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12 Brilliant IKEA Hacks for Your Kitchen

Do you have Pottery Barn taste but a flea market budget? Kitchen renovations can easily cost tens of thousands of dollars, but you can hack your way to Pinterest-worthy design in a weekend with a few IKEA basics and a little elbow grease. Here are 12 projects to get you started.

1. BILLY BOOKCASE ISLAND

Courtesy Golden Boys & Me

On her blog Golden Boys & Me, DIY genius Courtney Affrunti shares how she turned three IKEA Billy bookcases into a gorgeous kitchen island. She fastened the bookcases together using screws and topped them with a butcher block countertop. Add decorative siding (Affrunti used bead board), molding, or doors to give your new kitchen focal point some personal flavor.

Buy from IKEA: Billy bookcase ($50), Ekbacken countertop ($99)

2. KALLAX SHELF ISLAND

 

For their IKEA-hacked kitchen island, Minneapolis-based home reno duo JP Strate and Liz Spillman (The Rehab Life) used the Kallax shelf as their base. They then sanded and stained plywood to create a custom base, backboard, and countertop.

Buy from IKEA: Kallax Shelf ($65)

3. FAUX MARBLE COUNTERTOP

 

Prefer the look of marble to wood, but can’t afford Carrara? Stick some marble-patterned contact paper on your inexpensive IKEA shelf for an instant upgrade.

Buy from IKEA: Hyllis Shelf ($15)

4. UPGRADE YOUR JOKKMOKK TABLE

Courtesy Regina Morrison for Acute Designs

A sleek dining table with hairpin legs could cost you nearly $1000 from a trendy furniture store. On her blog Acute Designs, Regina Morrison shows how she made one for herself for under $300 by adding some hairpin legs she bought on Ebay (you can also find them on Etsy) to a $150 IKEA table.

Buy from IKEA: Jokkmokk Dining Set ($150)

5. RIMFORSA PLANTERS

 

Create a striking accent wall or in-kitchen herb garden by repurposing IKEA’s Rimforsa container holders as planters. The Rimforsa line includes two sizes of holders, a hanging rail, and glass containers. If you want to do some comparison shopping to save a few bucks, you could purchase discount glasses or cups separately to place in your holders.

Buy from IKEA: Rimforsa Holder ($11) and Containers ($17)

6. VURUM WINE RACK HERB GARDEN

A photo posted by Shawna (@sevenofstars) on

 

For another clever herb garden option, turn the $10 Vurum wine rack on its side, mount it on your wall, and add your own glass vases.

Buy from IKEA: Vurum Wine Rack ($10)

7. KALLAX SHELF BAR

Photos by Jennifer Kathryn Photography for The Everygirl; Styling by Alaina Kaczmarski

The cubed Kallax shelf is a favorite of IKEA hackers for a reason—it’s just so versatile! The Kallax’s four cubbies make stylishly displaying your bottles, glasses, and barware simple. The Everygirl’s Alaina Kaczmarski transformed the simple unit into an expensive-looking bar by adding metallic legs (she used the Estelle legs from Pretty Pegs, but you could easily paint simple wooden legs found at any hardware store for a more budget-friendly option). Use wheels instead of legs and add a rail (like the Finrop) and your bar is now a cart.

Buy from IKEA: Kallax Shelf ($35)

8. CHILD’S LEARNING TOWER

A photo posted by Anja Keks (@keks_dose) on

 

Combine the Bekväm and Oddvar stools to help your tot safely reach the kitchen counter. The Oddvar doesn’t seem to be available in the U.S., but you can find directions and dimensions for adding your own plywood railing here.

Buy from IKEA: Bekväm Step Stool ($20), Oddvar Stool (£7)

9. DECORATIVE PAPER SCROLL

A photo posted by Kristin (@kjrobson) on

 

Wall-mount the Mala tabletop paper holder for the perfect place to leave family notes, make grocery lists, or let the kiddos scribble while you cook.

Buy from IKEA: Mala Paper Holder ($8) and Drawing Paper Roll ($5)

10. STACKED BOWLS

 

Keep your counters tidy with this space-saving storage unit created using three Rundlig bowls and the Hilver cone-shaped leg. When entertaining, fill each level with different chips or sweets for easy grazing and an eye-catching display.

