10 Thrifty DIY Projects to Transform Your Home with Secondhand Finds

10 Thrifty DIY Projects to Transform Your Home with Secondhand Finds

Transforming a home shouldn’t always cost an arm and a leg. You can make a unique, stylish space that matches your identity by being imaginative and visiting thrift stores around your neighborhood. Second-hand finds are a goldmine for those who don’t mind getting their hands dirty. Here are ten DIY projects on a budget that should give any living space an entirely new feel.

1. Upcycled Furniture

Avoid anything made from particle board if you want a stronger piece of furniture with more potential life. These types of furniture tend to be less sturdy and won’t hold up well to refinishing.

You Will Need:

  • Sandpaper
  • Paint or stain (or both)
  • New hardware (if desired)
  • Fabric + batting materials (only if reupholstering)


  1. Use sandpaper to smooth out any imperfections on your furniture.
  2. Apply primer and paint it one or two coats, depending on the style you’re going for. 
  3. If staining is used instead of painting, ensure no visible primer shows through after.

If you have a vacant wall space inside the house, spruce it up by creating a gallery wall. Look for low-priced and unusual frames, mirrors, or other items in thrift stores that fall into this category.

You Will Need:

  • Various types of frames and artworks
  • Hanging materials
  • Spirit level
  • Tape measure


  1. Get frames in different sizes and shapes from second-hand shops.
  2. Hold up the frames on the walls to determine the best hanging spot.
  3. Measure and mark the points where each frame will hang on your wall.
  4. Hang pictures or mirrors using the spirit level.

3. Vintage Lighting

Changing out your lighting can go a long way in refreshing a room’s mood. Purchase a series of vintage lamps, chandeliers, or even lanterns and have them rewired to function in your room.

You Will Need:

  • Old-fashioned light fittings
  • New wiring kits (if necessary)
  • Spray paint or metal polish


  1. Check if the old lamp meets safety standards.
  2. Follow the instructions on the electrical wiring kit on how to install it.
  3. Use metal polish or spray the lamp in any color you like.
  4. Bask in the glow of your newly lit space!

 4. Repurposed Storage Solutions

Thrift stores typically stock many vessels, such as bins, baskets, and boxes, which you can recycle into fashionable storage units. You can use these to organize your things in any part of your house.

You Will Need:

  • Baskets, crates, or boxes
  • Paint or stain (optional)
  • Labels


1. Clean the containers and, if you wish, paint or stain them.

2. Use these to keep things such as books, toys, or pantry products in order.

3. Tag the containers to know what is inside each one easily.

5. Customized Bookshelves

You’re probably wondering, “Can I find bookshelves in a thrift store near me? The answer is yes! Plus, you can decorate them with paint, a wallpaper-covered back lining, or more shelves to suit your taste.

You Will Need:

  • Bookshelf
  • Paint or wallpaper back lining
  • Extra shelves(optional)


1. Dust and prepare the bookshelf.

2. For a splash of color or design, paint or apply wallpaper to the back panel.

3. If you need more storage space, add extra shelves.

6. Unique Planters

Thrift stores are filled with one-of-a-kind options you can make for your plants; teapots, baskets, and bowls – think out of the box.

You Will Need:

  • Teapots, baskets, bowls (unconventional plant pots)
  • Potting soil
  • Plants


1. Check if the planters have appropriate drainage.

2. Fill with the potting compost then plant your foliage.

3. Scatter them around your house for freshness and greenery.

7. Creative Headboards

A headboard has the unique power to make a bedroom look finished. Search for old doors, shutters, or large picture frames to create a distinctive and personal headboard.

You Will Need:

  • Old door(s), shutter(s), or large frame(s)
  • Paint/stain (optional)
  • Mounting hardware


1. Prepare and paint/stain your secondhand item.

2. Use your drill or other mounting hardware to attach it to the wall or bed frame.

3. Enjoy your new one-of-a-kind headboard.

8. Decorative Trays

Decorative trays are an excellent way to style your coffee table, ottoman, or countertop. You can find a great variety of trays at thrift stores, which you can paint or cover with any type of material you’d like.

You Will Need:

  • Trays
  • Paint, decoupage materials, or fabric


  1. Clean and prepare the tray.
  2. Personalize with painting, decoupage, or by adding fabric lining.
  3. Utilize the tray to organize or showcase items stylishly.

9. Fabric Crafts

Thrift stores sometimes have a range of fabrics, such as vintage sheets, curtains, and clothes, that you can easily repurpose into pillows, curtains, or quilts. 

You Will Need: 

  • Fabric from thrift stores 
  • Needle and thread or sewing machine 
  • Pillow stuffing or quilt batting 


  1. Pick out the fabrics with your desired patterns or textures. 
  2. Cut them into sizeable pieces and sew them to make pillowcases, curtains, or quilts. 
  3. Stuff or back the different fabric pieces as required.

10. DIY Mirrors

Mirrors have the unique ability to make any room feel more spacious. Pick a sizeable frame, dress it up with a vibrant coat of paint, insert your mirror, and voila – a decorative DIY mirror that blends perfectly with your living space

You Will Need: 

  • Thrifted mirrors Paint or Otherwise Decorative 
  • Hanging hardware 


  1. Spray or paint the mirror frame if desired. 
  2. Decorate with tiny beads, plastic crystals, etc. 
  3. Mount the mirror securely and hang it securely.


DIY projects that use secondhand finds are undoubtedly the best way to give your home a stylish makeover. So why wait? Spruce up your space with secondhand finds today by visiting New Horizons Thrift Stores. Their wide range of one-of-a-kind products makes it a safe spot for any DIYer to decorate their home with their personality and style.

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