• They taste as good as they look......

    They taste as good as they look......

  • Ambassador of Sweden Par Ahlberger cuts the IKEA ribbon

    Ambassador of Sweden Par Ahlberger cuts the IKEA ribbon

  • Take one allen key and keep practicing

    Take one allen key and keep practicing

  • Marketing Manager Amanda Gillman and Canberra Store Manager Mark Mitchinson

    Marketing Manager Amanda Gillman and Canberra Store Manager Mark Mitchinson

  • The much travelled 'ikearoo'

    The much travelled 'ikearoo'

  • Adrian Smith, Brooke Simon, Robert Simon, Roxana Smith, Josh Boucher and Rebecca Smith

    Adrian Smith, Brooke Simon, Robert Simon, Roxana Smith, Josh Boucher and Rebecca Smith

  • Ivan and Pip Trundle

    Ivan and Pip Trundle

  • Ashley Perman

    Ashley Perman

  • Blaire Brown and Carly Brown

    Blaire Brown and Carly Brown

  • Belinda Knight, Jess Knight and Rachel Merz

    Belinda Knight, Jess Knight and Rachel Merz

  • Jess Hull, Leanne Wilding and Julie Sheather

    Jess Hull, Leanne Wilding and Julie Sheather

  • Di Bradshaw and Ann Cina

    Di Bradshaw and Ann Cina

  • Sam Weeks and Penny Bradshaw

    Sam Weeks and Penny Bradshaw

  • The IKEA shelter, 'democratic design for humanitarian benefit'.

    The IKEA shelter, 'democratic design for humanitarian benefit'.

IKEA is one of the best things to happen to home furnishing. The Scandanavian style and simplicity blended with functionality and affordability changed our thinking about home furnishing and bringing a fresh light look to all aspects of our homes. My first IKEA experience was in Stockholm in 1974 and it’s been an on/off relationship as my taste and needs changed but that was when Orrefors was the perfect glassware and cheese fondue and beef stroganoff were fashionable.

The Stockholm store was an introduction to the kind of marketing and display we in Australia took a long time to accept and use. The simple concept of a store out of town with plenty of parking, entry from ground floor level and an easy spiral past the ‘room’ spaces and must have homewares brought you to the top level where a smorgasbord of the freshest food was a fine finish before picking up your flatpacks and soft furnishings. Yes we had to learn about the allen key and follow the instructions, but patience and determination were your best asset.

To pre-empt the opening of the first Canberra store, variously said to be October or November, the office space of the new and growing management team situated across the road in Majura Park has been gussied up by the IKEA design team into a pop-up of products, displays, food and chairs galore in cute pine cubby house frames. The cubbies are grouped around a central meeting table where for guests on the opening night of the pop-up a spread to indulge in all things Swedish to eat and drink was not all about meatballs, but they were so good. And then to meander at leisure the space made my Swedish neighbour just a tad homesick. Sadly you can't buy any of the products on display and I so want one of those octopus arms for my 'devices' but we've waited this long....what's a few more months.

So go for a sticky beak on the weekend between 10-5 until August 23rd and join the IKEA family, it will have its advantages.

And in keeping with the IKEA community involvement my contacts tell me that already Common Ground Canberra, set to open in July, is the beneficiary of IKEA furnishings for the Gungahlin units. The allen key proficient team helped last week to assemble the flatpacks.