How to Make an Ugly Refrigerator More Pretty


When novelty magnets are not enough, an ugly refrigerator can quickly be transformed into a unique and stylish appliance you can be proud of. If you are on a low budget it is still possible to to enhance the appearance of your refrigerator, making it an impressive centerpiece rather than an eyesore. You can give your refrigerator a partial or complete makeover with the use of wall charts, wall decals, contact paper or magnetic sheets.

Things You'll Need

  • Wall charts
  • Peel and stick magnets
  • Peel and stick decals
  • Decorative or stainless steel contact paper
  • Magnetic sheeting
  • Craft scissors
  • Spray adhesive
  • Ruler
  • Use peel and stick decals as an effective yet relatively simple way of transforming your refrigerator. These can be purchased from craft stores, home improvement stores or online. Choose from a variety of designs, including classic kitchen fare, children's themes, sports icons and decorative shapes.

    Carefully peel and apply the decal, or several decals, to the surface of the refrigerator, smoothing out any bubbles with your hand or a ruler. Large decals can be used alone, or several small ones can be used to create an effective design. It is helpful to make a rough sketch of how you want your refrigerator to look before applying the decals.

  • Buy contact paper that is designed for metal because it will result in cleaner and straighter edges than regular contact paper. Do not cut the paper from the roll. Begin with the sides. You will need two people for this. Position the contact paper in front of the surface you are about to cover, overlapping about 2 inches beyond the top and side edges. With your helper holding the loose edge, roll the contact paper down to the desired length. With your helper still holding the top edge, gently peel and stick the contact paper to the surface. Smooth any bubbles and trim the bottom end with 1 inch overlapping. Fold the top, side and bottom edges over to create a neat finish. Continue in this manner for all surfaces, making slits adjacent to the handles when covering the front.

    Depending on the width of your contact paper, you may need to join pieces to cover the entire surface. Be sure to join your pieces at the appropriate points so that your patterns match.

    Alternatively, for a unique design, you can cut individual shapes from the contact paper and position them in a uniform design over the entire surface of the refrigerator. This creates an effective design with the original surface acting as a backdrop for the pattern you have created.

  • Customize your refrigerator using magnetic sheets purchased from home improvement stores. After cutting to size, position the magnetic sheet on the front and sides of the refrigerator. You can place the magnetic sheets on the refrigerator alone to create a chic and minimalistic effect or you may choose to decorate the sheet with contact paper or washable wallpaper.

    Cut the contact paper and apply to the magnetic sheet in your chosen design. If using wallpaper, use spray adhesive to attach pieces to the magnetic sheet.

    The magnetic sheet is easily removable, which makes it an excellent choice if the decoration is intended as a temporary fixture.

  • Purchase or download charts for baking, measurement, herbs, spices and other interests to make an exciting and attractive display. Laminate the charts and attach peel-and-stick magnets to each corner. Laminated charts are ideal for a cheap and easy way to hide an ugly refrigerator.

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  • Photo Credit notas image by Jaume Felipe from Design image by 6922Designer from
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