Ikea inspirations, and two amazing product recommendations

There’s an Ikea store near my neighbourhood. About twice a year or so I pick a bad weather day and wander around the store, just because. Sometimes someone from the family will join me, but often I prefer to just go by myself. Sometimes I treat myself to a coffee….their food is mediocre, but their coffee is delicious. 🙂

Ikea has many items that evoke inspiration rather than a desire to purchase and own for me. I do like their practical set-ups in the rooms they display and take my time wandering around upstairs.  I often leave with a few items from the downstairs shopping area, but more importantly I come home with fresh ideas how to make our small home look and feel more functional and practical.

There are a couple of items I encountered either while flipping through their annual catalogue or while wandering around the maze of the store that I own today that I never regretted purchasing. I love their look, I love their function, and I even recommend them to others. Here is the first one:

Back when we renovated our kitchen, looking at accessories was part of the deal. I didn’t buy all the inserts to go into the drawers, using instead my own inventions, but I did come across these test tubes and liked them immediately. I use them every single day because I filled them with the spices I use most often: garlic powder, oregano, smoked paprika and cinnamon.

My test tubes sit on the counter but the little stand does come with an attachment that allows you to hang it on a wall.  I like where it is, near my stove, so I didn’t bother hanging it up.

The other item I purchased at Ikea a few years ago and absolutely LOVE is this cart:

I made this cart a supplies cart for my kids. My daughter in particular loves to draw, colour and doodle. I filled the top with jars of pens, pencil crayons, markers, brushes, some erasers, scissors and rulers. The middle has a box with glue and tape and a few small notebooks along with other knicknacks. The bottom has paper, activity books, baskets with stickers. (I have to purge it out once in a while.)

What I love about this cart is that all the supplies mostly stay in the cart and don’t get left all over the house. She wants to doodle in front of the tv? Pulls the cart along with her. He wants to do homework at the island counter? Pulls the cart up to the side of his chair.

I’ve heard of other functions for this cart, and I noticed too that the year after I purchased this one, the price reduced significantly. I may get another one to use in the bathroom downstairs, or the basement office…or one for outdoors as a drinks cart in the summer months.

By the way, it needs to be said that this cart is sturdy, not flimsy like some products from Ikea. It’s made with galvanized steel and considering how much ours gets rolled around, it is still, after three years, in perfect working condition.

An Ikea trip is actually imminent as we usually get the Christmas tree from there ($20! A great bargain!) and we’re a a little late this year, so perhaps I may pack up the van and venture out into the cold.


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