Five IKEA Products We Love for Small Spaces

We haven't made a secret of the fact that we love IKEA. Our home is so full of IKEA products that it could easily stand in for one of IKEA's showrooms if, you know, we didn't live here and have stuff.

IKEA has always been great for people who live in small spaces, and it's really not surprising given the company's Swedish roots. According to Statistics Sweden, the average Swedish apartment is only 68 square meters (732 square feet) and the average house size is 122 square meters (1313 square feet).

We purchased our park model in 2008 when the Tiny House Movement was still in its infancy, and it is really designed like a big house crammed into a small space. Many of the creative storage and design elements featured in today's tiny houses are absent from our tiny home, so we've had to get creative ourselves. Over the years, we've accumulated a number of IKEA items that have suited our tiny house well, and this is a list of five of our favorites.

1. NORDEN Gateleg Table
This table was one of the first furniture items we purchased after we moved into our home, and we have used it many ways and in many places over the years. It's a table that can be huge or small, it is only about a foot wide with both leaves down, and it includes storage. What more could you want in a tiny house table? We've seen this table featured in a number of other tiny houses as well, including on an episode of Tiny House Nation!

When we had our first gathering in our home back in 2009, we opened it all the way and used it as a buffet table. It was perfect. We've had it open and closed in the dining room and in the living room at various times, and we've even set our Christmas tree on it.

Incidentally, we're actually replacing it soon with another drop leaf table that will fit into the small space against the wall where we currently keep Sweetheart's high chair. She no longer uses the chair, and we want a slightly narrower table that is lighter and easier to move into the living room, but we agonized over this decision for more than a year. Don't worry, though. We won't be getting rid of our NORDEN table any time soon. We have plans for it in our future game room addition down the road.

2. FRIHETEN Sleeper Sectional

Of all the furniture purchases we have made for our tiny house over the years, this is probably one of our favorites. We weren't even planning to get a new couch for our living room, but we saw this one at IKEA and fell in love. We've had it for two years now, and it's still going strong. Like the NORDEN table, this is an item that we frequently see being used in other people's small homes.

The biggest downside to this couch is trying to assemble it in a tiny living room. It took us several hours working together with our sliding door wide open in the middle of winter as we didn't have room to lay out all the parts inside. Then we had to pretend to be contortionists to get it assembled, but it was worth it in the end.

Check out this post for our full review.

3. KALLAX Cube Storage

Does anything scream IKEA more loudly than their ubiquitous cube storage units? They may not be the height of fashion, but they are so incredibly versatile that we have four of them in our tiny house at the moment (plus one hold over EXPEDIT that we bought years ago as our first foray into cube storage).

The straight 4x1 units take great advantage of narrow vertical space, while the 2x2 unit fits perfectly in our loft. We have bins and cupboards and drawers and shelves and use them for toys and diapers and books and kitchen items and shoes and coats and video game accessories. They are easy to assemble and easy on the budget, and we clearly love them.

4. GNEDBY Shelf Unit

Like the KALLAX storage units, the GNEDBY is fantastic for a tiny house because it fits into such tight spaces. At less than eight inches wide and seven inches deep, this is one shelf that will squeeze in almost anywhere. And at just under 80 inches tall, it even fits under our loft with a couple of inches to spare.

We originally bought one (back when it was called BENNO) to fit into a small nook across from our refrigerator. Then we bought another one that fit right next to it. We used them for media storage for years. Recently we moved them to a more central kitchen location and we use it as open pantry storage. The adjustable shelves make it fairly versatile, though you will be limited by the width and depth of the unit, of course.

Like most furniture, this one really needs to be anchored to the wall. Its small footprint and fantastic height make it quite tipsy.

5. RAST 3-Drawer Chest

If you need a dresser to fit in a loft, this chest of drawers is going to be your friend. It is less than 28 inches tall and just over 24 inches wide. It is unfinished wood, so you can finish it off however you desire. Pinterest is full of ideas for making these little chests look amazing, and at $40 as of this post, it's a tough price to beat!

We originally bought the RAST to hold extra blankets up in our loft, but its short depth (it's not even a foot deep) made it the perfect size to fit in the tiny corner of our little nursery when Sunshine was born. We have two of these drawer units now: one upstairs holding various keepsake items and one downstairs next to our dining table holding our cloth diaper supplies. Due to the fact that the sides are solid pine and it only cost $40, we even screwed our DIY baby gate into it for a while.

These are only some of our favorite IKEA purchases; we have more favorites coming at you in a future post, so stay tuned!