Published on August 4th, 2011 | by Jules Yap


Ivar Instant Kitchen

Materials: Ivar shelves, Ivar doors, Kosing knobs

Description: Moved into a new house last year, with no kitchen due to an unfinished reno by the previous owner. We were pretty lean after the house purchase, so I came up with this hack, to buy some time before we install a more serious kitchen.

The hack is pretty straight forward. Simply cut down the 20 inch deep ivar shelf units (to 35 inches h + 1 inch for the counter-top) and then cut the 12×49 shelf units with a knotch in the back leg (see pic) so that they sit level with one leg on the counter top backboard. Metal L brackets hold the counter-top to the bottom shelf risers, and the bottom shelves are brought forward a bit to match nicely with the front lip of counter-top.

After that it was simply a matter of cutting a bit of ply wood to cover the open ends and painting that to match the wall color. The lower plywood also hides the “gap at the back” of the bottom row, because the counter-top is 25″ deep, while the ikea shelf units are only 20″ deep.

The final touch was changing the door pulls to the white Kosing pulls, which helped match the white counter tops. Upper shelves are secured to the walls, but so far the whole assembly is rock solid stable after 1 year of use with full loading from cans, dishes, etc.

Most people don’t even notice that the kitchen is a hack, because it looks quite warm and inviting. The sweet part was that we already had all the shelf parts from our university days, and the counter-top bits were from a local building materials recycler – Not quite free but darned close to it.

~ Ed M., Chicago

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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".

5 Responses to Ivar Instant Kitchen

  1. Hilary says:

    Really loving this and would like to recreate this in my own home! What did you use for doors though?

  2. Kitchen is the most important part of a home. I could see the well formatted structure is designed. Nice color combination and the design looks great! Definitely, I’m going to rebuild my kitchen!

  3. Robj98168 says:

    “so I came up with this hack, to buy some time before we install a more serious kitchen”

    Dude… this IS a serious kitchen. One of the best uses I have seen for Ivar. And great looking to boot… I wouldn’t change a thing!

  4. Laurel says:

    Wow, you did a great job, and the room looks so warm and attractive.


  5. Anonymous says:

    nice hack… it looks surprisingly good for a combination of Ivar shelves and some counter top… but don’t see any sink or appliances, I guess they are still to be added ?

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