Photos: Ikea's Customers in China Make Themselves Very Much at Home

If you've ever wandered through an Ikea and stared longingly at one of the oh-so-fluffy beds as I have, thinking to yourself how nice it would be to kick off your shoes and crawl under the covers for a nap, then you might enjoy Ikea shopping in China, where customers often do exactly that.

Ikea's ever-comfortable Chinese customers, some great photos of whom circulated on Chinese social media and were picked up by China Hush and Beijing Fox, are a favorite topic of China-based bloggers. It's not hard to see why: watching them so casually climb into display-floor furniture to read or doze is a fun subversion of Western norms, and a reminder of how artificial those norms can sometimes be.

If I happened to buy my furniture at a store where it was considered normal and acceptable to plop down on a display sofa for an hour of light reading or napping, then that's exactly what I would do. But I don't. Having had some good-natured debates with Chinese friends about the merits of the Western obsession with order and rules versus China's sometimes more free-form style (this distinction is especially apparent when it comes to, say, lining up at a store), Ikea seems like a case where the Chinese approach has some obvious strengths over the Western.

But I until my local Ikea adopts Chinese-style norms, the best I can do is enjoy these photos from afar. This one, from China Hush, which picked them up on Weibo, is my favorite:

ikea china large.jpg

Here are some the photos that Beijing Fox is running from the capital city's Ikea:

IKEA0.JPGIKEA9.JPGIKEA7.JPGIKEA6.jpgIKEA5.JPGIKEA4.jpgIKEA3.jpgIKEA2.jpgIKEA1.jpg

And here are the Weibo-born photos aggregated by China Hush:

20120726-ikea-01.jpg

Presented by

Max Fisher is a former writer and editor at The Atlantic.

How a Psychedelic Masterpiece Is Made

A short documentary about Bruce Riley, an artist who paints abstract wonders with poured resin

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

How a Psychedelic Masterpiece Is Made

A short documentary about Bruce Riley, an artist who paints abstract wonders with poured resin

Videos

Why Is Google Making Skin?

Hidden away on Google’s campus, doctors are changing the way people think about health.

Video

How to Build a Tornado

A Canadian inventor believes his tornado machine could solve the world's energy crisis.

Video

A New York City Minute, Frozen in Time

This short film takes you on a whirling tour of the Big Apple

Video

What Happened to the Milky Way?

Light pollution has taken away our ability to see the stars. Can we save the night sky?

More in Global

Just In