DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack!

Back over Memorial Day weekend, my husband and I made our first-ever trip to IKEA….and it was incredible!  Seriously, it was everything I hoped it would be.  Pinterest is of course filled with all these amazing hacks and DIY projects using their basic products, so I was eager to give my own a try.  Oh, and let’s not even start on those prices!  #takemymoney

We didn’t get too carried away and buy an entire showroom (no, that’s coming when we move later this year….be prepared, Honey!), but we did snag a few items, one of which was a 3-pack of cork trivets.

I had first planned on painting them with some cute design that was TBD, but then I started worrying (because that’s what I do)….would the hot dishes cause problems for the paint, or would the paint cause problems for the dishes???  Either way, that would not be good.  I mean we’re actually going to use these bad boys, so I want their upcycling design to have some staying power and also not wreck our kitchenware.  Maybe craft paint and hot casseroles go together like peas and carrots, but I didn’t feel like testing it out here.

So I put on my thinking cap and started brainstorming ideas, then it hit me: BURN THE DESIGN!  Yep, I’d been eyeing getting a wood burner for some time and giving it a go, and this project seemed like the perfect opportunity to test out this new crafty pursuit.  Luckily, this skill is easy to master (at least with cork) and my DIY burned IKEA cork trivets proved to be a huge success!

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been

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DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets



The Cork Trivets

Here are the cork trivets we snagged at IKEA.  They came as a 3-pack for I think $3.99, so like everything else at this land of enchantment and wonder….super affordable!

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


Creating the Stencils

Since I am completely obsessed with my Silhouette Cameo, I put it to good use and had it cut out the stencils for me.  You of course don’t need a Silhouette for this task though (but I highly recommend picking one up because it is my most favorite crafting tool in the history of ever…just check out my Project Gallery to see why!).

A stencil can also be created with a pair of scissors, an Xacto knife, stickers, or even just free-handing the design on the cork….I’m not that brave though.  #cantdrawastraightline

I created the designs for my three trivets in Silhouette Studio then cut them out of contact paper that I grabbed at the dollar store.  This was my first time ever cutting this medium on my Silhouette, and it worked perfectly….and it’s way cheaper than using precious vinyl!

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


Once all three of my stencils were cut, I trimmed them and weeded (or removed) all the excess parts.

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


This particular pattern of contact paper was rather busy and made it somewhat difficult to see my final design, but holding it up to the light made it easier to double check that I had weeded everything that needed to go.

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


Applying the Stencils to the Cork Trivets

Next, it was time to apply all three stencils to their respective cork trivets.  I first added some transfer tape over the stencils then used the fail-proof hinge method to apply them, which I talk about in more detail here, here, or here.

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


And here’s the stencil once applied (don’t worry, I smoothed out the inner portion of the “Y”….I know it looks all wonky in the photo):

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


Tracing the Design Onto the Cork Trivets

I then grabbed the closest writing utensil I could find which happened to be a pen, but a marker would work too.  I started filling in all the elements of the design and then removed the stencil.

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


The Wood Burner

Like I mentioned, this was my very first time ever using a wood burning tool, so this was a pure experiment for me.  I picked up this particular set that came with a bunch of different interchangeable tips as well as a handy dandy storage case.  It also allows you to adjust the heat depending on what type of item you’re burning….I like having options.

This tool can be used on not only wood and cork, but also leather, paper crafts, or other home decor items like fake pumpkins…..guess what I’ll be trying out this fall!

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


Thanks to a little bit of serendipity, the dots on my design ended up being the same size as the flow (or round) tip on my burner, so I quickly burnt those by just pressing straight down for a couple seconds over each dot.  I then let the burner cool down completely, removed the flow tip and replaced it with the calligraphy one (it’s sort of angled with both skinny and wide parts), then burned the rest of my design once the burner was preheated again.  I found it was easier to complete all the thick, chunkier sections first, then go back and do all the thin lines.

The cork is obviously softer than wood, so I didn’t need to use very much pressure to get a nice sear.  You can also change up your design and adjust not only the pressure you apply, but also the length of time you leave your tip in contact with the cork as well as the angle you apply it.  It’s quite an amazing little tool.

There’s of course no erase button (nuts!), so I had to be focused at all times with just where and how I applied the wood burner tip to the cork, but it was rather easy to clean up the edges.  I’ve also read that you can fix tiny mistakes when burning wood with just a little sanding….not sure if that will work with cork too, but it’s a handy tip.

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


The Completed DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets!

