This Genius IKEA BESTA Cabinet Hack Creates a Daybed Out of Thin Air

published Dec 14, 2022
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Credit: Erin Derby

Whether you’ve lived in New York City, visited a friend there, or just seen pictures of it, you likely know the rental market there is… tough. Spaces that wouldn’t ordinarily suffice for one human, let alone two, in other places are considered luxurious by NYC standards, particularly if an apartment has more than one room. Take Brendan Dugan and Kiersten Krog‘s place on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, for example. The apartment is only 450 square feet, but it’s actually considered a two bedroom, thanks to the two tiny rooms connected to the main living space. Since the couple only had so much space to work with, they decided to turn the second little bedroom into a “library,” which houses a good chunk of Krog’s book collection and functions as a reading, relaxing, and working space.

Credit: Erin Derby

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“The light that comes in through the large east-facing windows is wonderful, and it’s the perfect room for both of us to hang out and read, or cuddle with Lottie,” says Krog of the library. “We have most of our houseplants in that room, too, which gives it a very lively feeling. I also love watching the bluejays and mourning doves through the window when they stop by.” In order to enjoy all those benefits of this teeny-tiny room though, they had to get creative with seating and storage.

“I built the daybed in our library from two IKEA cabinets and a cushion from Urban Outfitters,” says Krog. “It not only provides extra seating to the room but also adds lots of storage underneath.” Two white lacquered BESTA units put together indeed make the perfect little storage and reading nook and can even function as a guest sleeping area if need be. The couple made the makeshift daybed even cozier with a bunch of throw pillows and blankets — the ideal place to read and listen to the birds from outside the window.

The assembly might be the best part, too: All you have to do is build the IKEA cabinets as you normally would, screw the units together (if you like), and then top the entire piece with the floor cushion for extra padding. Pretty genius and super-easy, if you ask me, and honestly, a lot cheaper than buying a “designated” daybed from a store, where they always seem to be at least $800 dollars, even though they’re really only twin beds with fancier frames.