39

    How to Paint Furniture

    Watch and learn the steps to a perfect painted finish.

     

  • 4 of 39

    Before: Past Its Prime Time

    The once ubiquitous entertainment center has fallen out of favor in our era of flat screen TVs and Roku boxes. With fewer cords and stacks of DVDs (and video tapes) no longer family room fixtures, these forlorn units are begging for makeovers. And so we give you ... 

     

  • 5 of 39

    After: Kitchen Central

    Every last inch of this former entertainment center is packed with smart kitchen storage. Removing the door creates easy-access open storage. Pegboard turns the open back of the TV shelf into hanging storage. Four-inch PVC pipe cut to length and painted was adhered to the former VCR shelf with construction adhesive for wine storage. Oh, and did we mention that new fabulous paint job?

     

  • 6 of 39

    Before: Basic Dresser

    A simple dresser was ripe with potential as something out of the ordinary.

     

  • 7 of 39

    After: Clever Desk

    Diane Henkler, of In My Own Style, turned the dresser into a clever desk with a drop-down front. Painting the interior blue and attaching false drawer fronts with vintage-style pulls to the bottom drawers gives the piece a unique look.

    Diane completed this project as part of our Makeover Madness challenge, and she was declared the winner! Go to the next slide to learn more about her project.

  • 8 of 39

    Dresser-to-Desk Makeover

    Watch and learn more about Diane's makeover.

     

  • 9 of 39

    Before: Boring Brass

    Right now, this brass lamp base isn’t chic or stylish. But with a little paint and a round metal baking sheet, it can be turned into a new, custom end table.

  • 10 of 39

    After: Stunning Table

    With a little imagination, an old lamp can become a custom table. Here's how: Disassemble the lamp by unscrewing the lampshade harp, removing the lamp socket using pliers, and cutting the lamp cord below the socket and pulling it away from the base. Drill through the center of a round metal baking sheet using a hole saw bit. Unscrew the nut on the lamp and apply a bit of metal epoxy. Slip the baking sheet over the threaded rod and press down to secure to top of lamp. Thread a washer and the nut that was removed earlier onto the rod, applying epoxy first to each part. Finish the top by attaching a cap nut. Spray with lacquer spray paint.

  • 11 of 39

    Before: Refurb-Ready

    Once used as a changing table, this dresser was ready for a new purpose and new finish.

     

  • 12 of 39

    After: Light and Bright

    Creamy white paint lightens the look of the bulky piece. (And bonus, the color matches the closet doors of the room in which it resides.) Inexpensive new knobs and metallic dotted details complete the makeover.

     

  • 13 of 39

    Before: Bookcase with Potential

    With a crisp white finish and high-profile molding, this bookcase was on a course to better design.

     

  • 14 of 39

    After: Bookcase Made Beautiful

    Watch to see how a few simple styling tricks and DIY add-ons transformed the simple bookcase into a stunner.

     

  • 15 of 39

    Before: From Just a Chair ...

    You'll never guess what this chair became after its amazing makeover. (Hint: Your four-legged friends will be pleased.)

     

  • 16 of 39

    After: Pet Bed

    With a few extra pieces of lumber, an old chair can becomes a bed fit for your furry BFF. Here's how: Dismantle the chair, cutting the chairback and legs away from the seat. Build a frame of inexpensive pine and plywood to the size you need for the bed, adding a lip to hold the cushion in place. Use wood glue and screws to attach the chairback as the headboard and the legs as the footboard. Finish by painting everything a unifying color and adding a comfy, washable pet bed or cushion.

     

  • 17 of 39

    Before: Honey Hue

    The finish on this table needed a style makeover.

     

  • 18 of 39

    After: Contemporary Finish

    With so-hot gray stain and a pretty stenciled design, this table became a showstopper.

  • 19 of 39

    Before: Midcentury Snooze

    We're all for midcentury-modern furniture. But we also won't scoff at a make-it-better revamp. And so we give you...

  • 20 of 39

    After: Most Improved

    Watch and see how a simple paint makeover gave the piece a new lease on life in the 21st century.