And here they are: all three of my DIY burned IKEA cork trivets!  I cannot tell you how much I love these little suckers….they are just so cool, and I love that they’re still completely practical and functional.  We’ll be putting them to good and regular use in no time.

I’m also quite proud of myself for making all three of them without any mistakes….or third-degree burns (see Hubs, I told ya I wouldn’t have to go to the hospital with this one!). ;)

One of the details that I especially love about these is that the designs are three-dimensional thanks to them being burnt *into* the cork.  Yep, the wood burner provided great texture and character that you just can’t get with paint, vinyl, or a Sharpie.

I think using this technique to personalize trivets or coasters would be such a fun and unique (and still very practical) gift idea!

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been

DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets: Cheap & Easy IKEA Hack! | Where The Smiles Have Been


Time-Lapse Video Tutorial!

Check out this quick time-lapse video I created that shows the cork-burning process from start to finish!  (I also have another time-lapse video from when I painted the bright and bold accent wall in my son’s room….complete with technical difficulties!) ;)


Thanks so much for stopping by!  I hope you enjoyed my first IKEA hack! :)


About Christine

I'm Christine, a SAHM to a spunky toddler and his mini-me infant brother, and married to the best guy you'll ever meet. I (try to) spend their nap times getting my craft on and I blog about my creations and adventures in parenting at Where The Smiles Have Been. My loves are all things DIY, especially Silhouette projects, wreaths, & personalized decor. And ice cream....definitely love me some ice cream.


  1. Rachel Fisher says:

    Love this! Is the Silhouette cut file available?

    • Hi Rachel! I’m glad you like this! Sorry, but the file isn’t available at this time. I’m looking to set up an online store later this year, so check back soon! :)

      • Was wondering if your files are available to purchase yet? Would love to make some of this in time for Mothers day next weekend

  2. I was wondering if you could email me your templates? It would be so cool to make this for my kitchen. I realize I would also need to buy the font. Thank you.

  3. stephanie scott says:

    could you use the wood burning tool to cut your stencil out of the contact paper???

  4. Love your craft idea. Just finished 2nd batched of burning images on them. My question is: Should I paint the trivets with polyurethane before using them to set hot pots & dishes on them so that my images aren’t compromised?

  5. Love this. Just bought 10 sets of these trivets on, can’t wait until they get here!

  6. what font did you use in the Silhouette Studio? These are adorable.

  7. These are so cool! I’m going to have to get make some.

  8. I LOVE these! I’m so looking forward to doing some burning of my own like this! Pinning these for sure. You’re also one of my features at the Talented Tuesday party tomorrow. I hope you’ll stop by and say hi :)

  9. These are SO GREAT! I never would have thought to use a wood burning tool! So smart! I”m featuring your project this week on You’re Gonna Love It!!

  10. How very cool is this!! I have these trivets, but nothing else! :-) I am feeling inspired though!! Thank you so much for sharing this at MMM! See you tonight at 9pm EST! I really love this idea! :-)

  11. Christine this is an awesome project love it! Thanks for sharing a must save :)

  12. I love this idea!! It’s so cute and would be such a great gift! Thanks for sharing! Stopping by from Blogger Brags – cheers! Kendra

  13. Michaels has trivets like these. They are on sale this week and end up being $0.60 each! Just an FYI for anyone without an IKEA :)

  14. Oh my gosh I love these! I think you made the right choice by burning these instead of painting. Now I think I need one of these burning tools…at least I should be able to easily talk my pyromaniac husband into it :)

    • Haha, Amanda….our husbands sound a lot alike! :) Yes, the burning tool is pretty fun, and I’m happy I went ahead and got one with interchangeable tips. Now I can’t wait to try it out with other projects! I hope you enjoy it too….if your husband goes for it. ;)

  15. Hi, Christine ~ I’m visiting from the Merry Monday Link Party. These trivets are so fun! We have an Ikea within an hour of us, but I haven’t had a chance to wander the aisles of wonder yet. I’m hoping to get there soon! I LOVE that you chose to use a wood burner on these rather than paint them. So creative! Thanks for sharing! Can’t wait to see what else you “cook” up with your new wood burner! :0)

    • Thanks so much, Tiffany! You should definitely hit up IKEA when you get a chance… is like heaven on Earth (only slightly exaggerating). ;) I’m sure you’d find lots of things to get your craft on with!

  16. Rachael says:

    I just ordered the burning tool to start this project! I am so excited but can you tell me if you have the cut files available for download?


