How to Hack Your IKEA IVAR Cabinet to Match Your Home Design

Although an IKEA IVAR cabinet can bring storage to any room, I particularly love them for workspace storage. The shelves are about 12″ deep inside and can hold items like:

  • Magazine file boxes
  • Small laptops
  • Cameras
  • Pencil, Marker and paintbrush cups
  • and all those little storage bins full of workspace necessities

No matter what kind of work you are doing, those cabinets close over the organized chaos ⁠— leaving you with a simple stylish front.

I have grown so attached to my own IVAR cabinet hack, that I’ve pulled together a list of leg ideas and design combinations that transform this simple pine piece for several different design styles.

Hack Your IKEA IVAR Cabinet

This $70 pine cabinet has become a favorite for IKEA hackers because it is such an easy (and affordable) blank slate. All you need to do is add legs (See My Instructions), finish, and style according to your own taste and budget.

1. Artsy Minimal

Artsy Minimal.png

If you like to create beautiful things, and hide away the mess, try styling your cabinet using the Waddell Ash end table legs. The sleek lines and chrome foot are so chic! I used these legs for my own cabinets. I always get complimented on how useful and tidy they look.

2. Country Style

country style

These traditional turned legs turn the plain pine cabinet into a traditional storage item when you use a weathered, gray stain. Choose accessories that celebrate rustic style (like this cowbell) and tones that complement your farmhouse aesthetic.

3. Funky Chic

funky style

I love the idea of keeping the pine finish on these cabinets and putting a pop of terrazzo wallpaper inside. It’s like a secret party whenever you put your things away. To counterbalance the plain square bun foot and the simple light wood, try adding mercury glass accessories.

4. Happy Junker

Happy Junk

If you can’t pass by a dusty vintage shop or a fabulous estate stale, and steal most of your decor from your well-travelled great-aunt’s attic, then you should coat your cabinet in a bright cherry red stain. This solid sofa bun foot props the cabinet just enough to give it prescense and visual weight. Playful, clashing colors can tie together your quirky and vintage-inspired accessories.

5. Boho Mod

mod style

A simple Parsons style leg creates a great foundation for a playful pink coral cabinet. You can style it with bright colors and wild-child accessories for a modern bohemian look.

6. Playful Retro

playful style

I love these little bun feet for storage in a children’s space. Opt for reinvented retro tones, like this great Aqua wood stain. Unexpected accessories, like an oversized pencil sharpener pencil cup, wink and nod.

7. Sleek Industrial

sleek industrial.png

If you love a hairpin leg, try adding it to an IVAR that you have stained a glossy black. Teal, aqua and stainless steel accessories will pop against the dark design. So cool with a masculine edge.

8. Solid Statement

Solid Statement

For a statement piece, that’s not too strange, try staining your cabinet a brilliant blue shade. Once you add the 20 inch live-edge metal legs, the cabinet raises to an eye-catching, eye-level height.

Show Me Your Workspace Style

If you have a favorite storage cabinet, I’d love to see it. Let me know if you added legs to an IKEA IVAR cabinet or found another cool storage piece. You can send me a note in the comments below or tag me on Instagram.

I’d love to feature your cool workspace!




8 Furniture Leg Kits You Can Add to Your IKEA IVAR Cabinet (IKEA HACK)

Adding a furniture leg kit to a IKEA IVAR cabinet turns a $70 pine storage item into a eye-grabbing piece of furniture. When I first planned on adding legs to my IVAR cabinet, I was surprised at how many different furniture leg kits are available at home improvement stores. Also, you can hunt down some unique or vintage legs by visiting local antique stores and estate sales.

How to Add a Leg Kit to your IKEA IVAR Cabinet

You can add your selected furniture legs using the instructions from the leg kit. Most include a metal piece that must be screwed into the bottom of the IVAR cabinet. Then, you can screw the leg into the metal piece.

Details on assembling furniture legs are listed in 12 steps at Wikihow.

Leg Ideas for your IVAR Cabinet Hack

Each of the kits below will customize your IKEA IVAR cabinet to match your personal style. Then, all you need is to choose a stain, paint or finish to complete the style.


A. Waddell 6 in. Traditional Table Leg from Home Depot

If you like a traditional style, this leg pair with the plain lines of the cabinet mimic the heirloom look. The trick here is picking a stain, preferably something darker like a rich honey tone, that evokes a long history. Then, it will blend well into a space filled with traditional pieces.

Product Details:

  • Fashioned using furniture grade solid pine
  • Pre-installed 5/16-18 hanger bolt allows for fast and easy installation when using
  • Waddell’s quick mount surface plates
  • Solid pine ensures long lasting durability
  • Sanded smooth and ready for your custom finish

With prices around $4 per leg, you can finish a cabinet for a total of $82.

