Thursday, July 30, 2015

IKEA

I have to admit that I am a fan of IKEA. I was first exposed to them several years ago when I visited a store in Frisco, TX. Being interested in modern design, I could not help but be attracted to much of the furnishings they have to offer.

If you have never been to an IKEA store, you may not be familiar with their products. IKEA is based in Sweden and they have stores around the world and many in the US. Until recently, the stores in the US were mainly located near the coasts, the exceptions being in Chicago, Minneapolis and Frisco. However, if you happen to live in the vast center of the country as I do, there was really not a convenient option for visiting a store.

When we built our house, I knew what a wanted as far as cabinet functionality. I wanted large drawers for pots, pans and cookware. I also wanted a modern look, good quality hinges and drawer slides. In addition, I needed to keep to a tight budget. IKEA cabinets seemed to fit the bill from the information I could find online. But you can bet that I was not going to buy cabinets for our new home without my wife's approval. And I wanted to her to touch and feel the cabinets so that I would be assured she would be satisfied with them. (can you tell I have been married a long time)



So one weekend, my wife and I made a quick road trip to Texas to visit the IKEA store and for her to get a good look at the cabinets. She gave me her blessing to use them in her kitchen. A month later, I drove a truck back to Texas and purchased all the cabinets for our new home as well as some lights, book cases and furniture. It has now been 9 years living with our IKEA kitchen and we are very pleased. They have held up very well to lots of use and three young children! I really would recommend them to anyone. Thankfully IKEA has now put a store in Kansas City. I was there today over lunch and bought a new comforter for our bed.

IKEA carries much, much more than cabinets. They sell couches, tables, chairs, dressers, linens, kitchenware, appliances, kids toys, lighting, counter tops, sinks, beds................. Lots and lots of things! Really pretty much anything you need to furnish and outfit your home. I guess I would say one of their main goals is to provide products that are very cost effective. Most of their furniture requires assembly. I have quite a few of their products and I am sure I will continue to purchase more in the future. I am currently considering an additional dresser and perhaps new living room couches in the not to distant future.

One thing they do with their display areas that I really like is to setup model rooms or apartments and kitchens so that people can visualize how to mix different products together. I think this is very helpful for many people.

Their products there are not intended to be high end, but I think many of them are very well made. I also think there are some items that probably will not hold up to daily use for very long. So you just have to analyze what you want to purchase, just like anywhere else.

The stores are quite huge affairs, almost always with two levels. If you visit one, plan on being there a few hours. And if you get hungry, they have a nice cafeteria that offers some traditional Swedish foods as well as more American style dishes.

Go and have fun!