Published on March 31st, 2011 | by Jules Yap


Working It

Materials: Besta base cabinets, Besta Chrome Underframes

Description: Creating a budget-conscious work station for two for our small Miami apartment required some thought…and several runs to IKEA.

- Besta cabinets and doors (3)
- Besta underframes (6)
- Wood slab top

Two IKEA Besta cabinets on each end serve as our individual storage, with a third cabinet in the center for a shared printer, computer router, and supplies.

Each cabinet was assembled per instructions without the back panel to allow for ventilation and cord management. To make up for the stability of the missing back panel, L-brackets were screwed inside to stabilize the cabinets.

Using two sets of the Besta underframes in chrome for each cabinet (one as the base and one on top) raises the work surface to counter height. The top frames rest securely on screws drilled into the cabinet tops.

The counter top is a 12′ slab of bobinga purchased from a lumber yard. By having the lumber yard cut one raw edge off (placed at the back wall), but leaving the front raw edge, we have both an organic look, and an ergonomic, soft edge for typing.

~ Ritch Holben and Ken De Loreto, Miami

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The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

28 Responses to Working It

  1. Ron Mateo says:

    This is such a great design. I was just curious, how did you attach the slab of wood to the underframe?

  2. Stephanie Charles says:


    I was wondering how you attanced the besca chromes to the top of the cabinet? Also do you know that the cabinet measurements are ?

    Love this idea

  3. Pingback: DIY & Handmade: Модернизация ИКЕА Бесто — ежедневный интернет-журнал о дизайне, интерьере и архитектуре.

  4. ari andreson says:


  5. jeannette says:

    guys this is AWEsome, the organic edge with the chrome and the white is just what le corbusier needed but wasn’t smart enough to come up with. go, you.

  6. Allan Shah says:

    To be quite honest, they kinda look like a bunch of old dishwashers from far…

  7. Hmm…can’t seem to locate either, but did find the door we used. Maybe it can serve as a clue/lead for you. Good luck!


  8. Anonymous says:

    Where can you find the besta base cabinets? I don’t see them on

  9. Anonymous says:

    Super!! c’est très sympa! bravo!!

  10. They do force you to sit upright. Truth be told, we’re coveting Restoration Hardware’s new ‘Spitfire Chair’ as replacements, but…until we can figure out how to make our own version…these stools will do.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Actually the chairs look EXACTLY like a 19th century child’s stool I used to have, which was to encourage sitting up straight. So pretty good for you when working. When you get fed up of sitting up straight, it’s probably time to walk to the kettle…

    I love this! Very elegant. I’ve used lots of timber like that – waney edge my timber yard called it – for bookshelves. Nice to see I’m not the only fan.

  12. Anonymous says:

    The chairs look extremely uncomfortable. Just don’t lean back.

  13. Thanks, Barnaby! Small world, you seeing this. It makes me happy to know that you might have one too chez toi. I still remember that floor lamp you used to have made out of screen. Hope all is well.

  14. Barnaby says:

    Great desk – congrats on the great job, and thanks for sharing with the world! (A version will soon be coming to my own house!)

  15. Oops…Ritch just corrected me. It’s ‘bubinga’. Silly me!

  16. Wow! Thank you for the comments! Ritch and I are extremely flattered that you like our little old desk. Although, at 12′ long it’s hardly little. The top was one single 12′ long board of bobinga, but we had to (sadly) cut it in half to fit it into our U-Haul, which we used to truck this down from The Berkshires to Miami. However, now the seam gives us a line of demarcation. My side. His side. No arguing with the cut.

    The stools were off of, and should be readily available there. I’ve seen them from time to time.

  17. Anonymous says:

    definitive contender for the hack of the year!!!

  18. Anonymous says:

    gorgeous! could you tell us the length of the whole thing? thanks!

  19. Anonymous says:

    This is beautiful. Would never have spotted it as a hack :)


  20. Dominic says:

    Nice hack! Very sophisticated. What kind of chairs are those? And where can I find them?

  21. severusslave says:

    Wow, very beautiful and functional! 1A hack.

  22. This is a hack worth to login make a comment on! :)
    Very nicely done! Like Meerkat said, it looks like a high end product.

  23. meerkat says:

    these are the type of hacks i love. very classy and does not look like a hack but rather looks like a high end product. hurrah to you

  24. 337 says:

    nicely done…dig the live edge and the chrome.

  25. Rita says:

    Elegant and inspirational posting. Love your post !!! All the stuff is looking contemporary and incredible.

  26. I LOVE THIS! you are brilliant and I’m stealing this!

  27. Anonymous says:


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