Take the 2-minute tour ×
History Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for historians and history buffs. It's 100% free, no registration required.

How did IKEA develop the characteristic style? I know there is a catalog each year, but I'm looking more for a summary and overview of the design evolution. I understand it's not as significant as, for example, Braun's design for which a design history article exists. Nonetheless IKEA is a term many are familiar with and the furniture is found in many urban homes (at least in Europe).

share|improve this question
Not exactly what you are looking for, but interesting nonetheless: How has Ikea changed furniture design? –  Yannis Rizos Jun 24 '13 at 5:21
Wikipedia is your friend: ikea.com/ms/en_AU/about_ikea/the_ikea_way/history ... –  Drux Jun 24 '13 at 7:17
The BBC link in the comments looks like something I'm looking for, only then in a book/article form. The history link of the IKEA website is just a brief timeline of the company. It does mention the introduction of certain products, but is very brief and does not place inside the design history context. So unfortunately the latter is not what I'm looking for. –  Bart Arondson Jun 24 '13 at 7:42
To my knowledge there are a variety of books related to IKEA for example, the following: Ikea the Book; The IKEA Edge; and Leading By Design. But many of these are business related. IKEA the Book is probably your most promising source. Although the question you pose is ripe for independent research. It seems like enough material for a decent sized book. –  franklin Jun 27 '13 at 0:21
Oh, I didn't see that when I posted this, sorry. Is this a recent change? Feel free to close this as off-topic. Here are some other questions that meet that criterion. –  Bart Arondson yesterday
show 4 more comments

1 Answer

Check Harvard Business Review. I've bought their "IKEA and Ingvar Kamprad" and "IKEA Invades America" articles (each are about $5) which both include information regarding some of their earlier approaches to design.

share|improve this answer
Could you please add a link to the articles? Using the search function of HBR yields nothing... It will also make your answer more useful for future visitors. –  Bart Arondson yesterday
Check this query hbr.org/search/ikea/0 let me know if it still doesn't work. You might need to register first. –  Brooklyn Woodshop yesterday
Thanks, that works. Strangely when I just use the search field this is the result (a general page, with links to most popular articles). –  Bart Arondson yesterday
add comment

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.