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New Frontiers in Ikea Assembly!


That damn allen wrench!

What Twitter and Facebook are for others, Ikea’s website is to me. In addition to sucking away hours I’ll never get back, the website has also given me a false sense of my handiness. Despite rarely being able to parse the iconography used in their cryptic assembly directions I’m fairly adept at putting together items very quickly.

Unless I want to feel badly about myself I avoid perusing the directions accompanying any Ikea product. Instead preferring to view the product fully assembled in the showroom and commit its perfect assembly to memory, which I then refer to as I’m putting the scraps of particleboard I’ve been convinced will magically transform themselves into attractive storage and seating solutions. And frankly, I find Ikea instructions a tad judgey and shaming. Mostly because I can often be observed engaged in the behaviors the instructions have marked through with X’s.

Oh sure a drill might be more efficient and save your fingers from rawness courtesy of those tiny allen wrenches, but you’ll only need to strip the screw once or ten times to learn it’s best to save the drill for real furniture.

Apparently, if you play your cards right and have hours of your life you’re not especially concerned about being productive the contents housed in this plastic package can morph into THIS!!!

Marius stools!

Marius stools and Lack side tables are the easiest products to assemble, which might explain why have around ten of each. While I have no concrete evidence, but based on its product weight and numerous working parts I assume the highly coveted Expedit bookcase series is probably the most challenging piece of Ikea furniture to assemble.

I’ve never known anyone who has personally put together an Expedit and of the two (not counting ones in the Ikea showroom) that I’ve seen in real life I was terrified to stand too close to either of them. One gust of wind or accidental bump and those bookcases were coming down like…TIMBER!!! Yet, this smooth criminal is making putting together that extremely intimidating iconic piece of furniture seem like rip roaring fun! Still Expedit seems like one of those far away dreams where the text is unreadable and you are always aware you’re dreaming.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. 04/30/2011 8:34 pm

    Most, if not all, of my furniture is from Ikea. I love it because it is probably the cheapest you can find, it’s modern and not bad looking at all. Besides, there’s a certain pleasure in assembling it yourself, not to mention that the packaging is very easy to handle on your own, without requiring a team of movers to help you.

  2. kerry permalink
    05/02/2011 3:44 am

    The worst Ikea furniture I put together was a bedframe, there was no way to do it with just one person! But the last thing I bought from Ikea, a nighstand, didn’t even come with instructions! And I had that awful little allen wrench!

  3. 05/02/2011 6:57 pm

    I totally loathe that little wrench. My chubby fingers have a helluva time trying to use that think properly.

  4. Rosecampion permalink
    05/02/2011 10:56 pm

    I have assembled a full size Expedit (the five foot high one) and let me tell you, the English language does not have enough curse words for the experience. It took less time and was easier to put together five Billy bookcases with glass doors than one Expedit. That said, once together, it was pretty awesome to have. It’s definitely a bookcase that you want to use wall anchors with. Especially if you use it as a room divider type thing, rather than against the wall.

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