Saturday, March 19, 2011

Spotlight on Dean Wilson, winner of the Ikea Hack of 2010

I recently finished painting the Campbell's Soup mural in our kitchen using the same method as the Reservoir Dogs design, a projector, pencils, posca pens and paint.

We've seen the winning hack. Let's get to know Dean, aka thedesignguy behind the gorgeous Pax sliding doors room divider.

More on the IKEA hack of 2010


IH: How did you come up with the idea for the Pax room divider?
Dean: When my girlfriend and decided to purchase our first apartment, we were fully aware that we couldn't afford anything much bigger then a studio. Both of us being fairly creative, we put our minds together found a well designed apartment and brainstormed how to make it a comfortable/functional living space.

IH: In constructing the hack, what was the toughest/most difficult portion?
Dean: The toughest part of the entire build was actually not the plan nor the mounting of the doors; those aspects of the build came together surprisingly easy. It was more the fact that as I had never built anything before; as a result I researched via the net, questioned employees at hardware stores and asked friends for advise. One of those friends was my girlfriend's brother who was an expert at building and gave me some insight into what to look out for. The number 1 being; cracks. The room was going to be combination of the already standing concrete walls, jip rock and ply wood. To prevent cracks from forming while joining the different materials, Sebastian recommended I wrap the entire room in a fibreglass type wallpaper before painting (which in Sweden is called microlit).

Now; I barely know the names of different building materials in English but trying to explain them in Swedish to the hardware store employees was quite the task. Needless to say I left the hardware store with a woven structure fibreglass wallpaper instead of the thin lining I should have. I then covered the entire room only to notice as I start to paint and discover the woven structure in the finish. As hard as it was to put up, it was harder to pull down but the benefit of renovating at home was not needing to wear appropriate clothing. Unfortunately I learnt my lesson the hard way, playing with fibreglass in your underwear is not something I would recommend.

IH: Did the room divider boost the sale when you wanted to sell your apartment?
Dean: Definitely! We believe the most important factor was that the bedroom was custom built to snugly accommodate a double bed and a small cupboard which left the remaining portion of the room to be a nice large living area. We expected to make a small profit from the improvements we had made to the apartment but never anticipated the 45+% increase on what we paid for the apartment a year before.

IH: What's with the Reservoir Dogs mural? A big fan?
Dean: A very big fan but I also liked the idea of completing the room's design with a simple piece of artwork, unfortunately my girlfriend didn't agree after she woke up rather tired without her glasses; she got a bit of a fright to say the least.

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