By nwilliams98

Finished Ikea Kitchen

Here is cost breakdown for the project.  We ordered during the IKEA 20% off sale which helped quite a bit.

Project cost Breakdown
Ikea Cabinets $4,000.00
Ikea Sink $350.00
Ikea Oven and Microwave $900.00
Countertops $5,000.00
DCS Rangetop $2,700.00
Frigidaire Refrigerator $1,100.00
Hood $350.00
Custom Paint Job $200.00
Crown,Trim, plywood $300.00
Dishwasher $600.00
Backsplash $200.00
Total $15,700.00

Other costs not accounted for here because of the contracts covering the whole house: electrician labor, plumber labor and faucet/materials.  We obviously could have saved a ton on countertops and rangetop  if we had picked a dfferent look but we wanted the industrial cooktop (because Holly is an incredible cook) and quartz for ease of maintenance:

Finally, the end result is as good or better than we hoped. This is especially true after Holly decorated the space:

FinalProduct

IslandFinal

Island2final

Thats all folks.  Drop me a line if you have any questions.

Credits: Thanks to Mommy (Cheryl), Pooh (Wendy) for the lightening quick assembly line that put that cabinets together.  Thanks to Mike for help with all the trim.  Finally thanks to Holly for letting for 2 years worth of support building this place and her mad decoration skills !

And with that.. I leave you with a bunny picture because everyone needs a bunny picture:

bunnypic

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Trim and Wine Rack

The last phase of the Ikea kitchen build was to add the crown molding, baseboards and wine rack.   First we still needed to install the wine rack. Originally we didn’t plan to have a cabinet there but the electrician made a mistake and forgot to run an outlet so we we had to cut a hole in the drywall to fish a wire which provided the perfect opportunity to add the wine rack.

wine_rack1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We added an extra bit of the metal track after carefully aligning the wine rack with the top of the oven cabinet then hung the cabinet in the same way we did the others.  The oven cabinet was the only high cabinet that did not make use of the track so there really wasn’t anything to align off of other than estimating the track distance to the top.

winerack2

Its not an inexpensive drywall patch but we love wine so thi was dual purpose.  I added some spacers of baseboard trim between the cabinets so that I wouldn’t feel obligated to tile a gap all the way to the top.   Next we started the crown.  As you can see above there really isn’t anywhere to nail crown molding into.   The method that we came up with that was fairly easy was to use scrap plywood (3″ by whatever cabinet side length) and screw it into the top of the cabinet using pocket hole screws.  This gave us a backer that was flush with the edge of the cabinet and very easy to nail to.  Here is a quick sketch of the plywood backing plus the first layer for the crown:

Crown Drawing

I screwed the backing into the top of the cabinet using those pocket holes and screws and then screwed Ikea’s baseboards to the backing from the rear to avoid marring the surface. Next crown 1.75″ cove was run around the top of the baseboards to create a larger crown molding effect.  This is my favorite way to create a crown look as it requires less precise corners (1.75″ cove to matchup vs a full 3.5″ crown piece). It is fairly easy to get really tight corners using this approach.

Crown Drawing2

From there we spent some time doing the same method around all of the upper cabinets and finally finished off the kitchen.  Here is a picture of the finished product near that wine rack:

winecrown

Here is one more picture of the crown work we did the same way.  The pin holes are spackled from my nail gun but we have not put on the final coat of paint:

MoreCrown

Next time I will post photos of the final result and recap the project.

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Backsplash, Hood and Rangetop

Next we added the backsplash.  The great thing about the Ikea cabinets is that they actually sit about 1/4 to 3/8″ off the wall (due to the metal hanging system) allowing you to slide backsplash tile behind the cabinet for a very polished look.

Tile_start

We started with the largest area and tackled tile before doing the crown or setting the hood so that both systems would have the final surface to terminate against. As you can see the refrigerator end panel that I bought is nowhere near big enough for the height we hung the cabinets (pictured above).  As such we had to return to Ikea and by the 3′ by 96″ side panel. If I had to do it over again I’d probably just buy a piece of plywood and paint it as the side panel was $200.  Here you can see the completed tile job and under cabinet lights that we added from Ikea:

tile_done

Tile we slid behind the cabinet pictured below:

Tile_Butt

We ripped out the apron piece of trim below the window and are planning on using the “sink cabinet” to install a rangetop.  For those that don’t know a rangetop is the syle of cooktop that has the knobs on the front and looks more industrial.  Holly is a bit of a pro cook so we decided to go that route since she enjoys using our rangetop at home so much.  Much like the dishwasher I had to put in a custom shelf at the right height to make the rangetop adequately supported:

