Home & Garden

Fri, 31 Aug, 2018Danielle McCarthy

The Kmart hack that earns one thrifty mum $5,000 a month

The Kmart hack that earns one thrifty mum $5,000 a month

A thrifty Aussie mum has turned her love for decorating cheap Kmart and Ikea furniture into a business that earns her $5,000 a month.

Gold Coast mum Kylie Hughes is the creator of StyIkea, a business she launched last year.

Kylie designs and sells peel-and-stick decals which transform ordinary budget furniture from her favourite stores into on-trend and stylish pieces, using her decorative foil panels.

Kylie first had the money-saving idea when she started renovating her own home but quickly discovered her styling options were limited if she wanted to stick to her tight budget.

Rather than ignore her desire to add some touches of luxury into her home, Kylie started sketching her ideas and then turned them into models, with the assistance of her husband.

A post shared by Stylkea (@stylkea) on Jul 11, 2018 at 11:37pm PDT

“I asked my husband to design panels on the computer and added legs and handles to a piece of furniture I had… and my friends said I should be doing this for a living,” she told the Gold Coast Bulletin.

It is a clever hack that not only improved the décor of her own home but has also saved thousands of other Aussies who were looking to achieve a similar look on a budget.

“At other (stores) you can buy these delightful beside tables for $1,200,” she said.

“Or you can get a very simple look like the Malm bedside table from Ikea which is about $69 and use our Greek-style panels. You have a similar look for $100, so that’s a saving of $1,100.”

Her business has resonated with so many renovators who are also on a budget, that she has been nominated for an award celebrating her entrepreneurial efforts.

Although it is a success now, Kylie spent three years balancing her full-time job and her duties as mum while attempting to create the business.

“I was working at night and on the weekends and I built the website by myself as well, so I was teaching myself e-commerce,” she said.

“Time was one of the biggest obstacles. It took me 18 months from deciding to give it a go to opening up the sales.”

StyIkea sells panels that range from $9.95 to $34.95 in a wide variety of materials that do not require any special tools to apply.

Kylie also sells a white foam option that can be modified with spray or acrylic paint, as well as gold and silver options.

A post shared by Stylkea (@stylkea) on Apr 26, 2018 at 2:30am PDT

“They're versatile, so they match a wide range of different decor styles,” she said.

“It comes down to your imagination and how you want to use them.

“Some are glam and luxury and others lend themselves beautifully to a nursery or child's bedroom.”

Have you ever re-styled a piece of furniture? If so, tell us about your experience in the comments below.