I love to shop. Sometimes for clothes and sometimes for household stuff. When it comes to household stuff my favorite places to shop are Target, vintage stores and my obsession: IKEA.
IKEA is the most amazing home store where you can literally find everything and anything you need at for a ridiculously reasonable price.
The only bad thing is you have to put everything together yourself. But lucky for me I actually enjoy that sort of thing, so I’m always up for the challenge. (And challenge it is–their instructions are very basic and sometimes hard to follow.)
Regardless, I still love it. It’s one of my all-time favorite stores.
Not only do they have a great catalog that looks like a magazine and comes out once a year, but the stores are also set up like a catalog and you literally just walk around like you’re walking through other people’s homes looking for stuff to buy.
It’s an experience that requires you to set aside several hours of time in your day. Otherwise you may miss something (and you don’t want to miss something!).
I first heard of IKEA when I was in college. One of my friends transferred to a college in the Bronx and his mom took him to IKEA to furnish what ended up being part of a hallway in a house he was sharing with four other guys.
And it was INCREDIBLE what they created in such a tiny little space. Just by adding a curtain they made a little hallway alcove into its own room, and then he had an armoire, a futon, a coffee table that doubled as storage, a small desk and a TV that was mounted in the corner. In the hallway of the house!
I was intrigued.
So when I moved to Southern California for an internship that turned into a job after college and found out there was an IKEA nearby, I took it upon myself to get there pronto. And it was then, back in 2005, when I fell in love with IKEA.
I moved to a new apartment and had to get some stuff I didn’t have. I was able to buy everything I needed for $50. Fifty dollars!!
IKEA is the bomb-dot-com.
Problem is, they only have them in bigger cities, so you have to order from the catalog online if you want to buy something and you don’t get that in-store experience. (They even have a restaurant–it’s so worth the in-person experience.) So I’ve had access to one every five years or so, when I’ve lived places where they have stores.
Now that I’m in Austin, I’ve got an IKEA 30 minutes away from me in Round Rock. So I make trips up there every few months (and when I do, we always eat at Salt Lick BBQ!!!).
Here’s what I picked up the last time I was at IKEA:
These two metal shelving units allow me to have open-storage of all my work-related stuff. I love open storage because I have lots of pretty baskets and wooden boxes that I like to use to hold all my stuff and closed storage doesn’t allow you to see or enjoy it. My decorative style is eclectic so I like to mix lots of different materials and textures and colors together.
I fell in love with this cart when I saw it on the 2017 IKEA catalog cover. It was being used as a serving cart for brunch (I’m a sucker for brunch) and I was hooked. I had to have one. Actually, I had to have two (I bought another one to use for herbs on my patio which gets the most amazing morning sun). I used my first one as a bar for all our glasses and drink stuff, and then I also have a wine rack made from an old pallet that I’ll be mounting on the wall above the cart (you can see this to the left of the cart).
When we moved to Austin, we downsized from a two-bedroom apartment to a one-bedroom apartment in order to upgrade the quality of apartment and still be able to afford it. (LOVE our new apartment!) And storage is at a minimum here, so I’ve had to get creative with how I store all of my work stuff (’cause I have a lot of work stuff). The patterned bin holds all my writing supplies that I haven’t used yet, brand new Moleskine notebooks, Dr. Grip pen refills, etc., and the black bin I use as a laundry basket.
The new 2018 IKEA catalog came out a couple months ago and it definitely didn’t disappoint. I have several pages bookmarked for the next time I make a trip to Round Rock.
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