IKEA furniture review
The whole Experience Point was pretty much entirely outfitted from IKEA. From the sofas and cushions to the tables, chairs and bookshelves, as long as it can be fitted into flatpack form and given a funny Swedish name, we bought it from IKEA. And, you know what, for the most part we're quite happy with them. But beware! Not all IKEA furniture are created equal, my friend. Oh no.
Below, we rate all of our furniture on value-for-money, ease of installation, and general aesthetics. All prices listed are IKEA member prices (membership is usually free) and are subject to change without prior notice because we don't work for IKEA. This article is not sponsored or in any way affiliated with the Swedish furniture company, but hey, IKEA, if you're reading this: call me.
(Click on any picture for the full Monty.)
According to IKEA's website, a BILLY bookcase is sold somewhere around the world every five seconds. And, you know what? I believe them. This is the best value-for-money bookcase you're ever going to be able to find, inside or outside of IKEA. Aside from the middle shelf (which is deadbolted to provide the case with structural integrity), the heights of all other shelves are adjustable, allowing you to display whatever you like wherever you like.
This thing was a complete nightmare. Not only was it extremely expensive at $80 per door - that's right, per door, not per pair of doors - it took us forever to install it into the BILLY. It takes two people to just get the door in place, and while one person holds the door, the other must quickly (and I stress quickly, because the aluminium and glass door is surprisingly heavy) screw everything into place. If you must have a door for your BILLY, I strongly recommend you go with the OXBERG instead (see below).
Not only is the OXBERG half the price of a MORLIDEN, it is also significantly easier to install and correctly align. The detachable hinges snap into place once properly aligned, and the light wood is a complete breeze for even a single person to install. However, for what basically amounts to a piece of wood and a couple of hinges, $40 per door is still quite a high asking price, seeing how it will take you four doors ($160, same as the MORLIDEN) if you wanted to cover the whole BILLY bookcase.
This table is an absolute steal at just $49. Although you need a fairly large space to assemble this table at any speed, the process is at least reasonably fast and simple. If you trip up a little in the beginning when it comes to installing the legs, here's a protip: don't screw the metal supports all the way in first. Leave it slightly loose, and only tighten after the legs are in. The melamine coating on the tabletop is also unfortunately prone to water damage, but at these prices? You can't really complain. Just use a coaster.
Each ADDE is $12.50, and when you combine it with the TARENDO, you can kit out a full dining/boardgaming table for just $99; which, as far as furniture goes, is a pretty damn good deal. These chairs are reasonably sturdy and comfortable, but the assembly - while simple enough - does take quite a bit of effort: especially if, like us, you're planning to assemble 40 chairs in a single day. The ADDE wouldn't be my first choice of chairs for a house, but they're really good value-for-money.
Made of galvanised steel, this lightweight shelf is surprisingly tough and strong, with each shelf able to hold up to 16kg (or approximately how much 800 pieces of sushi would weigh). It is also extremely easy to install: you don't need any tools aside from maybe a hammer, and you can put up an entire shelf within three minutes once you get into the swing of things. Only problem is, if you make a mistake with the shelf height, fixing said mistake can take quite a bit of effort because those things go on tight.
Assembling this sidetable was an absolute cakewalk. In fact, it was so simple to assemble that, when I was done with it, I found myself left with a vague sense of loss and longing; almost as if my hands were disappointed that I had only one such table to assemble. The price point is right, and the quality of the materials decent: what more could you want from a sidetable?
If you thought that the MORLIDEN was going to get the lowest rating in this list, you are sorely mistaken. This is the worst thing on the list, and we saved it for later because oh. my. god. Never, and I repeat, never, buy this sofa. My wife had never heard as much cursing coming out of my mouth as when we tried to put the cover over the metal skeleton. It took us literally half an hour each, and at the end of the day, the end result wasn't even that comfortable. Do not recommend.
Now this. This is what an IKEA sofa should be like. Not only is it many times more comfortable than the KNOPPARP, the HEMLINGBY is also so simple to assemble that even a blind monkey - given enough time and motivation - could put it together. The real kicker is that both this and the KNOPPARP cost the same amount of money: $99. The only real problem this sofa has is that it's almost always out of stock in IKEA, so if you're in the market for a sofa and you happen to see it, just grab it. You can thank me later.