DIY Furniture Upcycling

Kelsey Rumburg
3 min readOct 22, 2021

With the world getting behind the upcycle movement, home decorating and interior design have taken a whole new spin. You can call it whatever you want, revamping, repurposing, upcycling, reclaiming, salvaging, or reimagining. It all means the same thing. It is a worthwhile process of taking something old that you would normally throw away, and making it something that you either want to keep yourself or want to sell so it has a new and long life.

As I have mentioned in my book there are a lot of companies that are working in the upcycling movement. They have made it their mission to repurpose materials and make them into new items for our homes. This helps us have a more sustainable future by reducing our waste.

All you need to have when you choose to upcycle your old furniture is a few tools and a whole lot of imagination. For instance, if you are dealing with a piece of wooden furniture like an end table, sideboard, or hutch, you can give it an entirely new personality by picking a solid paint color for the unit and then buying a cheap stencil. There are so many stencils out there you could have birds, grapevines, butterflies, dragonflies, hearts…whatever you want, the possibilities are endless! Of course, you could always make your own stencil for free.

How about old wooden crates that you have laying around in your attic? Why not take them, empty out the contents, paint them, and mount them on your walls for decorative shelves?

With just a little paint and a few stencils that cost under $5 for a variety, you can bring a new personality to just about any item. A lot of people are making money at this. They’re opening up little shops and taking a lot of old junk that they find laying around and making it noticeable or use-worthy. Not only are people buying it because they are a novelty and one-of-a-kind item, but because upcycling has become such a global effort with a huge response. They want to be a part of the movement.

Even driftwood can be made into a work of art. You could make it into a wall mount with hooks to hang keys or coats, you can decorate it and write in vintage or Old English letters “Welcome”. You can take pallets and make furniture or an outside bar.

There is nothing that you can’t accomplish with the old junk lying around your yard and in your house. And if you don’t particularly like the style even though you think it’s cute or quaint, you can always sell it or have an online podcast or teach an online course as to how you go about repurposing. These are a lot of ways to either make money or completely redecorate your home. The choice is yours. Have fun and join the upcycle cause!

What are you planning to upcycle?



Kelsey Rumburg

As an adventurous farm girl, I am a creator on a mission to build a better economy. I question our idea of trash and look for new ways to use our resources!