Tried and Tested IKEA Furniture Hacks That Are Guaranteed To Upgrade Your Decor GameBy Michelle Stone
Ultramodern and affordable—that’s how most people define the furniture from IKEA. From admiring collections online or wandering down one aisle of the store to the other, it’s always fun to find a unique piece and bring it home to decorate the living space like a page out of a catalog. But, it’s easier said than done! Sometimes it’s hard to find the right-sized dresser or an affordable mini-bar, so we end up disappointed, but what if there’s an opportunity to customize everything perfectly? Yes, that’s right! We have collected a list of IKEA hacks where people have changed their affordable store-bought furniture into functional pieces of art! Better take note since these photos are so inspiring that a run to the nearest outlet will feel like a must after reading through this list!
How To Flaunt An Antique Sideboard
There is no denying how one antique can add a dash of chicness to any dining or living room. Mid-century style is now all the rage, and this person here came up with a perfect DIY idea to turn a regular IKEA sideboard into a piece full of personality and character.
They simply used very affordable golden tape that only cost around $10 to create a beautiful interlocking geometric pattern, which really made the piece of furniture stand out. The best part? Affordable and accessible to anyone who has an IKEA showroom nearby.
Window Seat With Storage
It’s hard to believe this stunning window seat was once a bookcase! It may look like a made-to-measure seating area with integrated storage, but in fact, it’s a Kallax IKEA bookshelf turned on its side. This inventive person repurposed the shelving unit to optimize the space in front of a wide, low window, creating a relaxing environment for reading or watching the world go by.
The ingenious home decorator even managed to source some perfectly sized baskets to add a touch of class and additional storage. We particularly love the padded seat and scatter cushions that top off the bench and bring the whole look together.
A Sewing Machine’s Hideout
While modern sewing machines have become more compact, they are still relatively big to display on a mid-size table, as seen in the photo. They are also quite pricey, underlining the need to find a safe and accessible place to store them. This crafty gal thought of using Kallax pieces, two Alex units, an Utrusta pull-out tray, and a Linnmon countertop.
First designed by French Barthélemy Thimonnier in the 1830s, sewing machines are generally low-maintenance but still need regular upkeep to maintain. Displaying it by the table, especially if rarely used, would only cause it to collect dust, so a cover or storage is highly advisable.
Snack Booth For Cats!
Storing pet food and treats has to be done pretty carefully; otherwise, sneaky little paws will be prying food out of the packaging in no time. This cat owner wanted a small snack booth for their furry friend, and it ended up looking so cute! Also, the extra storage space is a bonus.
The Kallax shelf was configured and refurbished by removing a lower-level panel. Now the fluffball could easily jump in and enjoy a good snack without stumbling into her owner’s feet in a rush to indulge in some good tuna and salmon!
A Wall Of Shoes Right At Home
What’s the problem with too many pairs of shoes? It gets disorganized very quickly. For Alyssa Coscarelli, a freelance writer, the best way to keep her apartment tidy and display her collection is by making a wall rack for her kicks with inexpensive curtain rods from IKEA.
These slim poles, which can be suspended from the ceiling or installed into the wall, are sturdy enough to hold lots of footwear. Fun Fact: Former First Lady Imelda Marcos of the Philippines, known for her penchant for anything luxurious, owned around 3,000 pairs. Some of them are currently on display at the Marikina Shoe Museum.
Faux Vintage Shelves
Vintage pieces and antiques add depth and character to any room. They breathe stories of a bygone era, and it’s both trendy and mod to have them in the study or drawing-room. However, getting one such piece could be expensive. Good thing we always have IKEA and hardware stores!
Simply use a card file unit from the Swedish manufacturer with some wood-colored stain, then wipe some of it off to give the piece a look of natural wear and tear. Combined with some gold-framed cards on the drawers and a bespoke-looking bit of furniture from a mid-century library is the result!
A Bookworm’s Haven
Most moms and grandmas use the Havsta organizer to store antique plate sets or China wares. However, it could also be used as a bookcase, as seen in the photo. Without the DIY, a bespoke one from a luxurious brand could cost north of $3K. But if one resorts to creativity and IKEA, this slashes the price by half.
This bookcase would be helpful for John Q. Benham, the Guinness World Record holder for having the most extensive private book collection. He has 1.5 million titles that he displays all over his house. Because he ran out of space, the American bookworm used his garage that fits six vehicles as storage.
A DIY Mini-Bar
It turns out the shelving units from IKEA can come in handy when thinking of setting up a mini bar in the comfort of any home. One creative guy executed this idea brilliantly, and we can all see how great it looks.
