Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Brush Prairie, WA
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I used IKEA cabinets to build a wet bar in my home theater room. I too had some sticker shock when I looked at more traditional cabinets ($4000+). My IKEA set up cost around $1,500. For a countertop, I went with stainless steel. I built up the plywood substrate, cut out the hole for the sink, took very careful measurements, and had a guy I've worked with before on our kitchen remodel fabricate it (with an integrated sink). It's really sharp (but cost about $700). A neighbor who is a wholesale plumping sales rep gave me the display model of a Hans Grohe bar sink that had been discontinued.
I'll post some pictures when I get home after work today. This was my first time installing IKEA cabinets and things went really really smoothly. Note that the IKEA stuff is all laminated. So if you're going to be using these in a super high traffic area where they will get lots of abuse (especially with kids), that's something to keep in mind as dings might really show (I haven't had any trouble like that - knock on wood).
One note: I didn't trust the IKEA legs to standup to the weight of the cabinets plus 1.5" of plywood plus the steel plus whatever gets put on the countertop. So I just built a base from 2x6 dimensional lumber and glued the toe kick boards onto the 2x6s. I would seriously consider going this route if you're thinking about putting something like 3cm granite on top.