If you have a thrifty mind and appreciate the enduring quality of vintage furniture, IKEA is probably not exactly on your dream list of brands. Yet, over the past two years, the Swedish design behemoth of mass-produced furniture has come into the public eye as some of its rare finds hit sky-high prices on the markets around the world. But how can a brand that is so famous for its affordability, self-assembly concept, and simple designs become the source of newly coveted design collectibles?
Let’s find out!
Designer furniture on a bargain
It all started with a Swedish socialist concept that all people should be presented with the same opportunities regardless of how well off they may be. Ingvar Kamprad, the founder of IKEA, grounded his business on the merits that everyone deserves to be surrounded by quality design.
Back in the days when furniture design stars made history by creating some of the most well-known pieces of all time, IKEA decided to team up with some of the well respected names to offer affordable replicas to everyone who is looking to fill their homes with high-end pieces, but don’t exactly have a budget for the real deal.
Today, the superb design of these vintage IKEA finds propels their prices on the vintage furniture markets, as classics remain classics even if they come in a budget package. Ironically, the products that were supposed to bridge the money gap are now being sold for a pretty penny.
Some of the most fruitful of all IKEA’s collaborations were the ones with Verner Panton, Noboru Nakamura, Gillis Lundgren, Morten Kjelstrup and Allan Østgaard. Some of these designs can still be found in the stores even to this day, but not every designer product that lined the retailer’s shelves became popular with the buyers.
From fail to success
Every now and then the pieces failed to impress and they were discontinued shortly after they hit the stores. They were either too advanced for their time or, in some cases, came with a higher price tag which made them less desirable than the rest of the IKEA’s offering.
But back in the day, high-priced items also meant higher production standards and better quality materials, which allowed them to not only survive to this day but still be in shipshape. When you add scarcity into the equation, it is obvious why these vintage IKEA pieces are already so largely coveted.
They don’t make them as they used to
The furniture retailer giant isn’t immune to this unflattering trend that’s been shaking the entire industry lately. The majority of the newly manufactured furniture is just not as well made as it used to be, and the same is true for IKEA.
If you score a retro IKEA piece in a great condition, chances are it will outlast its newly made counterparts.
Pink glasses of nostalgia
But nostalgia also plays a major role here adding sentimental value to the vintage IKEA furniture. Up-and-coming buyers have a personal relationship with vintage IKEA designs as they were surrounded by those pieces while growing up. Majority of the collectors interested in scoring rare IKEA finds are fairly young people who have become financially established and are now looking to recreate what they loved from their childhood homes.
The ‘60s and the ‘70s fever is already strong, but brace yourself – the ‘90s are coming back too!
Let’s take a trip down the memory lane and discover vintage IKEA gems available at Vinterior.
Though he wasn’t credited in IKEA’s catalog, this colourful set of chairs was designed by Verner Panton. Only about 4000 of these chairs were manufactured back in the day making this item an envied collectors’ piece.
This beautiful chrome and leather chair with a matching footstool is one of the most south-after vintage IKEA collectibles. It is extremely rare and in perfect condition, supporting the claim that they don’t make them like they used to.
Designed by Karin Mobrang back in 1973, the Safari chair comes with a cotton canvas seat and a backrest attached to a pine frame with three leather belts. It’s very elegant and a bit raw.
The authentic Johan Bertil Häggström lounge chair with a tubular chromed frame and brown leather seating. Masculine and sophisticated.
One more collector’s pick, Sky Chaise provides the ultimate comfort and is easy to move around the house. It features light brown leather and a coated steel frame.
The ‘80s classic Jarpen chair and table are so loved that IKEA reintroduced them in their latest vintage-inspired collection. But if you are after a superb quality, aim for the retro finds.
Big names of the antique trading business forecast a bright future for the IKEA’s PS series, so if you are loving the timeless design of Monika Mulder’s IKEA chairs, get your hands on them before their price propels through the roof.
Designed by Laurids Lønborg, the Mannequin will feel homely in any retro setting.
If being comfortable is your number one priority, think Bengt Ruda and his Mid-century IKEA lounge.
Chic and sturdy materials meet the sleek design in this gorgeous vintage IKEA pendant lamp. It emits a very soft light making it a perfect fit for any room in the house.
This Erker chair was designed by Gillis Lundgren, IKEA’s fourth employee and a creator of its flat-pack, self-assembly concept. The armchair features a curved back with splints and is a lovely period piece in an excellent condition.
And let’s end this walk with the Natura Easy chairs with an oversized pine frame and beautiful weathered leather seating. Isn’t it a stunner?
Which one speaks to you the most?
Still looking for the perfect vintage piece? Dive into the sea of opportunities at Vinterior!