Cheap & cheerful IKEA must-haves

So this week I got to be part of article from Apartment Therapy where real live interior designers shared their go-to pieces from… wait for it… IKEA.

Now before I go any further, let’s get something straight. I am a regular human being, therefore I have the same exact love/hate/love relationship with IKEA that you do. I walk in, and I am all “ew, ew, ew, college dorm, ew…” , and then,  just like that, I fall in love with something and can’t believe that somewhere in Sweden someone figured out a way to manufacture and produce it for such an unbelievable price.  (hello, Stockholm 2017 Rattan Cabinet I am talking to you.)

So for those of you who know me, you may be a little skeptical since you know what a stickler I am for craftsmanship, shopping small, & furniture pieces with impeccable details and quality. That being said, sometimes you gotta do a little high-low, and that doesn’t get easier than a quick trip to Ikea. Don’t believe me? Take a look at a few of our past projects where a piece from Ikea was not only cheap & cheerful, it was the star of the show.

This chair is everything! The Storsele chair is one of my all-time favorites. It’s the perfect textural accent with its loopy, woven back, and the noir finish keeps it from feeling to rustic. I love to pair it with a wool throw or sheepskin (also from Ikea) to add softness.

The large Hektar pendant light is one of Ikea’s best introductions in the last five years. The matte finish gives it a rustic, almost vintage feel, and the glossy white interior keeps it functional. The scale is slightly oversized, which makes it the perfect inexpensive addition to a kitchen or bar. Lots of style at an unbeatable price!
This one is double trouble, because I think these two pair perfectly together in an entry or playroom. In these kind of tight spaces the Hemnes shoe cabinet doubles as an actual cabinet. I swap out the hardware for something decorative and fabulous (these are the Streamline knobs from Anthro) and then secure it to the wall to give it a more customized, built-in feel. To add dimension and a designer touch I like to pair it with the Mosslanda picture ledges since the whites are a perfect match. Such a chic, inexpensive solution then allows you to splurge a little more on art, rugs, and accessories!
The Gjora bed may very well be my most favorite new Ikea introduction. The clean-lined dowel posts and slight nod to a mid-century aesthetic make it super versatile but also still on trend. I love that it comes in a natural finish because that makes it customizable! I had this one stained a medium brown with a slight grey wash and it looks like a million dollars!
See, I told you. You thought you had made your last trip to the big blue box your senior year in college, didn’t you? Well guess what? Accessibly priced (chic) furniture will always be on trend, and every once and a while Ikea gives us a reason to pop on over, eat some Swedish meatballs and add a little cheap and cheerful to our lives. Ikea I can’t quit you.

Kate Lester Interiors

Kate Lester Interiors