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Friday, August 12, 2022

Ikea Trofast Hacks & Play Ideas for Kids

Are you looking to buy a Trofast unit for the kids but not sure which one to get and how to use it most effectively? Or maybe you already have one and want to make it more versatile.

The Trofast units are a great modular storage option for kids toys, clothes, books and more. They come in individual, multiple, tiered and wall storage units in varying sizes in white and pine. The storage tubs also come in multiple sizes and colours meaning there's a Trofast configuration to suit any space and any decorating style.

In addition to using them as basic storage shelves, there's also many ways to hack the Ikea Trofast units. Whether your kids toys are stored in a dedicated playroom or in the bedroom, these Trofast hacks will give you many creative and functional ways to transform the Trofast for play and storage for kids.

trofast hack ideas for kids rooms


If you want to take your Trofast unit to the next level then try one of these creative hack ideas.

Please note: These hack ideas are provided for informational purposes only and do not constitute professional advice. If you choose to follow one of the hacks presented you do so at your own risk. IKEA® and Finding Myself Young are not liable for any product failure, injury or damage resulting from the application of hacks featured in this post.

Trofast Desk Hack

trofast units combined to make a long desk
Image: @celebrate_play

If you want to make the Trofast units more functional than just storage, then combine them with a large pine board to create a long desk. The Trofast units are a great height to use as a desk for children as there's ample room for them to sit in a chair underneath once the board is added. This is a great hack to provide a play surface with toy storage, or it could be used for a homeschooling space.

For this hack you'll need at least 2 Trofast units and a thick pine board to go across the top {get a hardware store to cut to size}. You can use more Trofast units, like Erin from @celebrate_play has done above, to make a huge wall length desk. To do this you'll need more than one pine board length, just make sure you measure them so the joins sit over the top of a Trofast unit.

Trofast Activity Table Hack

trofast activity play table hack

To turn your Trofast units into a big play/activity table you can combine 2 Trofast units together with a pine board again, but in this case use a piece of pine the same length as the Trofast unit and use right angled brackets at the back of both Trofast units to hold the wood in place between them. This then creates a big rectangle play table {like @gemma,leigh.r has done above}, which you can also use as a desk by adding chairs under the middle section. 

This would be a great hack for a childcare centre, or in home daycare where lots of children will be collaboratively playing with one activity. You can also easily change them back to individual units by removing the brackets.

Trofast Small World & Sensory Play Table Hack

trofast unit used for small world and sensory play

If you can't get your hands on the ever popular flisat table, don't worry, you can also convert a Trofast unit into a sensory and small world table just like @myplayroomuk did above. They've used the dinosaur land decal to transform the top of the Trofast unit into a small world play space using dinosaur figurines and some other play props, and used the individual Trofast tubs to store different sensory bases and more dinosaur figurines. This is a great way to turn the Trofast unit into a themed play area and have multiple play invitations set up and ready to go.

You can pick a theme to match your child's interests as there are many different Trofast decals available such as farm, forest, construction, city/roads, space, castles and more. You can see all the My Playroom UK Trofast decals available here. You can also get decals from Stickea and Hackea.

Trofast Lego Table Hacks

ultimate trofast lego table idea

If your kids are obsessed with Lego and you want to make the ultimate Lego play table with storage, try this epic hack from The Handyman's Daughter. Turn your Trofast units into oversized Lego blocks with the step by step instructions on their site. This Trofast Lego table provides ample building space and loads of Lego storage to sort by colour, size, sets etc.

easy trofast lego table hack

If converting the whole unit to look like a Lego block is just too much effort, then you can still make Lego storage using one unit with some adhesive base plates added to the top like Clarks Condensed did above. They've also utilised the wall storage unit to keep smaller Lego pieces up higher so the kids can only access them under supervision. You can download the printable block labels they've used for free here.

Trofast Bookshelf

ikea trofast bookshelf hack
Image Source

If you use single Trofast units with the shelf inserts instead of the boxes, they make great little bookshelves. You can also paint the unit and decorate the backing with contact paper like Lauren did above. This is a great, compact way to display books and toys in the kids bedroom. You can find even more creative Ikea kids book storage hacks here.

Trofast Rotating Bookshelf Hack

trofast rotating bookshelf

If you want a compact way to store multiple books then make a DIY rotating bookshelf with a Trofast unit and some spice racks. This bookshelf provides storage on all four sides and can easily be spun around to access different books. Follow the step by step Trofast rotating bookshelf instructions here.

