Affordable craft room ideas — Using Ikea kids storage and Re-Store countertops

craft room ikea trofastmy crazy crafty office remodelYes, after endless research and second-guessing, I ended up using one of my first ideas — Ikea Trofast children’s storage shelves and bins — for the collage and crafts work space and storage that were a key addition to my office remodel.  Alas, my design is not an “epic” solution, and you know how I like the idea of being the epic-est. But: This set-up was cheap, cheerful, fast, functional and fit my space to a tee. It was destined to be. Read on for more about why I am super happy with this solution… and hey, I had my first Ikea cabinet assembly experience in 15 years! –>

craft room storage

  • The tipping point in my decision to go Ikea was when the countertops were delivered unto me cheap just when I was ready and needed to make a choice on storage. I spotted the countertops at Eco Building Bargains, a Re-Store like place in Springfield, Mass. The top counter is 9.5′ long — yes, that’s nine feet+, and it is 20″ deep — not 24″, like most kitchen countertops. The second counter, which I use as a shelf on the second step of the Trofast, is a full 7′ wide, also 20″ deep. The reason I love the depth of these countertops is that the Trofasts are only 18″ deep — so the tops fit nicely. Also, their being a little more compact makes my office, which is only 9′ wide, feel more spacious. I do lose some working space but, heck — I have 9’5 feet of countertop to work on! The countertops were $30 and $20 each. They have a Herman Miller sticker on them. They are Herman Miller office countertops! They are laminate — kind of a birchy woodgrain, just the kind of light woodsy countertop I wanted to introduce.


  • Yes, the countertops are sagging toward the middle. I bought these brackets to install to add support. I now need to finish this. When I do, I may nudge the whole unit a bit to the right. We’ll see.
ikea trofast for craft room storage

  • Once I had these countertops in hand, I went right to the Trofasts. Not only were the Trofasts the right depth, but they also were the perfect height — just under 37″. Together with the countertop, the workspace is just over 38″ high — and hits just below my built-in shelves. That is a perfect standing-working height for me.
sunbeam appliance center

  • The combined pieces also hit just below my amazing, NOS Sunbeam Appliance Center. Finally, after all those years in a box — In A Box — it now is serving its purpose in life — gloriously!!!! As you can see, we hooked it up — the electrical inspector let us. I don’t think I will ever use the plugs, but the light works. That’s the original light — like, 50+ years old! I swear, they Do Not Make Things Like They Used To. It is a crying shame. It is worse than a crying shame. It is a crime against the bounty of the earth, it is really bad.
ikea trofast for craft room storage
  • Of course, the white Ikea Trofast unit fit the design of my room perfectly: All that 1960s brite white against the crazy patchwork quilt walls. There were four colors of drawers available — white, lime green, red and blue. The white and lime green also were perfect. I have 2/3 white, 1/3 green. No detail is too small for me to consider!
craft room shelvesikea trofast frame
  • Was it hard to assemble the Ikea cabinets? No. It was very easy. It was kind of fun to try and decipher the cartoon character instructions.
  • Do I like the quality of the Ikea cabinets? You get what you pay for. Each Ikea Trofast frame was $50. Each bin was $3. The two Ikea Trofasts with bins cost me $172 plus shipping — which was, ouch!,  $90, but I understand why — these were big boxes. Add the cost of the countertops and brackets and I’m in for $240: For 9.5 running feet of work space at the exact right height… for 24 binds for storage… and for another 7 feet of undercounter storage. The other idea I was looking at — an industrial workbench with a thick butcher block top — was going to cost $1,049 delivered, with no bins or shelves. It was super cool. But my Ikea solution — got the job done more completely and easily — and looks smashing.


Why don’t I show the rest of the room? Ummm, that’s not done yet. I’m thinking about it. It may be epic. But then again, it may be close enough.

See all the stories about my crazy craft office remodel by clicking here.

