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Ikea Comes To Town

Good Monday morning to everyone.  Okay, admittedly this has nothing to do with the Amish (oh, I'm sure I'll be able to come up with some connection if I type long enough), but has anyone been to this Swedish furniture behemoth?  I'll admit to being an IKEA late-comer,  I had barely heard of the place up until a couple of years ago.  It wasn't until Rachel started talking about it that the store made my radar.  We've been to their store in Canton, Michigan twice since it opened two years ago. But now IKEA is just 20 minutes from my driveway, opening one of their superstores in West Chester, Ohio.  So my Sunday was spent slogging through this festival of furniture with about 10,000 other people.   Interestingly, I did see one "plain" couple there, presumably German Baptists from our area.  That is a bit fitting since IKEA furniture's sleek style would probably fit into many plain tastes.  Rachel (ah, I found the Amish connection) was going to take Lovina's sisters Susan and Verena to the IKEA in Canton last year while I was working with Lovina on our book, but the trip was shelved at the last minute because of time. But I think they would have found the store amazing.  A few quick IKEA tips for anyone contemplating making the trip to the newly minted one in West Chester, or anywhere else:

1) Try to go on a weekday

2) Block about 3 - 4 hours out of your schedule for food, browsing, and check-out.

3) Don't bother going out to eat before IKEA, food is part of the experience.  They offer plenty of Swedish specialties in their cafeteria.

4) Prepare to assemble furniture yourself.  Their prices are are so low because almost any sizable piece of furniture needs to be assembled once you are home, and their assembly instructions can sometimes be lacking.

Anyone else have any IKEA comments or tips for others?   






Re: Ikea Comes To Town

Are you kidding, my husband is Norwegian and Swedish!  The IKEA (All caps by the way) in our area it is about an hour away, so it is an outing when we go and we usually have a purpose.  Finally,  talk about a culture I am familiar with! Not only is my house full of Norwegian/Swedes so is the area of the country that we live in and our church has Norwegian roots too. IKEA is just part of the vocabulary here!  

We always get free meals, with the kids club cards, you swipe them when you are there and they either give the children a small prize or free food.  We bring the cards even when the children aren't with us, which is most of the times that we go. We always come home with Swedish milk chocolate, the IKEA gravy mix and lefsa (Vestland). We don't have an escalator here ours is all one level.  We have a Target store with one of those though.  

Good luck with an IKEA is St. Louis, a German town may not be so accepting of a Swedish store! We have left without parts too, they won't mail a thing and are not accomdating to the we live really far away story. AND you have to pay a charge for regular shopping bags, so bring your own for small stuff.

God Daug! and happy shopping! 


LuvMaerz's picture
Re: Ikea Comes To Town

"A mind is like a parachute. It doesnt work if it's not open."- Frank Zappa

 Oh, Target!  One of my OTHER favorite stores!  I don't have one of those near me either.. but now that I have moved, at least there is one within 45 minutes.  I can't imagine a Target so big it needs an escalator! 

Re: Ikea Comes To Town

We have a "Target Greatland"!!!!  It's pretty big!  Fortunately, for my husband's sake, it is about 45 minutes away from here.  We don't really have any major stores within a 30 minute drive from my house.  Mostly they are all Walmarts.  Undecided

Re: Ikea Comes To Town

Rachel and you should go shopping....Target is her other favorite store, too.  Unfortunately for my wallet, there are lots more of THOSE around!  There are Super-Targets, have you seen those? SuperTargets are like regular Targets on steroids. I don't know that I've seen an escalator in one, but they are LARGE with a full line of groceries, etc.  We saw several in Florida....

Re: Ikea Comes To Town

Target is about 5 minutes from here for us, no SuperTargets or Greatlands though and not the one with the escalator, it is not that big it was just built on a smaller plot, no where to go but up!  There are a couple more within half hour or so.  (Luv) 45 minutes for a Target, that would be horrible!!!  I guess us suburban girls are spoiled! We avoid WalMart as much as possible. Guys shouldn't be talking about shopping! Y'all have to add steroids or hunting or sports in some way!!! It is much different for us girls.  If you ever did get Lovina and her sisters into IKEA, the looks on their faces would be priceless, just trying to imagine what three Amish women and you and Rachel in an IKEA would look like!  Talk about a want, want want kind of place, that's IKEA!!  

Re: Ikea Comes To Town

found this articule about shopping at Ikea.  Couldn't help but notice it talks about a scratch and dent section. Hummmm sounds like some good deals there.  Also found it interesting that he recommends that if you think you want a small item you should pick it up and put it in your cart then 'ditch it' at the check out if you change your mind.

LuvMaerz's picture
Re: Ikea Comes To Town

"A mind is like a parachute. It doesnt work if it's not open."- Frank Zappa


I can see why you would want to pick something up ... if you change your mind and decide you want something, it is a huge pain to have to fight the crowd to go track it down in the monstrous, circular store.  And up by the checkout there are bins to throw the reusable shopping bags back in... and it seems people also threw the items they decided they didn't want back into those bins, also.

 I forgot to mention, the day we spent the whole day in Schaumburg Ikea, I kept noticing this faint creak/shift every so often.  I wasn't sure what it was, and I didn't think too much about it.  When my husband and my friend's husband met up with us later, they told us it was the floors shifting from too much weight!!  I swear, although that store is sooo huge, there had to be 2000+ people in it that day.  Just glad there wasn't a fire or something.

