IKEA hack: big wall unit to hide television

Our house has very high walls (all that plastering was haaard work!) and to be honest, we haven’t yet made the most of all that vertical space.

ikeadetail2Our living room wall is a good example of what could be done but hasn’t been done. A space and storage creating project was long overdue and therefore I was very happy that a recent trip to my sister’s fuelled our imagination once again. We went to Amsterdam to help my sister, who recently moved, install a very big IKEA Besta wall unit. We hadn’t before considered using any IKEA furniture for our future wall project but seeing how useful a starting point a decent IKEA installation can be, changed our mind.

My one requirement for this project: please hide the TV. Our house is small enough as it is and a big black surface on the wall certainly doesn’t help.

We ended up looking into a tv cabinet variation of IKEA’s Expedit called Lappland. We found a secondhand one online and although smoke stained (as we later found out!) it really was a bargain=more money to spend on the hack.

Impatient as we are, the evening after we picked it up from the other side of Holland, we started assembling it. Only after putting it up against our virginally white wall we were faced with a first hurdle: the entire cabinet was stained! The former owner’s nicotine laden fumes had completely penetrated the outer layer! yuk. I remembered having seen other people try to paint over plasticised IKEA units and so I gave it a go. After a wipe and a light sand obviously.

I used a white polyurethane and to my surprise, it stuck! wooah, that made SUCH a difference…


I don’t know if you can tell from this photo but the difference between the painted and old surface is considerable

We’re planning to use a combination of natural birch ply and white painted ply to turn this Lappland into a wall covering, tv hiding, storage providing masterpiece!


LOVE the combination of ply and white


a triple thickness should approach that of the Lappland / Expedit sides.


That’s where we’re at now


Not sure whether I like the doors inset. Maybe overlay?

Have a look.woodikea ikeadoor detailikea


Here’s my photoshop sketch of what we’d potentially want. Not sure about the combinaton of open and closed yet.


Here’s our old tv cabinet, I’d like to copy these legs onto our new hack.


When in doubt, use a scrap of paper!


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