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Ikea hacking is part of wood science class at Canadian university

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A $20 step stool, reimagined more than a dozen ways

ikea stools transformed Courtesy University of British Columbia

Swedish retailer Ikea has won lots of fans over the years with their clean, functional pieces and affordable prices. A bonus perk? The simplicity of their design also allows for some incredible DIY transformations.

The latest example of “Ikea hacking,” which is when people take apart Ikea products and implement new design features or refurbish them entirely, hails from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. There, 55 wood science students recently took basic $20 Bekväm step stools and turned them into sophisticated pieces.

The hacks involved a variety of materials and methods, including sanding, bleaching, laser engraving, sealing with lacquer, staining with acetone based dye/pigment stains and wet sanding. This particular stool was chosen because it’s “well designed and engineered with many potential end uses,” said Professor Phil Evans, who led the UBC class, in an email to Curbed. Take a look at the video below to see how it was all done.