First up in my review of Christmas looks and embellishments is Ikea – the place that seems almost too overwhelming to visit and yet inexplicably….you do.
Christmas has come to Ikea but you have to put in the hard yards to get to it. There are a few very stylish Christmas tableaux sprinkled throughout the store to tease you, nothing as yet in the gift wrapping department which, when I visited last week looked very tired indeed, and just when you thought it was all a big Christmas hoax, you arrive at the area just before the checkouts to a forest of Christmas trees, lighting, wrapping paper and decorations.
No prizes for guessing that the Ikea Christmas 2016 has a strong Nordic feel. The big colours are red, silver/grey and white accompanied by lots of lights. There are touches of kraft paper and gold but the reds and greys are the heavy hitters.
I am not sure about the Ikea Christmas trees. They look a bit thin to me, there’s nothing much to distinguish them and I think there is better tree value for your Christmas tree $$ out there. I did quite like the reindeer shaped Christmas tree (should have got one but hesitated), though depending on which angle you look at it, it appeared a little like Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy.
There are lots and lots of pretty lights if lights are your thing – which clearly the Northern lights are to many – but I worry they would require professional installation. There’s also plenty of candelabras, but as Ikea does candelabras all year round I wasn’t going to get too excited. So I put my hopes in the decorator touches and wrapping papers. I do love the red buckets of all different sizes from $6.99 and the silver or white Rotera lanterns – at $4.99 they are particularly good value. Clearly I am not alone in that observation as two ladies passed me with 48 silver lanterns on their unwieldy Ikea trolley.
The tree decorations – well Nordic red pleasant but nothing I had not seen before. Still abundantly en masse these would pack a punch.
The lengths of plastic fir tree leaves at were a good idea and I could see many uses for that particularity for table settings and large gift embellishments.
And now to the wrapping paper. I know some people are crazy for Ikea wrapping paper. I am not universally won over and take each collection on its merits.There’s some kraft paper which I certainly did not mind at all, like the one with the geometric patterns. The red and white palette was nice but a red stripe is a red stripe and the red cross stitch look has been done before.
I was won over by the whites and silvers and bought rolls of the silver dots and the bird pattern and the silver and red ribbon combination pack as well. Not so keen on their gold paper and embellishments – sorry Ikea the golds really did look cheap. I did like the idea of extras wide rolls of paper – a great idea – but the pattern on extra width offering was not my cup of tea so it didn’t make the cut.
As it stands, a solid B to you Ikea. You’ve played it safe with most of the range (gold stuff aside – not a fan) absolutely usable though probably not overly memorable. Good Price point though – I give as further evidence a funky pair of Fullfolija scissors for $4.99. The buckets and lanterns are a definite winner winner turkey dinner. Silver and greys and white with red touches are Nordic cool. Ikea says their Christmas crockery and tableware will be out later this month, which is their strength and could well be worth another visit and possibly even a remark.