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Upcycled Furniture Ideas on a Budget

This post is sponsored by Gumtree

upcycled furniture ideas

Upcycled furniture ideas using free furniture (and where to find it!)

We all love Freebies, don’t we?  There’s nothing more satisfying than getting something useful for free and then the sense of satisfaction you get when you can turn that something into a fabulous piece.
Like my bed here for example, a boring old timber bed that, with a lick of chalk paint, has gone from dull and so 90’s to shabby chic.
You know the saying, ‘somebody’s trash is someone else’s treasure’? Well it truly can be, you just have to look in the right place and you can pick up a beauty…for free.  This is where Gumtree Freebies and Pinterest are a match made in heaven. Check out some of these DIY ideas that I’ve put together.
Take this set of vintage drawers, currently listed on Gumtree Freebies. A bit old school, right?
But look at what you could do to it! Turn it into this gorgeous dresser using just a bit of paint and paper. I can picture this in a little girl’s room or even a baby nursery.
And what about this TV Cabinet currently listed on Gumtree Freebies?  I know what I’d do with it straight away…
Turn it into a kid’s kitchen! I had a look online and a kid’s kitchen similar to the one below sells for well over $200, but you could make one for almost nothing. With a little bit of DIY handyman work, a coat of paint and some little accessories, you’re kids will be making you dinner!
Do you like knick knacks and books like me but you have no where to put them?  This bookcase is currently listed on Gumtree Freebies, a bit boring and in need of some TLC.
But with a bit of a wipe down and creative flair, you can turn it into something like this! ooh la la
And lastly, because I’m on a roll and I’m getting real inspiration here, if you’re in a house like ours which has no built in wardrobes, simply take a TV cabinet like this one currently for sale on Gumtree Freebies and…..
turn it into a gorgeous kids wardrobe/shelving unit!  Now I’m no handyman but even I could do this if you gave me a screwdriver, some sanding paper and chalk paint (chalk paint is awesome because you don’t have to do a lot of the prep work you do with other paints).
Isn’t it amazing what you can do on the cheap when you put your mind to it?
Not only does upcycling free furniture save you money, it could potentially make you money too. Upcycling is essentially reusing old furniture in a way to create a product of higher quality (or even value) than the original. Now there’s an idea to make a little bit of extra pocket money!
Oh, and I should add that upcycling furniture is great for the environment too; it’s a form of recycling and reduces the amount of waste going to landfill.
So, what are you waiting for? Jump onto Gumtree, find some freebies and let the ‘upcycling’ begin!

Eva Lewis (The Multitasking Woman)
Latest posts by Eva Lewis (The Multitasking Woman) (see all)


  1. Jody at Six Little Hearts
    July 29, 2014 / 12:25 pm

    I love furniture upcycling! I have been doing it for years and only recently parted with some of my creations.
    I have this massive TV cabinet in our garage that cost us a whopping $2000 and no longer fits our TV. (Who uses a TV cabinet these days?!)
    I am planning on painting it a funky colour and repurposing it into a display cabinet for the boys’ Lego and Megablocks models. There are so many of these models and they cost a fortune and need to be displayed rather than broken into a million pieces!
    That’s my plan anyway :D.

  2. July 29, 2014 / 12:31 pm

    I have completely repurposed a set of old pine drawers which were in our shed for years into a beautiful modern piece just by painting alternate drawers bright yellow and turquoise and varnishing it. Was so simple and now it’s a feature in my sons room.

  3. The Plumbette
    July 29, 2014 / 3:03 pm

    I haven’t attempted up cycling furniture but a lot of our furniture does need a spruce up I think. I would love to up cycle our wooden dining chairs by painting them white and reupholstering the seat cushions. I have some great ideas using pipe to create furniture too.

  4. July 29, 2014 / 6:48 pm

    Love the TV entertainment unit that’s been transformed into a kid’s kitchen :-).

    I was given a pine full length cheval mirror recently – I’m planning to chalk paint it a teal colour and give it a distressed finish 🙂

    visiting today from #teamIBOT xxx

  5. Elise
    July 29, 2014 / 8:04 pm

    Love, love, LOVE Gumtree! We’ve turned a grotty, nailpolish covered, scratch and beatup bookshelf into a coordinating piece for our sons upcoming SuperHero bedroom. All thanks to Gumtree (although unfortunately not the freebies section!)

