This IKEA side table hack oozes chic bistro-style, but you'll need a lot of patience

We can't believe how brilliant it looks! Here’s what the experts advise if you're looking to replicate it

IKEA Gladom black side table in a living room with a grey sofa
(Image credit: IKEA)

Everyone loves a good DIY project, and a recent TikTok video of a table upcycling project has captured the attention of almost 500,000 social media users – and for good reason.

DIY projects can be tricky, even IKEA hacks – sometimes you can see brilliant success by fixing something up at home yourself, but many of us know that, occasionally, they can go wrong, leaving you with hours of wasted time and an item you don’t love, or a part of your home that still needs addressing.

But luckily, this wasn’t the case for one business owner, who shared over on the video social media platform exactly how she breathed new life into a basic IKEA coffee table, with a pretty incredible new design.

Bistro-style mosaic IKEA table

In the video – which has been viewed over 500,000 times and has over 57,000 likes – TikTok user @duyguturgok, Duygu Turgut Gökpına who runs the cafe Milk No Milk in London, shared her smart IKEA hack.

Despite the stylish shop front, she admits in the clip that she dislikes the table they have outside the business, explaining, 'I think we just ran out of our budget and just got the cheapest coffee table from IKEA.' As far as we can tell, the table is likely to be the £19 GLADOM tray table from the Swedish brand.

Because of this, Duygu shares that she decided to do something about the table to give it 'a little makeover'.

In the video, she shares that she wanted to create a mosaic-like top on the black side table, and goes on to detail the process, which she confesses took her 'days to finish', but was 'definitely worth it' in the end.


♬ That Couch Potato Again - Prod. By Rose

To complete the DIY project, she explains, 'I ordered a kilo of mosaic tiles online, and honestly, I wasn’t expecting them to be that small, but it was okay!'

She then shared that she wanted to make the coffee table cute enough for people to take photos with, so opted to write out ‘Coffee & Chill’ in the small black and white tiles.

In the video, Duygu starts by glueing the tiles on the border of the table, before writing out her fun slogan in tiles. Sharing how tricky it was, she explains, 'It was okay until I started cutting the tiles to fit in the little gaps. It took me ages to finish, but I was so happy with the progress I made.'

The TikTok creator then revealed that she filled in any remaining gaps by layering grout over the finished surface, before wiping everything clean and sealing it – leaving her with a stunningly stylish black and white coffee table.

While she admits the process was a little tricky, with such a great result, we've definitely wondered how to recreate a similar look in our homes.

And if you're considering the same, DIY expert Tim Warren from Adkwik shares that there are a few things that may be helpful to keep in mind to make the job a little easier, while still producing the same impressive effect.

'Using a large piece of paper, trace the shape of your tabletop, and cut the paper to this shape. You can then use this to experiment with patterns and designs to see what works best before glueing them down to the table,' he suggests, to avoid regrettable mistakes.

'This trick will also help you to see if you have enough tiles to cover the whole tabletop surface. And as seen in the video, applying the tiles from the outside and working inwards will work the best.'

To make this job easier, you could also buy a sheet (or sheets) of multiple soft mosaic tiles that are already linked together, to cover a wider space in a short time – like these from Tiles Direct.

kitchen with wooden spatula glasses and mosaic tiles

(Image credit: TBC)

He also advises having the right tools for this DIY job, in order to ensure the table lasts a long time, and looks as good as possible.

Tim says, 'Firstly if you are going to be mainly using the table outside, you should ensure that you are using weatherproof materials so that the finished project can withstand the elements. Also, check that you are using an adhesive that is suitable for tiles, such as mortar, mastic or dedicated tile adhesive, which can usually be purchased from a DIY store.'

'You may also want to paint the table first if you are using tiles that are translucent, as otherwise, the natural colour of the table will show through. This should be done and left to fully dry before adding the mosaic,' he says.

Finally, while the creator of the TikTok video correctly seals the table before finishing, Tim warns that this is also something you should do on a regular, ongoing basis. 

'You will need to seal the surface of the table regularly to ensure its longevity, around once or twice every season depending on how regularly it is used and the conditions it is kept in.'

Will you be trying your hand at a spot of mosaicing?


 Amy Hunt is an experienced digital journalist and editor, now working in a freelance capacity specialising in homes and interiors, wellness, travel and careers. She was previously Lifestyle Editor at woman&home, overseeing the homes, books and features sections of the website. Having worked in the industry for over eight years, she has contributed to a range of publications including Ideal Home, Livingetc, T3,Goodto, Woman, Woman’s Own, and Red magazine