Stairway to cat heaven: 3 easy DIY cat steps

Pet hacks are often the most fun hacks I come across. Whimsical, cute, funny. I think it just goes with the territory of being a pet owner.

Regan sent me this catstairs hack, inspired by katwallks and entries from Apartment Therapy’s Pet Decor challenge.

“It’s pretty self-explanatory and hardly hacky, but I had to share since I didn’t see it on the site yet. It’s cat stairs made from two sets of the cascading LACK wall shelves, minus a few pieces (two in my case), and a LACK side table, minus the legs.

IKEA LACK cat stairs

To get this look, you’ll want to flip the table upside down so that the unfinished side faces the ceiling. The amount of LACK shelves you use will depend on the agility of your cat. (How far off the ground you put the first step) and how high your ceiling is. (The top of the landing on mine is at 70 inches and leaves just enough for a kitty to stretch without hitting the overhang).

I used metal braces from the hardware store under each horizontal shelf and large brackets on the table, plus glued a corrugated cardboard slip guard to each step, to ensure any felines occupants would be coming down of their own accord.

Plus, since I didn’t use two of the pieces from one of the LACK shelves, now I have a matching mini side table, once I drill holes in the proper spots to attach the unused legs from the table.”

Note: The LACK zigzag shelf is now discontinued.


We wanted to do the Stairway to Heaven cat stair hack but IKEA did away with the LACK zigzag shelf. Undeterred, we made our own.

red cat stairs along the wall


Red EKBY MANS wall brackets (now discontinued, use any other wall bracket)
Wood wall shelves

Making our own version of the LACK zigzag shelf: 

We bought 5 IKEA wood wall shelves and cut 2 in half. Joined them at 90 degree angle to create the stair look. To secure the two parts together, we used L brackets. The shelves were already in red, so we didn’t have to paint them to match our red-themed living room.

Then we used the regular L brackets for walls and one fancy red EKBY MANS bracket and poof! Our own LACK.

red cat stairs above door and kitchen counter

We used bath mats, cut in half and glued them onto the shelves. So the shelves were soft for the cats.

Project was under $30.


~ Kristel, Fishtown- Philly

No LACK of cat stairs

Materials used:

1 mid LACK shelf
3 small LACK shelves
1 PERSBY shelf, from as-is-section in IKEA
2 rolls of double-faced adhesive tape
Grey rug from another store
Sisal Rug
Steel nails
Screws and anchors

In total less than 80 EUR for the complete set-up

How to make wall mounted cat steps:

First you have to decide where to put your stairway to cat heaven.

While your hubby drills the holes into the walls, you may glue the rug unto the shelves with adhesive tape. The IKEA sisal rug is used for scratching, you can fix it to wall with steel nails.

Install the shelves onto the LACK shelf hardware and you’re done.

Much better than any cheap scratching tree and sooo much better looking!