My First Visit to Ikea (and What I Thought About It!)
A few years ago, probably about the time they opened the store near here, we received an Ikea catalog, the first ever. I had heard of the place from people on the internet but had no exposure up to then.
It was interesting to see what kind of styles were up and coming, what kind of things were popular in Ikea’s Swedish hometown and around the world. I am always interested in observing cultures that are foreign to me and analyzing the differences and what is important to them.
For instance, one thing I’ve noticed is that most countries put a great emphasis on relaxing around their meals, taking the opportunity to spend time with each other over a well-prepared dinner. And this is something American’s in general do not observe.
But before I begin a discourse on the many pecularities in each culture, let me get back to Ikea.
I recently had a chance to visit the store near here and was I surprised!
Not Your Normal Furniture Store
Ikea, is plainly speaking, a furniture retail company. But the layout of the store alone has taken tremendous thought and planning.
Like a mountain trail, the path winds around one display after another. And by display (I’m sure, in fact there is a better word for it) I mean an entire mini layout of a room. It winds so many times that I couldn’t tell where I was in the store or where “out” was (however, there are shortcuts available for those who want to get to one place in particular or want to leave the path).
After seeing a few things that inspired my crafty intellect, I took advantage of the chance to snap a few photos for future reference, which has now provided me with the opportunity to blog about it.
The Desire for Efficiency
First of all, what I noticed in everything was the desire for better efficiency in the given space. From normal home rooms to tiny apartment rooms, everything in it was specifically designed to make the best use of the rooms as possible without making it feel cramped.
My particular favorite, however, was this small studio with a daybed.
There is a simplicity to the style that is definitely alluring.
I don’t impulse buy, but I was sorely tempted when I started thinking about all the ways I could use Ikea’s roll-around cart.
I saw these and was immediately in love. How vintage can you get!
They also offer some kooky lights. All I have to say is, I don’t want to clean them!
I was walking around randomly snapping photos, hoping the battery on my tablet wouldn’t run out before we finished. Unfortunately, it did.
Entering the Warehouse
This was the point that was a shocker. After winding around the path in cozy nooks, you come out into a humongous warehouse, self-serve, no less. I could just imagine what my siblings and I would have thought about it if we had it when we were kids.
And then there was the food court and small market. You’ve got me at foreign cuisine. The cook in me just thrills to give it a try, ask how you make it, and make it myself.
However, the Kalles spreadable fish eggs was a little much. I can’t say I wouldn’t try it though.
All in all, it was a fun and enlightening experience, one that I was happy to share with family. Now I am ready to return with a truck and trailer.
What about you? Have you been to an Ikea? Do you like the styles they offer? Let me know what you think in the comments below!