RangetopShelf

And the final product …!

rangetop

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Adding Doors and Appliances

The counters are in and we need to install all the appliances and doors.  Here is a quick shot of where we are starting:

StartingPoint

The hardest part was the appliance cabinet on the right.  We chose to use the built in Ikea appliances because they look great and were an incredible price once you factor in the 20% off.  Full disclosure, I didn’t like the directions for this part of the project so I made up my own which you can follow as we go through this appliance cabinet.  I’ll try to point out where my approach is different from the Ikea instructions.

First I unpacked the ikea appliances to get an idea of what we were working with.  I found the instructions a bit nebulous so I wanted to verify all of the dimensions.  Definitely have a friend help you with that oven… it is heavy.  Once they were unpacked I attached the hardware to the appliances and checked out how they would mount to the cabinet because the next step is critical.

appliances

First the bottom drawer and shelves were installed (see pic below).  Full Disclosure: This is the first point that I veer off the Ikea instructions and was the biggest point of consternation in the whole build… I wish someone had posted this before I had to figure it out.   I took 12″ drawerfront that I bought from ikea and measure up to where it would land on the bottom shelf if I mounted the oven there.  As you can see the bottom shelf is now about 12″ above the bottom of the appliance cabinet.  This is the shelf that your oven rests on.  In the future that 4″ drawer front will be removed and reused as trim.  Unfortunately, you have to buy an entire package of 30″ drawer fronts if you want to use this method instead of the ikea method.  The benefit relative to the original instructions is that you gain a 12″ deep drawer space, and 3/4 of of horizontal distance to the island.

Next I measured the oven for the exact height that the next shelf would need to land in order for the oven flange to meet up with the microwave flange (none of this is covered in the ikea literature as the configurations of this cabinet are too numerous).  So that gives you height of the second shelf.  Finally, the top shelf is essentially an upper cabinet with 24″ doors.  That last shelf can be located by measuring down 24″ from the top.

appliance Cabinet

Next I slid in the appliances and called the electrician to hook them up.  As you can see we mounted them directly to the cabinet frame whereas Ikea would have you trim out this cabinet with a large panel and mount to that to fill in the holes above and below.  Don’t forget to buy some torx bit driver heads…. I got all the way to the project sight and couldn’t find one to hook up those brackets on the microwave.

apps_in

Next I took the 4″ drawer front from below and cut it down to place above the microwave using the table saw.  To do this, i pulled used some of the ikea L brackets and pocket hole screws to attach the drawer from behind.

drawerfront

As you can see this makes the microwave, this cut down drawerfront and oven the same depth from the wall.  This is what saved us the 3/4″ rather than mounting the microwave and oven to a large cut out panel front.  Finally, we attached the 12″ drawer bottom, which i’m surprised isn’t standard from Ikea as it works so well for this.

12drawer

Finally, we installed all of the rest of the doors which is about an hour long task once you get going for the whole kitchen.  You basically just pop the hings in the pre cut whole and screw the other side into the door frame.  Ikea Blum hardware is fantastic.

Doors

Next time we will cover the custom crown molding, backsplash, and baseboards.

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Add the drawers and paint the island

Once the island was trimmed with the custom look we wanted and we put together the drawers from Ikea and inserted them.

drawers-island

Additionally we filled in most of the non-island drawers since its easier to assemble everything once you are on a roll.

Lowers

The Ikea hardware works beautifully and is truly a bargain given the high quality and soft close feature.  Also, the paint finish is amazingly durable.  At this point we had to get out of the way of the painters who were taking care of our trim and painting our island and built ins.  The painters were easily able to match the grey Ikea drawers with a Sherwin Williams Enamel.  The painters started by masking off literally every square inch of the place.  It was impressive and I’m definitely glad I didn’t try to do that myself:

Masking

They sprayed the island first then worked around the rest of the white trim.  Unfortunately, i didn’t have crown on our white cabinets yet so they couldn’t spray those pieces as well.

