See How a $14 Amazon Find Completely Transforms This Boring Console

published Apr 7, 2024
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If you’re a serial DIYer (or a serial AT reader), you probably know what an IKEA hack is. But hacks aren’t limited to the Swedish retailer. You can upgrade any big-box furniture with inexpensive finds to make it look more custom and expensive, like DIYer Elim Shanko (@apartmentondamen) did with an Amazon console. 

“We bought the console brand-new, so this was not a transformation of anything old but was basically a dupe of what we wanted,” she says. “There was a burl wood console I really wanted (that I found on Pinterest), but when I saw the price, it was like $5,000. I COULD NOT afford that! So I was looking for ways to get the elevated look for a fraction of the cost.”

Credit: Elim Shanko
Credit: Elim Shanko

The console offered a lot of bang for its buck. 

Elim ordered a 95-inch console from Amazon for her project. She says she and her partner were looking for a console that took up most of the wall and was completely closed, and this one fit the bill. “It came with a bunch of extra shelves and consoles that honestly were pretty good value for money,” she adds.

Credit: Elim Shanko

Contact paper made it look even more expensive. 

She made the $340 console look even more expensive by giving it a burl wood look with contact paper. (And that was only $14 on Amazon!) “The whole thing was a budget-friendly endeavor,” she says. 

Her best advice for applying cheap contact paper to get an expensive-looking finish is to go slowly and make sure you smooth out all of the air bubbles. “Use a blow-dryer, squeegee, and X-ACTO knife” for a precise finish, she says. 

And even though it was time-consuming, it was worth the effort and is now a burl wood beauty that looks three times the price. “It’s absolutely beautiful,” Elim says.