They did not have to do anything to the cabinets besides stacking them together to achieve this end-product. With some top-shelf refreshments, the bar is complete and even has extras like a martini-making kit. It looks pricy, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Grab some shelves and get going with this perfect little number that’s sure to be the new favorite space for at-home entertaining.
The Purr-fect Hangout Spot
Cats will forever be thankful for this hack! People who keep these feline creatures as pets know how much they enjoy the sunshine, especially during their afternoon naps. A ‘catio’ does just that, ensuring our indoor companion gets to enjoy an outdoor experience without any safety concerns from injuries or pests.
Some chicken wire was all it took, as well as the IKEA Hejne shelves. It’s a pretty simple construction, relatively easy to assemble, and a must-have for anyone with an indoor cat. This could easily be a furry feline’s favorite spot.
Genius Litter Box Hack
Another one for our feline friends! Cats are among the most favorite furry companions to have, and besides feeding them and cleaning the litter boxes, there’s not too much else pet owners need to do to keep them happy and comfortable.
This ingenious hack hides the litter box, and its innovative design makes it perfect when having guests over. The IKEA Friends bench is the ideal tool for this, with the storage unit providing room for the litter box. To clean it, all one has to do is pull it out of the box shelf.
A Unique Cupboard
Thinking that this cupboard costs an arm and a leg? It doesn’t. It is made out of simple white IKEA cabinets, and the person who came up with this design embellished the cupboard with oval panels and added legs. They also used an exquisite basket-weave to cover up.
The cabinet definitely has a vibe from a different era and would be an ideal addition to a sitting room. Well, the good news is that no one has to break the bank to acquire such a trendy piece. Try this DIY and get creative while at it!
Yet Another Wooden Creation
Someone had an idea of turning their old desk into a bar cart, and it worked out for them surprisingly well. They have ended up creating this functional and aesthetically sound piece of furniture that would not look out of place in a contemporary art museum or a popular sports bar.
The glass gave way to a large wooden plank that could hold the refreshments’ weight on the cart, while the bottom platform provides extra storage space. It is pretty impressive that it used to be a regular old table. The transformation is quite epic!
Contemporary Baby Table
This ingenious idea is the perfect baby-changing platform. The combo of a bookshelf and dresser works perfectly without the need to spend a fortune. The stackable shelves are known for being sturdy, and they come in a woody hue that can be painted any color.
It’s pretty chic and modern for a baby changing table, unlike the traditional varieties, and the shelves even offer some storage for the clothes. On top of that, it looks relatively easy to assemble. Have some frames and a platform from IKEA like the one shown above? Then better create one of these!
A ‘Marbled’ Table
Marbled anything is in trend these days, but since they became a chichi home décor staple, the highly-desired stone has turned out to be incredibly expensive! But, thanks to our DIY kings and queens, we now know various ways to recreate that luxe effect for very cheap!
For example, this shopper bought this relatively affordable Vittsjö table and a roll of stick-on paper designed to mimic marble. They then stuck it onto the tabletop, and guess what? Nobody could ever tell that it was actually a DIY project. Here we have an affordable way to recreate something that would otherwise cost a lot and achieve an aesthetically pleasing result!
Garden On A Table
This is a hack that’s perfect for nature lovers. Most of us have probably even seen one of these built-in table gardens. This crafty person modeled their IKEA Lack table and put a garden right in the middle of it!
How did they pull this off? They cut a rectangular hole at the center of the table and installed small boxes to hold the plants. While growing plants from a table may be far-fetched, nothing is impossible for creative minds! Now, here’s one unique DIY that will instantly transform any room. Let’s get verdant!
Bookshelf Turned Sideboard
When one looks at a vertical bookshelf, it is jarring to think of it as anything else, but this person here clearly has a creative and innovative mind. How else could one explain the idea of turning a bookshelf into a sideboard?
The IKEA Kallax shelf was simply laid down horizontally, and metal legs were added at the base. A couple of cabinet doors brought more detail, and the accessories, like indoor plants and some old-school speakers, add to the overall charm. We just cannot see the rack it used to be anymore!
An Innovative Key Holder
These Bekvam racks from IKEA, coupled with some magnets to act as key holders, will instantly brighten up any entryway. We must commend the genius who came up with this brilliant idea, for we just can’t wait to try it out.
The spice racks have found a new use in acting as the perfect place to hang keys, and this person added some potted plants for aesthetic. Never misplace those keys again with this unique key-holder, which wonderfully brightens up the foyer too. It turns out these tiny shelves can do more than what they were made for, and if on the lookout for an easy DIY, here is the perfect example.
