Genius Ideas on How to Repurpose Old Furniture

You have a move ahead of you, and the first thing you’re thinking about is getting rid of older stuff. Okay, you’re probably considering hiring cross country movers, but also what you’ll need to buy. But if you learn a few things about how to repurpose old furniture, you’ll be able to save up and create custom pieces everyone will be in awe with.

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October 26, 2021 Posted in Housing Tips

Long-distance moving is exciting but complex and expensive, so we are keen on finding ways to save up a bit. But the cheapest way to move out of state is not to relocate by yourself; after all, when you calculate all in – the fuel, driving, packing by yourself, it’s a much better choice to invest in long-distance moving services. So however much do movers cost for a 2-bedroom apartment, or any residence size, various types of services will help us more than we know. So, where to pinch the budget then? That one’s easy, don’t rush with buying furnishings for your future home, but instead, create unique stuff from older worn-out pieces.

Why It’s a Handy Thing to Know How to Repurpose Old Furniture

First, there’s the apparent reason to choose repurposing and remodeling instead of buying. It will be easier to pay for the packing services to relieve you of the dreaded packing if you save some money. An auto transport service will get your car from A to Z. Secondly, it may very well be just the beginning of a beautiful journey into the world of DIY. If you get versed in this hobby, in the end, you may even know how to repurpose furniture to sell.

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What Can I Make With Old Furniture? From Simple Projects To a Completely Different Purpose

We know that most of us would like to avoid moving furnishings with a long-distance moving company and start anew in the future home. But why discard anything that can be recycled and reused using a few ideas, and given a chic and stylish touch? Your older pieces can be simply freshened up with fabric, given some shine, or completely repurposed into a different piece. That’s why one of the things to do before moving should be getting some small apartment ideas and finding tips and tricks for repurposing your furnishings.

A laptop on a wooden desk
Don't toss away any piece that can be repurposed and renewed with simple ideas

Where to Find Pieces for Your Projects?

You probably have some ancient pieces lying around your garage, attic, or even toolshed. Or perhaps an ancient dresser is currently cluttering your hallway, and you were thinking about tossing it into the trash before you start Googling for “long-distance movers near me.”

But if you require a few pieces for your future abode, there’s no need to run on a shopping spree. If you’ve heard that someone in your neighborhood is planning to throw a successful garage sale, that’s the exact spot where you can find some pretty sweet deals on valuable pieces that currently don’t look as much. Or perhaps someone in your surroundings is planning an office move and wants to get rid of some bulky desks.

Use these opportunities to grab a few lovely furnishings that can be repurposed into sophisticated objects. If you plan to repurpose salvage & furniture that was lying around someone’s backyard, it can bring even greater happiness because those pieces were already written off. Craigslist is also a great place to look for used and cheap furnishings.

A woman looking at jewelry
Visit yard sales regularly, and you'll manage to find some sweet deals

Start With Simple Projects – a DIY Upholstery

How do you redesign old furniture? Let’s begin with the basics. Your furnishings that have a worn-out fabric, but quality bones and a good design, can be repurposed in a few easy steps. First of all, ensure these pieces are on your moving inventory list and not left behind.

The next step is to visit a few stores and buy a few things – a staple gun and a fabric that will fit the style of your future place. After you remove the original fabric, leave it for the pattern. Remove the batting, too, and check the bones and springs for any damage. Cover the sitting part with batting and mind the edges, then attach the base fabric. Continue to do it on all sides.

For detailed tips and tricks on reupholstery, watch the video below.

Types of Upholstery Fabric for Giving Your Furnishings a New Shine

Even if your dining chairs or favorite armchair aren’t that worn out, you can refresh your abode with some bright colors and daring patterns. If you plan on writing down the fabric on your new apartment shopping list, you should first get to know the types used for upholstery:

  • Let’s start with the leather. Although not the most affordable choice, this is the most widely used type of material for upholstery. It’s comfortable, smells great, it’s quite durable, but above all, it looks and feels luxurious and grand. While it can last for a long time and won’t absorb anything spilled or any kind of smell, it can crack over time. But the biggest downside is its price.
  • Polyester is a microfiber most commonly used for upholstery. Besides being a material that is probably the easiest to blend in with any style, it looks almost as attractive as leather and gives off a similar luxurious feel. It is also comfortable, easy to clean, and quite durable. Although it can also crack over time, you shouldn’t smoke near it since it is flammable.
  • Rayon has also found its way to upholstery, as some of its variants have been made more durable and thus suitable for remodeling your worn-out pieces. It’s very cheap, but also comfortable and soft, and above all resistant to mildew and moths. The downsides are that it gets easily scratched, and it loses its original appearance quickly.
  • Another synthetic fiber often used for upholstery is acrylic. It imitates wool and is used in different blends. It’s produced in numerous vivid colors, so it’s a perfect choice to brighten up any interior area. It’s soft, easy to wash and clean, and it dries quickly. The disadvantage is that some people may be allergic to it.
  • Much less pricey than leather, but not less regal and luxurious is velvet. Besides the fact that it is soft, it makes any piece breathtakingly beautiful, and it accentuates the form of the piece. The rich colors in which it is produced make it even more appalling. Although somewhat cheaper than leather, it is still expensive and difficult to maintain.

