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Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we love

Looking for a cool family project or to upgrade your decor? These fun, inexpensive DIYs use second-hand materials from yard sales, flea markets or thrift stores.

By Amy Valm

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we love

Yard sale hacks

Yard sale hacks

Looking for a family project? Load up the brood and check out local garage sales and flea markets for unique treasures to overhaul. 

Read more: DIY archives>

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: iStockphoto

DIY bottle lamp

Keep an eye out for gallon jugs. Similar on-trend lamps of the same style cost upwards of $40-plus in store but are fairly simple to recreate. Grab a lampshade and lamp kit from the local hardware store to make this cottage-style DIY a reality. 

Get the instructions here: The Inspired Room

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: The Inspired Room via Pinterest

Dresser turned console table

This is the perfect way to repurpose those beautiful old bureaus that are missing a drawer or two! Make a console table to store toys or a pretty dresser for an expanding wardrobe

Get the instructions here: Liz Marie Blog

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: Liz Marie Blog via Pinterest

Herringbone dresser

Simply painting an old dresser can give it a whole new life. We're loving this herringbone detail. Other popular patterns to try are chevron and ombre

Get the instructions here: Howdy Honey


Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: Howdy Honey via Pinterest

Painted lamps

You can see them on garage-sale tables from a mile away: those gaudy brass lamps that everyone's grandma favoured in the '60s and '70s. The good news is you can easily revamp old lamps with a can of spray paint

Get the instructions here: Evolution of Style

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: Evolution of Style via Pinterest

DIY magnets

Look for old board games to create these easy-to-make Scrabble magnets. They're not only cute, but they're also a great way to encourage spelling and reading

Get the instructions here: From North to South

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: From North to South via Pinterest

DIY typography canvas

Grab that old canvas with dated depictions of landscapes and animals next time you see one! This simple wall decor is a fun and easy project for the entire family. Select a quote you love and head over to the dollar or craft store to pick up stick-on letters and paint. Once dry, have the kids help to gently peel away the stickers, revealing your awesome family mantra. 

Get the instructions here: A Beautiful Mess

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: A Beautiful Mess via Pinterest

Painted chair

Vintage wooden chairs aren't hard to find. Whether you need a new seat for the dining room, your child's workstation or simply as a conversation piece in the corner—get creative with paint. We love this two-tone chair and are also fond of the dipped look.

Get the instructions here: Casa De Lewis

Take a look at these helpful painting tips from Camp Clean for additional inspiration.

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: Casa De Lewis via Pinterest

Rocking chair overhaul

Perfect for rocking your new babe to sleep and adding a pop of colour to the nursery, this DIY hack is not for the faint of heart. If you're handy (or have a partner who is), try scoping out a functioning—albeit unattractive—gliding rocker (make sure it's safe and can support your weight first) then head to the fabric store and pick out a pattern or colour suits you best. 

Get the instructions here: Rock Paper Scissors Graphics

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: Rock Paper Scissors Graphics via Pinterest

Suitcase table

Parents take note! This adorbs table could be used in an entryway, as an end table or beside a bed. The retro design is not only visually appealing, it doubles as storage for your little one's trinkets

Our tutorial is in Dutch, but detailed photos outline the step-by-step instructions for this nifty overhaul.

Get the instructions here: Woon Blog

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: Woon Blog via Pinterest

Coffee table turned ottoman

Who said that functionality couldn't be stylish? Perfect for a rambunctious toddler, the soft corners of this clever hack will cushion head bumps and protect toddling little ones as they navigate around. Plus it's just pretty.

Get the instructions here:
 Love, Pomegranate House

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: Love, Pomegranate House via Pinterest

Chalkboard play table

Scour local yard sales for an old coffee table and freshen it up with a coat of chalkboard paint (available at most hardware and department stores). Perfect for independent play—create a zooming car track or doodle away a rainy afternoon

Get the instructions here: IHeart Organizing

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: IHeart Organizing via Pinterest

Repurposed play kitchen

Feeling ambitious? Try your hand at this kitsch kitchen. The one in the photo was made using an old TV stand, paint, fabric and a big dose of creativity. Change up the paint colours and fabric to create a modern abode or rockin' diner look. 

Get the instructions here: Narrating Life

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: Narrating Life via Pinterest

Read more!

Home hacks: 13 easy DIY projects>
Sometimes, the home decor we love in stores is just a little out of our price range. Here are some smart home hacks that even kids can help with.

Transforming yard sale finds: 12 creative hacks we lovePhoto: Sarah Hearts via Pinterest

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