Ikea Cabinets Oh, How I Love Thee!

No kidding! I really love our Ikea cabinets. My contractor installed them in 2015 and we are almost to 2020 and we STILL think it is the BEST decision we made when we remodeled the house. We still LOVE them.

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Quick Ikea Cabinet product review from someone who has owned them for going on 5 years.


- Affordable

- Durable

- More Bang for your Buck (more bells & whistles, accessories & upgrades that traditional cabinets don't have)

- Modular so if you need to replace only a door, you can order only a door

- Soft close sturdy hinges for both doors and drawers

- Laminate is thicker than most box store cabinets

- Easy to clean inside and out

- Style options are pleasing to the eye and numerous

- Full extension drawers including (but not limited to) drawers for pots & pans and dishes

- Cabinets go to the ceiling (at least my 8 ft ceilings)

- Metal stabilizers for the drawers and lower sink and cook-top cabinets

- Online kitchen design software works well through the Ikea site



You have to assemble them (unless you pay someone to do it for you)

- Ordering can be daunting if you don't know what you are doing since every pieces-part is sold separately

- If you don't live near an Ikea, shipping can be quite expensive - Pick these puppies up, if you can

If you would like to read my March 2015 blog post about my cabinet adventure that brought me to Ikea Cabinets, you can read it here.

TIPS for Ikea Cabinet Potential Owners:

  1. Ikea typically has kitchen cabinet sales twice a year; Spring and Fall. We took FULL advantage of their Spring sale in 2015. That saved us 20%, which really helped the bottom line budget. If you are thinking about using Ikea for your kitchen remodel, try to time it so that you can take advantage of the savings.

  2. If you are in the Nashville, TN area, I HIGHLY recommend a company called ModerNash. Nick Ray owns ModerNash and is a great guy. Actually, back in the day, Nick rented space from me in my YouNeedADrink.com warehouse when he was first getting his company off the ground (YouNeedADrink.com is a business I still own after 19 years. I'll speak more about that another time). ModerNash will help you design your kitchen, order your cabinets, pick up your cabinets from the closest Ikea, assemble you cabinets, and yes, they also have installation services. They are experts in all things Ikea and when it comes to making sure you order the correct parts and aren't left in a bind, call Nick.

  3. If you aren't in the Nashville, TN area, are not close to an Ikea but still want to give it a go......CALL IKEA DIRECTLY AND GET HELP. I can't stress this enough. Ikea cabinets are great, but there are a ton of parts you need to assemble each cabinet. That means each part has to be ordered separately. GET HELP!

  4. You will also need extra hands if you choose to DIY the assembly of the cabinets. Enlist friends, family, strangers on the street....hire help......do what you can to get MORE HANDS TO HELP. This is not really a one woman/man job. It can be, don't get me wrong, but it will take forever and a day and you will more than likely want to run away from home. One girl's opinion and probably an exaggeration on your propensity to escape, but not really.

  5. If you bravely decide to assemble these cabinets, HAVE PATIENCE!!!! I can't tell you how important PATIENCE is to this process. Patience, is not one of my virtues and I DO NOT normally shine in the glow of patience. However, I found it when I needed it. You will need it. Find it, or pay someone to assemble them for you. Trust me here, your mental health will be brighter and tighter if you take a deep breath and do one thing at a time; taking your time.

  6. We found that using a cordless drill DID NOT ALWAYS HELP. We had one laying around, but Ikea has their own fastening system. In addition, you have to be VERY careful with the power of your drill. You can easily go too far with a screw. Most of these pieces had to be SNUG but not too TIGHT.

  7. READ THE DIRECTIONS. READ THE DIRECTIONS. READ THE DIRECTIONS. I'm not kidding. When assembling things from Ikea READ THE DAMN DIRECTIONS. Can't stress this enough. If you feel your reading comprehension is not up to par, or you are too cool for directions and think reading directions is for FOOLS, CRY BABIES, AND HIPPIE DEMOCRATS.....READ THE FUCKING DIRECTIONS ANYWAY AND FOLLOW EVERY DETAIL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You're Welcome!

