The Secret Behind IKEA’s Crazy Product Names

May 31, 2016 | by Carlie Miller

ikea

Working at an agency responsible for naming products and brands regularly, I always find it hard not to appreciate companies who find creative ways to name their merchandise. I took a trip to IKEA over the weekend and wandered the massive labyrinth of cheap furniture and trendy housewares for a good two and a half hours. During this adventure, my friends and I had a good time pointing out all of the crazy words that IKEA has chosen to name their products. But all jokes aside, if you were to Get More Info on how particular furniture, scilicet, Patios can be used, then maybe they can be taken in a more serious manner.

Now, I know these product names are all in Swedish, but I also know they couldn’t be completely random, right? So, I decided to do a little research after eating my Swedish meatballs and leaving the store. It turns out that the founder of IKEA, Ingvar Kamprad, is dyslexic and decided to use names for his products to avoid dealing with numbers. Each category of items corresponds to a different set of words. Here are the categories according to Business Insider:

  • Upholstered furniture, coffee tables, rattan furniture, bookshelves, media storage and doorknobs: Swedish place names
  • Beds, wardrobes and hall furniture: Norwegian place names
  • Dining tables and chairs: Finnish place names
  • Bookcase ranges: Occupations
  • Bathroom articles: Scandinavian lakes, rivers and bays
  • Kitchens: Grammatical terms and sometimes other names
  • Chairs and desks: Men’s names
  • Fabrics and curtains: Women’s names
  • Garden furniture: Swedish islands
  • Carpets: Danish place names
  • Lighting: Terms from music, chemistry, meteorology, measures, weights, seasons, months, days, boats and nautical terms
  • Bedlinen, bed covers and pillows/cushions: Flowers, plants and precious stones
  • Children’s items: Mammals, birds and adjectives
  • Curtain accessories: Mathematical and geometrical terms
  • Kitchen utensils: foreign words, spices, herbs, fish, mushrooms, fruits or berries and functional descriptions
  • Boxes, wall decoration, pictures and frames and clocks: colloquial expressions and Swedish place names

While also helping Mr. Kamprad avoid his much-dreaded numbers, I thought this was a really interesting way to name your products. Not only does it create some pretty unique and exotic-sounding names to entice customers, but anyone who hears you talking about your latest Morgedal purchase will either know immediately where you got it from or ask you out of curiosity.

8 of IKEA’s Craziest Names (In Our Humble Opinion)

For fun, I decided to find my favorite and most ridiculous product names and list them here with their English translations. Enjoy!

IKEA bjorksnas rug

BJÖRKSNÄS

A small town in Sweden, not really close to any major cities, but hopefully home to many of these rugs.IKEA druvflader bowl

DRUVFLÄDER

A mildly poisonous berry native to Sweden that is similar to the elderberry. Maybe the idea was to keep your druvflader berries in this bowl?IKEA fornybar freezer bag

FÖRNYBAR

This one is just fun to say. Fornybar, ha! Fornybar is Swedish for “renewable”. I don’t think I would consider a plastic bag renewable, but I guess it could be if you’re thrifty?IKEA grusblad comforter cooler

GRUSBLAD

Literally translates as “gravel sheet”. I’m not sure I’d want to cover myself with a gravel sheet while sleeping…

IKEA hoppig soft toy HOPPIG

Means “jumpy” or “hopper”. It seems like this would make more sense for a toy rabbit, but sure, a dog works too.

IKEA jujubar plant pot

JUJUBÄR

The jujube tree, a fruit-bearing tree or shrub. This one actually makes a bit of sense. Grow a jujube tree in this planter and treat yourself to this date-like fruit all summer!

IKEA norsborg chaise

NORSBORG

Almost as fun to say as Fornybar, Norsborg is suburb of Stolkholm, Sweden. Also a line of sofas at IKEA.

IKEA snudda lazy susan

SNUDDA

Means “to graze’ or “barely touch”. In case you couldn’t tell from the photo, this circular piece of wood is a Lazy Susan, which you would lightly touch to spin.

 

1 Response

  1. elizabeth Burke

    very interesting story about the Ikea names. now when i visit i will be trying to figure out if i’m in a river or some exotic place.
    thanks for making ikea more fun, carlie.

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