The Multi-Purpose Desk
Working from home is the norm these days. It gets incredibly tiring, and that is why we prefer having a nice workspace. This couple here fancied working side by side so much that they wanted a dual working desk. We understand, working together with a loved one is a rare privilege, and these love bugs wanted to make the best use of the opportunity.
As for the desk itself, it is actually a countertop that was configured by attaching metal legs to the top. And just like that, voila! An aesthetically pleasing DIY table. How cool is that? Nobody can argue that it’s simply chic.
An Enchanting Fortress Fit For A Princess
Which child would not like a bed turned into something out of a fairytale? And this little girl’s parents figured just that and decided to turn a regular IKEA Kura piece of furniture into a beautiful castle bed fit for a princess.
They added some synthetic stone and various wooden fixtures to give it the appearance of an enchanting castle. In addition to that, there’s even a playhouse underneath that she can enter through the tower. Yes, a tower! How very kind and loving are these parents to take on such a project just to make their daughter feel special?
The Ultimate Cat Tree
Cat owners know how felines love to climb up curtains and cupboards so they can have a good view of all their domains. Apparently, it is their natural instinct to have a birds-eye view of the surrounding area. This person decided to use an IKEA Frosta wooden tool cut in half to make the perfect cat tree.
See, each stool acts as a stepping stone for the furry explorers. Now they can climb up and down or sit at the top, monitoring everybody as they walk by. Honestly, this must be the coolest hangout spot for a pet—ever!
Marble tables make for a good statement piece but are expensive and heavy. Not so with this one! This creative person has decided to protect their money (and their back!) by giving an IKEA Docksta table its own fabulous makeover.
There are various ways to create a marbled look, depending on how inventive someone is. To build up a marble effect using furniture paint, add freehand marble veining, and then soften it with water spray. Or just buy marble contact paper and apply it carefully to the surface. Either way, the outcome is an expensive-looking piece of furniture at a budget price!
Display Shelf For Professional Gamers
Most gamers love to collect figurines and collectibles of their beloved game characters. So about this Ikea hack itself, this guy apparently loves playing Mario, and he also happens to be the luckiest boyfriend in the world.
Just look at how his girlfriend decided to replicate the Super Mario shelf for his precious toys! That’s incredibly thoughtful of her. And the best part is how alike the frame looks to the actual maze in the video game. It is so hard to believe that it is actually just two Lustigt shelves, painted over with some black with lights bringing a fresh design element to the display.
Bunk Bed For Mister Paws!
Apart from luxurious furniture, IKEA also sells some pretty great accessories and toys. Their most popular plaything is this super adorable Duktig Doll Bed designed for kids to lay their dolls to sleep in. “But who makes these rules anyway?” said one person who decided to utilize it for a completely different purpose.
All they had to do was add some soft, warm blankets and rugs and introduce their cats. One cat, in particular, found the new setup incredibly cozy and decided to spend lots of time sleeping on the brand new IKEA piece!
A Book Lover’s Dream
Any book-lover will be impressed by this person’s inventive use of low-cost IKEA bookcase units. Libraries are usually found in luxury penthouse apartments and country mansions. Still, this person has lined their ample hallway space with floor-to-ceiling shelving. A comfortable armchair and side table are the only accessories the space needs!
This household will never run out of something to read! And spending less on home décor means more money left to buy plenty of new books to read. We’re just not sure where they would keep them, but they’ll find a way somehow.
Who said a laundry room couldn’t be a space that’s worth loving enough to spend time in? This person has used IKEA units to make a style statement without breaking the bank. The often-dreaded chore of washing clothes need never be dull again!
This person has used Karlby wood veneer countertops to house their washer and dryer and give themselves a beautiful surface for folding all those freshly-washed clean clothes. With Voxtorp cupboards in matte gray providing tidy storage, this is a dream space for any house owner looking to get their detergents and cleaning supplies out of sight. All that at a minimal cost too!
A Wall Of Life
Hear ye, plant hoarders! A creative way to step up that at-home nature game without having it look like a jungle is by adding hanging greens using Racka poles from IKEA. This is the perfect proof that rods aren’t simply used for curtains. Instead, they can be repurposed into something that would go well with a boho interior.
This hack works well on any wall color as the rods available are in neutral hues. Like the genius behind this wall plant display, macramé holders in shades of brown, white, or gray can add pizzazz to an otherwise dull space. Plus, having plants inside could help purify the air as they absorb carbon dioxide.
A Baker’s Perfect Assistant
The stars in this photo are the leather cabinet straps, an answered prayer for those looking to get cozy and laid-back accessories in their kitchen. These tiny but functional handles can make pulling drawers feel like a breeze. More than that, they come in various colors, which means they could replace metal bars any time of the day.