B. American Pro Decor Hardwood Square Bun Foot from Home Depot

If you’re looking for a bolder, chunky look, consider using a square bun foot. Your cabinet will be lifted slightly off the ground, creating a solid, stable look. It can be a great contrast to a funky paint style or quirky styling.

Product Details

  • Size: 5 in. H x 3-3/4 in. W x 3-3/4 in. D
  • Pre-installed 5/16 in. Dia threaded hanger bolt
  • Made from solid hardwood
  • Comes unfinished
  • Natural woodgrain texture unfinished

As a pricier option, at about $10 per leg, this solution creates a very stable base.

C. Waddell 6 in. Parsons Table Leg from Home Depot

You can transform your cabinet into a mission-style piece by adding this simple parson’s leg. Personally, I can imagine Mark Montano using this to create a primitive canvas (and maybe a little decoupage), then decorating the cabinet fronts in his vibrant style.

Product Details

  • Crafted using furniture grade solid ash for the finest appearance
  • Pre-installed 5/16-18 hanger bolt allows for fast and easy installation when using
  • Waddell’s quick mount surface plates
  • Solid ash ensures long lasting durability
  • Sanded smooth and ready for your custom finish

An affordable option, these $4 legs blend nicely into the simple lines of the cabinet.

D. American Pro Decor 1-7/8 in. x 3-5/8 in. Unfinished Solid Hardwood Round Bun Foot from Home Depot

If you are thinking about customizing an IVAR for a children’s room, I like these round bun foot. They are short, giving enough lift to get it off the ground without actually making it easy to tip. And you can add L brackets to bolt it to the wall for added safety.

Product Details

  • Size: 1-7/8 in. H x 3-5/8 in. Dia
  • Pre-installed 5/16 in. Dia threaded hanger bolt
  • 18 threads per inch bolt (5/16-18)
  • Made from solid hardwood
  • Comes unfinished
  • Natural woodgrain texture unfinished

These legs are about $5 each, making your total cabinet investment around $90 before you decorate it.

E. Matte Black Hairpin Metal Table Leg – Small from Hobby Lobby

Using metal hairpin legs, and an espresso stain, will turn your IVAR cabinet into an industrial chic design. These legs lift the cabinet and create a different sightline for the room. What a contemporary look!

Product Details

  • Leg Length: 3 1/8″, Width: 3 1/8″, and Height: 10 1/8″
  • Hanging Hardware, 3 – Hole Cut-Outs and 3 – Screws

For about $40, you can upgrade your IVAR to something that looks like a Restoration Hardware piece.

F. Waddell Ash Sofa Table Leg from Lowes

If you prefer heavier furniture with blocky lines, try adding this sofa table leg. With a warm stain, you can create a storage piece that blends alongside a classic leather couch. It might work well in a traditional TV room to store media, cables and board games.

Product Details

  • 4-in x 2.5-in
  • Furniture grade solid ash for finest appearance
  • Pre-installed hanger bolt allows for fast and easy installation when using our quick mount surface plates
  • Sanded smooth and ready for your custom finish
  • Solid hardwood for long lasting durability

For around $9 per leg, you can turn your IVAR cabinet into smart storage.

G. Waddell Ash End Table Leg from Lowes

If you want to match my own minimal, artsy style, go with this table leg. It transforms the cabinet into a slim-lined, modern storage system. Apartment dwellers always ask me where I found this thin, useful storage cabinet.

Product Details

  • 1.5-in x 5.5-in
  • Furniture grade solid hardwood for finest appearance
  • Pre-installed hanger bolt allows for fast and easy installation
  • Sanded smooth and ready for your custom finish
  • Self-leveling foot provides great stability
  • Footing is a chrome-silver finish

By adding these $5 legs, I created a storage cabinet that looks much more spendy and chic. You can see my project, with instructions HERE.

H. Live Edge Metal End Table Leg from Lowes

For a room that needs a WOW-factor, these legs can turn your cabinet into a trendy piece. At 20 inches tall, the cabinet lifts to eye left. I can imagine using this transformed cabinet as either a dry bar or art supply storage.

Product Details

  • 1.5-in x 20-in
  • Modern industrial designed steel furniture legs
  • Can be painted with any paint suitable for metal
  • Four screws per leg are included

While the legs cost $85, the total cost for this cabinet would still be less than $200.

Add a Furniture Leg Kit to Your IVAR Cabinet

If you haven’t seen it already, be sure to check my instructions for adding a furniture leg kit to your IKEA IVAR Cabinet. It’s actually pretty easy.

If you do customize your IVAR, let me know. I’d love to see and feature your project. Just tag me on Instagram or send me a note in the comments.


How to Be More Productive

Watercolor of desert

I’m not busy.

It’s a strange thing to say. When is the last time you heard that phrase? Can you remember the last time you said it?

I am not busy. I have not been busy for a long time. It’s a choice and most people don’t understand.

Some may automatically argue that I have it easier. If only I lived their lives I would realize why it is so necessary to be busy.

I call B.S.

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