11 IKEA Hacks To Turn Your Backyard Into A Summer Oasis

Published On 06/15/2015 Published On 06/15/2015

It's no guarded secret that IKEA's extensive catalog is ripe for reinvention. Laptop table turned old-school bar cart? Check. Spice rack bathroom caddies? Totally a thing. If you can dream it, IKEA can help you achieve it. And as it turns out, the reimagining isn't just limited to the indoors.

We've uncovered 11 ingenious ways to transform everything from bed frames to filing cabinets into one-of-a-kind benches, fences, grills, and more for your backyard.

1. The filing cabinet grill

Price: $65
Materials Needed: FINTORP rail and hooks, KONCIS roasting pan, HELMER drawer unit
How It's Done: Assemble the HELMER unit as usual, cutting a rectangle roughly the size of the roasting pan into the top. Cut a few holes in the roasting pan and slide it in the first drawer (it will act as the coal catcher), then prop the mesh grill from the pan up through the hole, bending to shape if necessary. Finally, after you've fastened the rail and hooks to the side, burn the hell out of the whole rig before cooking any actual food in order to strip away any toxic chemical/paint/metal fumes. [See more]

2. Rolling patio table with storage

Price: $100
Materials Needed: 3 EKBY MOSSBY shelves, LACK side table, DRONA storage box
How It's Done: Fashion a weatherproof lounge table by replacing the top of a rolling LACK side table with a series of three EKBY MOSSBY stainless steel shelves you've attached with Liquid Nails. Slide in a storage box underneath to stash bug spray/board games/booze, and you're in business. [See more]

3. Sun-blocking pergola shades

Price: $42
Materials Needed: DYNING canopy, DIGNITET curtain wire, SYRLIG curtain rings
How It's Done: Give yourself a break from the rays when with this special sun-blocking setup, which essentially acts like a horizontal window shade that can be drawn or opened with the flick of your hand. BYO pergola. [See more]

4. The bed frame bench

Price: $230
Materials Needed: 1 HEMNES bed frame, screws, wood glue, paint (optional)
How It's Done: Slightly less complex than the bed frame-based sofa described above, this one involves cutting the footboard of the HEMNES in half, attaching them as sides, and creating a seat from the slates. [See more]

5. The glassed-in porch

Price: $22 per foot
Materials Needed: TORSBY kitchen table tops, steel angle brackets 
How It's Done: Create a sophisticated glass fence around your porch for a fraction of what it would cost to have a professional do it by repurposing dining table tops. Secure the readymade sheets of tempered glass between tall L-shaped steel angle brackets mounted to the deck, then sit back and bask in full view of unobstructed nature. [See more]

6. The mix-and-match modern trellis

Price: $85
Materials Needed: HJÄLMAREN towel holder, rust-proof nails
How It's Done: While the CD/DVD storage racks shown in the above photo are no longer carried by IKEA, their slightly larger towel holders will do the trick just as well. Secure one or multiple to the fence or wall of your choice and slowly thread your favorite vine-prone greenery through the rungs. [See more]

7. The outdoor bed-turned-sofa

Price: $220
Materials Needed: FJELLSE bed frames, SULTAN LADE bed base, MOSHULT foam mattress, ULLKAKTUS pillows, sheet of plywood, weatherproof wood stain
How It's Done: Assemble one bed, affixing the headboards on either side. You'll have two end pieces and two side pieces left over, which you'll then use to fashion a backrest along with custom cut sections of the plywood. Secure the bed base, and stain the whole thing. Then, once it dries, drop the mattress and pillows in place and proceed to lounging. [See more]

8. Plant pot patio lights

Price: $21
Materials Needed: 3 SOCKER pots, 3 HEMMA cord sets
How It's Done: Tap the pre-perforated drainage holes in the bottom of three SOCKER pots in the color(s) of your choice, thread a HEMMA cord through each, and hang them in a bunch with each tiered slightly below the other. If you're feeling ambitious, paint them a custom color and rough 'em up a bit to give the fixture a more distressed look. [See more]

9. The tall wall hanging garden

Price: $50
Materials Needed: 6 SOCKER plant pots, 4 BESTÅENDE flatware caddies, 2 GRUNDTAL rails, 1 GRUNDTAL towel holder, 10 GRUNDTAL S-hooks, 1 ROTERA lamp
How It's Done: The vertically mounted GRUNDTAL hanger shown in this photo is no longer in production, but you can achieve the same effect mounting the swiveling towel holder in its place. Once you've got all three rails mounted to your wall of choice, plant or transfer your greenery into the pots and caddies and arrange in whatever way you like, with the lantern in the middle to illuminate the spread to full effect at night. [See more]

10. The daybed fence

Price: $400
Materials Needed: SVELVIK daybed frame
How It's Done: Rather than assemble the bed frame as instructed, take the three sides and line them end to end in the section of yard you'd like to sequester. To make it permanent, dig a half-foot trench and fill in the dirt around the main posts and bottom edges so it's solid and sturdy. [See more]

11. Hang anywhere lanterns

Price: $12 each
Materials Needed: EKBY HÅLL bracket, BORRBY candle lantern, votive candles
How It's Done: Mount a series of these simple lantern setups to add some flickering mood lighting that looks a little more sophisticated than a crude fence of tiki torches. [See more]

Joe McGauley is a senior editor at Supercompressor, and will eagerly try most if not all of these out as soon as scores a backyard.

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