Look! (and a Brief How-To): Cork Cabinet Siding

051409corksiding.jpgRecently over on Apartment Therapy Chicago, we featured our new cork cabinet siding. It wasn't ever in our plan, but on a whim became a great, useful choice for figuring out a kitchen gone slightly awry...

The task:
After rearranging our freestanding IKEA kitchen cabinets, the sizing and originally-intended use and look of things needed some adjustment.

Placing our not-so deep cabinet alongside our extra deep countertops meant we had excess space between the cabinet and wall. We also now wanted to be able to use the side of the cabinet, so we decided to cover it with cork (we hadn't originally purchased the side panels that IKEA sells separately). Using a liquid adhesive, we cut the cork to size to cover the entire cabinet side, reaching all the way back to the wall.

Here's how we did it:
We attached the semi-rigid cork insulation from McMaster-Carr using contact adhesive, because that's what we had available. Pro's: strong, permanent bond. Con's: off-gases. A non-permanent installation could probably be done with sticky-backed Velcro or mechanical fasteners. We used a pull saw with a very fine blade, and the material cuts very easily. The cork is also quite dusty at first. Before applying the contact cement we vacuumed the surface and then again after installation.

Has anyone else used cork in a similar way? If you don't have a magnetized fridge, chalkboard surface, or much extra (convenient) wall space going on, cork can be a great way to keep shopping lists, recipes, photos, and even a scale (see ours) handy.