Re: Ikea Comes To Town

Never heard of them until the show Clean House.  It seems like a lot of the furniture they buy is from Ikea. Seems like the guy on that show is able to get some really nice looking furniture.  I've seen on other home improvement shows where they put together the furniture as a way to save money but always wonder how easy that would be.  I'm not much for crowds when shopping so maybe next week when I am on spring break I'll get to the one in Ohio or just wait for summer vacation which isn't until June 10th Frown

Re: Ikea Comes To Town

I looooove IKEA!  My kitchen table and chairs are from there, as are my bookcases.  It's wonderful to be able to get real wood furniture at a reasonable price.  I've never found assembly to be difficult and now that I'm married to the handiest man ever, it's a piece of cake.  I've got my eye on a wardrobe/armoir for my daughter when she moves from crib to bed and has more space in her bedroom.  I love the bunkbeds too, but my daughter has her great-great grandma's iron bed to use.

I agree, go during the day in the middle of the week if possible.




Re: Ikea Comes To Town

  Ikea is building a distribution center for the West Coast about 5 miles from my house (Spanaway, WA about 15 miles south of Tacoma) and it is HUGE! 

Re: Ikea Comes To Town

I've seen the signs, but had no idea what was represented.  Not near us------yet.   Or, maybe it is, but I've not noticed. 

Spent our Sun. first, in church, then a lovely ride to a pop concert, which was over the top-----in all ways.  No, it wasn't an Irish concert, but the music of Bill Conti, conducted by same-----& the orchestra outdid itself, which is a sign of really fine conducting.   Also included a tribute to Mancini, who was, in life, a friend of Conti.  Just an amazing program of film music & TV themes----right from the source.   The hall was filled with sound, but not excessively so.   Definitely not an Amish sort of day, but wonderful to us. 

Food-----not Swedish, but a good meatball/garlic pizza on the way home [only get garlic when headed home], with a perfect crust.  Not a chain, of course.  CS

LuvMaerz's picture
Re: Ikea Comes To Town

"A mind is like a parachute. It doesnt work if it's not open."- Frank Zappa


OMG Kevin... now I am prepared to say you are the luckiest man alive!!!!  Ikea is the Mecca for the bargain home decorator, like myself!  I first learned of it in college, and I called to get a catalog.  I poured over the catalog, circling things, dog-earring pages, and wishfully thinking that someday there might be one near me.... the closest one is 5 hours away, in Chicago.  You CAN order via phone, but the shipping charges are astronomical.

Last summer, I got my chance when we took a vacation up to Chicago to see some of my husbands family and to take the girls to "A Day Out with Thomas (the train)" at the IL Railroad Museum for their birthdays.  It was a Wed or Thur, I believe, in late August, and we went to the store in Bolingbrook, IL.  I almost cried at the sight of the blue and yellow sign, with the flags waving.  I even took a picture.  Spent a few hours there with DH and the kids, bought a decent amount of odds/ends.  Then when I saw his cousins shoe cabinet at her house, and I found out this ingenious piece of furniture came from Ikea, I made my husband stop on the way home in the one in Schaumburg, IL.  It was a Sunday, and I "ran in real quick to get it".  HAHAHAHAHAHA!  That meant finding it in the 3 level store, then getting a print-out for it, standing in a HUGE line to check out, then waiting at a pick-up station to get the thing.  There are baracades up outside the store entrances so that you cannot take your carts out of this little corral thing at the entrace of the stores to load your stuff in the parking lot like most people would... you have to find a parking spot at the "loading dock" and load up there.  So a lot of hoops to jump through, but it was worth it.

When I got home, my BF April was so jealous that I got to go to Ikea!  Sooo... we found babysitters for our kids, and the two of us and our husbands took a roadtrip BACK up toward Chicago Labor Day weekend, which was two weeks later!  The guys did their thing, and April and I spent 6 hours at the Schaumburg location...the next day we spent 3-4 hours in the Bolingbrook one.  The bed of their pickup was full to the limit.  We never had so much fun!

Here are some tips we found during our expedition:

  • Definitely plan to eat in the cafeteria.  The food is DELICIOUS, low priced....and definitely get dessert, too.
  • Go early, on a weekday, if at all possible.
  • Browse the catalog first and find things you like...the catalog tells you where to find things in the store.  Sometimes that is difficult, because the stores are 2 or 3 stories tall.
  • Make sure you get all your stuff that you paid for.  I got home and found that I was missing a curtain rod that I had bought the brackets, etc for.  Called the store up, they said "so sorry."  I explained that I lived 5 hours away, but too bad, they couldn't ship it to me.  And the "order by phone" people were nice, but not helpful, and wouldn't even give me a break in shipping because of the incident.  I ended up ordering the $4 rod and paying over $17 to ship the dang thing...just because I really needed it Yell
  • If you are a shopper like me, and have never been to an Ikea, plan on it being a day-long event.  If you are a scrapbooker, take your camera.  The escalators alone, with their special escalator for your cart, are the coolest things ever.  You just have to see them to understand the least I did.  But the store we went to that had only 2 floors didn't have the cart escalator, only the 3 floor store.

Wow...sorry about the long-windedness!  You touched on a very passionate subject for me!  Smile  I am hoping that one day, they will build one in the STL area, which would be sooo much closer to me.  But to have an Ikea 20 minutes from home...  I wouldn't even know what to do!  You don't know how lucky you are.... Rachel, I am so jealous!!

LuvMaerz's picture

"A mind is like a parachute. It doesnt work if it's not open."- Frank Zappa

I forgot to mention... even if you don't have an Ikea near you, go to their website, or BETTER yet, get a free catalog from them.  It is a huge catalog and is packed full of home decorating ideas. 

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