Friday, November 2, 2018

IKEA Hacker Says - How to make White GRIMSLOV look best.

---> BIG EDIT: Nov 1, 2021 ---> GRIMSLOV is being discontinued by IKEA. It is recommended that you REPLACE your damaged GRIMSLOV elements: doors, drawer faces, side panels, etc. --->  RIGHT NOW.

---> If you have an 'ON-GOING Design' - many people have; you have spread out your GRIMSLOV purchase over an extended period of time - NOW is the time to hit that PURCHASE button on IKEA's website. Stock is still plentiful but will begin to slowly dwindle down - YOU WANT to complete your design!

OK! Done....

Read on....


[pictured shows a large window with an upholstered bench underneath, flanked by bookcases with lights. This is an IKEA Hack using the Grimslov doors, Sektion box, Billy bookcases, Omlopp puck lights and PAX strip lights. The lighting is controlled using Ansulta remote control - designs like these are a sign of 'Peak Furnishings', according to Karol Kosnik] 

Chapter 1 - White GRIMSLOV Hate

As a designer - so a 'built interior designer', so I won't really accessorize or pick your throw pillows but I will help you set-up solid foundations for it, so built-ins, lighting, storage, organization, pretty furniture - I always strive [my duty! I say, lol] to create pleasant interiors. 

Most often it means selecting something from the IKEA's line-up, and most often it is Sektion or BILLY. I have been avoiding the white GRIMSLOV [so that is SEKTION] because I wasn't able to be successful with it - IKEA doesn't really make any nice 'sides' or mouldings that match that style. GRIMSLOV essentially is an over-sized Shaker, and you can either live with it or you cannot. There is number of specific characteristics that this door possess - some of it is intentional, like the relatively large frame, or the soft radiuses which are by-product of the way the doors are manufactured - thermofoil door - they have to be that way. 

**Most people that go to IKEA get 'trapped in the doors'**

Most people that go to IKEA get 'trapped in the doors', what do I mean by that? IKEA has professionals that make sure that their kitchens look GREAT - optimized and maximized with accessories and lighting and all the other trinkets that you can buy at IKEA - but you have to look past that. 

And the doors are GREAT too - lots of cost effective options to satisfy any budget [I am genuinely mind-boggled that I can buy Ukrainian made HAGGEBY doors for $8 - eight dollars!]. But as more and more people want to utilize the price point in their renovation/decorating project they start looking for more. So we already know that the 'rock-bottom' is captured - but there exists a market just above that, that IKEA wants to capture - that's why the catalogue is 'different' this year! 

Some SEKTION side panels are shared across multiple door styles - it's the colour that unifies them. So as we have a great variety of doors, what IKEA misses are those 'trimmings' that give each kitchen its unique 'flavour'. So I want to say that for 'modernist' kitchens, like the RINGHULT for example, the skinny side panels work - well, because, simplified, that is the 'modernist kitchen'. But the same size panels completely DO NOT WORK for GRIMSLOV! I personally think it is a great clash - that frame is just too oversize and overpowers that skinny edge that is showing! 

PRO TIP ---> Next time you are at IKEA, look BEYOND all the show and glitter, and just focus your attention on the actual box proportions and your preference for functionality. Take notes + pictures. 

This 'Create a BETTER look for GRIMSLOV aesthetic' was particularly challenging on this project - challenging but refreshing too! You know why refreshing? Because I knew that this was no kitchen, I could do anything that I wanted without having to stick to restrictive dimensions and functions, that working with kitchens brings - I LITERALLY just started experimenting. 

I have admit that my 'go to design exercise' is 'designing for myself' - I want to create something that I personally would like to have in my home. AND I am an optimizer! And there is just SOOOO much product - 'the bones' - that IKEA has to offer. No jokes, on this project, it seems, I grabbed a piece from every department! From Kitchens, and Bookcases, and Storage and PAX and Lighting! Of course there are custom touches on it too - my favourite I call 'deep bead board' - I make it that deep to 'unsettle the viewer'; because I've never really seen anyone do bead board in this fashion; it gives an illusion of great depth.

Do you know what the IMPROVED aesthetic for GRISMLOV is?

I just started scaling up the side panels in thickness. I took that move from my custom bookcase- I build them thicker now; I use 1" material. They end up  just looking better, custom. 

And then on the bench, because it is so long [horizontal] in relation to height, I wanted to beef it out even more - and so it came out to 1 1/4". That was a a lamination - glued up and filled edge, before painting - you have to do it, otherwise the edge will have an inferior texture - won't have that smoothness that shows care about details. 

[picture shows SEKTION boxes with white GRIMSLOV doors with custom base and custom, thicker side panels. The side panels are 1" and 1 1/4" think and look great]

**I think every style of panel doors has an optimum side panel - some are good with stock IKEA, and some, like the GRIMSLOV, need a custom solution. **

So, I also got the crown moulding for the GRIMSLOV too - it is just a thick flat [I made mine 6" x 1" for ease of joinery] with a large radius on the underside. This thing floats 3/16" over the top of cabinets/doors and extends about a 1/4" more than it is thick. 


Yea, me too kind of - will upload a pics and drawing -, you will right away see - it is deceptively simple, but a very STRONG detail. AND... and... and I want to say that it is a bit of a trend in the kitchen design world, especially the finer ones. 

The OTHER advantage of this particular design  - detailing for the GRIMSLOV doors - is the fact that it makes the space look taller, much taller - that's the Psychology of Design that I always talk about. If you don't have a tall space and you need to 'make it feel taller' than there are specific things you do when you are decorating.

**Who doesn't love the feeling of sky high ceilings... I do!** 

The next step in elevating your ceiling, in this instance, is to adjust the heights of commonly introduced decorating elements that play a FUNCTIONAL role in design, like clocks for example. 

[picture shows a custom built upper cabinet. It features 1" thick cables and a solid wood glass door; the cabinet is crowned with a floating flat crown moulding]

[picture shows a close-up of the corner of the previously described cabinet - the wood grain flakes from the quarter-sawn white oak solid doors are visible].