The innovative design studio is a new concept for IKEA, enabling customers to design and order complex home furnishing systems for kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms and living rooms. Customers schedule one-on-one planning sessions with a trained IKEA design expert or via a self-service planning station in a dedicated studio space.
IKEA launched the concept Sept. 1 with a location in Oshawa, Ontario. The IKEA Brampton Design Studio will open Oct. 14, followed by the St. Catharines and London locations in late October and early November.
The move comes as IKEA has struggled with supply chain issues––along with the rest of the retail sector––and faced challenges keeping items in stock. IKEA also faced challenges in the spring when some of its cargo was held up on the cargo ship Ever Given, which became lodged in the Suez Canal for roughly a week before being freed.
"Our ambition is to become more accessible to Ontario residents by bringing IKEA closer to them and offering new, convenient services that meet the evolving demands of our lives at home," said Toronto Area Manager Niclas Karlsson-Järnkrok. "The IKEA Design Studio is one of the many ways we're delivering local, relevant home furnishing solutions to meet these evolving needs in a meaningful way."
The IKEA design studio concept is a much smaller footprint than a traditional IKEA store. The design studios showcase the full range of IKEA products through digital solutions as well as a curated selection of product display samples. Products are not available for immediate takeaway, and the stores do not offer food.
IKEA plans to keep the studios open for 12-18 months.