IKEA Trellis as a brilliant lighted room divider

Outdoor trellis comes indoors as a lighted room divider.

As many of you do, due to COVID-19, we spend most of our time at home.

We wanted to make the home environment more cozy and charming and designed a lighted room divider. Our project is called Velumen.

We wanted to take a simple and inexpensive object and reimagine its usefulness and beauty. One that could enter any home for not too much money but for great effect.

With our room divider you can easily create an inspirational private space in your apartment, even if it is small. 

Velumen Lighted Room Divider
Velumen Lighted Room Divider
  • $1.00 each – Chipboard 18 x 24” (19 sheets)
  • $6.29 for 50 18x 25” sheets – Vellum
  • $1.99 – 1” Self Boring Screws x 14
  • $1.99 – 0.5” Self Boring Screws x 4
  • $1.00 – Sandpaper

VELUMEN Lighted room divider directions:


1. Lay the TORDH shelf on the ground.


2. With a foot placed on it to secure it in place, use the back of the hammer to pry the support wood from the 5 planks.

3. Now that you’ve separated the two support pieces, take your wire cutter and clip away all the nails poking through the bottom.

removing nails

4. Next take you hammer and finish the job by hammering them until they are no longer visible.

5. For good measure take your sandpaper and go over the support planks one more time to ensure no nails poke through. If you can’t get rid of your nails completely, don’t worry, cover the bottom of the wood with duck tape or a similar film to protect your floor.

6. Take your ruler and find the center point of the support piece. Making a mark with your white pencil.


7. Take your hand saw and cut that support piece in half. These will become part of the base of the Velumen Room Divider.


8. Next take the planks from the TORDH shelf, and place them on the floor. There should be 5 in total.

9. Take two of the planks, placing them end-to-end, creating a longer 39” surface from the two 19.5” planks.

10. Do the same thing with the next two planks. Placing the new 39” surface parallel to the first one you placed.


11. Take the two halves of the supporting piece you cut and screw them to the underside of the two long planks, connecting them with about an inch gap between.


12. Take your GRANHULT brackets and place them on top of the two 39” surfaces that you made from the four planks.


13. Align the edges of the GRANHULT brackets with the outer edges of the two long planks in order to find the proper distance to screw them in place. But don’t screw yet!

14. There should be a gap between the two long 39” surfaces that’s around an inch.

15. Take that last plank from the TORDH shelf and measure off 5 inches.

16. Take your hand saw and cut off those 5 inches. This piece will be used to screw the base planks you just prepared for securing. Keep the remaining 14.5 inches, we will use that later.

17. Now that you have your 5 inch piece of wood, place that under the two long blanks, and begin to screw them into place. Use two screws at the end of each plank for a sum of 8 screws total.

18. At this point you should have the wooden base entirely secured.


19. Next take the GRANHULT Brackets and place them 5 inches from the outside edges of the name wooden base.

20. Take 4 more screws and secure both brackets in place, using two screws for each bracket.


21. Congratulations! The base is complete.


1. Take your ASKHOLMEN Trellis and lie it flat on the floor, adjust the length of the freely folding trellis until the squares between each wood piece form 90 degree angles.

2. Take the leftover 14.5’ plank and screw that to the center of the fourth row of the trellis, securing the proper angles of the structure. Use two more screws for this. This will serve as a handle as well!

Velumen Lighted Room Divider

3. Now that the trellis has been secured, mount it into the brackets. To do this, slide the edges of the rellis into the cavities on both brackets. This should hold the trellis in place reliably.

Velumen Lighted Room Divider

Congratulations! You have successfully installed the trellis.

Velumen Lighted Room Divider

1. You can prepare paper lanterns by laser cutting the material or by manually cutting it (the second option is doable, but will require much more time) . Use this pattern or make your own!

You want to laser cut or manually cut these four shapes:

  • Chipboard box with glue tabs
  • Chipboard box with glue tabs
  • Vellum cover with glue tabs
  • Vellum cover without glue tabs

2. Download this Adobe Illustrator file. Or use this pdf file for manual cutting. Central square of the cube is 4×4 inches.

3. Email Adobe Illustrator file to a laser cutting facility of your choice asking them to laser cut 35 cubes (one cube consists of four above mentioned shapes). So you will need to laser cut 70 shapes out of chipboard and 70 shapes out of Vellum.

4. After getting your cuts done, assemble your 35 cubes, by glueing together these details in this order:a) Chipboard box with glue tabs and vellum cover with glue tabs
b) Chipboard box without glue tabs and Vellum cover without glue tabs
c) Form a cube by glueing part a and part b

5. Congratulations! You have prepared your paper lanterns.


1. Take your paper lanterns and place them into every available hole of the trellis. Subtracting the three filled by the 14.5” handle that secures the trellis’s rigidity, there should be 35 holes to fill.

Velumen Lighted Room Divider

2. To finish off the piece, take your lights and string them through the tops of your lanterns or in whichever way works easiest for the lights you have available.


3. Congratulations you have finished your Velumen room divider.

How long and how much did it cost?

Breakdown of Time

Construction of Base: 30- 45 min

Mounting Trellis: 15 min

Building Lanterns: 6 hours with one person

Threading lights: 15-20 min

What do you like most about the hack?

Vellum paper reveals the underlying pattern of the lanterns when either sunlight or the lights inside shine through it. The natural flow of transparent Vellum paper masks the rigid structure of the chipboard lantern.

Velumen Lighted Room Divider
What was the hardest part about this hack?

The hardest part was assembling the lanterns. They are extremely simple to build, but we would recommend grabbing a friend to help you so that you can finish folding the lanterns faster.

What to pay special attention to?

Pay special attention not to tear the paper of the lanterns when you’re threading the lights. When I did it, I stuffed at least 2 lights into every lantern and I had to gently fold down the flaps so that I wouldn’t tear the corners with the cords on the string lights.

Velumen Lighted Room Divider
Velumen Lighted Room Divider

We used the IKEA LEDLJUS light initially, but the easiest light to use is the Icicle type hanging light. The longer sections of wire between each strand make it easy to hide them behind the paper, and the bunchings allow easy allotment for each lantern. They’re also less expensive.

Looking back, would you have done it differently?

We would have purchased another TORDH shelf. For this design we really made every piece of material count, but in the future, that extra supply of clean planks could make fabrication a lot easier. Also, we would rethink the placement of the handle so that all 38 holes of the lighted room divider can be filled with lanterns.

Velumen Lighted Room Divider

~ by Jane Voronovich, Tirth Engineer, Shayn Jackson

More photos of the VELUMEN lighted room divider (click to enlarge)