IKEA ENETRI shelf and 4 clever ways to hack it

ikea enetri hacks

The IKEA ENETRI was one of the more popular, metal and “wood” shelving units designed by Niels Gammelgaard. It was first launched in the 80s and made a short comeback in 2019.

It has since disappeared again. Will we ever see it in IKEA stores in the future? We can only keep our fingers crossed.

Until then, if you have an old ENETRI, hold on to it. If it looks a bit out of place, scroll down for ways to hack the IKEA ENETRI shelving unit to look like new all over again.

Asymmetrical ENETRI shelving unit hack

I transported my old grey ENETRI stand for over 20 years, if not more, back home. I bought it in London, and when I moved back to India, it was easy to pack it and transport, as it was so compact. 

Several years went by, the ENETRI slowly lost focus in my interior schemes. It was once my proud living room book stand, but it receded into the background as I found other pieces of furniture, finally ending up in a corner of a very compact Study to hold books. 

When I moved to a new flat recently, I needed a very slim and compact stand to hold a TV. That’s when my enetri came back in focus. 

This is how the original looked.

IKEA ENETRI shelving unit in white

Turning an IKEA ENETRI shelf into a TV stand

Asymmetrical shelving unit IKEA ENETRI hack

The tired grey shelves got covered in a beautiful veneer (or you can do so with contact paper). I redesigned the shelving so it allowed for a modest central aperture to house a TV.

I removed the second shelf and cut it in two sections, along where the shelf rest on the metal brackets. Then made miter cuts to join the vertical shelf to the horizontal planes. Use wood glue and brad nails to secure the two parts together.

It turned out beautifully. I used all the points that were on the original ENETRI to secure the new asymmetric shelves in place, so there was no loss to stability. 

I’m happy to say that humble stand is back with a bang, and I’m thrilled to be able to use it in a new way. 

~ by Venkat 

Elevate it for height

I moved to an apartment with much higher ceilings all of my stuff seemed ill-proportioned (plus that ENETRI shelving was rickety and generally irritating!)

This is a media center of sorts with my BESTÅ TV unit as the base. I screwed the ENETRI unit on top. I took out the lower ENETRI shelf to fit the electronics and covered the remaining ones with drawer liner. I’m pretty happy with it! Oh and the sofas visible are also IKEA, recovered with cotton duck and IKEA curtain.

~ by Pinky

Shorten it as a sideboard hack

I sawed off the ENETRI unit to make it shorter. I also attached a detached single plank from the top to the bottom of the unit to give it a complete feel.

~ by Ani, Kirkland, WA

IKEA ENETRI table top shelving unit hack

So my room was getting a bit messy and cluttered and I planned on redoing my computer area. After browsing for some ideas, I ran into IKEAhackers.net and my creative ideas came to life!

I browsed Craigslist for some used IKEA furniture. Got all my EXPEDITs for dirt cheap and bought the $6 white VIKA AMON table tops. The EXPEDIT units from Craigslist were pretty scratched up but I was going to repaint them anyways.


2 EXPEDIT 2x4s (or KALLAX)
5 VIKA AMON Table Tops (or LINNMON)
1 ENETRI shelving unit (discontinued)

So here is the before picture of my room:

IKEA ENETRI minifig collection storage

First I painted the EXPEDITs and when dried, I placed the VIKA AMON table tops on top of the EXPEDITs. After that I cut down my ENETRI to the size that I wanted, I installed the CAPITA legs on the underside of the ENETRI shelving unit.

Once that was in place. I was ready to install some DIODER LED lighting strips that I had lying around.

And voilà! My IKEA ENETRI hack is done. All my junk is now organized and I have a ton of desk space. In the near future, I will be adding a sheet of plywood over the EXPEDITs so that I can store clothes, etc without dust getting in them.

~ by B Wong