DIY Furniture Makeovers

Furniture Projects
Give old furniture a fresh face with these makeover ideas. With projects for tables, chairs, dressers, and more, you'll find plenty of fun inspiration to elevate tired furniture to wow-worthy status.

Crate-and-Pipe Shelf

Create custom storage for less than $100. Assemble a collection of vintage and new wooden crates that fit your space. (Lay the boxes on the floor to figure out the best arrangement.) Paint the crates white for a consistent look. Connect the boxes with nickel plumbing pipes and flanges from a home center. Secure the boxes to wall studs with screws for added stability.

Give tired dining room chairs a boost by reupholstering the seat cover. It's a simple project that makes a world of difference for secondhand, flea market, or just plain old dining room chairs.

Dining Room Chair Makeover

Transform dated, worn out chair seats with this simple upholstery technique. Watch and see how it's done!

Gold Leafed Table

Emphasize a favorite part of a furniture piece with gold leaf. Here, it's the leggy, geometric base of the small table. Go to the next slide to learn how to gold leaf.

Add shimmer to your decor by learning how to gold leaf. This easy DIY technique can be used on many surfaces. See how it's done!

How to Gold Leaf

Bonus Tips:

-- Clean and/or sand the surface to be
embellished. Porous surfaces may need to be sealed before you apply metal leaf.

-- Because sheets of metal leaf are very thin and tear easily, consider wearing smooth cotton gloves.

TV to Table

You'd never guess that this clever storage console was a console of a different kind in a past life. Blogger Beckie Farrant ( removed the workings out of a vintage console TV, painted and glazed the frame, and created a brand-new storage console.

Yes, you can actually paint upholstered furniture and give a tired piece a brand new look. Learn how, plus what type of paint to use, and the secrets to success.

Painted Upholstery

Did you know you can paint upholstery? Learn how it's done, what paint to use, and how to get stunning results.

Faux-Metal Finish

The gold leaf effect is just as stunning on a tabletop as it is a table base. Try it on a trio of nesting tables for triple the effect. In addition to gold leaf tops, the edges of the tables shine, too. Use a soft, lint-free cloth to randomly apply wax metallic finish along the edges; let dry. After the final coat of gold-leaf sealer is dry, seal the tables with water-base varnish.

Dress up a plain piece of upholstered furniture with nailhead trim. Use these tips to help you achieve embellishment success.

Nailhead Trim

Want a quick makeover? Look no further than nailhead trim. It's easy to add and will give an upholstered piece a little extra polish.

DIY Look-Alike

An expensive bone inlay table? Nope, just a laminate top that had been kicked to the curb before being rescued and restored with a stencil kit and new legs. “I did it in an afternoon,” says Kim Myles, Los Angeles designer and past winner of HGTV’s Design Star. “It shows the beauty and power of stencils.” A sponge roller, rather than a stencil brush, sped up the process of applying bone-color acrylic paint over the black painted top. (Get the Indian Inlay kit at

Shelf Makeover

This shelf is a medicine cabinet and towel bar in one -- perfect for a small bathroom. Start with a basic shelf with two wooden support brackets. For the towel bar, drill holes into each bracket and insert a wooden dowel. Perk up the edges of the shelf with flat dowel plugs glued along the front and sides, then paint.

Stenciled Slipcover

Paisley has been around for centuries, but it looks of-the-moment stenciled in black fabric paint on a white slipcovered chair. Painted dots -- make them with an unused eraser on a pencil -- mimic the look of nailheads along the bottom edge. To make a stenciled design appear more casual and free-flowing, position the pattern a little off-center and carry it off the edges of your project.


Stack suitcases -- the biggest on the bottom -- on a flat-top stool for an instant nightstand. Store old books or magazines inside; the extra weight will keep the suitcases in place.

Drilled Design

Turn a basic sold-back dining chair into something more showy with a drill. Here, a sunburst design visually lightens the chair's solid back. Create a template on your computer of your desired design. Keep things simple with a design that uses only the drill bits you have on hand; the circles in our design range from 1/4 to 1 inch in diameter to match our basic set of drill bits. Tape the printed template onto the chair, and drill through the circles.

Blocked In

Sample-size pots of paint are perfect for giving a small cabinet a fantastically colorful makeover. Paint every other drawer front a lively hue. Keep the frame and some of the drawers white for contrast. Play around even more by subbing out basic knobs or pulls for vintage letterpress blocks adhered with glue.

Role Reversal

This cheap brown dresser didn't grab attention until a die cut and white paint rolled over the drawers brought it to life. Use stencil adhesive to secure a crafts store die-cut mask, cutting it to jump from one drawer to another. Roll primer and two coats of white semigloss paint over the drawers; let dry between coats. Peel away to the die-cut mask, revealing the unpainted design beneath.

Stain Striation

Organize a collection of same-color dishes on a bookcase stained in mustard, terra-cotta, and cinnamon hues. Use a pencil to lightly draw guidelines on the inside back of the bookcase, marking on the top and bottom of each shelf. Remove shelves. Starting with the inside top, brush on the lightest stain color, ending between the top two pencil lines; let dry. Repeat for remaining stain colors to create a color-block design. Stain
shelves in the corresponding color; let dry. (If your shelves aren't removable, use painter's tape to mask off where the different stain colors meet.)

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