How to Make Ikea Cabinets Look Built in

Making IKEA cabinets look like they are built-in can be a great way to upgrade your kitchen or bathroom without breaking the bank. Many people think of IKEA as only for those on a budget, but you can make their products look high-end with simple steps. With the right techniques, you can create an amazing, built-in look for your cabinetry.

How to Make Ikea Cabinets Look Built in

The advantages of making Ikea cabinets look built-in are that it is a relatively inexpensive and easy way to achieve a custom, high-end look in any space. Installing Ikea cabinets as if they were built into the wall can give any room an updated and modern feel without breaking the bank. In this blog post, You will learn in detail how to make ikea cabinets look built in.

Step by Step Processes for How to Make Ikea Cabinets Look Built in

Step 1: Inspect Your Cabinets

Before you begin the transformation, ensure your cabinets are in good condition. Check for any major scratches, dents, or other damage that may need to be repaired prior to starting the project. Removing the hardware from each door and drawer will create a sleek and modern look. Use a screwdriver to remove the screws from each handle and set them aside.

Step 2: Clean and Sand Your Cabinets

Use a damp cloth to clean away dust, dirt, and grease. Then lightly sand the outside of your cabinets with fine-grit sandpaper to create an even surface for painting or staining. You can choose to either paint or stain your cabinets. If you’d like a more natural finish, try staining the wood with a protective sealer to prevent damage from moisture and other elements.

Step 3: Install Trim Pieces

Installing trim pieces is easy to make your cabinets look custom-built and more substantial. Use a miter saw to cut the pieces to size, then attach them using wood glue. Installing crown molding above your cabinets will give them an even more polished and luxurious look. Measure the length of each cabinet’s sides, then cut the molding to size with a miter saw.

Step 4: Install Cabinet Lighting

Installing lighting inside and outside your cabinets adds a unique touch and makes them appear more custom-made. You can opt for both LED strips or individual puck lights depending on how much light you want in your space.

Adding decorative molding to the sides and front of your cabinets will give them a more finished look. Measure the area where you’ll be installing it, then cut and attach it using wood glue or nails.

Installing Lighting Inside and Outside Your Cabinets

Step 5: Paint or Stain Cabinets

Once all of the trims and molding are in place, you’re ready to apply your chosen finish. Paint or stain your cabinets as desired and allow them to dry completely before moving on to the next step. Finally, reattach all of the handles that were removed earlier. Use a screwdriver to secure each handle in its original spot, and your Ikea cabinets will look like they were custom-built just for you.

These steps aim to help you transform plain-looking Ikea cabinets into a stylish and sophisticated set that looks professional and custom-built.

Tips for How to Make Ikea Cabinets Look Built in

  1. Always use safety glasses when operating power tools and saws.
  2. Wear closed-toe shoes and gloves to prevent potential lacerations from sharp edges or splinters.
  3. Keep fingers away from the blade while cutting, nailing, stapling, or drilling with a power tool.
  4. Ensure that the work area is well-ventilated, especially when using paint or glue.
  5. Disconnect power tools before adjusting blade depth or changing bits/blades.
  6. Keep children and pets away from the workspace while construction is in progress.
  7. Use proper lifting techniques to avoid strain injuries when carrying large pieces of cabinetry material.
  8. Always read the instructions for any tools or cabinetry materials before use to ensure proper usage and safety precautions are taken.

By following these tips, you can ensure a smoother and safer experience for your Ikea cabinet project. With the right techniques and materials, you will surely create stunning built-in cabinets that will last for years.

What Types of Ikea Cabinets Are Best for Achieving a Built-in Look? 

If you want to make Ikea cabinets look built-in, then the type of cabinet that works best for this purpose is a full-height kitchen cabinet. This can be either a wall or base cabinet, and it should have doors that fit flush with the walls. If you are using existing cabinets in your room, you may need to use filler pieces between the cabinets and walls to achieve a flush look. You may also need to adjust the cabinet’s height by cutting and re-mounting it. Full-height cabinets offer the best coverage when using Ikea cabinetry, making them ideal for achieving a built-in look.

Use Filler Pieces Between the Cabinets

Another option is to pair full-height cabinets with countertops and mid-height wall cabinets. This will allow for a seamless transition from the full-height cabinet to the countertop, creating the appearance of one continuous unit. Mid-height wall cabinets can also be used above the countertop to complete the look.

How Do You Remove the Hardware on Existing Ikea Cabinets to Create a Seamless Appearance? 

