IKEA kitchens

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

So if you live in Nova Scotia and you haven't been under a rock...you probably have heard that IKEA has finally opened in Darmouth Crossing.


A lot of stuff in our house comes from IKEA.

I have regular arguments with my dad about IKEA. (It's mass produced, pressboard, off-gassing..I could make that...etc.)

That's IKEA for you...destroying family relationships ever since putting together IKEA furniture was a thing.

Here are some of the things in our house from the big blue box store:

- all of our bathroom vanities

- Our media centre

- Emma's bed

- Emma's light fixture

- Emma's clothes cupboard


But our biggest purchase ever from IKEA...our freakin' kitchen.

Our IKEA kitchen in it's unnatural habitat...clean

When we brought up to our contractor that we wanted to put in an IKEA kitchen...I don't think he was that thrilled.

In fact...I think he grunted.

Most contractors around here, are used to people going to one of the local businesses, picking out your cupboards and countertops. Then the contractor just subcontracts whatever business you picked out, to come in and install it for them...add 10% and Bob's your uncle.  Any issues?  Go back to the subcontractor.

This is obviously not the case with an IKEA kitchen.

Basically, we had some strong suits in our argument for the kitchen we wanted.

- I knew exactly what I wanted (i.e. nobody had to walk me through different options)
- We said we would design and go through every piece that needed to be ordered from IKEA.
- We would put all of the parts/pieces in the online order cart (our contractor would pay and that's it..when it came to ordering)
-  We (ahem...Andrew) would assemble all of the cupboards
- We (ahem...Katie and Andrew) would pay his workers to do two days of labour to install the cabinets


Finally...I made a case to Graham, that when the new IKEA opened, there would be lots of people requesting IKEA kitchens...this would make him the resident local expert (LOLOLOL).  (BTW this is in no way sponsored by Graham Construction....IKEA...CALL ME!!)

Either I am really good at negotiating, Graham is an agreeable person or a bit of both.

So IKEA had a kitchen event last fall.  It's when you get a percentage of the cost of your kitchen back in IKEA giftcards.  This sounds a bit lame...but when you are buying a kitchen, the percentage would essentially pay for our vanities.

As a result, we were kinda scrambling to design our kitchen. We designed it ourself. If you have an IKEA nearby, they have people that can help!  (Again, it was a really good thing that I knew what I wanted.)

IKEA has a kitchen design application for desktop/laptop.  It's reallllllly crappy in terms of the speed that it runs.  It's suuuuuper slow.

But, you enter the measurements that you are dealing with, pick out all the bells and whistles that you want and it gives you a list of all of the ordering numbers of all the pieces you picked out.

This is definitely where the app (at least the app we used) falls down.  There should be a button that just adds all of these pieces to the shopping cart automatically.  But it doesn't.

We had to print off the list of all of the pieces and one by one, enter them into the shopping cart and then order them..

yep.



If you want to test your marriage...do this.  I dare you.

There must have been 40 or so product numbers to enter. (We are talking xxx.xxx.xx per product number.)

We made it through, though.  And less than two weeks later, we had two pallets with our kitchen, in boxes, waiting for us in Graham's warehouse.

Then we had to wait forever, because we were still in the "windows and framing" stage at that point.

Here is a hot tip for you.  When you get your kitchen in pieces, you must take your original list and inventory eeeeverything.  Try to organize it by doors, bases, drawers, drawer fronts etc.  Then when you go to assemble, everything is where it should be. Or at least I hope it is.

This inventory took a whole morning.  But I had to make sure it was all there. In addition, to all the pieces we had...we had several pieces of some other poor sap's kitchen on the south shore.  I felt pretty bad.....unfortunately by that point, we had, had the kitchen pieces for months...IKEA had already figured out that someone was missing pieces to their kitchen.

We (ahem..Andrew) started assembling the kitchen after Christmas, prior to tax season.

Here's Andrew for a moment to give you his opinion on the assembly...

"The biggest thing I can recommend is make sure you have a good cordless drill.  The instructions tell you to use a screwdriver.  That's what I used for a while...but then realized how much time would be cut, just by using a drill.  The cupboards are just boxes with supports.  The assembly goes by faster as you get used to assembling them"

At this point, our foreman and an additional carpenter, installed the rails that the cupboards are mounted on, secured the cupboards, adjusted the feet for the cupboards, installed baseboards and sideboards....and many other things that I am sure I don't realize are part of the installation process.

Adulting is hard. 
We had some customization to ensure the things that we were looking for were achieved.  This mostly was related to the fridge and making sure it looked like it slid in and some trim work.

I can't speak to how easy or not easy it is to install yourself.  I am not handy.  And Andrew, while very interested in DIY, didn't have the time during tax season, nor really the help that he would have required, to install an IKEA kitchen.  Paying someone to do it for us, was well worth the money.

In the end....I have no regrets in purchasing an IKEA kitchen. We got exactly what we wanted..a sleek, minimal, modern, high gloss white kitchen, which is something that is hard to find in the local businesses without paying an arm and a leg.  If you are interested in how much the total cost was by all means, message me on facebook, instagram or in the comments!

Have a look... ( I realize now why I am not a vlogger)



Some things to remember about ordering an IKEA kitchen online...

1) You will mess up.

This is a definite.  We made a mistake with one of the cupboards and ordered the wrong drawers.  Know this going in and don't get too frustrated when you have to make a secondary order. Be zen and know this is part of ordering online.

2) There is a possibility IKEA will mess up.

We didn't have this issue with our kitchen...but poor sap on the south shore definitely had a mess up in her order and delivery.

3)  There will be a learning curve with assembly.

4) If you want a custom look...you need to have skillz or hire someone with skillz to do finishing work.

5) It's much easier if you have a clear vision of what you want your kitchen to look like.

6) The app is crap but it does allow you to play with different cupboards, drawers etc.

7) MEASURE MEASURE MEASURE.  We had to do some troubleshooting with measuring of the space between the a wall and a bulkhead (couldn't have done it without a carpenter).  In addition, measure measure measure your appliances...cuz just because you think they are standard width, doesn't mean they are.

8) If you are getting someone to install it for you...check in and have a good communicative relationship with your carpenter.  Apologize profusely when you make a big change and bring them cookies. Cookies fix everything.

(Some people don't believe in apologizing...that's cool...that's just my way)


Hope you don't get into any fights with anyone in IKEA!  Try the cinnamon buns...they're great!

K.


p.s....If you want to know more about local kitchens...drop by my great friend Sherrie Graham's website and listen to her podcast: Nova Scotia Kitchens (link here).  My IKEA kitchen and I, are part of her October feature, where we make apple dumplings (A Newfoundland favourite)! Thanks for coming over Sherrie!!










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