Give the changing table a few more useful years

Kids’ art desk hack saves changing table from the landfill.

Although my toddler outgrew needing a changing table a while ago, she loved playing with it and I couldn’t bear to deprive her of that. So my husband and I decided to repurpose it.

We made a chalkboard kids’ art desk with a mini shelf on top. Best thing is we reused the original bolts and only needed to make two additional holes. 

We use the original hanging changing table baskets to store crayons, chalks, colouring pencils, magnets, etc.

And, we couldn’t be more pleased with how it’s turned out — we’ve converted a piece of furniture that lost usefulness after a year into something that will last well into childhood!

We used:

GULLIVER changing table |


We took the top and bottom shelves out of the changing table, including the side supports. 

kids' art desk

I took the centre shelf out, cut the magnetic chalkboard roll to size and stuck it to the centre shelf, then put the centre shelf (now chalkboardy!) back in place.

kids' art desk from IKEA GULLIVER changing table

We reassembled the back supports on both top and bottom shelves. For the bottom shelf, the front support was turned at a 90 degree angle and screwed in using its original bolts into a pair of holes that existed to hold the side pieces on about 2/3rds of the way to the back. This provided structural stability.

My husband drilled a hole through each side about 2/3rds of the way to the back on the top. With the front support for the top shelf flipped upside down, the groove to hold the shelf was perfectly level with the groove on the back support. 

kids' art desk from IKEA GULLIVER changing table

My husband cut one of the shelves to fit the new 1/3rd depth shelf on top and reassembled the desk for the final time. 

Other thoughts: 

1. You could do this without the drilling or cutting if you forgo the top shelf — just screw the front support into the side holes left by the side supports. It won’t be level to insert the shelf, but it will enhance structural stability with less effort.

2. Use chalkboard paint or just leave the middle shelf blank to make a simpler desk. 

3. The desk is the perfect height for a 3ft tall toddler to stand up next to and draw, or to use a kids chair with. 

See more about the kids’ art desk project on my Instagram @rachelscotland

~ by Rachel Scotland