The design world definitely has a love-hate relationship with Ikea. Price points? Love. Design? Love. Ubquity? Hate! So while Ikea is perfect grounds for basics and odds and ends it is definitely not a one-stop shop (unless you are a college student then by all means, go for it!).
So what is worth picking up at Ikea? CalloohCallay gives you the best and the worst of Ikea:
5 of the Best:
1 ~ Kitchens! ~
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Yes, really Virginia. Those Ikea kitchens are amazing, the hardware is great and they are of generally great quality and value. I particularly love the organizational accessories available. Recycling centers, utensil organizers, in-drawer spice racks, oh my! They are all clever
and useful and similar devices will cost you a fortune elsewhere. So even if you are diamettrically opposed to Ikea, I would go so far as to suggest even getting all your kitchen carcasses (ie. Akurum units without the doors) from Ikea and get custom doors supplied from a millworker. You will still save money!
The Pax wardrobe system is, simply put, amazing. Like the kitchens there is a huge variety of
organizational accessories that really make this one stand out. Plus it is available in different
heights, widths and door styles that really make it work in different spaces. I used to have a huge unit and I miss it terribly. I will be buying one again and I can’t wait to map out all our needs.
3 ~ Expedit! ~
I love how much this thing holds. Truly, if you are having storage problems this baby is the answer! I have the large white one and it has survived two moves. Plus last year I added the desk addition to it and it is now my perfect little crafting area. I have another one in my living room and I am trying really hard not to buy one for the husband’s studio space.
4 ~ Rugs! ~
You have to admit that the rugs are pretty rad for the price point. I love the Andrea Rund in particular. But they come in all sorts of cool and kooky designs. Normally my advice would be to stick to something classic when it comes to rugs, but when they are less than $500 that line of thought goes out the window. You can pick up something relatively trendy and in five or so years, not have guilt about replacing it. Win win.
5 ~ The Little Things ~
I am cheating and lumping these things together. Here is my mini-list of the many little Ikea essentials:
Stay away from the scented candles and you are good to go. There is nothing wrong with having a good supply of votives, pillars and, of course, tea lights on hand from the big Blue and Yellow. I use tea lights like crazy, especially in the winter. I love lighting them for parties or just for evenings at home. I put them in little glass votive holders, also from Ikea. Originally we bought a whack of these for the aisleway at our wedding and we are still using them regularly six years later.
I discovered these relatively recently. The 4-packs of cotton dish towels (Elly are a must. The are super absorbent and dry quickly – exactly what you need in a tea towel. Have stacks on hand, especially if you are a baker, like me. I could use some more right now actualy.
So cheap! I am constantly throwing a couple into my to-buy pile at the cash register. Plus they also have a battery recycling center for your old ones.
3 to Avoid:
Don’t go there. Not the cute water glasses, not even the oversized wine glasses. They will be cute at first but I can’t tell you how many times I have picked broken glass out of my dishwasher because one exploded during the wash. I would rather pay a bit more money and get something more substantial that will last.
Nothing will make your room scream Ikea catalogue faster than an Ikea sofa. If you must, skip the matching throw cushions and blankets and get something a little less expected. I know that they are cheap and sometimes it’s that or used and I understand that dillemma. But I am speaking from experience. I have put that damn foam thing into the back crevice
one too many times (Klippan I’m looking at you).
Just don’t okay? While I am currently entranced with the white washed Tundra , I know that it will give my space that Ikea Showroom syndrome. There are better options out there that will cost you a little more but will also outlast Ikea.
(Banner image credit to Oi Max)