The always adorable Coco is ready to graduate to a big girl bed (from a toddler bed in our room, and our bed prior to that) which means MORE furniture cluttering up my semi-minimalist house. Add to that my husband wants the playroom to morph into a reading/meditation/ music room and I really, really still need the floor space of the girls’ bedroom.
What to do, what to do – the answer of course is IKEA. Granted, you want to jump off a bridge after driving an hour to get there, wandering the fluorescent aisles, bickering with your spouse about what you are there to buy and then finally guiding your inexpensive Swedish goodies perilously out of the giant yellow and blue box out to your car…. but Ikea has the answer – the fabulous Kura bed. The short version – it’s a loft bed, for littler people.
The only problem with the Ikea Kura loft bed is that it comes in one color combo, pine with blue and white panels. Coco is a girly girly. And, well, her daddy likes things to match.
What’s an eco-crunchy hippie mama to do? On the internet I go looking for a Low VOC or No VOC painting option, since I am not competent to be trusted to use a glue gun and fabric, and the likely hood of my modge podging my way through some type of scrapbook paper to make an awesome something like I’ve seen on IkeaHackers is very very (very!) small.
I somehow (PINTEREST!) stumbled across the PANYL.com – a company that lets you customize your Ikea furniture. It’s like someone magically created the ultimate Pimp my Ikea Kura starter kit. With HOT.PINK.PANELS.
YAY! Seriously – if you have read my craft post ever – you can appreciate that spending $199 on a bed would have been a big messy loss if I would have had to paint it. Or it would have just stayed blue. Most likely – it would have stayed blue, after a 3 month stint in the box in my garage with me planning on working on it every weekend. Then every single time we went into Coco’s room for the next 4 years it would have been a glaring reminder of my lack of home improvement follow through. But I digress…
Negligible VOCS – no waiting for the off-gassing of the paint!
I got Dan at Panyl to send me the VOC information on their product:
- It doesn’t contribute to overall deforestation or reduce old-growth timber, which in addition to being in finite supply uses extensive energy to process and transport.
- It reduces landfill by extending the useful life of existing furnishings and offsetting timber processing waste
- PANYL is ASTM E-84 Class A fire rated (defined as “Cladding Materials for Fire Doors and Frames”, UL 10B, UL 10C, CAN/ULC-S104).
- PANYL is also:
- Stain and solvent/chemical-resistant, anti-bacterial, anti-mold, colorfast, washable, scrubable, abrasion resistant, cold-crack-resistant, heat-aging resistant and high-humidity resistant.
In terms of VOC’s, PANYL has extremely low formaldehyde emission levels – a tiny fraction of even the lowest-emission paints, plywood and fiberboard products labeled as low or no-VOC, and receives the lowest-possible VOC Emission Grade of rating of F4 on the Japanese F-Star VOC emmissions scale (the more stars the product is rated, the less amount of formaldehyde it emits).”
(I sort of get what all that means – super super impressed!)
The wait for the Panyl to arrive honestly was the hardest thing about this process, we had the Panyl applied and the bed assembled in a couple of hours. I had decided that I would truly DIY this project (hubby was against the Kura – so I had something to prove, I guess!) and I was going to be the one to install it. Filming it meant that my potential for humiliation would be that much higher or I could prove I am not a total craft failure. If I totally botched it – well – I guess I could have NOT put it on YouTube, but really that would probably generate more hits than a success. Content is content right?
I was worried there would be some odd stretching and lining up or something – like some weird idea of what I *think* hanging wall paper might be like.
Unboxing it made it a little less intimidating. It looked thick enough to be somewhat forgiving, unlike the shelf paper in my bathroom (I have actually put shelf paper in my cabinets – it looks pretty bad though). I was able to lay it very simply. The instructions seemed easy enough – I was happy to have my husband there to tell me that I was interpreting things correctly. The best part was definitely that you could pull it up and re-lay it as needed. It didn’t bubble or pucker. There wasn’t even any cutting on my part.
It’s been almost a month since the install – it still looks beautiful. The room is about as put together as you might expect from a busy working mom of three who dreads interior design and all things crafty – but the bed itself is ROCKING. And I haven’t had a giant 3 year old in my bed all night since then (at least not until about 4-5 am – but that’s good enough for me!).