5 Sites & Apps That Help You Shop IKEA
IKEA, we love your low-priced assemble-it-yourself Swedish home goods. What we don’t like is that just grabbing a lamp at your store seems to be a drawn-out process. Good news—there’s an app (or website!) for that. To upgrade each part of the IKEA shopping experience, here are our 5 favorite hi-tech ways to shop for IKEA furniture, plan out your room, navigate the warehouse, get your grab home and assemble it all without a hitch—even if you live a couple hundred miles from a store.
To figure out what fits in your space…
Deciding on a dining table? Thinking about making a (small) investment in IKEA kitchen cabinets? Try the IKEA HomePlanner, free software that lets you become a super-pro interior designer. With access to IKEA’s full line of products, you can choose furniture to fit the exact measurements of the rooms in your home. Download it for free here.
To find exactly what you want…
2011 IKEA Catalogue iPhone App
Just like the paper catalog, but better! Access each and every page of the 2011 IKEA catalog on your phone, and just click to find out product info—no more searching for fine print. Grab it for free!
To navigate the warehouse aisles…
SwedeShop iPhone App
We always get IKEA-itis. After we’ve efficiently made our picks in the showroom, we become sloppy messes in the warehouse, searching endlessly for our side table only to realize that we wrote down the wrong aisle. With the SwedeShop app, you can easily record the name and location of the stuff you want to buy—then store it in an aisle-ordered list. It’s only 99¢ at the App Store.
To get your loot (to a far away) home…
Until we can get the CEO of IKEA on the phone and tell him our plan for more US stores, there are still going to be plenty of major metropolitan areas without IKEA stores, like New Orleans. If you’re living in the Big Easy (or anywhere in the gulf region, including Baton Rouge or Lafayette), you can still get in on some sweet Swedish flat-pack furniture with online service Blue Bag. Blue Bag’s motto is “We drive to IKEA Houston so you don’t have to.” They take your list and bring the goods 350 miles back to your door. Even though this one’s really only useful for readers in Louisiana, we still love the concept. You can find a similar Ikea delivery service in your hometown with Google.
To assemble it all seamlessly…
IKEA Fans’ IKEA Instructions Forum
Think the toughest part’s over? You thought wrong. Now it’s time to assemble your new furniture with hard-to-read instructions and never the right amount of parts. When you inevitably need help getting it all together, turn to the Ikea Instructions Forum at IkeaFans.com. You’ll find posted PDF manuals, annotated with helpful hints, plus a thread of helpful IKEA fans troubleshooting their own attempts at assembly.