U-kea, I-kea

I first heard of Ikea in college, when my roommate showed up on moving day with a flat cardboard box containing what would become our coffee table for the next year. He explained Ikea as a mecca of cheap and stylish furniture, but we didn’t have one in Ohio so I never thought much about it. Over the last eight years I’ve heard more and more about Ikea, particularly once one opened in Cincinnati (a short two hour drive away). And yet B and I had never gone.

Well, we finally remedied that a few weekends ago! My friend Amanda invited us to make a pilgrimage with her and her husband and even though we didn’t have anything specific that we needed, we thought it would be a fun trip.

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I have to say… it was quite an adventure! It was by far the biggest store I’ve ever been in. At the end of the first floor they have a cafeteria so you can stop and refuel…. that says something.

And even though we didn’t go intending to buy furniture, we are apparently not immune to the powers of Ikea! As we were walking through we started thinking of the one piece of furniture we (okay, mostly I) have been really unhappy with… can you guess?

img_6841If you guessed the too-small blue bookcase, you would be correct. So when we saw this…. we took note.

photo 2-4The cool thing about Ikea is that most of the furniture can be configured in multiple ways. So even though this looks like a huge (and expensive) unit, it could be made much smaller. After snapping a picture of the tag (which shows the location of the bookcase and doors in the warehouse) we continued on with our shopping. (We also got a light I’ll show you after I bribe Amanda’s husband into installing it for us!).

Once we got to the warehouse, B found wielding the large boxes to be a bit challenging, while I mostly found it hilarious.

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We all had a good laugh about getting the book case through the checkout, at which point we were told that the true test of our marriage would come when we got home and tried to actually put this bad boy together.

Luckily, we found it mostly pretty easy. We were missing 2 screws from our package, and the whole “you can put the whole thing together with an allen wrench they provide” thing is a total lie though. In the end we needed a screw driver, a tape measure, a pencil, and a drill with a new drill bit we had to buy. We actually made a trip to the hardware store with the directions in hand and just asked someone what we needed to accomplish the job! But, the new drill bit and extra screws actually cost us less than $5 so it wasn’t a big thing. And after a couple hours, both the bookcase and our marriage were in tact!

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Then came the really fun part, filling it up! Even though B let me do the arranging, I wanted to keep it “man-ish” being that it was located in the man cave. The bottom three shelves are functional with a basket for all B’s gaming components (controllers and cords and whatnot), his laptop and external hard drive, and all his games. The top three shelves are the fun stuff. The top shelf holds the first gift I ever gave to B (the book), a little vase I got at Ikea, and a picture of us from the grand canyon (I may replace this with a 5×7 at some point because it looks a little small… but its what I had laying around.

IMG_8014The second shelf is all about sports. A few signed baseballs, a hockey puck, and some sports books. It also includes a canvas with 16 pins on it that B has collected over the years. He has always been a collector and he has a TON of pins, so I thought it would be fun to have him pick his 16 favorites and display them. I plan to paint the canvas as some point, but B can’t decide what color he wants it so for now it remains white…

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The third shelf is for B’s love of music. It displays two books about one of B’s favorite bands (Motley Crue) and a “Rock” wall hanging that we had sitting around.

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But of course, my favorite view is always the before after. So, let’s see the before again:

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And after!

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I absolutely love it. It fits the space SO much better and really finishes off that wall. And since this is where we do 99% of our hanging out at home, I’m definitely appreciating the view a lot more. I think we may officially be Ikea believers… at least for some items. Anyone else an Ikea believer?

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3 thoughts on “U-kea, I-kea

  1. The new shelf looks great, and gives you so much more storage space to work with than the old shelf. And I still fondly remember my first trip to IKEA in college, it was amazing! I really miss passing by one of the two Bay Area IKEAs on my daily commute, when I lived in California, now we’re about 2 hours away from one too.

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