  • 21 of 39

    Before: Snoozer Headboard

    Maybe it's a handmedown or maybe it's the bed from the set you've had forever. Either way, it's time to rethink your wood bedframe. 

  • 22 of 39

    After: Stylish Focal Point

    Yes, that really is the same headboard. Thanks to a tension rod, batting, fabric, and a few basic tools, this once plain-Jane headboard gets the Cinderella treatment, which fortunately doesn't go away when the clock strikes 12.

  • 23 of 39

    Before: Unassuming Dresser

    The simple white finish of this dresser begged to be reimagined.

  • 24 of 39

    After: Antique Finish

    Milk paint and an antique finishing glaze give the dresser a throwback vibe. The antique look is complete with vintage-inspired dresser pulls.

  • 25 of 39

    Before: One-Dimensional Chair

    With a great shape and fab design, a quick fix customized this chair to take it to the next level.

  • 26 of 39

    After: Color Panache

    By painting just the vertical spindles, this chair receives a custom look without the hefty price tag. To recreate the look, tape off the parts of the chair you want to leave unpainted. Apply interior/exterior latex primer, let dry, and then apply latex paint in your color of choice. For tight detail work, use a 1/2-inch flat detail brush.

     

  • 27 of 39

    Before: Hodgepodge Hutch

    Tall and gangly, this hutch was destined to store more than just knickknacks and china.

  • 28 of 39

    After: Bath Storage Superstar

    With a new back and fresh paint, this beauty is primed for primping supply storage in the bathroom. The shelves are perfect for storing frequently accessed items and stacks of folded towels, while drawers hide other necessities and less frequently used items.

  • 29 of 39

    Before: Has-Been Hutch

    With a formal profile and a dinged-up finish, this hutch was begging for a modern revamp.

  • 30 of 39

    After: Fresh-Faced and Fabulous

    Pale khaki paint and white hardware launch this old-fashioned hutch into modern-day style. Wallpaper along the back provides a pop of color.

  • 31 of 39

    Before: Ready for Storage

    Six drawers and a generously proportion cabinet say "store stuff in me"! But this hutch's style was a little lacking.

  • 32 of 39

    After: Accessory Central

    Removing the cabinet door and installing custom shoe racks make the most of this storage space in this hutch. New knobs and paint up the fashionable factor, while freshly installed hooks house a collection of scarves.

  • 33 of 39

    Before: Diamond in the Rough

    A beautiful shape was hiding behind a worn finish and yucky upholstery.

  • 34 of 39

    After: Fashion-Forward Makeover

    Orange-y coral paint shows off the chair's shapely silhouette, while new upholstery in black and white fabric ups the fun factor. When looking for your own diamonds-in-the-rough, look for pieces that are sturdy and well constructed. Paint and new fabric can work wonders, but a shoddy structure is less easily remedied. 

  • 35 of 39

    Before: Basic Secondhand Table

    Walk into any secondhand shop and you'll likely find a table resembling this one. While it may be an ordinary end table, it's ripe with potential to be something else.

  • 36 of 39

    After: Office on Wheels

    Turn an end table into a go-anywhere office with a few simple modifications. Choose a table the width of a standard hanging file and then sand, prime, and paint it. Screw metal strips to the sides to accommodate hanging files, use a jigsaw to cut holes in the top for glasses or small storage buckets, and attach casters to the legs.

  • 37 of 39

    Before: Hidden Charm

    Boxy and somewhat boring, but with a pretty brass handle, this nightstand was a prime candidate for a makeover.

  • 38 of 39

    After: In the Details

    Fresh white paint remedied the dull brown finish, but a geometric design in gold paint took the nightstand to the next level. Use a ruler and a pencil to stencil on a design and then use painter's tape to mark it off before you paint.

  • Next Slideshow Fabulous Furniture Makeovers

    Fabulous Furniture Makeovers

    Uncover the hidden charm of a cast-off piece with a bit of creative thinking and elbow grease. Check out our furniture makeover project ideas for inspiration.
    Begin Slideshow »
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