Why use MDF for DIY projects?
There are a number of creative and practical MDF uses for home improvement projects. It’s a great material to work with for DIY because it’s relatively cheap, easy to work with and easy to decorate.
MDF boards are also incredibly versatile and available in a range of depths, making them suitable for DIY projects big and small. Our guide to MDF uses gives you top tips completing a range of projects, both practical and creative.
Tips for using MDF
- When handling MDF, be particularly careful with its edges and corners. The faces are tough but the inside is softer and can easily be damaged by hard knocks or water.
- Take care when sanding MDF boards, as they produce a lot of fine dust. We suggest wearing a safety mask and goggles when working with MDF as a precaution.
- You should ideally use a solvent-based primer or specialist primer for MDF. Regular water-based paints can cause the board to swell or bubble. It’s a good idea to sand the edges of your board before priming, to smooth.
- Use countersinking drill bit before applying screws to avoid splitting the board, pushing up chips or snapping the head of the screw.
- While MDF is priced by large sheets, you can buy pre-cut pieces for projects like shelving or decorative moulding. Most manufacturers can also cut your MDF into pieces according to your needs, which saves you carrying heavy loads. We can cut MDF sheets to your exact measurements at your local Bradfords branch.
Creative and practical MDF uses
MDF can be used to create various furniture and storage objects in your home. However, regular MDF sheets can be a little underwhelming. With our guide, you can find MDF uses which are both practical and creative by putting your own personal decorative touch on a project.
Photo credit: The Wonder Forest
Coffee tables are classic DIY projects because they don’t have to be particularly big or adventurous to do the job. Even the most basic design can be dressed up with a good stain or bright paint. For a really individual piece, why not apply decoupage or mosaic tiles to your table top? If you’re not quite confident building your own frame, you could recycle an old frame or antique table legs with a new MDF table top.
Window seats and benches are two great MDF uses for making the most of your space. Bay windows often pose a problem for homeowners, as they create space which is awkward to fill. Bay window benches can be expensive to buy, but are not very hard to make from MDF. You can use thinner boards for the top and side facing pieces, and thicker lengths of MDF for the structure. The outward faces can be dressed up with decorative mouldings and the tops covered with eye-catching seat cushions.
Photo credit: Pretty Handy Girl
To update your office space, you can build a simple and functional desk from three MDF boards. If you want added storage space, create shelves on one end of the desk. You’ll need an extra cut of MDF which is the same height and width as the two outer pieces and a few extra pieces for shelves and backing. Why not add some decorative wallpaper to the backing of your shelves? Alternatively, if you have a couple old storage cabinets, you can use these as a base and fix an MDF board to the top.
Photo credit: Thou Swell
One of the simplest MDF uses is for creating wall panels in your home. They are very practical, providing added protection and insulation to your walls. Rather than buy large, intricate hardwood wall panels, you can apply plain MDF sheets to walls and add your own decorative mouldings such as rails, architrave and skirting boards. If you want to add wall panels in a child’s bedroom, consider painting with blackboard paint for a fun canvas that can change as they grow.
See our full range of MDF sheets and decorative mouldings to find the right supplies for your next project. You can also find more MDF uses for home improvement in our Expert Advice section.