they are made up of cheap wood. i'd rather go to a yard sale or craiglist. but their kitchen accessories are fine. they also have a clearance section (for your living room/sofa) that are a little bit damaged or stain that are inexpensive.
Depending on what you are looking for and what the use will be Ikea can be ok. I have some cd towers that don't get moved, that look nice and I like them. I also have some night stands and dresser drawers that get moved frequently and they are not holding up as well.
I love the solid wood shelving units/frames that you can assemble and build on. They are very utilitarian for us in our computer room and basement storage. They assemble/disassemble very easily when we need to move them.
I would vote for solid wood furniture from Craigslist for furnishing your apartment.
Anything made of particle board will fall apart. The wood utility shelving is good, the particle board shelves will start to bow. Anything with a dark finish will chip and scratch.
We bought a kitchen cabinet from them which is very solid (stand alone counter with drawers), and I have the unfinished pine shelves which require a lot of anchoring to stop the unit from wobbling but the actual shelves are strong.
Any of the particle board cabinets, dressers and shelving that you have to assemble into a unit get damaged quite easily, particularly during assembly if you are not the world's most patient person. These things look good in the showroom but are not.
They do have great deals on glassware, dishes, lamps, kitchen accessories, etc.
I just asked dd about this and she said that many of the college kids at CMU go to Ann Arbor and buy furniture there for apartments. She said it is not the greatest quality and that she recommends checking garage sales, estate sales, and the newspaper classifieds for sturdy furniture.
DH and I have dressers from Ikea. He has to fix them once in a while, but they've survived three moves, so I'm not complaining. My MIL has a really nice daybed from Ikea, it has drawers underneath and a trundle that pulls out making it into a queen bed, I think.
The furniture won't last you forever, that's for sure. But if you take good care of it, and you like the way it looks, you'll be fine.
I have Magiker bookcase (no longer made) that is about 7 years old. It looks as good as it did on the day we got it and it has survived two moves. We have an Expedit bookcase that we use as a dresser (takes up less space) and it's been moved around our house a few times--still looking good. In fact, we are going to Ikea sometime next month to buy two more Expedit bookcases for our kids rooms. We also have a flimsy plastic hamper that was $2--it also is 7 years old and has transported hundreds of pounds of laundry to the basement for yeras.
Like others have said, not all of their stuff is great quality. I find the more popular pieces (like the Expedit) are among the best. The best thing to do is to go to the store and look at everything, open the drawers etc to get a feel for the quality. You will definitely notice a difference. I'm an Ikea ho so I'm a little biased towards their stuff!
We only buy solid wood from IKEA. When we were married 28 years ago we bought a living room sofa, love seat and chair, and a table. All are still in use...except the sofa. We had no room for it in this house and actually cut it down into lawn furniture. It was okay until the 75' tree fell on it and smashed it. Anyhooo.... Yeah, IKEA is okay. I need to refinish the pine table after 28 years. And I've recovered the cushions on the love seat and chair. And I also replaced the plastic/tarp like support for the cushions with decent canvas. But I mean, come on, it's been 28 years!!!
We have 2 book cases, a wardrobe and a computer desk from IKEA. All are wood and purchased during their sales. Great deals, had them for years, still like new condition. We also have curtains, dishes,cookware, and loads of other things. I'm quite happy with the things we purchased. We made sure to look for their quality items though, I think that is key. I think if you go for the cheapest stuff at IKEA that is exactly what you get, however like I said we only shop IKEA sales and find that on sale their good stuff is the same price or less than their cheap stuff.
I did my kitchen over... and yes, I used Ikea for the cabinets. I would have loved to buy solid oak cabinetry... but, I didn't have $20K :lol: I did however, buy a better quality counter top than what Ikea offered.
Some of the furniture there is pretty solid and worth the money... some aren't. Same can be said of items at the 'quality stores'.
I was at Jordans (major furniture store here) and they had a dresser we really liked for $1000. After further investigation, it was nothing more than well dressed press board and the one in the 'display bedroom' was cracked, chipped and broken... and it didn't get the daily wear and tear of normal use.
Would I be ticked off if I bought a $120 dresser from Ikea and it chipped? Yes... but not nearly as much as if I paid $1000 for it.
Some of the sofas are great, again, some not so much. Look for one with a solid frame and not the movable metal.
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