Ikea Karlstad Sofa Tapered Leg Tutorial

Give your IKEA sofa a new look with chic tapered legs -- without buying new legs!

Hi guys, I am so excited to share my most favorite transformation with you today. The Ikea Karlstad Tapered Leg Tutorial. Did you know you can simply change the legs on your Karlstad, without even buying new legs? Ah, did I get your attention?

Ikea Karlstad Sofa: Tapered Leg Tutorial

I have been thinking about how to transform my Karlstad Sofa, since the day we bought it! Not, that I am not loving it the way it was!!! I just wanted to give it a little more flair. I gave the cushions a new look by tufting them (see here) with our ready-made fabric buttons, which not only gives your sofa a whole new look, it also makes the cushions less saggy!

But today, I like to show you how I transformed our existing Karlstad Legs into “walnut stained tapered legs”.


The tools you need:

  • Electric sander
  • Ruller & Pencil
  • Table saw
  • Brush to stain & finish
  • Wood to build a custom tapered leg station (I used leftover wood from other projects)

Ikea Karlstad Tapered leg - sanding the legs and measuring

Step 1.

Take all your legs off, and write a number on the leg and the sofa frame. That way you know where each leg needs to go (this is important for when we cut the legs) when we put them back on.

Step 2.

Sand each of your legs, start with a 80 grit paper and finish it with a 220 grit paper. You can smooth out the corners, so they don’t feel too edgy!

Step 3.

Mark the bottom of your legs with 10-12mm lines, this will be the guide for your table saw blade on where to start cutting.

Ikea Karlstad Tapered leg - measuring the leg

Step 4.

Now mark the top line, which will indicate on how far we will cut the leg. I measured 1.5inches from the top down, because I used 1.5inch wood for my skirt.

The X’s on my legs (see image below) indicate which sides I was going to cut off. I tapered my legs on the inside. To find the inside of each leg – you will have to return to your flipped over sofa, and place each leg back (remember the numbers I asked you to write on in the beginning?)

Mark each side that you want to taper (if you are doing a full body tapered leg, make sure not to cut too close to your center hole on the bottom of your leg).

Ikea Karlstad Tapered leg - marking where to cut the legs

Step 5.

Now it’s time to build a custom tapered leg station. I used this video tutorial, to help me build mine. The video should tell you exactly on how to align your leg, so you achieve the tapered look.

Ikea Karlstad Tapered leg - building a cutting table

Ikea Karlstad Tapered leg - cutting table

Step 6.

Once I had all my legs cut, I sanded with the fine paper over the newly cut areas and also gave my edges a smooth finish.

Step 7.

My next step was to stain my tapered legs, to do that I used a lumber piece, drilled it with 8 holes and  stuck my legs on top.

Ikea Karlstad Tapered leg - stain and finishing station

Ikea Karlstad Tapered leg - staining the legs

Step 8.

I applied two coats of dark walnut stain to my legs and finished them with a semi-gloss polyurethane.

After a couple of days, the legs had fully dried and we were able to attach them back onto our sofa. To find out how we transformed our sofa entirely with a sofa skirt, visit my blog.

Ikea Karlstad Tapered leg - finished project

Thank you so much for checking out my today’s Ikea Karlstad Tapered Leg Tutorial, please make sure to pin and share it with your friends.


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Betty is a “stay at home mom” by day, an aspiring entrepreneur, crafter, DIYer and blogger by night. She loves to share budget-friendly home improvements, fun DIY projects and nifty, thrifty makeovers with you on her blogOh Everything Handmade.
Molly is a farmhouse-obsessed DIYer who likes her dogs and long walks on the beach. Find more of her shiplap and burlap style at MyWebsite.com.

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