I intend to write in the future about unique or unexpected items that can be found at Ikea, but this article is specifically about a DIY project that can be made from Ikea fabric. So first, did you even know that Ikea had fabric? They have a wide range of sheer white fabrics and colorful, graphic prints that are reasonably priced—from $1.29/yard to $8.99/yard for plastic coated fabric. I chose a black and white graphic fabric ($5.99/yard) to make three panels to hang in my Ikea and antique-inspired living room. Since this was so easy and I am very pleased with the result, I thought I would share the step by step directions.
The material and tool list is very simple. Once you select your fabric at Ikea it is a self-serve process to cut it. They have the tools and tags to cut and mark your purchase. I bought one and a half yards of fabric to make three 14 inch wide by 24 inch tall panels. This might seem like an excessive amount of fabric, but as you will see in the directions you need an additional four inches beyond your finished artwork size to wrap the frame. My fabric was a one yard repeat, which I expect is common for their patterns and should be taken into consideration when deciding the final size of your panels. The comprehensive materials list includes:
- 1.5 yards fabric, minimum
- 2-8 foot pieces of 1″x2″ pine
- Thin batting (optional)
- Corner brackets
- Staple gun and staples
Step One: Trim your Ikea fabric to the height of the size of the desired finished product plus four inches. Repeat patterns are often a mirror image on the total width. I cut about 28”, so that after wrapping the fabric on the frame I still had some of the blank space at the top of my artwork.
Step Two: Cut the Ikea fabric in thirds lengthwise. In my case with the 1.5 yards of fabric I had three half yard pieces. They were specifically 28 inches high by 18 inches wide. If using batting, you should also cut three pieces of batting the same size as the fabric.
Step Three: Cut the pine into frame pieces. I mitered my corners, which since this is hidden is not absolutely necessary, but I feel it makes it stronger. So based on the 18” x 28” fabric, the point on the miters should measure 24” on the height side and 14” on the top/bottom. In all you need six pieces of each size. Tip: Cut two at a time so you know they are the exact same length and will create a perfect square, and keep the matched pairs together. Alternate: You can use straight cuts, in which case cut six 18” pieces and six 21” pieces. You can even get the lumber store to cut this for you.
Step Four: Lay out the frame pieces into a rectangle with true square corners. If you want to be precise you should use a carpenter’s square or some other guide, but this isn’t rocket science. The wood should automatically square up pretty well. One exception is if you are using a square geometric pattern you might want this to be more exact.
Step Six: (Optional) On a flat surface lay out the batting and center the frame (with corner brackets facing up) on top of it. Stretch the batting around the frame and secure it with the staple gun in the center of each side. Miter the corners by folding the tip of the batting toward the center of the frame and staple to the frame. Then fold the sides over the edge and staple securely over the top of the mitered corner. (See picture.) Continue stretching and stapling around all four edges of the frame. Repeat for each frame.
Step Seven: Repeat Step Six with the Ikea fabric, placing the fabric right-side down on the flat surface and laying the frame, batting side down, on the wrong side (side without the pattern) of the fabric. Secure the fabric around the frame on each of the three frames.
In all, this project took less than an hour and cost less than $20. Not bad for art hanging in my entryway. Let me know your thoughts!