15+ IKEA Hacks For People Who Want Something Different

The first North American IKEA store opened its doors in 1975, and we haven't looked back since. It's been a blur of hex keys, particleboard, weird names, and awesome furniture.

One of the awesome aspects of IKEA furniture is that it's like another Scandinavian invention, Lego: even though it's designed to be used a certain way, there are creative ways to repurpose and reimagine the original design. So think outside the IKEA box and dare to dream with these clever hacks, courtesy of Ikea Hackers!

1. Give your cat the cushy life.

Ikea Hackers

Even if you can never live up to your cat's lofty expectations, you can try. This cat hammock from lentilki is clearly a big hit with their cat, and it's simple to make: just a couch cushion ingeniously fastened to the underside of a kitchen chair.

2. Transform laptop tables into an elegant bar cart.

Ikea Hackers

IKEA has a range of ready-to-use utility carts (I'm using one as my bar cart right now). But you can also hack together a larger one. Mauricio Garcia put this one together, surprisingly enough, out of a pair of Ikea laptop tables.

3. You don't need bulky countertops for your sink.

Ikea Hackers

Max “Tusken” Grebennikov created this lightweight stand for his washbasin from IKEA furniture. It seems like a great solution for washrooms where space (and storage) comes at a premium.

4. The amazing, expanding board game table.

Ikea Hackers

It's common for dining room tables to have expandable leaves for bigger groups, but you don't often see it in coffee tables. Contributor Adam shared detailed instructions for making this expandable coffee/board games table out of multiple inexpensive IKEA tables.

5. That's a grate lamp.

Ikea Hackers

IKEA hacker K McF created this fun desk lamp using little more than an IKEA cheese grater, a CFL lightbulb, and cord set. The stainless steel gives off a sleek, industrial vibe, while the grater adds a rustic feel. I love how this diffuses the bright light!

6. Get up, stand up.

Ikea Hackers

Standing desks are all the rage these days, but their requirements are finicky. They need to be at the right height and also need to have two separate shelves for your keyboard and monitor. This creation from Meg Poehler satisfies those requirements, and comes in a small form factor you can put on top of any table.

7. Skinny but full of storage.

Ikea Hackers

This narrow kitchen cart from ryancey could tuck into a corner in just about any kitchen due to its skinny form factor. It creates a ton of extra storage space in a small, mobile footprint.

8. The ultimate play table.

Ikea Hackers

This awesome play table for kids, hacked together by Brigitte, is actually super simple. Brigitte took a standard shelving unit, added wheeled casters for convenience, and bolted a door to the top. You'll have to supply your own train set, but IKEA sells those as well!

9. Power up like a boss.

Ikea Hackers

I think pretty much everyone has that one power outlet that's a total jungle of tangled cords. No judgment, but if you want a little more order in your life, Stefan Sahlander suggested this charging station he rigged up out of standard IKEA components.

10. This succulents table isn't lacking.

Ikea Hackers

Sticking with the table theme for a moment, Elyse created this awesome planter table for succulents out of a standard Lack coffee table. Just hollow out a space in the middle and decorate it however you'd like!

11. Give your cutting boards a home.

Ikea Hackers

Storing cutting boards can be tricky — you want them accessible, but they're also big and bulky. This simple hack from Billie7 utilizes two spice racks attached sideways to a cabinet. This is one of the most useful, least complicated IKEA hacks out there.

12. Never run out of seating.

Ikea Hackers

If your family dinners include anywhere from two to 20 people, a built-in dining bench might be a good option. Mat Hede shows us how a couple of long Ikea benches, along with laminate flooring, can fit into a dining nook.

13. For added class, just add glass.

Ikea Hackers

Dry erase boards are useful but kinda ugly. Glass is a much better look, but finding ready-made dry erase boards isn't exactly easy. Jules rigged this up using some simple IKEA shelving along with a glass top intended for a dresser.

14. From breadbox to mailbox.

Ikea Hackers

Mailboxes are a nice visual flourish for a home. If you need a new one, this creation from the humbly named Mycreativegenius is a pretty attractive option. It's literally a stainless steel IKEA breadbox mounted to the outside of a house. Add address numbers and you're good to go!

15. Floating Billy? Floating Billy.

Ikea Hackers

Ikea's Billy bookshelves are durable, affordable, and super customizable. Karine Schenkeveld and Erik Roscam Abbing turned these iconic bookshelves into a real statement piece by making them float on their walls. All it takes is an assortment of sturdy L-brackets mounted to the wall under each shelf.

16. Create new space.

Ikea Hackers

Some spaces are better utilized when divided, and that's where room dividers come in handy. You could buy a simple ready-made divider, or think outside the box. This contributor shared a solution using a series of IKEA shelving units. It comes with the added bonus of creating new storage spaces, too.

17. This person turned the classic blue IKEA bag into super fashionable shoes.

Instagram | @sasiaamalie

Do you think IKEA should start selling these?

18. There's a reason why this is called a utility cart.

Ikea Hackers

You can really utilize it in any way you need it!

Like a mini ironing station for tiny spaces.

19. Even the doggies like a good IKEA hack!

Ikea Hackers

This Lack side table hack transforms the popular minimalist table into a functional dining table for your pets.

20. I don't know about you, but I'm one of those people that just throws wrapping paper to the back of my closet.

Interior Candy

Using the VARIERA plastic bag dispenser is a great way to keep them all together, neat and nice.

21. This is a great one for all the crafty people out there.

New Swedish Design

If you find yourself with a ton of ribbon, loop them through the holes of the ORDNING cutlery jar, and voila! No tangled mess, and one easy place to find them all.

22. Bring your own coffee cup holder while grocery shopping.

Ikea Hackers

This is just one SUNNERSTA container, and it works perfectly.

23. This cart really does it all, doesn't it?

Instagram | @caprichosperera

This person turned their RÅSKOG cart into a little adorable coffee and tea station.

24. You never know when you'll need a sturdy magazine rack.

Ikea Hackers

These folks hacked the IKEA VARIERA box into a cute magazine rack.