Ikea Counter Stools updated with bar stool slipcovers to fit seamlessly into any kitchen! Get tips and tricks to elevate Ikea bar stools.

how to update ikea bar stools
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For months I searched endlessly for kitchen stools. I fell in love with the natural riviera counter stool, but they didn’t feel practical for kid. I kept going back to them to the point I was paralyzed (kind of like our kitchen remodel).

pretty counter stools with ticking stripe slipcovers for farmhouse kitchen

When I finally decided to look outside of the impractical options, we sought comfort. The island is a place we, the girls, friends and family gather.

We love the chairs in the breakfast nook because they’re easy to wipe down, but it’s not exactly where you want to spend an exorbitant amount of time because wood chairs aren’t comfortable.

counter height bar stools with ticking stripe slipcovers

I turned to upholstered kitchen stools and hoped to find some in a durable indoor/outdoor fabric that would be easy to care for.

Given that we decided to go with a wood island, I wanted a little contrast, too, so we needed a cream base.

counter height stools from ikea with custom ticking stripe slipcovers

IKEA Counter Stools

I decided we needed to design our own and headed out to brave IKEA. I mean, just walking in the door gets my heart pounding and I want to run away.

So we parked, entered and spent 45 minutes attempting to find the stools to verify the height, depth and etc (I’m a visual person and it makes me feel anxious not knowing what lies inside those boxes)!

Then I worked off the previous evening’s wine with a walk to the warehouse where I located the stool, questioned everything I had decided, the height, the width and is this really a good idea?

An hour and a half later the Henriksdal counter stools were loaded and there was no turning back, because it will be months before I could brave another trip to IKEA.

Ikea counter stools are surprisingly well made. Even better, they’re really comfortable!

They come in black (though listed as dark brown).

The stools have a metal kick plate to protect where your feet rest. The cushioned back kitchen stools are comfortable enough to spend several hours on.

IKEA offers a few bar stool slipcovers, in white, natural, grey, green and floral. The slipcovers cover just the base of the seat itself and go over the legs.

IKEA bar stools are 30 x 19 while the IKEA counter stools are 26 x 19. It’s important to select the right height for your table or island so you have plenty of legroom.

how to update ikea bar stools

How to Update IKEA Bar Stools or Counter Stools

Paint (or strip) the stools to coordinate with your kitchen.

  1. Sand or use this method to paint without sanding.
  2. Paint using quality furniture paint. We used the same color as our Cream Kitchen Cabinets.
  3. Have a slipcover made in your favorite fabric. You can use one of IKEA’s as a guide or follow the tutorial linked below.
padded upholstered kitchen stools

Lisa from Farmhouse on Boone made bar stool slipcovers using a cream and soft blue ticking stripe fabric. I had her make them longer to drape to appear casual, but refined. You can get the slipcover tutorial here!

french country kitchen with slipcovered counter stools adapted from ikea

I’m head over heels in love with how comfortable and practical they are. Bar stool slipcovers blend function and design – offering comfort, yet ease of cleaning.

Adapting IKEA counter stools is an inexpensive way to achieve custom kitchen stools that fit any kitchen design.

kitchen counter stools from ikea with custom ticking stripe slipcovers
ikea counter stools with bar stool slipcovers

Do you have a fear of IKEA, too? Please say I’m not the only one!

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  1. Your kitchen is exquisite. I love your marble countertops and am wanting to replace mine. My husband loves to cook but he’s pretty messy. Do you think the Danby marble is conducive to a heavy cooking kitchen? Italian marble is not recommended. Thank you!

    1. Thank you, Brenda! I love Danby and you can use comet (on honed) to eliminate etching, but if you want fuss free, quartz would be a better fit for you.

  2. I really love your kitchen! All of my favorite things! What type of wood did you do for the island and what did you decide on the finish? 

    Good luck getting the project finished – that must be frustrating. Can’t wait to see more – we are also planning on a panel-ready refrigerator. 


    1. Oooh! I’ll ask my husband the stain that was used. It was supposed to be unfinished oak covered in Modern Masters Dead Flat for minimal protection. Unfortunately our carpenter made it in red alder which required a stain to achieve the color we wanted and then we put Modern Masters over it, which isn’t ideal because stain is a different base.
      Another thing I learned is a panel ready is different than an integrated – I personally prefer integrated because the metal is hidden. Hope that helps!

      1. Thank you so much! This is very helpful for the island and the refrigerator. I also didn’t realize there was a difference between those types of fridges. 

        And, again, I absolutely love your kitchen! (And house and everything!)