These Osternas caramel leather pair are suitable for holding a dowel or stick, which, in turn, could act as a kitchen roll, foil, or wax paper dispenser. The good news is that these chic life-saving contraptions prevent messy baking and cooking sessions! Plus, it can be handy in the household as a family uses an average of 409 toilet rolls per year.
A Chest Of Drawers Exuding Luxury
To some, white drawers may be plain. But for the minimalists, simplicity is their most significant selling point. One can never go wrong with this color because it practically goes well with any theme or tint. Take this Malm piece, which is excellent on its own but can still become more luxurious with just a little tinkering.
To make the room more hotel-like, a dab of gold paint in between the drawers, like in the photo, could make a huge difference aesthetically. This sparkly addition will go well with matching hairpin legs, like these from The Hairpin Leg Co. Although these metals that support furniture look contemporary, this type dates back to the mid-century.
From A Divider To A Piece of Home Office Furniture
The only people that haven’t seen IKEA’s Kallax cubes are those who’ve been living under a rock. Pinterest has hundreds of ways to creatively display things, from plants to vases to books to CD collections using this furniture. But what others don’t realize is that this piece is quite versatile as it can be used as a divider, bookshelf, and even a cabinet.
This guy, Jeff Havixbeck, thought it was wise to turn his two units of Kallax into cabinets for his home office. He used oak plywood for the countertop that attaches both pieces as well as the drawers. He added quaint knobs to go with the warm finish of the plywood.
The Only Furniture A Dog Needs
Even though it’s cute to see a tiny puppy failing to jump onto the bed, it may be heartbreaking to realize that the dog can never get up without the master’s help. This adorable fluffer in the photo has short limbs that stop it from getting up onto the couch, so the owner, Courtney, bought Knagglig crates and transformed them into tiny stairs.
Sure, there were tons available online, but none matched her theme. Obviously, her adorable puppy approves of the new stairs. This hack will not only help the four-legged creature but will also prevent injuries as small breeds were found to be prone to falling.
The Longer The Game Table, The Better
It’s hard to invite friends over when there’s limited space. Worse, no one could host board game sessions when there’s no table to use. However, this next hack allows both because this expanding table can also be a space-saver when not in use. These are actually Lack TV benches that can be used for many things.
In this case, the person ditched the bottom shelf and used three to six units (depending on the desired length of the extension) and expanded table rails. The other shelf pieces will be used as leaves to be added when the table is extended.
Going Traditional With Something Blue
How exactly does a dolled-up bride in an intricate gown answer the call of nature? Most soon-to-be Mrs.’ would go to the bathroom with her bridesmaids to help her, but this genius lady named Tina anticipated that something like this would happen and used IKEA’s iconic bag to help her on her big day.
Tina was wearing a mermaid gown, which hugs the waist and thighs and flares outward from the knee, meaning she either had to unzip the outfit or rip the lower half. So she simply cut a hole at the bottom part of the bag, making sure that it’s close to her body’s frame. She pulled it with the flare and the straps over the shoulders.
Transform That Boring Bed
Beds made of solid wood can be pretty expensive. But with this hack, a more affordable option comes along that looks every bit like the rustic berth of any aesthetic-loving individual. Don’t believe us? Just check out how it can easily be done!
These trendy beds are the in-thing now, and for this DIY, all it took were some wooden slats fitted onto an otherwise regular-looking headboard, which the owner painted white. The outcome is a masterwork, with chic wooden accents at nearly half the cost. To transform that drab bedroom, this is one hack that’s easy to execute.
Facelift For Small Pieces
With this beautiful craft, all that’s needed are Frosta stools, paint, and creativity. One can already tell that the owner of these things is an artist; just look at those silhouettes! Kate Zaremba only took 30 minutes to give life to these pieces that can also serve as footrests or side tables.
Stools are very versatile as they can be repurposed. With this hack, anyone can make a lasting impression with the design’s uniqueness, and they can change the design anytime they like. If one is looking for inspiration, check out the works of some of the most celebrated furniture designers like Hans Wegner and Kenneth Cobonpue.
A Collapsible Workspace
Again, if space doesn’t permit a typical desk, there’s nothing wrong with a makeshift one. Åsa Dyberg used a floating shelf, a pegboard, and drawers to make her workstation. The best part is that this can be ‘disassembled’ should she opt to save space, and every component has a use.
This would be perfect for students and crafters as well as home-based workers. In recent years, the number of telecommuting employees has gone significantly up, and it would seem that this will be a continuing trend in the next few years. As per FlexJobs, an estimated 22% of the workforce in America, or around 36.2 million people, would be remotely accomplishing their tasks by 2025.
