Hey I love to shop….online….away from people…far far away from people. I also love to talk with people but I don’t enjoy being in the mist of a mass amount in the thralls of consumerism. I especially don’t like malls which are giant mecca’s to the mighty dollar. I prefer to find what I need online at a good price and have it shipped to my door. No gas money wasted, no dealing with parking, a stress free environment where my chi is balanced and all is right with the world (insert chirping bird noises here.) But the dreaded annual trip to IKEA was upon me yet again. We went to the Motorcity Comic Con in Novi this year (I’ll post about that later) which is a hop skip and drag your ass screamin’ to Canton home of the mega-super-duper-plex IKEA store. My wife insisted on going since it was so close by. I was hoping she’d forgotten.

It’s pretty easy to get to. It’s sort of like when you’re going to Cedar Point you can see the rollercoasters over the horizon but in this case it was a enormous blue and yellow warehouse the size a football stadium. It would have to be the colors of the dreaded UofM as well already irritating me. IKEA has a lot of great things going for it though even if they choose the wrong colors. They offer family parking with nice friendly signs of a silhouetted family including a baby stroller…trust me you are handicapped when you have to drag a stroller and a screaming 5 year old into one of these stores. But it’s very nice of them to give us family folks our own parking spots close by. Also inside there’s a play area you can drop of your kids at which is supervised. Reminds me a bit of fencing in rabid racoons but it works. Score another point for IKEA. But then you start up this escalator on the beginning to this never ending pathway of homogenized plastic and wood furniture and trinkets most of which when you buy you have to put together yourself.They even supply you a map if you get lost! There’s some short cuts to checkout and different departments at certain points but we know what happened to the frontiersmen that tried to cut through the mountains, they ended up lost and ate each other. No thank you! Speaking of eating, I want to give props to their awesome restaurant they had there which was my high point for the trip. a good meal for under $5 including fruit, veggies, and swedish meatballs and throw in a amazing cinnamon roll for $1. The Swedish chef from the muppets would be proud.

I understand IKEA’s attempt at bringing minimal and functional together into their designs but for some reason everything just took on a sort of giant sterile blandness. There was no warmth or decor it was just flat and streamlined and mass produced. Their couches lacked comfort, and their chairs forced you to sit up like you were attending a posture class. The couches were tiny like they were built for a midget named Gunter. I want a comfy chair I can sink into and relax in not one that auto-corrects my spine.

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This Swedish company is known for it’s functional design and low prices but in my opinion it’s design that strips away too much personality when it comes to home decor and that can really create a cold impression on some people. I know other people love this style and good for them. Differences in tastes in styles make the world go around but I prefer more patterns and different textures and vintage wood grains and things that are hand crafted. A style that’s more inviting for a home. This stuff just doesn’t do it for me. Weird as how I love Apple’s product design but I just don’t think that translatesto home furnishing at least for my own tastes.

So if you plan to visit Canton, pack some survival gear and hiking boots. You’ll need them just to get out of housewares. I for one will stick my online adventures in shopping and then put my legs up on my comfy couch and take a nap.

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