  1. Stacey says:

    Yet again, another beautiful idea come to life at Pam’s house! I love it, Pam! And now I want one, too. I really like all the storage bins and the double countertop space. And I was wondering what you were going to do with those recessed shelving spaces in the wall – and now I see the appliance center. Like I said, I want one of these crafts workspaces. Now.

  2. JamieAbe says:

    The wallpaper is looking even better with your furniture going in. It makes the room look so cozy. Great ideas!

  3. TappanTrailerTami says:

    Wow, Pam! I just love destiny! And finding those counter tops were definitely destiny at it’s finest.

    Your whole space looks so workable, and practical, yet not simpleton as most practical spaces go……yeah, simpleton is NOT the word for your office to be sure!

    And SWOON over your appliance center that is not in a box any more, and your vintage medicine chest. I’m feeling the urge to go find an appliance center too now……thanks a lot!

  4. Marta says:

    You found countertops that said Herman Miller? I’d definitely call that a sign from above. Best thing about plastic bins is when they get dirty/dusty, they can take a shower.

    I was surprised you had the Trofasts shipped since you have an Ikea not too far away. Then I thought about going to Ikea when we were redoing the turning-7yo grandson’s room for his birthday last month. I’d found a fold down desk at Ikea on line for $29 but couldn’t wait for shipping, so we went to the store. $189 later . . . 🙂 But Reilly loooved his room, especially the room-length wire lines from Ikea that mount to the wall and have clips for hanging all his artwork.

  5. Jana (Berniecat) says:

    You Rock! What a seamless blend of vintage and new materials in a colorful, visually interesting room! Your ideas of combining practicality and creativity have again, come together in a wonderful work space!
    You surely have earned the “Thrift Queen” crown with the score of those beautiful counter tops for less than “cheep”. I love the addition of the vintage medicine cabinet & the appliance center… Awesome!

  6. Laurie V says:

    Love all that counter space. I also love the medicine cabinet, you can alway brush your teeth or shave if you needed to. . . well maybe not shave.

  7. Jay says:

    Oh, Pam! Beauiful! I am home recuperating from surgery and I am enjoying your posts about the office remodel, I have been waiting for the reveal. Your creativity and resourcefullness shine through. you are one creative person. I love your appliance center with the light. Don’t be afraid to plug in a radio or a lamp but the old receptacles in the center might not have the wide slot which wil prevent you from using them anyway. Vintage appliances, fans and lamps have the old narrow plugs but anything new now has polarized plugs. Again, great job!! You done good!

    1. pam kueber says:

      Well, I’m happy to be keeping you entertained! I hope everything went well with the surgery — get well soon!!!

  8. lynda says:

    I love the counters and the creative use of the Ikea storage cabinets. I think it would look nice to replace the rolling plastic tote with an adjustable industrial stool. There are new versions around, but you may be able to find an old one. I saw some on Craigslist. You would need to have the stool adjustable since your counter is higher than a normal counter and not as tall as a bar counter. You may be able to find a Tolix stool in the right size. That would look nice too.
    Isn’t it wonderful when everything seems to fall together? (Only after hours and hours of thinking, searching, and work, of course!)

      1. lynda says:

        I think your stool would look great. Maybe you can find some of that office type nylon upholstery fabric in orange and have it redone. Although what is on in must go with one of those wallpaper patterns!

        1. pam kueber says:

          I like the original upholstery I like having some rich greens in the room. And yes, haha, I can make most anything fit with 18 designs of wallpaper on the wall!

  9. Blondie7 says:

    Wow Pam! Your office space is looking very orderly, organized and neat. I love it! What an awesome space. You’re a Blessed woman. Thanks for being here and sharing. Great job! Beautiful!

    1. pam kueber says:

      Haha, I had to stage the room for these photos. Meaning: It’s a nightmare of piles. My excuse is that sorting and filing and organizing is still in process.

      1. Blondie7 says:

        lol….Still beautiful, staged and all. Sorting and organizing is no easy job. After it’s all said and done….I’m pretty sure you will enjoy your office space(forever) and let it be known that it was worth the hard work. I am truly excited and can not wait to see more. Love it.

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