Customizing Budget-Friendly Furniture

by Shelley SmithSeptember 16, 2013

I feel like when you’re decorating your home, you go through stages. For a long time I never thought I would get out of the painting and molding stage. Every room in our house needed a fresh coat of paint on it’s walls, and in doing that I started dreaming up fun molding ideas in the spaces I was painting… and well, you know how that goes. It becomes a never-ending task.

Fast forward a few years later and now that all of our walls are painted and the moldings we wanted are up, we’re in the finessing and decorating stage of life. I personally feel that this is a stage that never really ends, because you should constantly be trying new things in your space, but for the most part, you can get the bulk of your items in place, so that your rooms start coming together.

One of the places that we’ve been working hard on this summer, has been our basement. With the addition of a new couch, rug, pillows and some funky little ottomans, this room is really starting to come together. As we’ve been filling up this space with items, we’ve carefully taken into account our storage and seating needs.
One area that we really wanted to improve upon, was the space behind our couch in the basement. We didn’t have a ton of room, but there was just enough for a long narrow table, and chair. So, while shopping one day at our local “budget-friendly” furniture store, we noticed this sleek, modern beauty that came in black and white. At first glance we thought that it may be a little too stark for the space, but then after going back and forth a bit, we decided that all it needed was a little customizing!
Since we knew the table would come in multiple pieces that we would need to assemble on our own anyway, the ease of painting a few of the components a different color was the perfect idea! That being said, we opted to paint the metal portions of our table (the legs and drawer pulls) a coppery gold color.

We started out by sanding the sheen from the metal with 100 grit sandpaper and a little steel wool. Then we primed each piece with gray primer, to help the final two coats of gold metallic stick much better.
Check out our additional tips for spray painting metal and also our spray painting tips when refinishing furniture. There’s a lot more detail in those posts, if you need help getting a flawless finish with your paint.
After a few hours, a little assembly and the addition of one of our equally as awesome customized ghost chairs, everything was ready to go! We now had a semi-customized piece of furniture that fit perfectly into our space, kept us on budget and added additional style and seating into our room.
It’s amazing what the power of paint can do for a plain little piece of furniture, whether it’s from a big-box store or just a local thrift shop. Below are some other budget-friendly, simple furniture hacks I wanted to share. Most of them also just using paint and maybe some new hardware!




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Shelley Smith
  • September 16, 2013 at 11:56 am

    Hi Shelley,

    I love this project! I’ve been eying those chairs and this is definitely a great way to customize them in any paint color. Yours look great!

  • September 16, 2013 at 11:57 am

    Thanks Jessica! It really does change up the whole look and for just a few bucks! Oh the power of spray paint! 🙂


  • September 17, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    Love this idea, and I love the long and narrow design. Perfect without taking up a lot of space!

  • Shelley Smith
    September 17, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    Thanks Andrea!

    That’s what we loved about the table too! It’s perfect for working on a laptop or just writing a quick note 🙂

  • Trisha
    September 19, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Where did you get the awesome pillow and matching chair? I feel like I may NEED them!

  • Whitney Smith
    September 20, 2013 at 11:46 am

    I love what you have done with the desk for the basement and the ikea hack! I’m always struggling to find creative/subtle/classy ways to incorporate gold into a room because it just brightens up everything.

  • Rebecca
    September 21, 2013 at 11:32 am

    I LOVE all these ideas for budget-friendly, and SUPER cute furniture re-do’s. I’m gonna have to do some of these!

  • Rebecca
    September 21, 2013 at 12:01 pm

    I love the coppery finish on the legs! I’m going to copy that for hardware on a dresser I just refinished!

  • Cassy
    September 21, 2013 at 2:36 pm

    I love the little table in the living room space Im thinking Homework station:)

  • September 30, 2013 at 10:36 am

    I just love how you updated those pieces with spray paint! Thanks for all the great ideas, I am on a tight budget and love cheap (but not cheap looking) decor 🙂

  • Chris
    February 9, 2015 at 3:21 pm

    Whats the name of this table? I can’t seem to find it on the ikea website and I want it!!!!!

  • Cayse
    February 24, 2015 at 12:47 am

    Is that gold can in the photo the same spray paint you used for this hack? It looks so coppery! I’m looking for the perfect copper and that looks amazing. But maybe it’s just the lighting of my screen?

    • Erin Viera
      February 24, 2015 at 9:43 am

      It is the same gold spray paint used in the how-to, it’s Krylon ColorMaster in Gold Metallic. For best results, be sure to use the primer as well!

  • Jay
    February 2, 2016 at 1:03 pm

    Hi ya, this is so awesome – thank you for such an helpful and instructive post! I’d love to know – how many cans of the primer and gold spray did you end up using for the table?

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