Some of the readers of this blog will recall that I used to ardently wish that we had IKEA in South Africa. In fact, I was so desperate that in 2009, I even made a tea towel about it!
I’ve since had the IKEA experience for myself (reality seldom lives up to dreams, sadly), but since hearing that the Swedish homewares giant will be releasing a Studio Ilse collaboration this month, my sense of IKEA deprivation is keen as ever, once again.
Ilse Crawford is an amazing woman. She is founded Elle Decoration magazine, when she was just 27 years old, back when it was an offshoot of the UK fashion title, she writes books about buildings and homes and humans and how they ought to function together, and she founded the Department of Man & Wellbeing at Design Acadamy Eindhoven. Her core belief is that the spaces and things that people use to live and work must make us comfortable, feel at home, and bring enjoyment and sensuality into everyday activities. This belief is at the heart of the design and consulting work she does with her design agency, Studio Ilse.
So it makes sense, then, that the products made in the Studio Ilse collaboration with IKEA are not a ‘special collection’, but are part of the general IKEA range, and that they are made with natural, hardwearing, tactile materials, like cork, bamboo and glass.
It also makes sense that they are beautiful objects that make me want to make me wave my I WISH WE HAD IKEA teatowel in the air once again!
Interested in more? Read this interview with Marcus Engman – IKEA’s design manager – for interesting insights into how the collaboration worked, as well as how the IKEA design process happens.