This Reader Transformed Someone Else’s Unwanted Furniture Into a One-of-a-Kind Masterpiece for Her Son

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More Happy Friday


You’re gonna love this kid-friendly desk transformation! 🙌

It’s no secret that purchasing secondhand items can save you a ton of money, but this week’s Happy Friday reader, Rachel, really went the extra mile to take an ordinary used desk and make it into an extraordinary custom piece of furniture for her kiddo!

The desk itself was a steal at $40, but with a little extra effort and some fun character decals, this desk really comes to life.

Check out this mama’s upcycling story…

Upcycled Desk

My son graduated kinder this year and I needed to find him a nice desk for future homework sessions. A local mom was selling her desk for $40, so I snatched it up and planned on painting it! I used spray paint to do the blue and bought the Super Mario decals to place on top so it looked like a video game level.

I had so much fun, and my son thought it was the best gift ever! He was very excited to do his homework there and immediately began placing his books on the shelves. I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome. I love upcycling things and giving them new life!

Little boy in front of a desk

Thank you, Rachel, for sharing your budget-friendly furniture makeover with us. The smile on your son’s face certainly says it all! Not only is this desk incredibly practical and will get lots of use, the memories of the extra work you put in to make this desk into something you knew your child would love will last far beyond your child’s school years! ❤️

Turn your trash into treasure with these helpful upcycling tips!


Do you have a funny, “Hip”, or unique tip to share?! Fill out our Happy Friday form. Every Friday, we post one submission by a Hip2Save reader (view past submissions) that gives us a glimpse into their frugal lifestyle or simply makes us smile. If yours is published on Hip2Save, we’ll email you a $10 Amazon eGift card!

About the writer:

Nicole has 7 years of blogging experience. While her primary background has been in the restaurant and hospitality industry, she is a self-taught couponer with over 10 years of hands-on experience and a desire to share her knowledge to help others save.

Join The Discussion

Comments 22

  1. Tammy

    Congratulations Rachel on a job well done. I love this idea and the look on your son’s face says it all. I already have a desk similar to this one and I was looking for some ideas, so you have inspired me. Love the idea of video game levels.

    • starfarm

      I agree, Tammy. Rachel, you are an inspiration. Thank you for sharing this project.

      • Rachel

        Thank you both so much! 🙂

  2. silvgoddess

    So cool! I’m a huge Nintendo fan and would have loved this as a kid. I even like it now as a mom haha. Great job on it!

    • Rachel F.

      So true!

  3. Momof3superkids

    Wow! Great idea and good work! Congrats !

    • Rachel F.

      Thank you!!

  4. stephcat90

    This upcycle was great, especially because the original item was rather bland and dated. Great job!!

    • Rachel F.

      Yes it was! I knew I couldn’t make it worse. Ha. That’s what I always tell myself when I start these projects.

  5. Kay

    Awesome job. Luv that u used spray paint. I never thought of using spray paint for furniture. Turned out great. Luv the idea of wall decals too, especially the different levels for Mario. Very impressed. Congrats.

    • Rachel F.

      I spray paint everything! I also go the lazy route and don’t prep/sand anything. I’ve done night stands, dressers, desks, tables, etc. they all hold up beautifully. I’m not sure what will happen when he writes on it? I did put a clear coat on top. Hoping o can just erase it or clean it off. I’m prepared for it to be damaged though. He’s a small kid and it’s what kids do. Ha

  6. NikkiLLM5

    This is so sweet! And the fact that you personalized it for him made it even more special!

    • Rachel F.

      He’s so excited still!

  7. Jessica Godfredson

    When doing this to furniture, do you have to sand it? Any specific spray paint needed? Does it hold up well when your son writes on it. So many questions I apologize, I would like to attempt this, it looks great! Thank you!

    • Deb

      Yes you need to sand for it to adhere. I have also always primed. Sorry I do not know about spray paint and wood. But if you went to the paint shop they would be able to tell you what brand etc.

    • Rachel F.

      I accidentally responded up above. I don’t sand. 😳😅 it always works out perfectly fine and lasts a long long while too. I just clean it with a wet cloth and remove dust and the inevitable spider egg sacks found on old furniture.

  8. Anne

    Love this idea of recycling and re-using. That is what I have been doing all my 70+ years!

    • Rachel F.

      Yay! I love to hear it!

  9. Tracey

    He looks like one happy camper; great job on the desk transformation!

    • Rachel F.

      He loves it. Thank you!

  10. Mama2Nine

    How cool! Love it! 😍
    Thanks for sharing! ♥️

    • Rachel F.

      Thank you!

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