It’s not just the meatballs, free childcare and humane corporate policy: We truly, thoroughly love Ikea.

Here, seven ways to make a $140 dresser (or a $90 bookshelf… or a $400 sofa) look way more expensive than it really is.


Paint It

This one’s a no-brainer. If you leave your boring, white Malm dresser white, it will look like a boring Malm dresser that is white. Enter: color. Brush up with our four-step guide to painting furniture, then go to town transforming cookie-cutter pieces into one-of-a-kind masterpieces.


Wallpaper the Back of a Bookshelf

Use fancy wallpaper like a yellow leaf by Burke Décor or this woods design by Cole & Son to give the standard Billy an original look. Just apply the wallpaper before assembly for a surprise pop of pattern or color.


Swap Out the Pegs on Your Sofa

Ikea sofas don’t look terribly chic on their own, but one super-easy and inexpensive way to up the wow factor is to swap out their legs. Swedish company Pretty Pegs sells adorable ones (all made to fit Ikea pieces) that take any item from meh to midcentury modern.


Add an O'verlay

Want a preppy vibe? This kinda genius company makes easy-to-apply geometric decals that glue onto the front of Ikea furniture, mirrors--and even your walls.


Pick Out Pretty Drawer Knobs

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: The easiest, cheapest way to make any piece of furniture look like a million bucks is to replace the hardware. From vintage glass and porcelain to patterned, polished pewter, a whimsical pull can add a sleek or feminine touch. We’re coming for you, Hemnes three-drawer chest.


Paper the Inside of Your Drawers

Speaking of that Hemnes chest, won't it make you infinitely happier if you open it up and see a hint of gold? Just choose a paper that has some weight to it (fine, delicate ones won’t hold up), set inside and secure with double-sided tape.


Just add Wood

These Trones shoe storage cabinets cost $13 each. Affix them to the wall, then head to Lowes, pick out a piece of lumber that you like and get it cut to size. Gently set atop your wall unit (you don’t even need to glue it down.) Gorgeous upgrade: complete.

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