IKEA’s new collection features cork and natural-fibre furnishings

Posted by Assia Awad

In August 2015 IKEA launches the SINNERLIG collection in all IKEA stores. The collection is the outcome of a unique collaboration between IKEA and Ilse Crawford, a well known designer and interior stylist.

The collection consists of more than 30 pieces for the home and can be loosely categorized into three groups: working, dining and lounging. The furnishings are made of natural materials such as cork, ceramics and glass.sinnerlig-ikea-2The use of cork is one of the striking features of the SINNERLIG collection. “Cork is a fantastic material in so many ways,” says Jan Ahlsén, who is a specialist in natural materials at IKEA of Sweden. “It’s a renewable and natural material that is heat resistant, lightweight, and dirt and stain repellent. The downside is that it is fairly expensive. To make furniture accessible to as many as possible, we always have to consider the price, which is why we’ve used a cork veneer for the dining table. This means that the table has the feeling of cork, yet the price is lower than if we used solid cork.”

The question that Jan gets most frequently about cork is if it actually withstands spills like wine and coffee. And indeed it does. Cork is naturally water repellent, but to make sure it stands up to the normal mishaps of daily life, the surface of the table is treated with natural wax.

sinnerlig-ikea-3 sinnerlig-ikeasinnerlig-ikea-4Mass-produced uniqueness. Furniture is key to expressing personality. But one-off furniture is expensive and takes time to create. The next big frontier in furniture design is to figure out personalisation on a mass-industrialized scale. The SINNERLIG collection includes vases that are all given different treatments during production and therefore look different. sinnerlig-ikea-5 sinnerlig-ikea-6 sinnerlig-ikea-7The SINNERLIG collection is designed to have more than one function or setting. This is a reflection of the way we live today. In the fluid home, the furniture is flexible when it comes to its function; the trestle table could be a desk by day and dining table by night, benches could be consoles, and stools can be side tables.

Ilse Crawford talking about the SINNERLIG collection at Democratic Design Day 2015.

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