A 30 min IKEA ALEX Drawers Hack That will make ALL the Difference!

How to update the popular IKEA Alex drawers using contact paper! And a sneak peek of my current work from home set up!

super quick ikea alex drawers hack pinterest graphic

The perfectionist in me didn’t want to share my office space until it was completely  finished. But if there’s one thing these past few months have taught me, its that its important to enjoy the process and not just the outcome. And that showing up imperfectly, is better than not showing up at all.

OK, that’s two things … but you get what I’m trying to say right?  Perfection is the enemy of done!

So on that note – you can expect more ‘In progress’ blog posts from me in the coming months . .  starting with a peek at my new home office (which previously used to be here, but I’ve since released that having an office in the bedroom isn’t such a good idea. I never felt motivated to get out of bed and work ha)

IKEA ALEX DRAWERS USED AS DESK STORAGE

In my previous post where I shared my DIY IKEA dining seat hack, you might remember me saying that I was slowly converting one side of the dining room into an office / space?

I had a rough floor plan in mind before I got started, and so far I’ve been able to keep to it.  It’s amazing how much you can fit into a room with a little out of the box thinking! ? I also plan to include a bar and coffee station which I’ll be sharing more about in the future.

IKEA ALEX DRAWERS COVERED WITH CONTACT PAPER AND USED AS DESK STORAGE

WHY THE IKEA ALEX DRAWERS?

The biggest feature in this space right now are these upcycled IKEA Alex drawers . I feel like anyone who has ever shopped at IKEA will recognize this drawer unit – are you even a true IKEA fan if you don’t own one? I love them because they look modern, and have the capacity and depth to hold quite a lot of stuff! (I also have one in my sons under the stairs homework station).

The only downside is that they don’t come in a wide range of colours. If you’re not into the white glossy look – the only other option is to personalise them in some way. But not to worry, that’s the great thing about owning IKEA furniture.There are so many ways you can customise or hack them!

IKEA alex drawers before the makeover

These drawers in particular are actually second hand, given to me by a friend (one mans trash is another mans treasure and all that). As far as functionality they were in good shape, however there were a few marks and scrapes to the fronts of the drawers. I decided against painting and opted instead to cover them with contact paper.

Contact paper (or Fablon as us Brits call it) is a self-adhesive paper that can be applied to most smooth hard surfaces (including walls and floors – see my wallpapered floor tutorial here).

RELATED: WAYS TO USE CONTACT PAPER IN YOUR HOME 

It took me about 20 mins to complete this project. The DIY is pretty self – explanatory, but I’ve included a few instructions if this is something you would like to try doing  out yourself.
 

MATERIALS YOU’LL NEED FOR THIS IKEA ALEX DRAWERS HACK:

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  • Contact paper or removable wallpaper.
  • Knife – or craft knife
  • Old card
  • Tape measure

HOW TO

1. Clean and dry the surface of the drawers well (use alcohol wipes if you have any)

2. Place the IKEA ALEX drawers on its back – so that the drawers are facing up to the ceiling.

3. Measure the height and width of the drawers (allowing a few centimetres for error). Cut the paper to size according to those measurements.

4. Peel back the backing from the contact paper and place firmly on the front of the drawers .

Place contact paper on top of the alex drawers

5. Now use your knife to cut away the paper around the handles and sides of each drawer.

Close up of craft knife cutting contact paper around the drawer handles

6. Smooth out any bubbles in the paper with the old card.

Picture of card being used to smooth out bubbles in paper

Done!

Completed drawers with contact paper to the front of the drawers

As you can see from my pictures, I have used these drawers to make up one side of my desk (FYI this cork table used to be our dining table). The other side of the table is held up with legs – also from IKEA.

View of the home office station with alex drawers under the cork table

To account for the small difference in height between the drawers and the legs, I slotted in a thin wooden slat between the drawers and the table top as seen below.

Wooden slats applied to the top of the ikea alex drawers

The wire that runs across the room is actually an indoor clothes line.. it retracts when not in use.You can buy similar from here.

Full view of home office station with alex drAWERS under the cork desk with hanging art.

What do you think? Have you ever upcycled the IKEA ALEX drawers before? 

How to update the ikea alex drawers pinterest graphic

How to hack the ikea alex drAWERS PINTEREST GRAPHIC
 

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Filed under IKEA Hacks, Upcycling

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Comments

  1. I love a good IKEA hack! And contact paper is such an inexpensive way to get a fab look. Love it!