‘10 Stories for the Future’ is an outdoor exhibition at this year’s Copenhagen Design Week that features 10 IKEA commandments and products that represent how the company is embracing responsible design. Through a story-telling journey of objects and words enclosed in glass and wooden boxes, the Swedish company demonstrate how they balance pricing and producing their products without compromising people or the environment.
1. Use Wood from Responsibly Managed Forests
IKEA’s first commandment is represented through their BEKVAM wooden stool. The design shows a commitment to using and creating demand for FSC wood.
2. Lighten Up
IKEA uses its own recyclable polypropylene plastic pallets instead of the standard wooden ones. This way they can adjust them to accomodate different products. The pallets also support additional weight, optimizing transportation and cost effectiveness.
3. Economize on Resources
Material optimization is paramount to Ikea, and this can be see through the company’s popular LACK table. The table is made from sturdy board-on-frame (BoF) and filled with recycled honeycomb paper.
4. Empower Women
This commandment refers to a joint effort by IKEA, Unicef and Dutch designer Hella Jongerious. Through the PS GULLSPIRA, Jongerious quilted wall hangings that helped skilled Indian women in creating their own small businesses while preventing child labor.
5. LED Bulbs Keep Glowing
6. Support More Efficient Cotton Production
IKEA supports eco-friendly cotton production. This can be seen in the production of its DVALA bed linens, which are made from organic cotton that is less water-intensive and pesticide-free.
7. Make Smart Use of Materials
IKEA focuses on using renewable, biodegradable, multifunctional and recyclable materials. Shown here, the NASUM basket is made from dried banana trees trunks (waste), and the LUSY BLOM cushions are stuffed with production leftovers.
8. Live a More Sustainable Life at Home
The company is aiming to help customers reduce water consumption by promoting fitted pressure compensating aerators (PCAs), which reduce water use by more than 30%.
9. Sort Your Waste
Recycling is key to reducing waste. IKEA’s RATIONELL system helps people organize and recycle household waste in a simple and environmentally friendly way.
10. Design the Price Tag First
The Swedish company carefully considers the use of raw materials, transport and production methods. This is exemplified in Ikea’s LAMPAN lamp, which features a lampshade that doubles as protective packaging to allow for a dramatic reduction in price.
For the second time IKEA is one of the main partners at Copenhagen Design Week, and the company’s ‘10 Stories For The Future’ exhibition offers an educational example of how they believe in making sustainable design affordable for the masses.
Photo © Ana Lisa Alperovich for Inhabitat