The Best IKEA Products of All Time, According to IKEA Designers and Leaders
Including the ultimate affordable bed sheets.
Wandering the aisles at IKEA (or ambling through the virtual aisles online) can sometimes be an overwhelming experience. With (quite literally) thousands of products to choose from, you have endless options—but at the same time, how do you know which are the best? How do you find the products you'll want to keep for years to come? To help narrow down the selection, in the past we've asked interior designers for their favorite IKEA items and have grilled expert organizers on their go-tos, but this time around we decided to quiz the IKEA insiders. Here, IKEA designers and leaders reveal their favorite IKEA products of all time, from a crinkly bed sheet that will keep you cool all summer, to an upcoming window curtain with the power to clean the air. These are the IKEA staples you'll want to keep around for a very long time.
Why does the textured OFELIA VASS duvet cover land at the top of Sarah Fager, an in-house designer at IKEA's must-buy list? "It's perfect for winter, it's perfect for summer," she explains. Made from crinkled fabric that Fager says "reminds you of crumpled paper," the unique texture helps keep this bedding light and crisp during the summer months, yet insulates so you're warm and cozy all winter.
To buy: $50, IKEA.com.
"I have my home full of the KLIPPAN sofa," says Betina Tviis Larsson, the material and color design manager at IKEA of Sweden. Besides being perfectly-sized for small spaces, this loveseat is also versatile and long-lasting. "You can change the cover, and I have dogs, and when the kids were small, it was really convenient," she explains. It's no wonder this beloved sofa has been around since the 1980s.
To buy: $249, ikea.com.
My favorite product at IKEA is the STRANDMON wing chair. You can sit and relax in it, be comfy, and read a very good magazine," says Peter Bondesson in resource and development at IKEA of Sweden. "And it's a very good price point," he adds. For less than $250 for the woven fabric version and less than $300 for the luxe velvet option, this chair looks many times more expensive than its price tag.
To buy: From $249, ikea.com.
Showing up in homes, apartments, dorm rooms, and offices around the world, the BILLY bookcase is an IKEA mainstay—and it turns out that IKEA insiders also adore this much-loved piece. "From a form perspective, I think it's a classic design," says Susanne Waidzunas, global purchasing and logistics area manager at IKEA. "I have had my BILLY throughout the years, so there's this emotional connection," she adds.
She notes that while the basic design has stayed pretty much the same, the BILLY has gotten some updates over the years, including the new bright yellow version, above, launched in celebration of the bookcase's 40th birthday this year.
To buy: $60, ikea.com.
"My favorite product is the air-purifying GUNRID curtain. IKEA wants to make a positive impact on people and the planet, and air pollution is a huge area of focus...a lot of people know about outdoor air pollution, but not everyone knows about indoor air pollution," explains Alexandra Audrey Galef, sustainability development leader at IKEA. Made from recycled polyester, the curtain is treated with a mineral-based coating that can help reduce air pollutants, such as formaldehyde, when it comes into contact with light. Unlike traditional air purifiers, this simple curtain doesn't require electricity or changing filters—plus, washing it won't effect its air-cleaning abilities.
To buy: Launching in 2020
Sometimes, the best IKEA products are simply small innovations on everyday items. The case in point: this typical flower vase redesigned with ergonomics in mind. "Most vases are not easy to handle if you have a tremor or arthritis," says Britt Monti, creative leader for the upcoming OMTÄNKSAM collection at IKEA of Sweden. "So we have made a very grip-friendly vase—you don't even have to use your hands, you can use your arms."
To buy: Launching May 2020