Today is countertop day! Can I get a holla?! Yes, we are still talking about our IKEA kitchen. DIYing an IKEA kitchen is no joke. So. Much. Work! The countertops were not DIY (thank goodness) – IKEA sent a crew over to measure and install the countertops. We are super happy with them and am glad we purchased them through IKEA.
Here’s our kitchen, ready for countertops!
When we ordered our kitchen through IKEA we told them we wanted to purchase the countertops also. We chose our material and they did a rough square footage to come up with the cost. They also gave us their 3rd party company that installs the counters and told us to call them when we were ready to schedule the templating.
IKEA also told us that if we had the countertop company come out and the kitchen wasn’t 100% ready, they would not template. They needed the kitchen finished – including all filler pieces. They didn’t need every aspect of the kitchen finished, but wherever the countertop was going to touch cabinets or filler, those areas needed to be 100% finished.
As you can see in these photos, areas like the pantry and upper cabinets are not finished with all the filler, but since the counter wasn’t going to touch those areas we didn’t need them complete.
However, all the side and filler pieces on the lower cabinets were completely ready before the countertop company came out.
I called the countertop company and scheduled them about a week out. That gave me a week to get the kitchen completely ready for the templating. I was up late the night before finishing little details at the last minute.
The templating process was fascinating! I wasn’t sure how they would do it, and watching the guy work was enlightening. Maybe I’m the only one who geeks out over this stuff, but I thoroughly enjoyed learning the process of coutnertops.
They used strips of balsa wood. Balsa wood is very soft and cuts easily. He laid out the strips and hot glued them together. Then he took a utility knife and easily cut the excess off.
We had three separate countertop areas. The one below is to the right of the stove and is our coffee area.
Here is the countertop to the left of the stove and is our lazy susan, sink, and mini wrap-around counter area.
You can see how he made the small section for the wrap-around counter. This kitchen is starting to take shape and I am more than excited about it!
For the island, he templated the entire island surface and also the overhang for the counter.
They took all these templates back to their shop to cut the counters. I guess I assumed they would just measure a lot and then transpose it to the countertops, but they used these real templates as stencils to cut the counters perfectly.
About a week later they showed back up with the cut counters. The first one to go on was our island overhang. Oh the excitement of seeing this finally and being able to visualize sitting here!
The island required two pieces of countertop material.
Our little coffee area only needed one piece. I’m always happier with fewer seams.
Here’s our sink and wrap-around counter being slid into place. I am thrilled that they were able to do the mini countertop on the same slab and reduce the number of seams in the kitchen.
The sink and lazy-susan ended up using two slabs so a seam was needed to the right of the sink.
They used this machine attached to each piece of countertop to seal the seams together.
I’m not exactly sure how it works. I don’t know if it’s just holding the seams together tightly while glue dries, or if it heats it or what, but the seams are tight after this.
Wow, a first look at this kitchen coming to life!
They also installed the under-mount sink. I forgot to mention, when they did the template, they took the sink back to the shop with them to make sure they had a perfect fit before coming back to install everything.
Here’s an up close of the counter. The material we chose is called Frosty Carrina from IKEA.
Here’s a cool view from our cat-walk. I wanted to show that you can see the kitchen from the 2nd floor.
Once the sink was in place they drilled a hole for the faucet. I opted to have only one hole drilled. He suggested to do another one for soap, but I didn’t want extra holes in my new counter.
I’m loving the faucet and sink. I purchased both from Costco.com.
I couldn’t wait to unpack our new barstools and put them under the counter. Lots of time will be spent sitting at these barstools!
In my next IKEA kitchen post I will be talking about installing all the hardware.
Here are all the posts in our IKEA kitchen series:
Start at the VERY beginning of our WHOLE-HOUSE renovation:
New to this series? Click here to start at the beginning!
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Thanks for reading! Have a wonderful week!
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