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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

ikea hack: coffee table

It has taken me months of dreaming and scheming to figure out a coffee table situation for our living room.  This Ikea hack was actually one of my first ideas, dreamed up over the summer back in the States.  After searching for ready made furniture in our budget, nothing was sufficing.  This island is not secondhand or cost effective friendly.  I wanted something with personality and not very modern.  And less than the 80 to 100 euro I was seeing on everything that I didn't even like.  So, we went back to Plan A, make it myself, using basic tables from Ikea for 4.99 each.
about 45 meters of rope
10-15 meters of twine
more hot glue than you want to admit to
glue gun
lack table
1.grab the top to the lack table, hot glue, gun, and rope.
2. starting on the sides of table, run a line of hot glue and attach rope.
3.  continue process, wrapping around sides of table.
4. carry over to the top following the perimeter of the table..until the 30 meters of rope you got at the hardware store runs out and you have to hurry back to get 25 more before the store closes.
5.  use the rest of the rope from your second trip to the hardware store to finish off the top of the table.  use a thick dollop of glue in the center and secure loose to prevent snags.
6.  with the thinner twine (because yet again, you ran out of rope and don't want to go back to the hardware store...) and the glue, repeat process, wrapping and gluing twine around the legs of the table.
7.  throw everything in a pile and breathe a sigh of relief that you had enough twine.  then follow the manufactured instruction to put the table together.
My plan is to make two of these to be situated side by side.  The amount of rope needed kind of sidetracked this plan.  I needed (no joke here) 45 meters of it for the top alone.  Heavens to Betsy is that a lot of rope!!  I looked at a couple of stores to find a rope and color that I liked and was only able to find something suitable at one for about 60 cents a meter.  While that's pretty cheap, it racks up pretty quickly when you need 45 meters of it.  So..I'm saving up for the other table.  I suggest going to your local hardware store and asking for a discount for buying so much rope at one time.  I would try this, but I don't know Greek.  This is also why I used the twine on the legs.  The whole ball of twine (which I used most of) was 2.99.  

The table took me about a day to do.  (I discovered the show Hart of Dixie and watched/listened to a good seven episodes of it.  Don't judge me...)  It's not hard, just time consuming as everything needs to be wrapped and placed.

It turned out exactly like I had imagined when I sketched it out in my head.  My next plan is to make its mate and find a suitable rug so the room isn't a total wash of white.  I might be Scandinavian, but every so often, even I need something other than neutrals.


  1. This came out PERFECT! Love it! I can't believe it is taking that much rope! YOWSA! And I'll have to check that show out! :) Love you Mrs.!

  2. That's such a fantastic idea. The table looks great.

    Professionally Petite

  3. Try checking ebay or craigslist or somewhere online for the twine....looks so nice")

    1. Great idea! When I made this table, craigslist wasn't an option. Now that we're back in the States, I'll definitely be utilizing online resources more.

  4. Your instructions are impeccably clear. And the price just right! Thanks!

  5. I have a larger Ikea piece that I need to recover. My plan (to save time and materials) is to use the rope technique in places (like edges) and apply a coordinating fabric on the larger surfaces.

    1. What a great idea! It would look great with some scrap leather. Good luck!

  6. Wonderful idea. Great execution.