We use this mid-century bar cart to hold office supplies, and it's one of our favorite craigslist finds from the last few years. In an effort to bring a little more color to this area, we came up with a quick & cheap solution we can change or reverse on a whim.
We simply cut a piece of colorful wrapping paper and put it behind some glass we had cut to fit at our local hardware store (the glass cost us less than $20.) When we get tired of the current pattern or color we can just switch it out. We're happy to get some more color and pattern in the room, but also happy that the piece remains in original condition, just in case we ever want to go back to classic black.
This is a treatment that can easily be done to any surface - although be warned that if you want glass with rounded edges things can start to get much more expensive.