Buy from IKEA: Rundlig Serving Bowl ($13), Hilver Cone-Shaped Leg ($25)

11. LEKSVIK CUP RACK

A photo posted by lealiveblog (@lealiveblog) on

 

Sometimes the best hacks come from finding unexpected uses (or places) for common items—no tools required! Move your Leksvik rack from the entryway to the kitchen and you have a great place for storing mugs, teacups, or pots and pans.

Buy from IKEA: Leksvik Rack ($13)

12. TOWEL RAIL POT LID HOLDER

 

Similarly, move a towel rail into your kitchen and you have a perfect place to store your pot and pan lids. Install the rail inside a cabinet or pantry door to keep them within reach but out of sight.

Buy from IKEA: Balungen Towel Rail ($15)

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The Force Field Cloak
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Design
This Glowing Blanket Is Designed to Ease Kids' Fear of the Dark
The Force Field Cloak
The Force Field Cloak

Many kids have a security blanket they bring to bed with them every night, but sometimes, a regular blankie is no match for the monsters that invade their imaginations once the lights are off. Now there’s a glow-in-the-dark blanket designed to make children feel safer in bed, no night light required.

Dubbed the Force Field Cloak, the fleece blanket comes in several colorful, glowing patterns that remain invisible during the day. At night, you leave the blanket under a bright light for about 10 minutes, then the shining design will reveal itself in the dark. The glow lasts 8 to 10 hours, just long enough to get a child through the night.

Inventor Terry Sachetti was inspired to create the blanket by his own experiences struggling with scary nighttime thoughts as a kid. "I remember when I was young and afraid of the dark. I would lie in my bed at night, and my imagination would start getting the best of me," he writes on the product's Kickstarter page. "I would start thinking that someone or something was going to grab my foot that was hanging over the side of the bed. When that happened, I would put my foot back under my blanket where I knew I was safe. Nothing could get me under my blanket. No boogiemen, no aliens, no monsters under my bed, nothing. Sound familiar?"

The Force Field Cloak, which has already surpassed its funding goals on both Indiegogo and Kickstarter, takes the comfort of a blanket to the next level. The glowing, non-toxic ink decorating the material acts as a gentle night light that kids can wrap around their whole body. The result, the team claims, is a secure feeling that quiets those thoughts about bad guys hiding in the shadows.

To pre-order a Force Field Cloak, you can pledge $36 or more to the product’s Indiegogo campaign. It is expected to start shipping in January 2018.

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Pantone
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Design
Pantone Names 'Ultra Violet' 2018's Color of the Year
Pantone
Pantone

Time to retire your green apparel inspired by 2017’s color of the year: The color experts at Pantone have chosen a new shade to represent 2018. As The New York Times reports, trend followers can expect to see Ultra Violet popping up on runways in coming months.

The decision was made after Pantone scattered a team around the world to search current street styles, high fashion, art, and popular travel destinations for the up-and-coming “it” color. The brand describes the winner, PANTONE 18-3838, as “a dramatically provocative and thoughtful purple shade.”

Fashion plays a large part in the selection of the color of the year, but Pantone also considers the broader socio-political atmosphere. Some may see Ultra Violet as a nod to our stormy political climate, but the company’s announcement cast it in a more optimistic light.

“Complex and contemplative, Ultra Violet suggests the mysteries of the cosmos, the intrigue of what lies ahead, and the discoveries beyond where we are now,” it reads. “The vast and limitless night sky is symbolic of what is possible and continues to inspire the desire to pursue a world beyond our own.”

The color is associated with some of music’s greatest icons, like David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, and Prince. The architect Frank Lloyd Wright also had a special attachment to the color and wore it when he was in need of creative inspiration. When it’s not sparking artistic thinking, purple is sometimes used to promote mindfulness in mediation spaces. So if you’re feeling stressed about whatever the new year holds, stare at the hue above for a few seconds and see if it doesn’t calm you down.

[h/t The New York Times]

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