Moving to Holland is not easy, but it's worth the effort. This blog tells the story of shifting from American life in Pittsburgh to Expat life in the Netherlands,
and all of our European adventures that follow.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Viva Ikea!

Nothing gets a European's blood pumping like saying the word Ikea (pronounced e-Kay-a in Holland).

Seriously, they are not shy about their love affair with the cheap semi-disposable Swedish furniture. If you go on a Sunday, expect there to be a long line of cars on the highway next to the Ikea exit. I don't know if it's because it is one of the only stores open on a Sunday, or because they sell 75 cent ice cream cones, or because it is just a great place for a family outing, but they flock here by the thousands. And if the weather is bad, forget about it. You can wait for up to an hour to get into the parking lot (unless you are smart and take the tram).

No matter how you look at it, this store has revolutionized home design in Europe. Almost every 'modern' apartment and home now has the sleek, designer lines of a space ship.  Personally, it is not my taste. Give me an antique oak cabinet over a white square box any day. However, I am forever grateful to this mamouth size store for furnishing our Dutch apartment for 3 years for less than 1000 euro. So, I guess they have a little something to meet everyone's needs.

When I am able to assemble almost all of the furniture myself, that tells you something. ;)

And, I don't think it looked half bad in the end (although the couch leaves a bit to be desired when it comes to comfy movie watching).

I'm waiting for the monster-truck rally-style show down of Ikea versus Wal-Mart. My money is on Ikea, because Wal-Mart will be so distracted trying to pronounce the names of the furniture in Ikea that it won't even see the fork lift until it's too late. Those sneaky Sweeds. ;)


No comments: