3 Easy IKEA Storage Hacks For Kids

I’m a huge fan of IKEA and I love a good hack, so I thought I’d put together my 3 favourite IKEA storage hacks using Austin & Monkey furniture stencils. I used a small foam roller to apply all the paint on all 3 pieces of storage.

Storage Hack 1 - 

First is the Lixhult cabinet. I love the shape and simplicity of this cabinet (and the huge storage space inside), but the grey colour left me feeling flat. You could paint the cabinet before putting it together, but I built our cabinet first and then painted it, which I found easier to do. 


IKEA Lixhult Cabinet & Austin & Monkey Starry Night Stencils

I didn’t have time to prime the cabinet, so I used a standard white eggshell as a base. It needed 3 coats to cover it and I used a small foam roller to apply the paint, which went on really easily. Make sure that each layer is completely dry before applying the next! You don’t want the base layer to come off when you peel the stencils off later.


I then applied the star Austin & Monkey furniture stencils. You get a lot in a pack, so one pack was more than enough. Make sure to peel them off carefully and use a piece of card (or old credit card) to smooth them out. I peeled away a very small part of the backing, stuck that small section on to the cabinet and then slowly stuck the rest down whilst pulling the backing off, continually smoothing it down as I went. You don’t want any bubbles and you need to make sure the edges are all stuck down very well so that none of the top coat of paint bleeds in. I I had some of the stencils overlap the gap around the cabinet and I just left them whole when I painted over them.

After applying the stencils, I then used the same matte emulsion I used on the walls in my daughter’s room on top. The colour I used is called Cracked Clay 1 by Dulux, which I had colour matched by The Decorating Centre Online. Again, I used the small foam roller to apply the paint and it took 3 coats. Again, let each layer dry before applying the next!


I peeled away the stencils VERY carefully when the paint was completely dry. I didn’t varnish my cabinet, as I will probably change the colour of it again. Even without varnish, it has held up very well to being used by a toddler and has no scratches on it. However, I would recommend varnishing it if you have the time and inclination!


What You'll Need -

  1. Lixhult Cabinet
  2. Small foam roller
  3. White egghshell paint
  4. Dusky pink emulsion paint
  5. Austin & Monkey Furniture stencils - starry night pack

Storage Hack 2

Next up is the Ikea Ivar cabinet. I love this wooden cabinet - it’s so spacious inside and can hold an enormous amount of books and hideous plastic toys!

The large expanse of the natural wood cabinet was a bit overbearing in my youngest daughter’s small nursery, but I wanted to keep a little bit of it, so I decided not to do a base coat on the Ivar. That way, some of the natural wood would still be showing when I peeled the stencils off.


IKEA Ivar Cabinet & Austin & Monkey Jungle Leaves Stencils

I applied the stencils carefully (see hints and tips above on how to apply them) and also placed some over the gap in the doors so the overall finished look is more natural. I used one pack on this cabinet, but if you were doing the sides and top as well you might need two packs.

I then applied the emulsion paint over the top of the stencils and on to the wooden cabinet using a small foam roller. I didn’t use an undercoat, but the paint took to the cabinet really well. I only did two coats of the paint as I wanted a little of the wood grain to show through. I only painted the front of our cabinet, but you could do the sides and top as well. If you’re just painting the front like I did, you could use masking tape on the edges to keep them neat.


Wait until the paint is dry and then peel off the stencils very slowly and carefully. Again, I didn’t varnish the cabinet afterwards, but you could do!

What You'll Need -

  1. Ivar Cabinet
  2. Austin & Monkey Furniture stencils - jungle leaves set
  3. Magic Touch paint by Valspar
  4. Small foam roller

Storage Hack 3 -

Finally I wanted to give a makeover to our little Flisat toy trolley. We’d had the trolley for a while and it’s very useful, but I hated the bright green wheels!

I love the scallop trend in nurseries and children’s bedrooms at the moment, so I decided to go with the scallop stencils set.


IKEA Flisat Toy Storage & Austin & Monkey Scallops Stencils

First I used frog tape around the edge of the front of the trolley, as I didn’t want to paint the sides. Then I gave the front 3 coats of the white eggshell paint using a small foam roller to apply it.


The stencils didn’t quite reach to the end of the toy trolley, so I had to use two strips for each set of scallops. There were still plenty in one pack for this project. I measured 8cm down from the top of the trolley and made a mark with the pencil. I did this at three points along the trolley. I then drew a line along those points and checked it was straight with the spirit level. Then I carefully stuck the scallop decal on so that the bottom of the decal was on the marked line. I put another decal on next to it and overlapped them slightly so that the scallops matched up. I then measured another 8cm down from the bottom of that decal and repeated the steps above for the next three lines of scallops.


Once they were all smoothed down properly, I did two coats of the Little Greene emulsion paint over top. When the last coat of that was completely dry, I carefully peeled away the stencils. The Flisat did need a little touching up with a small brush afterwards, but I think that’s because I didn’t let the white undercoat paint dry enough before applying the stencils!

I also applied 3 coats of the white eggshell paint to the green on the wheels of the trolley. I used a small paint brush and had to have a very steady hand! Again, I didn’t prime the wheels before painting or varnish them afterwards, but they have already scratched a little, so I would definitely recommend at least varnishing them!

What You'll Need - 

  1. Flisat Toy Storage
  2. Tape Measure
  3. Small spirit level
  4. Pencil
  5. Austin & Monkey Furniture stencils - scallops set
  6. White Eggshell paint
  7. Small foam roller
  8. Gauze Deep paint by Little Greene
  9. Frog tape

I hope you found those little Ikea hacks useful - do leave a comment below if you have tried any of them!

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