What is it?
IKEA (“eye-key-ah”) offers 9500+ household products ranging from a 3-pack of wooden kitchen utensils for $0.49 to entire rooms for thousands of dollars.
According to Wikipedia, IKEA was founded in 1943 by a 17-year-old named Ingvar Kamprad who named the store using his initials (IK), the first initial of the name of the farm where he grew up (Elmtaryd) and his home parish (Agunnaryd) in Småland (also the name for where parents imprison … erm … stow … uh … leave their kids while shopping – pronounced “Smallland”).
Where is it?
How is it?
The word conjures overwhelming excitement in the hearts of shoppers everywhere. For me, I first heard of IKEA when I moved to Syracuse, New York for school (I know — it’s a post about Portland and one of the first things I do is mention another city – sacrilege!). While in the great white north, experiencing IKEA simply meant receiving their epic catalog of products promising everything that particle board furniture has to offer, but, with no location nearby, shipping charges so exorbitant that cardboard boxes became a better fit for my nightstand needs.
IKEA blessed Portland with its own store location, conveniently planted within driving distance of the international airport just in case you need to buy an affordable but attractive kitchen table with matching chairs, and then hop a flight out of the country to escape your escalating credit card bills.