Yes, 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! –>
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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!
- 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.