Beds are really experiencing something of a renaissance in their design, aren’t they? How about this one that looks like a treehouse? The wooden panels on the exterior give this ‘IKEA’ bed the treehouse look with Trofast shelves’ steps.
They are designed to store the toys, and this innovative design of a floating bed is a lot of fun for the little ones. Bedtime will no longer be the same, and in addition to that, parents and guardians will have a ton of storage space for toys. A standard bed setup consumes a lot of space, and this treehouse option looks like the way to go!
Kallax units can be used as a bookshelf that doubles as a bench, too! This gives life to an otherwise drab living space and, at the same time, keeps knick-knacks tidy. Depending on the preference, it can be painted to suit the room’s theme.
This would also go well with a Scandinavian interior. From the name itself, this design originated from the Nordic countries in the 1930s. At the time, people tried to be as minimal as possible to let in natural light, which combats the freezing temperatures.
Floating Modern Organizer
Design Sixty Nine proved that Billy bookcases could be made into a built-in organizer to display books, plants, and paintings. These IKEA staples were mounted into a wall, but the creator made sure to leave space at the bottom to create an illusion of a hanging shelving system, maximizing the use of the area.
It does take a lot of time and would probably need an expert who can create a wall beam to support the weight of the things it will carry. On the other hand, it saves a lot of money, especially if using repurposed bookcases. This could replace Andy Cohen’s organizer that he revealed in an April 2020 post as he set his radio station at his house.
A simple outdoor event like a wedding or a birthday party can be elevated further with these seemingly floating chandeliers. These are actually Solig white nets suspended by strings. They are lightweight and can instantly make any setting feel oh, so magical.
Apart from providing a bohemian vibe on any nook, this net’s primary purpose is to keep bugs from biting when outdoors. Mosquitoes, for one, can carry many diseases, depending on the location and the time of the year. That includes life-threatening chikungunya, dengue, malaria, encephalitis, and Zika.
Vanity Metallics For Ages
Although the Swedish retail giant is known for its hidden furniture treasures, sometimes, there’s a need for customization. Take, for example, this classic yet simplistic chest of drawers that is fine on its own but is updateable to become more elegant. Yes, one can personalize however they want, but Superfront could provide the countertop, rose gold sink, lined fronts, and legs.
In recent years, metallics, especially rose gold, have been seen on phones, cars, accessories, and furnishings. As per the digital fashion editor of Marie Claire magazine, millennials’ inclination toward this shade of pink may be explained by how it pictures well online. An aesthetic photo means hundreds to thousands of likes in this digital age.
Bed By The Sea?
Who knew that adding a minute detail to this bland frame could make a massive difference to its vibe? Adding a sheet of cane to a contemporary frame can instantly make it appear more laid-back and chic. Such as what editor Rebecca Deczynski did with hers.
Cane webbings or sheets were installed using a staple gun, which means this only took less than an hour to finish. There are many advantages to using wicker furniture, including comfort and being lightweight. Unlike leather, it is perfect for warmer weather.
DIY Stained Cabinet
These before-and-after photos prove that one right move can turn an unostentatious, average-looking piece into a luxurious custom cabinet. This Ivar wooden furniture was reimagined by using green wood stain and black pulls, which gives off an industrial, contemporary feel.
This utilitarian cabinet is made up of untreated pinewood, which means it doesn’t need extra steps before the stain. Although they both give color, paint and wood stains are different. The former serves as a coat on the wooden surface, whereas the latter gets absorbed by the wood.
Sofa To Mirror The Mood
The Ekebol sofa is made to fit in tiny nooks and saves space by offering a shelf and removable cushions. The only caveat is that it doesn’t come in lively hues, so it’s up to the owner to give it a breath of life. Lana Red, a DIY guru, thought of using a pink botanical print fabric for reupholstery.
Some people prefer wild, vivid hues, while others find peace in muted shades. Colors can influence mood and evoke emotions. Red, yellow, and orange, also called warm colors, elicit feelings of comfort or anger, while cool hues like blue, green, and purple are linked to tranquility or melancholy.
The Emergence of Rattan
Can anything rattan be out of trend? Items have continuously popped up on Instagram and Pinterest feeds in recent years, and more designs and hues have been developed. Just like this 2017 Stockholm chair from IKEA, rattan furniture is usually customizable, making it a bang-for-a-buck purchase.
Rattan, abundant in the Asian and African regions, gives off a bohemian and beachy vibe to any living space. The texture of this material can be contrasted with colorful yarns, which could even be repurposed out of old jersey fabric.