  6. Lucy @ Bake Play Smile
    July 29, 2014 / 8:23 pm

    Gosh its amazing what a nice coat of white paint can do!! Love the idea of upcycling your old furniture.

  7. Kathy www.yinyangmother.com
    July 29, 2014 / 8:40 pm

    Some great finds here and sounds like you are a seasoned up-cycler. We once did up my mother-in-law’s old hoop pine dresser, which involved stripping about 10 layers of old paint – chalk paint over the top sounds a whole lot easier.

  8. July 29, 2014 / 8:43 pm

    Wow, I love the tv cabinet turned in a kids play kitchen – brilliant! And yes I agree with Lucy, it’s amazing what a lick of white paint will do to an old piece of furniture!

  9. July 30, 2014 / 2:24 pm

    We upcycled to two fold on an old, old white door. First it was our outdoor table (very cool with old knob and antique looking key hole). Then, after 5 years it started to disintegrate in the weather, and fall apart. Before curb side collection, I went out with a saw and cut off a piece that had an old (cool) rusty hinge attached. I got my husband’s hammer and nails and nailed two nails at either end of the piece of door. Then I got my cooking string and attached that to either nails so I’d be able to hang it from the picture rail in my room. Then I hammered nails in all across the front of this piece of door. IT’s now my necklace holder. I love it’s old rustic charm, with the rusted hinge on it, and rough white peeling paint.

  10. Paula J
    July 31, 2014 / 9:31 am

    I have a few pieces of furniture I’d love to upcycle and now I’m inspired!

  11. July 31, 2014 / 8:25 pm

    I’ve never even thought of this!
    But I’m not much of a home decorator at all. I’m very plain jane in this respect.

  12. Claire Lewis
    August 1, 2014 / 11:45 am

    I am soooo keen to do this! We are moving to a little farmhouse soon and I am going to keep my eyes out for a little buffet cupboard that I can paint and convert into somewhere to stash our muddy shoes and boots on the verandah! Loving that chalk paint, I will have to look closely at that.

  13. staceyshailer
    August 1, 2014 / 2:16 pm

    Hubby has several old timber pallets lying around at his work place, and I’d love to turn them into an upcycled timber potting bench! Somewhere to store all my empty pots, potting mix and seedlings 🙂

  14. Caroline Kelly
    August 1, 2014 / 9:49 pm

    Removed the hinges off an old door from my house added a pair of saw horses for a serving table at a barbecue.

  15. JBMarigold
    August 2, 2014 / 2:18 pm

    I’ve long toyed with the idea of giving abandoned wood pallets a second life… An industrial chic coffee table would be my first project. Just sand, oil and add wheels!

  16. Karina Lee
    August 2, 2014 / 11:20 pm

    I would love to turn my old tea cups into candles and pot plants.

  17. amandagorton
    August 2, 2014 / 11:25 pm

    Upcycled pieces in the garden create an aesthetic, rustic country cottage feel. My ideas range from using old wheelbarrows to drawers to create functional herb gardens or colourful flower arrangements.

  18. Kasey Evans
    August 3, 2014 / 8:55 pm

    We are in the middle of turning an old tv unit into a reptile cage for our bearded dragons.

  19. Nicole White
    August 4, 2014 / 5:01 pm

    I would love an old wine barrel to be converted into a wine cabinet with a little door at the front and then stained in a nice finish…I think it would be a nice addition to a bar room. 🙂

  20. Michelle Gray
    August 4, 2014 / 10:25 pm

    Here I am upcycling discarded pallets into a no dig garden on top on concrete. The beginning of a great herb garden.

  21. Charlotte
    August 5, 2014 / 2:23 pm

    Ooo I just love all your projects, so inspiring!

    My favourite pinterest-worthy upcycling which I’m yet to complete (though I have the goods!!!!!) is taking an old glass-windowed wall cabinet, painting it and attaching legs and using it as a glass display coffee table. I already have so many ideas of what displays to include, with seasonal and holiday items, I can’t wait!

  22. Kim m
    August 6, 2014 / 11:04 pm

    I once converted a shoe cabinet into a unit for my stero and when I got sick of that I changed it into a tv cabinet and finally a bookshelf! It had tonnes of use and it was given to me free!!! Score!!