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This past June I was fortunate enough to travel to Sweden and Denmark. Ikea organized the trip and it was wonderful. One of the many highlights for me was a tour through a small museum that Ikea keeps almost a secret — it's under a hotel that they own for corporate guests visiting their headquarters.

We entered through a funny door in the basement, and there before us were rooms filled with Ikea history and furniture examples since the company’s conception in 1943.

Photo: Ikea Catalogue from 1963

Photo: Ikea Catalogue from 1970

Photo: Ikea's old furniture drawings

Photo: Ikea Museum - green chair

Photo: Ikea Museum - orange chair

Photo: Ikea Museum - chair and foot stool

Photo: Ikea Museum - green and wooden chair

Photo: Ikea Museum - old dining room set

Photo: Ikea Museum - living room, colourful wallpaper, furniture, paper lantern

Photo: Ikea Museum - living room, colourful wallpaper, shelf, furniture, vases

Photo: Ikea Museum - living room with blue fluffy furniture

Photo: Ikea Museum - blue fluffy sofa

Photo: Ikea Museum - Ikea's first flat-pack parcel

This was Ikea’s first flat-pack parcel.

Photo: Ikea Museum - orange light fixture

Photo: Ikea Museum - orange light fixture with moulded detail inside

Always-in-style retro lighting. Notice the moulded detail inside.

Photo: Ikea Museum - fry pan with wooden handle

I love the shape of this frying pan with the wooden handle.

Photo: Ikea Museum - tea cups with vintage design

Photo: Ikea Museum - forks with wooden handles

Photo: Ikea Museum - Orange pot and wicker pot holder

Photo: Ikea Museum - yellow teapot

I have to say the mid-century pieces really caught my eye, seeming so current and on trend. It would be so great if Ikea could reintroduce some of these items. The “Classic Collection” — I can see it now. I’d buy the hanging red-orange retro plastic light — imagine it in a rainbow of fab colours.

Click here for Michael Penney’s top picks from the latest Ikea catalogue.

Photo credits:
Morgan Michener

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