I will tell you a short story that happened five years ago. Back then, I moved from Austria to Munich, Germany, to start my new life. I found a great job and loved the new city. Plus, I found a cute little apartment in the city’s heart, set atop of a building overlooking Munich’s Old Town. When I moved into the apartment, on a gloomy winter day in January, it was literally ‘stark naked’. There was nothing in it. Not even a light bulb.
As I was already working in a full time job and had no car, buying furniture seemed like a tough challenge. With a small budget and even smaller time frame, I was determined to accomplish this task the best possible. The question where to get nice and reasonably priced furniture was quickly resolved: Ikea. I browsed their website, jotted down furniture pieces I liked and set off to the closest Ikea on a snowy evening after work. I had to use the public transportation and I need not mention that it took me a 45 minutes ride on the suburban train plus an additional 25 minutes of walking through the snow. Finally, I arrived there an hour before the store closed. I went to a salesperson, went through my list (I pre-checked the availability of my chosen pieces online) and got everything I needed in 30 minutes. Another 30 minutes later I paid around 1.000 Euros for the furnishing of my entire apartment. Of course, I had the goodies delivered and assembled – and after a few days I had a fully furnished and lovely apartment that I’ve called my home up to today.
And that’s why I love Ikea. It is beautiful design. It is super affordable. It gives you a lot of possibilities to arrange and hack their furniture. After all, Ikea is not about having the same things everywhere. It is about interpreting their products in your personal way. And this is proven if you visit the inspiring Ikea Family Live website. Have a fab Friday, friends!
Photography via Ikea Family Live
i love your ikea story. ikea has figured greatly in my life as well. from my first apartment to our first home ikea has been with us. i had always referred to it as “hot rodding” ikea until i learned about “ikea hacking” whatever you call it, i’ve used it when i’ve decorated television sets and designed our homes – i’ve used ikea kitchens in 6 of them! i swear by them. good design at great prices. by the way, i love your blog, just discovered recently.
I agree Igor! I think some people prematurely turn away from Ikea thinking their homes will look like a catalog. But if you are creative and willing to invest some time expressing yourself and making your things yours, then Ikea is a great medium for that. As you said, they provide some affordable items with stylish designs that can be adapted to reflect your personality. And as a company, they support that! Which is quite unique, I think. I have to admit that I have been disappointed in the past by the quality and durability of some products, but I have been equally surprised by others. It’s just a matter of choosing the right product for your needs. That said, I think a thoughtfully curated home includes all kinds of furnishings varying in brand and designer. After all a home filled with only designer items can become just as sterile as a home filled with only ikea products. I think balance and honest expression are key when creating a home.
Happy Friday! Xx.
Igor, this is a really wonderful write up. Please know that you have equally inspired us with your passion, knowledge and style. Thank you so much for giving us all a glimpse into the impact IKEA has had upon you. We’re certain your IKEA products are lucky to have you!
I think most of the things in our house is from Ikea. Having just finished my Masters degree a year ago and moving together with my husband 1.5 years ago we just haven’t been able to afford anything but Ikea. But I LOVE it. To be honest when I’ve done research before buying I always ended up liking the Ikea option better. And then it is o much more affordable as well. The few pictures I’ve seen from your flat shows that it definitely does nto look likea catalogue. But then a home should never be about the furniture anyway, it should be about the personal details 🙂
Billy, Olle and Malm – happily living with us! Can’t imagine life without my swedish furniture. During university days years ago we would often drive to the next big city with an IKEA store, shop around and have a hot dot..or two 😉 Always a great day. Happy weekend, Igor! And thanks for sharing! lg, Susanne
Totally agree…when folks say they are tired of IKEA, I think “never, they are innovators and put so much good design into the hands of folks that can’t afford a lot of the other stuff” I will always be their fan. Love this story!
Thank you all so much for your lovely comments! Great to see so many Ikea lovers!!
I enjoyed this post so much! We have a great deal of IKEA in our apartment; in fact, the only furniture items which are NOT from IKEA are our bed and dining room table/chairs! Literally everything else is IKEA, and I love it that way. We always get compliments on our leather couch — people never guess it’s from IKEA and we’re always eager to tell them it is & encourage them to shop there as well! 🙂
Igor, what a charming and heart felt story. I bet your apartment reflects exactly who you are, given your exquisite taste. I love Ikea for being there, the same way I love easyjet. Now I might be at a stage in my life where I can afford different things like I prefer flying BA and Lufthansa but without these wonderful creative entrepreneurs the world would be a sadder place.
Who hasn’t kittet out their flats with Ikea before? Most of us have probably had a ‘Billy’. In fact when I designed my flat and wanted a white kitchen I opted for white gloss panels from Ikea. I agree with Holly, it really depends on how you use Ikea products. In fact, maybe I shall have an Ikea outing as I haven’t been for quite some time:)
What would we do without Ikea, seriously? We sold/gave/left everything in Iceland when we moved abroad and later when we arrived in Denmark and then Belgium trips to Ikea did the trick.
Hey, that’s my dining table in the bottom right corner! Well, mine is beech, I think this one is birch 😉
Cool story, are these photos of your place, if so, wow, so bright I want a place like this. Really can’t beat Ikea.
Hi Stephen, thanks for you comment! These pics are featured homes from the Ikea Family Live website, not my place unfortunately. But I do have a lot of Ikea at home myself:-)
This is amazing I have a website that I just found its http://www.panyl.com here you can order any kind of vinyl to cover the Ikea furniture if you are looking to personalize any of your Ikea furniture. They also have free sample.