The answer to the question above: a Shanghai IKEA recently designated a "match-making corner." The New Yorker article "House Perfect; Is the IKEA ethos comfy or creepy?" by Lauren Collins provided an exhaustive history of IKEA, along with many fascinating stories and facts. The article even quoted our very own Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan as stating: "A brand-new IKEA store that's fully stocked can be a happy place, but one that's been trampled by the crowds on a Saturday is an ugly place to be."
More Interesting IKEA Facts from The New Yorker:
1. The IKEA museum in Almhult contains a file cabinet filled with "unfortunate" IKEA product names, including Anis, Dick and Fanny.
2. The IKEA catalogue is only slightly less popular than Harry Potter books.
3. IKEA is the third largest consumer of wood in the world, ahead of Walmart and behind Home Depot and Lowe's.
4. Last year IKEA's business in China grew by twenty per cent. IKEA sells certain products tailored to Chinese clientele, including water fountains, chopsticks and mosquito nets.
5. The LACK table (introduced in 1979) and the BILLY bookshelf are the most iconic IKEA products.
6. The founder, Ingvar Kamprad, is 85 years old and is referred to as "The Founder" or "Ingvar"
7. Ingvar Kamprad opened the first IKEA store in Almhult, Sweden in 1953.
8. IKEA invented flat pack furniture in 1951, when an employee took the legs off of a table trying to get it into his Volvo.
• IKEA staff conduct thousands of yearly "home visits" where they visit customers' homes (in exchange for an IKEA credit voucher) to find out what frustrates customers about IKEA products.
Image: via IKEA as Status Symbol?