Now, on to our Ikea cabinet adventure:

I hired ModerNash to order the cabinets and pick them up from the Atlanta Ikea. Back in 2015, the Memphis Ikea was not opened. We worked closely with Nick to help make sure our design was going to work. I did the bulk of the design work online using Ikea's online design tools. I then gave Nick the plan and he refined it for me. We did get an estimate from ModerNash to assemble the cabinets for us, but our budget was just too tight. In retrospect, I would HIGHLY recommend budgeting for Nick to handle it all. Yes, it isn't cheap, but you know.....he's worth it.

Here's the other reason: assembling a kitchen full of cabinets can be overwhelming. There is a fair bit of organization that needs to happen. You need to take your packing list, your design and your original order to make sure you get the right parts with the right cabinets. You need INDOOR SPACE to do this. Luckily for us, we had the empty den (the den with the "wet water" walls) and our downstairs bedroom to devote to the big-ass assembly line. We were not living in this house while it was being gutted and remodeled, hence we could make space easier than folks who are trying to live in the house as the kitchen is remodeled (BLESS those folks. They are MUCH better people than I am).

Lucky for me, my sister came in town to help with both the house we were selling and the house we were remodeling. Although our relationship is currently extremely strained, and we don't always see eye to eye about most things in life (a journal entry for another time), Glenda really helped us during this time. Glenda is the queen of manual labor. She is strong as an ox and willing to do anything physical. She was a great help to us during this time.

Here are some pictures of the Ikea Cabinet Festival

(I'm not sure why, but there are not many photos of us assembling the cabinets. According to dates on the few pictures I can find, the Ikea cabinet assembly took place from around 5/30/2015 - 6/16/15. 6/16/15 was when the first cabinet was placed in the kitchen. During this time the kitchen floor went in (6/3/15) and floors were refinished. My guess is I was overwhelmed with the kitchen floor (blog post here), refinishing the den walls and the other eleventy billion things I was doing. My bad ;-) )

Photos: L-R, T-B:

1.) Ken working on one of the 4 large pantry cabinets, 2.) Ken working on one of the lower drawer cabinets, 3.) Tools of the trade and one of the four Kobalt ratcheting screwdrivers I bought for us along with one of the many instruction pages, 4.) Assembled cabinets in the middle of the den project.

I designed our kitchen and cabinets choices in a manner that would not suit many folks. I have white cabinets on one side of the kitchen and black cabinets on the other side. WHY??? Thanks for asking. Because Ken wanted BLACK cabinets and I wanted WHITE cabinets. So I split it down the middle. Since we partially removed the divider wall between the kitchen and completely removed the dining room walls thereby making more of an open concept, I knew that the black cabinets would transition well into the living area. I was correct. They work really well and we are very happy with the choice.

Another design choice that was VERY important to me, LOWER CABINETS ARE WIDE CABINETS WITH 2 - 3 DEEP DRAWERS. With the exception of the sink cabinet, which is a standard box cabinet, I stuck to my goal. I wanted all my dishes and pots and pans etc in DRAWERS. The thing about this house and this whole downsizing adventure is, we plan on dying in this house. At the time, both of us were in our 50's by the time we did this, so I knew that it would be easier to remove heavy pots and pans and dishes from a drawer instead of getting on my hands and knees to dig for needed pots in a big-ass box type cabinet or lifting stacks of dishes up to my head to place in an upper cabinet. As we age, this feature will be even more important. I wanted to completely re-think the whole kitchen and the way I work in it. Again, along with the cabinet choices, another BEST DECISION I EVER MADE.

Here are some photos of the kitchen before the #kitchenremodel. This is as it was when renters lived in it (right after my mother-in-law moved out). This was just before #demoday in March, 2015. The tenants painted the dark (dirty dark walnut) cabinets gray and white: gray for the bottom cabinets and white for the top. They also removed the cabinet doors of the top cabinets. This actually helped this little kitchen, although my mother-in-law did not approve of the change since she loved her little kitchen and thought it was beautiful the way it was.

