I went to Dallas last weekend for Natalie‘s art show and to investigate the Ikea in Frisco. Wow. Now I’ve finally experienced the distinctly Swedish combination of utility and design elegance that people on the coasts have known about for over 15 years.
I came home with an entertainment center, a bed frame, a coffee table, and a chair all for around $650. And it all fit in my car! At first I thought nothing would fit – I picked up the entertainment center and coffee table on Saturday and went back for the bed frame and chair on Sunday. I love the smell of commerce and wood and cardboard boxes in the morning. My car smells like a new house now.
I was very impressed with Ikea’s conscientiousness and creativity in service of utility. Everything they do seems to be dedicated to efficient storage, attractive design, recyclability and low cost. They even write an ETA of your wait on the floor in front of the checkout lanes. Hopefully their influence will help rewrite the rules for home furnishing stores. I never thought buying furniture would be a revelatory experience. Part of me wonders what the catch is. Like maybe they engage in exploitative business practices or their CEO sends salacious instant messages to his underlings like certain Florida congressmen.
Interesting side note: enough people have linked to Generation X at amazon.com using the phrase “semi-disposable Swedish furniture” that the Amazon listing is #1 in Google without even having the phrase anywhere on the page or in the cache. See “failure, miserable” for a similar effect.
1.) My first Ikea experience was around 1989 just outside Washington, D.C. on a school trip, but I didn’t care about furniture then.