Make The Most Out Of Your IKEA TORNVIKEN Kitchen Island With These Hacks

Kitchen islands with shelves instead of closed cabinets provide additional storage with easy access and make a space feel more open and inviting. The IKEA TORNVIKEN is a great example of this. With two storage shelves on one side and space for seating on the other, it's just what a kitchen needs to feel a bit more airy and spacious. Furthermore, its simple frame also allows it to be modified to your exact needs and desires. Two ways to make the most out of your TORNVIKEN kitchen island is to install coverings to conceal the open areas and to add storage compartments to maximize the amount of items you can store inside the piece.

Including an island in the kitchen is Erin and Ben Napier's smart trick for creating definition in an open concept space. If it's a kitchen island with shelves, it adds even more interesting visual dimension because it retains a lot more openness, offering more style and functionality over a regular island. A unit like the TORNVIKEN gives you more space to play with and more opportunities to use it to display decorations or useful items like dishes. This specific piece is 49⅝ inches long, 30⅜ inches wide, and 35⅜ inches high. It comes with oak surfaces and a choice of either a gray or white body. Once you've purchased the piece, consider upgrading it with one of the following hacks.

Add doors or curtains

Doors or curtains can instantly transform an open kitchen island because they provide more personalization. Instead of having the shelves visible all the time, a curtain or doors can give you the option to conceal the open spaces. This can come in handy if you need to prevent dust or pets from getting into the compartments or if you just need to hide away some clutter when unexpected guests arrive.

This hack can be as cheap or as fancy as you'd like. To decorate with curtains, you can get 35.4-inch wide by 35.4-inch high (closest fit to the TORNVIKEN dimensions) kitchen curtains for $20 on Amazon. These don't need a rod and attach with an adhesive. If you want to have the rod look, you can buy shorter curtains with rod openings and install a tension rod just below the worktop. 

Including sliding doors will require more elbow grease, as you'll have to install a mini door track and the doors. If you're doing everything from scratch, you'll need to get the wooden planks for the doors and the track measured to fit exactly on the TORNVIKEN. For a readymade product that will swing open like regular cabinet doors, you can use IKEA's LAPPVIKEN doors, $15 per piece, and attach them with the BESTÅ hinges, which cost $15 for a two-pack.

Add extra storage compartments

Another way to make the most out of your IKEA TORNVIKEN is to add storage compartments. A common use for storage in a kitchen island is using it as an extension of your pantry so you can retrieve commonly-used items quickly and conveniently. As is, the TORNVIKEN has one side of storage, but what if you could turn both sides into shelves? TikTok creator @jessiefinds added just one shelf to the seating side of her TORNVIKEN and was able to get more storage that way. She then concealed that side of her island with a curtain while leaving the shelves open.

On the other hand, you can customize the built-in shelf side further by adding drawers or a bottle rack. These will help provide easy access to things like cutlery and utensils, wine bottles, or pots and lids. However, fitting these into the TORNVIKEN could require more complex DIY jobs. With the drawers, for example, you'd be building them from scratch and installing a sliding mechanism into the island. One alternative we suggest if you want a simpler way to add storage compartments is to use basic storage containers or baskets on the built-in shelves instead. These will help hold smaller items and also offer a more tidy look if you don't want everything to be out in the open.