There are many more fabric types from which you can choose, like jute, linen, acetate, cotton, wool, or olefin. Before you decide which one to buy, you have to take several things into consideration – how often do you use the piece, whether you plan on moving with pets so they’ll be using the piece, too, and of course – the price.

How to Repurpose Furniture With Paint

Although you’ve probably thought of paint cans as what to get rid of because it’s among the items movers won’t move or pack, they are an inexpensive way to dive into DIY furnishing projects. So write them down on your to-do list, and head on to the store to buy some. If you were thinking about how to repurpose wood furniture the easy way, adding some color to the pieces with a brush is the answer.

You can choose paint or wood stain, depending on the ideas you have and the look you’re aiming for. Stain penetrates the wood surface and protects it, all while preserving the natural beauty of the wood. Paint covers the wooden texture completely, while it also hides any minor imperfections the furnishing might have. Before you apply either one, the wooden surface must be appropriately prepared. You have to remove any previous layers and go over the surface with some sandpaper.

A white desk
A good paint job, and new hardware can make a piece shine

A Cheap Cabinet Can Become a Lovely Garden Bench

Before you start unpacking after the move, especially in the kitchen, consider whether the worn-out cabinets are going to be hung on the walls or used somewhere else. While you can still use them in the kitchen, by making an island in the middle of the cooking area or turning them into bathroom cabinets, they can be repurposed into something completely different. If you lower them on the side and screw on some chic legs (brass, stainless steel, or wooden), and add some cushioning on the top, you’ll have a stylish garden bench with a storage area in no time.

Some Other DIY Ideas to Repurpose Furniture and Create a Bench

If you are moving to a smaller home, it has probably crossed your mind that you should get rid of the bulky and heavy wooden desk you’ve used in your home office. But worry not, it may find a new purpose. You can either turn it upside down or give it a solid bottom made of a thick piece of wood. Cut out the top and add a bench seat between the sides of the drawers and the back of the desk. This way, you’ll leave the drawer compartments, which you can still use for storage.

A pile of palettes
Palettes can be ultimately versatile, and you can create many different things and some chic designs, for your garden or interior

The Wall Rack Can Become Something Entirely Different, and a Crate Can Be Reborn as a Bookshelf

Do you have any wall racks you were planning for your packed plates? You can remodel them and use them as holders for towels or hooks in the hallway. Also, if you can find any wooden crates lying around, and you’ve packed books and shipped them to the new place, you can use them and create a wholly different design. Repaint them and mount them to a wall in a pattern you like to get unique yet easy-made bookshelves.

A dresser that is thrown out before cross-country moving
How do you reuse old wood furniture? If you have an older dresser lying around, make shelves out of the drawers

Use a Few Repurpose Old Furniture Ideas and Turn a Dining Table Into a Desk

If you’re tired of the design of your dining table and you’ve shipped it nonetheless because you were last-minute moving, but you’re also in need of a good sturdy desk for your home office – worry not. You can change the table’s purpose entirely. It’s best to use a leaf table, where you’ll turn the leaf into a sort of wall organizer. You can hang the leaf on the wall or simply lean it if you plan on using it for dining again some time. If you don’t own a leaf table, you can buy used ones that are so cheap it’s a steal.

How Do You Convert Old Furniture to New? Many Things Around Your Home Can Become Something Else

Do you have a coffee table on your checklist for moving to another state? You probably need this piece in your life but have no room in your budget to buy it right now. But it’s quite easy to make one out of different furnishings. So how to repurpose old worn-down furniture? Try with a crate – you can add some legs or wheels under it, screw on a wooden board on top, and give it some life with paint and a brush. Or, if you’re handy with tools, you can use a door to create a unique piece where you can leave your magazines, books, and mugs.

A woman wiping a wooden surface
Dining tables can become desks or something completely different

Adopt the DIY Lifestyle and Create Some Original Projects With Your Hands

After the long-distance movers have shipped your stuff, and right after you’ve managed to adjust to another town, there’s some time in your schedule to use wisely. The easiest way to relieve yourself of any moving stress and overcome relocation depression with success is to make some changes in your life. And what better ways are there than by using DIY ideas to create something new with your own hands, which your family and friends can enjoy too. And if you turn it into a regular hobby that can even bring you a dime or two, even better.

Kate Holland

A true grunge and rock music fan born in Seattle, Kate has moved across the country and started writing about her experience.



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