Trofast Market Stand Hack

trofast unit converted into a kids market stand

You can create a budget DIY market stand for the kids by combining a Trofast unit, some Knagglig crates and plywood. This Trofast market stand is oddly deceptive and looks like it only stores the food in the crates, however there's also ample storage at the back of the unit too. Follow the instructions at Ikea Hackers then add a cash register and grocery basket and your market will be open for business.

Trofast Bench Seat Hack

trofast used as a bench seat

If you need spare seating space in the playroom or kids bedroom, but don't have room for a separate chair or sofa, add some foam and cushions to the top of the Trofast units to turn them into a DIY bench seat just like Put Up Your Dukes did above. You just need some upholstery foam cut to size and fabric to make DIY covers. If you make the foam covers the same size as the individual Trofast units it also gives you the option to rearrange the bench seat like a sectional couch if needed.

Trofast Bed Storage Hack

trofast under bed storage

You may have seen people making beds with the Kallax shelves, but did you know you can also make a bed with storage underneath using Trofast units? Corey built an entire bed base around Trofast frames which saves heaps of space with toy storage concealed under the bed. You could also use the tubs to store clothing and shoes if the kids room doesn't have a built in wardrobe. Get the step by step instructions at Hey There Home.

Trofast Stairs Hack {for bunk beds}

trofast unit turned into bunk bed stairs
Image: @lenawillburg

If your kids have a bunk bed you can turn the tiered Trofast units into a set of stairs with built in storage like @lenawillburg has done above. You will need to build a secure safety railing out of pine to attach to the unit so nobody accidentally falls {or jumps} off as they're climbing up and also secure the unit to the bed or a wall. Please note these units are obviously not designed to be used for stairs and would only be suitable for young children as they have not been weight tested for climbing.

Trofast Montessori Wardrobe Hack

trofast montessori wardrobe hack
Image: Polished Playhouse

The Montessori philosophy is based on teaching children to be independent by preparing their environment so they can achieve this while following their own interests and making their own decisions. One of the ways to help foster independence with practical life activities, is to provide children with access to their own wardrobe to dress independently from a young age.

A Montessori wardrobe is a wardrobe that is child sized and located where children have easy and free access to their own clothing. The shorter single Trofast units are the perfect height for a toddler Montessori wardrobe and provide many different ways to configure the clothing within. To provide hanging space use a small adjustable tension rod in the top guide rail {make sure you measure the width to get the right size rail}. You can also add shelves with baskets for clothes or shoes underneath, or use another unit to have a whole row of shelving.


There's also a number of ways to hack the Trofast storage boxes to use them in ways other than storage. The Trofast storage bins are a great way to provide compact and portable play experiences, perfect for small homes. You don't need the Flisat table to use these ideas, they can be done with just the box, however they will work with the table too.

Trofast DIY Light Table

trofast bin turned into a light table

Light boxes and light panels are a great resource for young children, however they can be quite expensive, but you can make a really cheap DIY light table using a Trofast tub, lid and some led lights. Two Crafty Makers put together their light table above for just $30. If you want a completely flat lid for your Trofast light table without the hole in the middle, you can get a light box insert here.

Trofast Compact Kitchen Hack

trofast kitchen decal

If you don't have space for an Ikea play kitchen, but your kids still want to do some pretend play cooking, you can convert a large Trofast tub into a portable cook top. You can get the sticker decal, that includes a stove top and grill, from Stickea. It works perfectly with the Ikea pots and pans set, which you can store in the box when it's not in use.

Trofast Touch & Feel Box

touch and feel insert for trofast box

If your kids love the mystery box challenges on YouTube they'll love this hack. Turn a Trofast tub into an instant touch and feel box with this mystery box insert. A touch and feel box is a great way for children to use their sense of touch to try and form a visual picture of what they're feeling. Is it big/small, soft/hard, squishy/bumpy/sleek etc. 

Trofast Geoboard

geoboard lid insert for trofast

Turn the Trofast storage tub into an instant geoboard with this geoboard insert. The insert also comes with the golf tee pegs and coloured elastic bands. Geoboards are a great way for children to build fine motor skills stretching the elastics over the pegs. They can also be used to practice shapes, patterns, colour sort and build mazes.

Where to buy Trofast box lid inserts

The ideas featured above are just a few of the creative ways you can use inserts to change the functionality of the Trofast tubs. There are many talented makers selling educational inserts for Trofast tubs, which can also be used with the Flisat table. Most of the stores ship internationally, however I've listed the shipping country for convenience.

You can also get various wooden and vinyl labels for Trofast tubs here. If you don't live close to Ikea you can find selected Trofast units and tubs on Amazon here.

ikea trofast hacks for kids rooms


Disclosure - This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience, which means I may make a small commission at no cost to you, should you make a purchase.

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