Before & After: Kristen's Seating Area

I live in a rental rowhome in South Philadelphia and if you've ever had the pleasure of stepping foot in one — you know how narrow they can be. My home is very narrow and my fiance and I entertain quite often. We're always running out of seating for our guests, so we decided to fix up a discontinued IKEA cabinet into a bench and cover up our unsightly thermostat.

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I didn't have a picture of the seating area before I made the cushion, but it looked very bare with too much unused space

To cover the thermostat, we took one of our prints from our favorite local shop, Awesome Dudes Printing and framed it in a simple IKEA RIBBA frame and picked up small hinges from our local Lowe's. We drilled the hinges onto the back side of the frame and then drilled the hinged frame onto the wall so the frame would then swing open. We were nervous about the weight pulling the hinges from the wall — so we attached a small piece of wood to the wall so the frame would be supported when closed over the thermostat.

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With two small hinges from our local Lowe's, we were able to cover up our unsightly thermostat!

Next, we needed to tackle the seating so we picked up a piece of thin plywood with the same dimensions as the IKEA cabinet, SOFIA fabric, spray mount and cushion foam. We sprayed the top of the plywood and the bottom of the cushion foam with spray mount and attached the two, allowing them to sit for 20 minutes to ensure a secure bond. Then we wrapped the cushion and plywood much like we would a present, stapling the fabric on the underside of the wood.

To paint the discontinued IKEA cabinet, we used Valspar Interior-Exterior Bonding Primer and then finished the job with several coats of Valspar Interior Semi-Gloss Finish Standard Paint.

All in all, the process was extremely simple and could easily have been completed in a weekend or even a day!

Images: Kristen Lubbe