Thinking outside the IKEA Box

I love IKEA.  I live about 10 minutes away from an IKEA, and I am pretty sure that when we first moved to this house, I was there every day for two weeks straight.  The furniture is so functional, modern, and affordable.  My house is a walking advertisement for IKEA.  But, when it came to my craft space, I knew I wanted to think outside the IKEA box.

When you type craft room organization into Pinterest, you will come across thousands of pictures of pristinely organized IKEA craft rooms.  They are gorgeous and beautiful, but eerily similar.  I do use IKEA furniture in my craft room for shelving and my desk, but I knew that to make the space feel like “me”, I would need to dig a little deeper to find unique character pieces that inspired me just as much as beautiful art supplies.  I scoured thrift stores, second hand shops, and out-of-the-way vintage country stores to collect pieces that suited my needs and also had a story to them.


The first piece I found also happens to be one of the signature pieces in my craft space.  This is a wooden card catalog that I believe was used in an office, based on the paper pieces I found inside.  It holds all kinds of small bits and embellishments from paper pieces, ribbon, and glitter.  The tiny drawers are removable and allow me to easily re-organize as I see fit.  I love it!


When I brought the card catalog home, I knew that I would need a stand of sorts for it to sit on.  I wanted it to be low profile, yet sturdy because the card catalog is extremely heavy.  After I gave him a few sketches and measurements, my husband created this stand for me and stained it this rich tone that coordinates with my custom pegboard.  These shelves are the perfect place to display my journaling Bibles, hymnal, art journals, and craft binders.  The bottom shelf holds my Jane Davenport Deep Sea Die-Cutting machine and a metal basket from Hobby Lobby where I store my dies (I only have a few!)


The card catalog came from the same little town that my rubber stamp storage came from.  It is a quaint little town named Luckett’s and is full of vintage shops where you get to dig deep to find treasures.  I do not have a large rubber stamp collection, and I love that they all fit in this antique letterpress holder.  I originally planned on spray painting this piece white, but the wood tones bring a lot of warmth to the room, so I left it as is.



I also don’t have a super large ink collection, but it is growing every month!  This piece was an awesome find at our local Salvation Army.  Originally for cassette tapes, my ink pads fit well in this character piece.  I looked online for ink pad storage and was SHOCKED at the cost of specialty designed storage solutions.  For $12, I certainly don’t mind that there is a little extra room around my Distress Oxides.  In fact, with the money I saved, maybe I can complete my collection!


The more that I can see my supplies, the more likely I am to use them.  I am a pen and marker enthusiast, so I wanted a storage solution that would keep them close at hand.  I purchased all of these glass vases at my local Dollar Tree, and they rest at the back of my desk against the window.  My markers and pens are not only corralled, but they are organized and right at my fingertips.  Dollar Tree is a wonderful option for cheap storage solutions!  Many of the pieces I have found at Dollar Tree are easily customized and provide the perfect storage.  Check out other deals I have found at Dollar Tree here —> Sunday Secret #2 – The 5 Crafty Things You Should be Buying from Dollar Tree

Die-cuts are also something that I use on a daily basis.  For the collections I work with in my Bible, I like to have them grouped by devotional and company.  The clear piece pictured above is actually an earring organizer that I picked up for $2 at a community garage sale.  I added thin pieces of clear acrylic to create sturdy shelves, and I use it to store my current die cut pieces.  I collect trinket trays from Hobby Lobby and Michaels as they go on clearance, and I love the pops of color they add!  Plus, it is so easy to pull a trinket tray onto my desk when I am working on a particular devotional.


Of course, the most unique piece in my craft room is my custom pegboard, built by my husband and decoupaged with tissue paper and a large Jane Davenport rub-on.  You can find out all the details about this gorgeous piece here —> The Ultimate Crafty Pegboard

My craft room inspires me and lifts my spirits every single time I walk in!  IKEA is a wonderful, affordable resource, but I challenge you to think outside the IKEA box.  Spend some time collecting unique pieces that will make your craft area feel like you!  While the storage pieces I have from IKEA are very functional, it is these special pieces that bring warmth and character into my space.

What are some of the special pieces that you use in your craft space?  Are you a thrift store hunting pro, or do you prefer the clean lines of IKEA furniture?  Let me know in the comments below!

Keep it creative,

-The Scrappy Wife

Published by Elisa

I'm a mom of 3 who loves all things creative! My current passion is bible journaling, a creative outlet that has really shaped my faith journey. I'm also excited about diving into some memory-keeping projects and dabbling in a bit of art journaling.

6 thoughts on “Thinking outside the IKEA Box

  1. What’s nice about this space is it’s truly personalized to your needs and tastes, you’ve done a really good job. Oh and by the way, I’m green with envy I’ve that card catalog find!

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