Here’s a DIY Ikea kitchen island I built out of butcher block counter top and base cabinets. The design is simple and does not require expert carpentry skills. If you can use a screw gun, and a circular saw you can build this.
How To Build An Ikea Kitchen Island:
The first step is to determine what type of countertop. Ikea has several types of butcher block counter top available. This is an oak wood top, but you may prefer another style. Oak does have some open grain to it, woods such as maple or birch have a tighter grain. Some people think the open grain can catch more stains, etc. but I’m fine with the oak.
The length of your Ikea kitchen island determines which butcher block to purchase. Right now Ikea sells two lengths, 74″ and 98″. You can easily cut these down to whatever size you need. Cutting the length shorter is easy with a circular saw.
If you need to make the counter top narrower, you will need to do what is called a rip cut, which is harder to do with a circular saw. If you don’t use the correct saw blade, you can start to burn the wood while cutting it. Pay attention to which side is marked “DOWN” that side faces down.
What do you want under the counter? For this project, we put in a dishwasher and two base cabinets with a top drawer and 2 door cabinets. Ikea is very modular, and with a mix of different cabinets, you can get pretty close to your ideal.
Screw the base cabinets together in 3 or 4 places. Drill pilot holes so the cabinet wood doesn’t crack. 3/4″ screws work well. Ikea gives you some screws to join cabinets, but they are difficult to use, I think.
To finish off the back sides of the cabinets, you can buy a sheet of backing material from Ikea. You will have to cut this to length, take your time and be careful. Put down blue masking tape right over where your cut line will occur, and mark the cut line on the tape. The tape helps make it a clean cut.
Be sure to seal the butcher block before installing it. We use the sealer from Ikea, and give it several coats, top, sides and bottom. If you are putting a dishwasher under the top, put some extra sealer in the area above where the dishwasher will go. Your dishwasher will come with a foil strip, attach this to the underside of the counter top where the vents of the dishwasher will be located. The strip helps keep the moisture from the dishwasher affecting the butcher block.
There will be some angle brackets in the box with the counter top to secure it to the base cabinets, screw these into the solid parts of the cabinets and then into the counter top.
You cant’ see it in the photos, but I bought some white outside corner molding to cover up where the cabinet backing meets the side of the cabinet. Tack it on with several small nails.
Buy the adjustable floor levelers for the base cabinets, this makes it much easier to level the kitchen island. Best to do this with the counter top in place, the weight of the top helps make it all solid. So there you go, an Ikea kitchen island you can DIY.