I love IKEA.
There. I said it.
There are plenty of haters, but after a recent trip to Fort Worth, I’m not one of them.
Where I live, the nearest IKEA is 412 miles away in Atlanta, a six an a half hours of driving. We were in Fort Worth, TX for a week, so we decided to pop in and see what it was all about. I simply fell in love.
Yes, it is inexpensive. Yes, some of the merchandise is cheaply made (you get what you pay for).
The store displays the merchandise according to rooms, and not just by rooms like some furniture stores, but they have serveral completely furnished (ceiling to floor) rooms for you to browse. That, my friends, made my heart go pitter-pat.
Looking for bedroom furniture? There are 10 to 15 completely furnished bedrooms to browse. Looking for kitchen ideas? There are 20 to 30 completely furnished kitchens to browse. Some brainiac even came up with the idea of furnishing entire apartments with the stuff you can buy in IKEA. Your apartment is only 900 square feet? No problem, IKEA can show you how to furnish it. Your apartment is only 600 square feet? No problem, IKEA can show you how to furnish it AND have a ton of storage. It is incredible! And it’s all labeled and priced. All a shopper has to do is jot down the item numbers, hand the list to an IKEA employee, and they will bring it to you. What is not pure heaven about that?
I’m sorry. I’m sure some of you are thinking, IKEA? Really? You get your decorating ideas from IKEA?
Yes, and I’m not even ashamed or sorry. For anyone as interior-design challenged as I am, IKEA is a dream come true. It is really the concept that I love about IKEA. No longer do I have to pluck rooms from Better Homes and Gardens or Martha Stewart Living and search the world over for each individual piece. It is all right there in front of my eyes waiting for me to say, “I’ll take it.” If there is an item that I’d like to swap for something of higher quality, such as a couch or mattress, I can find that item at a different store. No big deal.
But the furniture doesn’t last, you say? I’ll have to replace it in 10 years, you say? So what! I’d have to replace in 10 years anyway. My kids are 9 and 7. What they don’t completely destroy, they’re not going to be satisfied with when they are teenagers anyway. In less than 10 years, I’m going to need storage solutions, so it doesn’t matter to me that the furniture isn’t the highest quality.
The Swedes are great at using every inch of a small space. I like that – the using every inch part, not the small space part. I’m claustrophobic. Seriously, the storage they are able to squeeze out of a small space is amazing.
I want to redo Eff’s and Z’s bedrooms this summer, and if I had a hitch on my Scion xB, I would have rented a U-Haul trailer and packed it full. Instead, I took pictures and will order online or plan a weekend trip to Atlanta.
Shopping online isn’t the same as going to a store. Although there are pictures of furnished rooms, one doesn’t experience the feeling of the room or experience just how much storage is actually in the room. Little “check out the inside” stickers show up in the oddest of places to reviel some incredible storage solutions. Plus, the IKEA website doesn’t include the completely furnished apartments like the showroom. The showroom is amazing. It really is a tourist attraction all by itself.
I can’t wait to start on the kids’ rooms. Aflutter is what you might call me, all aflutter.
Meanwhile, I snagged a nifty contraption that holds all those pesky plastic bags. I love it!
Time will tell if I my infatuation with IKEA is really, truely love, or if I will find another company who is willing to cater to my handicapped eye for all things interior design. In the mean time, leave me a comment and let me know, are you an IKEA lover or hater?