    • Hey Rachael! Glad to hear you’re excited about doing this project too! Nope, I don’t have the cut files available yet…..I’m planning on opening up an online shop within the next several months, so they’ll be available once I get that going!

      • I am looking forward to your offering the cut files for download! I don’t have a Silhouette but know someone who does. I’m hoping she will print out the patterns for me. Any idea how soon this might be available?

  17. Theresa says:

    That is a great tutorial and I will be doing some of these for sure. I have a question about the Silhouette. I have used mine tons with the expensive vinyl because for the life of me, I can’t figure out what settings to put it on to cut contact paper. No matter where I set it, it seems to cut right thru the whole thing, not just the top layer. So it just leaves me with the outline of what I’m cutting. What settings do you use?

    • Hey Theresa! Yeah, I’ve always only used expensive vinyl for stencils too before this project, but I hated to waste it. This was the first time I tried cutting contact paper and I’m actually planning on sharing a whole post about making contact paper stencils. The settings I used were Blade: 1, Speed: 8, Thickness: 3, and they worked perfectly. Hope this helps you out! :)

  18. Great project! I’m going to have to add this to my list of things to try!

  19. You make it look so easy! I’ve been eyeing a wood burner for a couple projects and this makes me want to get one so much more! I’ve been meaning to go on an IKEA run so I might need to pick these up when I go. Great hack!

  20. I have not been to Ikea in years but I want to go now! It’s a bit of a drive for me but with a woodworking hubby I already have a wood burner on hand to give these a go. Now to just get the Silhouette without the husband knowing about it. ;)

    • Haha Jennifer, oh how fun it is to try and sneak a fun purchase past the hubby. ;) Good luck with that, and have fun if you decide to give a project like this a go!

  21. WOW! Brilliant! Love the idea. I pinned this!

  22. As always, another fabulous projected you’ve shared! Love your creativity, Christine :) You always make it look so easy with your step-by-step tutorials and pictures! Thanks for the inspiration….can’t wait to get myself a woodburner to try out!

  23. This is a really clever idea! I’ve seen designs stamped on cork before, but not burned. How did you like the results? I think they’re just too cute!

    • Thanks so much, Pam! I love how they turned out….they’re so much cuter now, and I’m so happy that they’re still practical and functional since we’re actually going to put these to use! Thanks for the kind words! :)

  24. Awesome project, Christine!! I’d love to try wood burning sometime, though I admit that I am not a lover of hot tools (even getting food out of my oven makes me a little nervous). But your trivets turned out so cool I may need to get over it ;)

    • Thanks, Emily! Yeah, I know what you mean about being nervous with hot tools. I was really nervous about using this woodburner, but it actually wasn’t difficult, and I didn’t get the slightest burn….wahoo! As long as you pay attention to what part of the tool you grab and make sure you place it back on the holder when not in use, it’s pretty safe. Good luck if you decide to dive in! :)

  25. Love Love Love! I may have to go buy a wood burner now. Awesome job on the video!

    • Thanks, Michelle! The woodburner is quite amazing….I can’t wait to try more projects with it! And thanks for the kind words about the video….I’m trying to get all fancy and techy. ;)

  26. These are fantastic! I am seriously in love with IKEA and I can’t wait to pick up some of these and make my own pretty trivets!

    • Thank you, Marie! I’m in love with IKEA now too! We don’t have one by where we live, but the Cincinnati store is just about 20 minutes from where my parents live….now I want to visit the store during every trip back home! :)

  27. The idea to burn the designs onto the trivets is perfect Christine! They turned out so well. I think I might have to get a woodburner because I can think of really cool Christmas ornaments ideas to make with it! Thanks for the inspiration. You always have the best ideas.

    • Why thank you, Kelly! Yes, I think Christmas ornaments sound like a great idea! The woodburner really has the wheels a’spinnin’ in my mind now… many crafty possibilities! :)

  28. These are adorable!


  1. […] saw a post on Pinterest about these cork trivets from Ikea and made me very excited to try to make […]

  2. […] I wish I had all of the tools on hand to make these DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets from Where the Smiles Have Been. […]

  3. […] I bought a wood burning tool before my daughter’s wedding that hasn’t gotten nearly enough use since.  I’d love to try these Burned Cork Trivets from Where the Smiles Have Been. […]

  4. […] DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets | Where the Smiles Have Been […]

  5. […] DIY Burned IKEA Cork Trivets – Where The Smiles Have Been […]

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