Photos L-R, T-B (Despite the copyright date on the photos, these were taken 3/11/15):

1.) Standing in the breakfast nook area looking into the kitchen, 2, 3, & 4.) Standing in the kitchen footprint looking toward the back of the house (kitchen window overlooks backyard), 5.) Standing in the kitchen footprint, directly across from the sink and dishwasher, the stove cook top and wall oven (fridge to the right), 6.) Wider view from the breakfast area you see the fridge, pantry, and oven (FYI, we kept the footprint of the kitchen and just took partially took down the wall to the point where the wall oven stood. We also removed the pantry.), 7.) inside the tiny pantry, 8.) Close-up of the iron railing that enclosed and separated the breakfast area from the den, 9.) View into the den (before the make-over) from the breakfast area, 10.) Close up of the counter tops. Marble like Formica/laminate, 11.) The breakfast area window overlooking the area where the package HVAC unit stood (see this blog post for details of that adventure)

Here are some photos of the cabinets as they were when I started loading them with our dishes, cooking tools, and other paraphernalia and then organizing them:

L-R, T-B

1.) Blurry image of the first cabinet that was temporarily set so we could figure out the half wall and the spacing of the black cabinets on the "stove side", 2.) Sean and Jason bringing in either a stainless steel counter top, or an Ikea large panel through our newly installed carport door. This area was a solid wall with no door before. Sean cut a door so that we didn't have to get wet when entering from the carport, 3.) Movers delivering our refrigerator on one of the moving days (7/11/19). You can see the black cabinets with the large drawers on the left and the white cabinets on the right, 4.) Our gas range and vent on the black cabinet side, 5, 6, 7) The storage bench between the white cabinets (tying the black and white together). This is built with a slab from Ikea of the same material as the black cabinets. The lid of the bench is edged with aluminum corner pieces. This was a stylish solution. We mixed metals in the whole house with wood. I love metal and wood together, 8.) White drawer cabinets before the bench was completed, 9.) A look at the white and black Ikea cabinets on moving day. This area was where the old dining room was. The wall was removed between the kitchen and the dining room as well as the dining room and the living room, 10.) A close-up of the stainless steel countertops in the area of the dining room (too big white cabinets connected by lower cabinets create a buffet of sorts), 11.) We did a drop in stainless steel sink into the stainless steel counter tops, 12, 13, 14.) Beginning of the organization of my dish drawers. I purchased 2 sets of Rev-A-Shelf from Amazon along with extra wood pegs for the system. Here is a double set that was not available when I bought them. I have included some affiliate links to the system like what I bought (remember as an Amazon associate, I earn from some of the links...like those for Rev-a-shelf), 15.) Ken on the day his pool table was delivered. You can see that the stove vent was not installed yet. Yes, I bought that on Amazon too. I can't find the exact one we bought, which is fine. We aren't that impressed with the performance. It works fine, but it isn't something we freely recommend. Here is one that may do the trick. I will say, that it is VITALLY important to read the reviews when buying this type of appliance online. If I had to do it over again, I would have done my best to spend more and buy it locally. Yes....I know that doesn't go with providing a link online but I want to be honest and give you options, 16.) The cabinets on the white side. The doors to the trash area and the sink had yet to be installed. It is a messy area because these were taken on one of the moving days, 17, 18, 19, 20.) The Ikea cabinets with deep drawers can be ordered with hidden interior drawers. I LOVE this set up. This is where I have my silverware, cooking utensils, and spices. Have I said I LOVE MY IKEA CABINETS??? I do, 21 & 22.) We ordered the stainless steel like toe kicks for the cabinets from Ikea. These are plastic. Since I don't pay much attention to toe kicks on cabinets, they are perfectly fine and fairly durable. However, if I had the budget, I think I would have had toe kicks made of real stainless steel like the cabinets. But that budget was blown by many other things. So these toe kicks are really, really fine with us. This also shows a close-up of my kitchen floors that were a labor of love. I will write a post about those later.

There you have it. Ikea cabinets are great. I am a fan.

That is all.

Carry on.

Amazon Disclosure:

Marla Sanderson/SockOnARooster.com

is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

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