Islandspray

And the front side:

Island_front

It looks messy but they did an incredible job of protecting the floors.  A couple of days later they balled up the paper into massive 4 ft diameter spheres and we had the counters installed before moving on to finishing the upper cabinets:

Island_Top

The counter above is a quartz LG product made to look like marble. The counter below was a different brand of quartz made to look like concrete.  They were both selected because although we love our black granite at home you basically have to wipe up your finger prints every couple of hours 🙁 Never again Holly says.  Anyway, this appear to be much more friendly to smudging.  A couple things worth noting:  (1) you can save alot of money with the Ikea Apron sink if you like it.  Its only $300 and requires no undermount cutting by your fabricator (savings of at least $300).  (2) Don’t trim a window within 1″ of your sink.  I had to rip out the apron trim piece below for the tile to have enough room to be placed.  Next time we will look at finishing the uppers and tiling the backsplash before putting the crown molding on the upper cabinets.

Island_side

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Install the dishwasher and Add some shelves

I couldn’t find a cabinet for the dishwasher anywhere on the Ikea website so I went the cheap route (I’m still not sure what the Ikea approved method is when the end cabinet is a tall one).  Anyway, I created two little shelves and installed them from above using pocket whole screws. This created more than enough support for the countertop later on that would go above it and also created a flange to screw the dishwasher into at the top.

dishwasher

I took the same approach to finishing off those island shelves except had to cut them at 45 deg and mount them from below:

Island Shelves

Here is the finished trim on the side which shows how we generally terminate the base into the leg on any custom cabinet.

FinishTrimside

Next time we will get ready for paint and fill in the rest of the cabinets.

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Layout the Island

This is where we start to veer off into the customization part of the Ikea build.  We wanted a large custom island with overhang for seating and raised panels for a more custom look.    We started by building a wall around the island.

Start_Island

I just nailed down 2x4s and pulled the electricians island outlet run through the 2×4.  We placed the island cabinets inside so make sure the dimensions were correct and leveled them.  Next I framed out the walls using pretty standard framing techniques.  You can use screws 3″ screws or a framing nailer to put walls like these together.

Frame_Island

After that I skinned the island with 3×4 birch plywood and maple to create a solid surface.

Start_island_skin

You can see here that the island walls are just 3/4 plywood.  The kitchen side of the island has simple shaker legs that were put together using a miter saw and a Porter Cable Quick Jig.  The Quick jig is the ultimate fast joinery tool.  A leg like that can be assembled in 5 minutes. with pocket holes at 90 degrees.  I’ll add photos to show how its done.

The leg on the front of the island is getting started and you can see that it has a raised panel.  These are also pretty easy to put together with the quick jig and i’ll draw out how i did that using varying thicknesses of plywood.

Its probably worth noting that the island cabinets are attached at the sides using pocket hole screws as well as the back in order to stabilize them.  The approach ikea recommends where the entire island is floating on 4 legs per cabinet seems pretty unstable to me so i’m not sure how it would work out otherwise.

Here is a bit more finished.

More_cabinet_skinned

Eventually there will be plywood triangle shelves in that akward section above where there are two almost “legs” at a right angle.

Raised panel legs

The front legs are 9″ wide raised panels using the quick jig.  They are raised panels on three sides to give a more custom look.  Everything else will be skinned in flat 3/4 plywood then built up using trim to create the raised panel look there.island_with_plywood

Finally, I just nailed varying thickness trim onto the island to create raised panels for the backs and sides.  I usually do a 3×4 baseboard  and half inch vertical pieces so that  there is always a nice way to terminate a piece into the side of the baseboard.

Panels Done

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Finish the corner upper cabinets and start the lower cabinets

When you first hang the corner upper cabinet you have to cut the rails to the length of the two nearest runs of cabinets.  I filled in those cabinets by sliding the hanging hardware until they were touching.

 

IMG_0904

From here you have to be careful about mounting some through bolts to attach the second cabinet to the corner cabinet.  These through bolts do a great job of aligning the cabinets permanently though if you use a couple of clamps as suggested by the Ikea instructions.  Next I added the last corner cabinet and started to work on the lower cabinets that wouldn’t conflict with hanging more uppers.

CornerCabinet

There are a couple of things worth noting in the picture above.  I mounted 2x4s to the wall instead of the ikea supplied mouting boards to give the cabinet something more substantial to sit on.  Second, be careful about your wiring height. Notice how i had to interrupt the 2×4 several times.  It would have probably been easier to have the electrician raise the height of these outlets to somewhere inside the cabinet itself.  Third, you can’t spend enough time leveling that first cabinet in every direction possible using the adjustable feet supplied by Ikea.  This cabinet dictates the rest of your run so its quite important.  Fourth, a stud finder pays huge dividends as you need to mount the steel brackets in the upper back of the lower cabinets to studs or use really good anchors.  I used toggle bolts as they are generally the strongest (below).

toggle

I stopped for the day after putting up a few more of those lower runs:

IMG_0909

A Couple of comments here are:

(1) notice the two padded clamps used to clamp cabinets together.  These are hugely useful before drilling holes.

