Much of the furniture we buy today comes in a box ready for assembly complete with instructions for us to study and follow, to end up with a piece of furniture that we’ve constructed ourselves. But have you ever wondered who actually invented the flat pack? This article will tell you the story of this well-loved commodity.
According to records ready to assemble furniture was first invented by a gentleman back in 1956 who was struggling to get his table into the boot of his car, so he took the legs off. Gillis Lundgren, who was a Swedish draughtsman, then reassembled the table when he got home. When he went back into work the following day he told his employers what he’d done and the concept of flat back furniture was born. As the idea took off it was exported from Sweden worldwide, and the company that Gillis worked for was IKEA.
In 1958 the first IKEA store opened in Sweden and in 1975 it opened a branch in Sydney, Australia. In 1987 the UK became the 20th country to have an IKEA store and it was in Warrington. Today over 40 countries have IKEA stores, with Germany having the most outlets. Over 655 million global shoppers buy from the stores each year. The main reasons for the success was the outstanding value for money, and this form of furniture was so popular as it was cheap and easy to assemble, and avoided delivery costs as customers could take it away with them. It also gave people that feel good factor achieved when they’d successfully assembled the flat pack furniture together themselves.
The range of furniture from IKEA today is vast and the designs are still adaptable and customisable. Other designers are taking a fresh approach to the self-assembly style of furniture by using digital technology where you buy the blueprint for pieces instead of the object itself, and ingenious rare-earth magnets are being used to assemble the furniture instead of the normal fixings. Robots are also being specially designed with flexible functionality so that they’ll be able to assemble the furniture for you!
If you’ve purchased a flat pack and are frustrated with the instructions and unable to complete the job to your satisfaction, then there are many furniture assembly and delivery services that you can find online who’ll happily visit you at home and put together any kind of furniture for a small fee. By finding a reliable and trustworthy company you’ll be assured that the furniture will be constructed properly and quickly, saving you time and reducing stress!
The flat pack is still perfect for today’s lifestyles. It’s easy to transport, comes in a great range of finishes and colour schemes and is ideal from students to pensioners. It looks as if flat pack furniture is here to stay.