Removing the hardware on existing Ikea cabinets is an important step when making them look built-in. First, you’ll want to find out what type of screws or clips are used to secure the hardware in place.

Some cabinet styles may require different types of screws, so make sure you have the right ones on hand before beginning. Once you’ve located and purchased the correct hardware screws, you’ll need to use a screwdriver or power drill to loosen and remove them.

Next, it’s time to remove the cabinet doors and drawers. To ensure your hardware doesn’t scratch or damage the cabinet, use a flathead screwdriver to carefully pry the edges of the door and drawers away from the frame. You may need to use some force, but be sure not to apply too much pressure, as this can cause damage. You should also take extra care when removing any hardware that is connected to the cabinet.

Remove the Cabinet Doors and Drawers

How Can You Customize an Ikea Cabinet for a More Unique Look? 

Whether you’re looking to create a custom look in your kitchen or just want to spruce up the cabinets you have, there are several ways that you can customize an Ikea cabinet to give it a unique look. One option is to buy hardware specifically designed for use with Ikea cabinets.

This allows you to match the hardware to the rest of your decor and gives you more control over your cabinets’ appearance. For example, you can choose from a range of knob styles and sizes as well as hinges and drawer pulls that are designed to fit in with Ikea’s cabinet frames.

Another way to customize an Ikea cabinet is to paint it. You can either use a spray paint or brush on a coat of high-quality paint to achieve the desired look. It’s important to make sure that you use a primer before painting, as this will help protect the surface and seal any wood grain.

If you prefer something less permanent, consider adding some decorative accents to the cabinet. You can add trim, molding, or even wallpaper to create a more personal look. You can also incorporate other materials such as glass or marble into your design—just make sure that they are suitable for use in a kitchen environment.

How Can You Fix Any Gaps or Holes in Your Finished Product So It Looks Seamless? 

The key to making Ikea cabinets look built-in is making the cupboards and drawers look like they’re part of the walls. To achieve this, you need to fill in any gaps or holes between your appliances and furniture so that it looks seamless. Filling the gaps will help reduce noise and make your kitchen feel more unified.

The best way to fill in any gaps or holes is by using flexible caulk. This type of caulking comes in a tube or a cartridge and is easy to apply. Just ensure you’re wearing protective gloves, as it can be messy to work with. Once you’ve applied the caulk, use your finger or a damp cloth to smooth out the edges.

Ensure You’re Wearing Protective Gloves

Another option to fill any gaps is with wood filler. You can use this type of filler to fix nicks, dings, and any other damage that might have been caused during installation. The best type of wood filler to use is one that is made for furniture repairs and refinishing.

Using sandpaper to smooth out the surface once you’ve applied the wood filler. Finally, if you want your Ikea cabinets to look like they were custom-built for your kitchen, then consider adding crown molding or other trim pieces around the edges.

How Can You Customize Your Cabinets to Match Your Interior Design Style? 

When you’re looking to make Ikea cabinets look built-in, there are several ways to customize the look to match your current interior design style. If you have a modern or contemporary style, try adding some sleek handles and finishes that emphasize the straight lines of your cabinets.

Consider adding ornate handles and pulls to your cabinets for a more traditional look. You can also customize the interior by adding dividers or adjustable shelves.

Consider Adding Ornate Handles

Another way to make Ikea cabinets look built-in is to add crown molding along the top and sides of the cabinet. This will create an illusion of height and give it a more finished look. You can also consider adding a toe kick (a strip of wood that runs along the cabinet base) to give your cabinets an even more custom and built-in appearance.

Finally, if you’re looking to add unique details or colors to your Ikea cabinets, consider using paint or stain to customize them for a look that is all your own.


In conclusion, making Ikea cabinets look built-in can be done through careful planning and thoughtful execution. To make the cabinets look more seamless with your existing decor, it is important to paint and install them properly. Additionally, you may want to consider adding trimming or molding to enhance the overall look of the cabinets.

With some patience and creativity, your end result should be a set of Ikea cabinets that looks as if it has been built-in into your home. I hope this article has been beneficial for learning how to make ikea cabinets look built in. Make Sure the precautionary measures are followed chronologically.

Photo of author

Adrian Green

Adrian is a woodworking hobbyist and has loved Woodworking since he was 10 years old. Back then in childhood, his father used to have a furniture shop. He used to help his dad and learned a lot from him about how to fix woodworking furniture, basic carpentry knowledge and also about how to work hard and take care of business. He enjoys woodworking as a hobby. He loves the feeling of creating something with his own hands, and the satisfaction that comes from seeing his finished products used by others.

Leave a Comment