When we moved into our apartment last August, we had nothing in the way of furniture. We went straight from college to Korea and then to stay with family upon our return home. Having to furnish our place — and more or less all at once — meant that we had to purchase on a major budget. Of course, that's where Ikea came in! I really do love Ikea's general aesthetic (and have talked before about my love for Scandinavian design), but Ikea stuff does tend to lack personality. Since we ended up buying our bed, our couch and two tall living room bookshelves from there, we wanted to infuse some creativity into our furniture so that our apartment didn't end up looking like an Ikea showroom.
We bought the Karlstad sofa, with the Sivik dark gray cover, but weren't at all into the thick, square, un-stained legs and really wanted to switch them out. I stumbled across some photos on this blog, by a couple who had replaced their Karlstad legs, and I was sold.
Our sofa now:
I love the mid-century look of the tapered legs and gold ends. (The legs were purchased here.) The update was quick and easy and our sofa no longer screams "IKEA PURCHASE." Here's everything we used to do this little project:
Quick, simple, inexpensive and an entirely new look!
The other update we did was to paint the backs of our Billy bookshelves. We bought them because they fit perfectly on either side of our bay window nook. I knew before we purchased them that I wanted to a) paint the backs a bold color that would make the things on the shelves pop and b) to make the bookshelves look as built-in as possible.
I chose Olympic's "Blue Bayberry" in an eggshell finish:
Billy bookcases come with a bunch of holes lining the inside, allowing for the shelves to be placed at various heights. We knew we weren't going to feel the urge to switch up our shelf placement, so decided to get rid of the eyesore as best we could by using some white wood filler. The wood filler definitely doesn't erase every trace of the holes, but it makes them a lot less in-your-face. To do this quick and easy bookshelf facelift, you'll need:
Both updates were completely painless and gave some life to our generic Ikea furniture. I would love to get the sofa cushions tufted at some point, and to add some molding around the base, top and sides of the bookshelves to make them look a bit more built in. One day!