IKEA has been around for over 70 years. Can you believe it?
Over the past two decades in particular, the Swedish brand’s cheap, flat pack furniture became a popular solution to stylishly decorating your home on a budget.
However, there’s a long-standing divide between people who love IKEA for its simplicity and cheapness, and those who hate it for, well, it's simplicity and cheapness!
Enter the trend ‘IKEA Hacking’.
IKEA hacking describes taking an item from the store and making it better, by applying imagination and a bit of DIY genius.
This approach takes pieces of furniture that are in millions of peoples homes around the world, and makes them unique to your home.
To inspire you, here are my top 10 favourite IKEA hacks:
I’m always on the lookout for vintage wooden crates – and I’m clearly not the only one! This kind of crate tends to get snapped up quickly, and is also quite expensive.
Fortunately, some smart person found a way to get that similar feel for less money. Using the KNAGGLIG box crates, you can simply stain them or paint them and then distress with sandpaper.
This hack actually came from IKEA.
2. Personalised Drawers
Image: Thistlewood Farms
Here we have a very plain and simple chest of drawers that have been turned into something for which you’d usually pay a lot of money! Thistlewood Farms found a way to make the drawers your own.
There is a fair bit of work involved in this one, but I’d say it’s very much worth it.
3. Stepping Stools
Image: Little Street
Stepping stools often become unnecessary after your kids can reach everything they need to. But this shows how a simple stool can become a cute feature in your home, used as a display stand or even bedside table.
A fantastic project using the BEKVÅM Stepping stool, paint of your choice, and funky wallpaper.
Thanks to Little Street for this adorable hack.
4. Tree Stool
This hack from Seakettle is great because it looks like it’s worth way more than it actually is!
You could use this as a small bedside table, or make a few and have them as dining stools.
This hack uses the MARIUS stool from IKEA – but you could use a variety of different, cheap but stable similar pieces. Finding a nice piece of wood might be a little more tricky. Try your luck on sites like Gumtree, eBay or Etsy for tree trunk slices, or contact a local saw mill or timber supplier. If you’re buying online, make sure you have your precise measurements handy!
5. Doll House
Image: Honest to Nod
Little kids love playing with dolls houses, but some can be very expensive and don’t leave much room to add your child’s own personality.
This house from Honest to Nod is great. It’s made from cube shelves and you can decorate it to suit the desires of your son or daughter.
6. Toilet Paper Holder
Image: IKEA Hackers
Toilet paper holders are mostly pretty nondescript, but this hack makes a feature out of it.
Using the BEKVÅM Spice rack, leather strips and a stick, this is what you could have. Check out IKEA Hackers for the details.
Image: Lolly Jane
This next piece by Lolly Jane is a bigger project, but makes an quite the stunning feature piece.
Using the NORDEN Sideboard and a few licks of lacquer, this DIY duo have made something quite special.
8. Cubby House/Bed
Image: IKEA Hackers
These bunk beds aren’t simply for sleeping. They’re a blueprint for all kinds to adventure and have imaginative fun.
This bed is originally the MYDAL bunk bed, but you’d never even know it was the same one. Definitely not a quick hack, but look at how much fun it is!
This hack was found on IKEA Hackers.
9. Bookshelf /Dress Up Closet
Image: Rain on a Tin Roof
I feel like all kids (and adults) should have one of these! What started out as the BILLY bookshelf, can be turned into the sweetest little dress up closet. Check out Rain on a Tin Roof for details.
10. Bulletin Board
Image: Tatertots and Jello
Get creative with this piece by Tatertots and Jello and choose whatever colour combination, and material pattern you prefer! The original UNG frame is certainly stunning, but it’s not unusual as a picture frame. As a noticeboard, however, it rocks!