(2) notice the two drills. Its nice to not be changing between 3/8 drill bit and driver for attaching the cabinets. Saves lots of time.

Lastly, take lots of pictures…. just reviewing this I realized where the outlet is for my garbage disposal that I haven’t hooked up yet.  Right below that window divider.  Not sure how I missed that when mounting the sink cabinet.

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Next Step: Clear out and hang the upper cabinets

The first step that Ikea recommends is hanging the upper corner cabinets. But first… we had to clear the space:

Clear_the_room

The upper cabinets hang off of a slotted metal track. I brought our trusty Harbor Freight to the site and used it to cut the metal tracks to length. I used a 2×4 to support one end and cut it on the back of my pickup. Accuracy is not paramount here as the tracks don’t need to extend to the edge of the cabinet run. You can be short be at least an inch.

Cut_Tracks

Once the tracks are cut you insert the hardware so that when the tracks are mounted on the wall you just need to hang your cabinets off the bolts. I found it much easier to add the hardware on the ground before screwing the tracks into the studs with 2.5″ screws:

Slide_tracks

Finally, you mount the track on the wall. I used the Ikea recommended height for the track (can’t remember what that is plus about 2″ because we wanted more under cabinet space. In the interest of full disclosure… I used a rotary laser used for surveying to mark the entire run of cabinets. I realize not everyone will have one of these but a level should work just as well:

Rotary Laser

Next I put the first two tracks on the wall. This is necessary as you are supposed to start with the corner cabinet according to Ikea. I should point out that Ikea recommends two people for this job. The cabinet is not super light so its probably advisable although its possible with one person obviously.

track_on_wall

After all that… we now have a cabinet on the wall. You basically lift the cabinet onto the bolts. It will teeter there for a second so make sure you have the square washer and nuts in your pocket to secure the cabinet. I had to adjust the bolt location several times by sliding it in the track to get this first cabinet up. After that it was a breeze to measure bolt locations and add more cabinets. The last thing I want to point out is that it makes sense to put your upper cabinets up before the lowers so that you have room to walk and lift the uppers. If I had to do it again I think the only step I would add is cutting some 2×4 supports to set the cabinet on to help me position them.

first_cabinet

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Finally! Assemble the boxes

After all the planning and waiting for delivery, the fun of assembling the boxes was finally here. A crew of the most efficient people I know was critical: my wife, sister-in-law and mother-in-law. I offered Costco salad and wine as wages which seemed liked a pretty solid payback.

To pull together all of the parts we needed for each cabinet, we kept lists of our order (which includes all of the parts necessary for each cabinet by cabinet number) in the garage and would basically have one person pull together boxes while others assembled. Overall this was fairly easy as the parts became easier to identify after the 3rd or 4th box and the Ikea delivery guy seemed to actually do a good job of grouping parts at dropoff. It was definitely nice having the entire garage to lay out our parts:

garge full o cabinets

In order to increase efficiency we set up a large table and had several full sets of tools around the workstation so that we wouldn’t be bending over all day long. This included: pneumatic stapler, cordless power drill with hex bits, some mallets and lots of solid screw drivers. We were able to assemble all 14 boxes in a single morning with a quick break for lunch at the station below:
Boxes on the ground

Once the girls got going each box took about 15 minutes to assemble. You basically pull the tops and sides together with cam locks and then staple the back on. Additionally you attach some metal brackets to the sides for hanging the cabinets from the wall rails. After you have done one Ikea box you won’t need to read the instructions again except for maybe the corner cabinet which had a couple of extra steps. As you can see in the photo above we spent a little time positioning the cabinets on the floor to check the position and size vs our final dimensions. After all that planning I think we had at most .5″ of variance amongst the walls due to a miscalculation on my part relative to drywall thickness. Thus, I recommend measuring the actual site and not just relying on cad or plan dimensions.

We ran out of room quickly for working so we placed the remainder of the boxes in other rooms that we knew didn’t have much work going on during this phase of construction.

extra storage

Next time I’ll show how we attached the cabinets to the walls and started working on the island. Many thanks Holly, Wendy and Cheryl for their help during this stage!

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