Ikea launches the next part of its premium Stockholm collection on 1 April, its fourth such collection since 1984 and the first since 2006.
As a country we have a love/hate relationship with the brand, which is credited with bringing a more modern Scandinavian aesthetic to millions of British homes while simultaneously introducing a generation of consumers to the woes of constructing flat-pack furniture. But even for those who swear off the brand, the premium products are worth a look – pieces from previous collections such as the black and white Stockholm rug still grace the homes of style mavens around the world and there are a number of products in this series that have a similar designer feel.
According to Ikea designer Ola Wilborg, the collection was inspired by the 1950s and 60s and aims to deliver products that have a strong tactile element. "We wanted to contrast straight lines and curved shapes, painted surfaces and natural wood, glossy finishes with matte surfaces," says Wilborg.
The best pieces are those that make use of more premium materials. The sofa upholstered in full-grain tan leather, velvet swivel chair, oversize round walnut mirror and the dining table and dining chairs in walnut veneer (not available in the UK until August) all punch above their weight. Smaller accessories worth looking out for include individually mouth-blown glass vases, stainless steel candleholders, the walnut serving bowl and delicately etched glassware.
The secret to using Ikea products at home is to choose judiciously. Avoid furnishing an entire room with the brand, but select those products that stand out for craftsmanship or design and mix and match with vintage pieces and designs from other stores.