Can’t Find (or Afford) the Kitchen Island of Your Dreams? Make One from IKEA Parts


A kitchen island can provide invaluable utility to a kitchen, and IKEA products were made to be adapted into flexible, mobile, helpful, and even beautiful—especially when topped with marble—versions thereof. Here are 9 ideas, that range from a simple yet transforming coat of paint to total makeovers, for creating the kitchen island of your dreams from IKEA products.

Let’s start things off fancy: this graceful island was made by topping a Karpalund underframe with “a custom-made cultured marble top.” Add a towel bar, a slatted shelf, and gold-painted casters painted gold (of course) for additional utility and luxury.

A four-unit Kallax with the middle cubbies removed—and pretty gold casters added—serves multiple functions as it’s rolled around the kitchen. The minimal piece provides extra workspace and is used for dining, and the stools fit perfectly underneath when they’re not in use.

This very functional island is made out of a Kallax Shelving Unit in White, two Kallax Inserts in White, a four-pack of Rill Castors, two Grundtal Rails, and two Lamplig Chopping Board, all for approximately $102.

DIY Coffee Cart (or Island!) by Creating with KLC

A run-of-the-mill IKEA cart becomes a glam island, thanks to the magic of gold spray paint and marble contact paper. This exact cart is no longer available, but the PS 2017 or Sunnersta could work.

In this sunny Montreal kitchen, an IKEA trestle and shelf form a kitchen island that provides ample seating and counterspace.

Here’s the same concept taken to another level: Finnvard desk legs are topped with two pieces of wood, creating both a workspace and a storage space. The shelves below—which come with the trestles—make the perfect wine racks.

Does painting count as hacking? This duotone paint job certainly elevates the humble Förhöja cart to an elegant island.

There are a lot of islands out there made of Kallax shelf units, but this is the only one with added legs, and they really—forgive me—elevate the whole thing. IKEA sells similar stainless steel legs and more ornate white legs, as well as the Lamplig cutting boards you’ll need to make the top.

Two of the ubuquitous Lack tables are stacked on top of each other and topped with marble contact paper to create a greater-than-the-sum-of-its-parts island. The Lack is currently available in bright red and sunny yellow, so go nuts.

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