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9 Favorite IKEA Hacks

Don’t you love finding IKEA hacks that are wildly functional and extremely good-looking!?

Kudos to this group of nine handy people changing things up. I hope I grow up to be just like you.


ikea tarva smitten studio



Smitten Studio’s tarva dresser

The Pax free-standing wardrobe hacks are most excellent. I’ve seen them painted black with brass hardware and now Jenna Sue built those in to make a pantry in her custom kitchen reno. Makes you feel excited to put the dishes away.

ikea pax pantry jenna sue

Jenna Sue Design Pax Pantry

When it comes to Ikea hacks, there’s something about painting metal mint green that makes it instantly fabulous.

ikea style me pretty bar cart

Style Me Pretty bar cart

The Charming Nest blog is putting Hemnes to work in all kinds of situations. Some carpentry skills will take you and Hemnes a long way. I really, really want to make my own beefed up Hemnes sideboard. I just need to get me some reproduction latches and sash pulls and some crown molding and we’re in business.

ikea charming nest sideboard

The Charming Nest Hemnes sideboard

The Nesters did it again, this time with the Hemnes TV stand molded in to mudroom storage. They love their Ikea hacks.

ikea charming nest mudroom

The Charming Nest Hemnes mudroom storage

ikea hemnes media built ins

Hemnes media built-ins

Want the built-in, library look? (The appropriate answer is always yes to this question) Folks are using the affordable Billy system to make all kinds of built-ins, over door frames and windows.

ikea makerista billy built ins

Makerista Billy built-ins

ikea oliver and rust kitchen island

Oliver and Rust’s Bekvam Kitchen Cart

Some marbleized paper and a sweet brass knob tricked out the simple, white Hemnes night stand.

ikea vault files night stand

The Vault Files Hemnes nightstand

Have you got any genius IKEA hacks up your sleeve? Sharing is caring.


Maija Lourkari for Marimekko

I don’t know exactly how Sarah came by this Marimekko print, or even where it may hang in her house these days. I have a feeling it might be in DC’s bedroom. Here it is taking center stage in her bedroom about 3 homes ago.

I have long admired it. So I set to DIY my own to fill up a blank wall with LARGE art in the Heffe House. Sarah, do you mind if I jack your steelo?

Mine is pretty simple – it’s a shower curtain that I stretched over some canvas stretcher bars from Blick Art Supply.

In hindsight, I might have lined it, but all in all, I’m happy with it. It was a super inexpensive way to get some large impact art on our walls!

The final product landed as part of a cluttered vignette, atop the piano. Since I’m now striving to declutter, I’ve moved the piece into the den where the scale matches the room. I think it’ll live here as we work to improve the overall design of the home.


Sarah’s Desk Revamp

A few months ago I bought this old desk at my favorite local thrift shop for about $30.

sarah desk before


I was immediately drawn to the brass pulls. And then upon closer inspection, I realized it kind of has a Parsons look with classic straight lines. The finish was in horrible shape, it had not been treated well. I needed a desk and the price was right and it appeared that I could repair the finish with some wood filler and paint.

You know lots of bloggers post about painting furniture but two of my go to sources are Little Green Notebook and Young House Love. I felt confident about my knowledge of the overall painting process but needed to review the recommended primer and what kind of clear finish to apply over the paint. So I consulted YHL’s furniture painting tutorial before starting.

I wasn’t 100% sure I wanted to paint the desk white. I was waffling between white or gray. But then I saw this and it was really tempting,

desk black+whiteBut I think it was a little too sophisticated for a desk area in the kitchen/sitting area. So I returned to gray because I love the way that gray and brass hardware live so well in perfect harmony.

I really wanted to hit the gray just right and I think this image embodies what I was shooting for,

desk gray

So my color would be,


 Ben Moore’s Fieldstone, which is what Sally Wheat painted her kitchen cabinets and everyone drooled all over them and it started a revolution or at least it felt like there was a movement? Maybe it was all in my head…

I used Elmer’s ProBond Wood Filler because that’s what I had on hand and a latex primer and paint from Lowe’s. Yeah, I used latex primer because I am absolutely over oil based paint and the mess that it creates and John & Sherry said I could anyway.

And here’s my thrifty lover in process after one or two coats,

desk progress


And here it is dunzo… finally. I know you’re jealous of my whitewashed paneling in the kitchen, those feelings are natural– just try to contain your excitement. The desk chair is totally temporary and I do not in anyway consider this to be styled.



Close up shot, I did add Floetrol to the paint to diminish some brush strokes and I think it worked…ok. I also scrubbed the hardware with Barkeeper’s Friend and a little Brasso. For about $50 all together I’m absolutely fine with the end product and I could move it somewhere else in time and use it as a console.









Yarn Hangy Thingy

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All my fav bloggers are pinning this thing. Admittedly, I’m looking at it, and I’m thinking that it’s looking more like an installation for an Anthropologie store, and less like something that the Dude wants to live with on the walls of his home. But then I realized it just wasn’t the right color scheme for me, but perhaps I could take that concept and give it a more organic touch. It’s so 70s. DIYidea perhaps… for another day.

Today, I’m just dreamin.



Crafty Peeps

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There are lots of creative people around the net that have got maybe a little more time than me and a lot more motivation to make cool things.

I recently caught this on Pinterest,

ikat clutch

and immediately thought of this…

silk ikat fabric cocoon tribal chase

available here

Don’t you think some of you sewing extroidinaires OR novices could whip one of those up. There is a lot of great ikat fabric on Ebay and Etsy. And hey if you do it please email me a picture, I wanna see and then I will sing your crafty praises.