Thursday, July 28, 2011

Inspiration Swedish Style

Getting close...
About eight years. That's how long I'd been waiting (along with many other IKEA fans in Colorado). That's when I first heard buzz that an  IKEA might open here. So yesterday, when I would normally be in the studio in the early morning, I found myself (along with a cast of thousands) in a cavernous parking garage waiting in line for the Grand Opening of the Denver IKEA store in a sea of cadmium yellow medium and cobalt blue.

500 seat restaurant--love the snowball lights!
Shopping Snack--Yum!
Thankfully the opening seemed well-organized and while I did win a sofa or chair, I only waited about an hour. While I've browsed the IKEA website many times, I've never visited an actual store. I was immediately struck by the massive scale--imagine an airport with towels,candles, rugs, and cool mugs. One of the staff told me the Denver store was now the largest IKEA in North America. I think it will likely take a few visits to really get a good sense of the place. Tip: Wear comfy shoes--it was also a great walking workout.

As a foodie with a Scandinavian heritage, I was particularly looking forward to the cafe and the Swedish Food Market. They did not disappoint. I had very tasty pancake with ligonberry preserves and bought some dark chocolate bars and in the market. Eventually I had get back to the studio, but I had enough time to pick up these fun Mala felt tip stamping markers. I also had my eye on this interesting paper roll holder and drawing paper that I thought would be great for casual sketching. (Both were in the kid's department where I thought the prices were super affordable.)

Colors, shapes, and textures in every direction! 

I'm back in the studio painting and teaching today, but I have to admit, I've got a touch of  IKEA fever so if there are days I'm not posting in the next few weeks, you'll know where to find me...Welcome to Denver, IKEA!

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