Oatmeal Studio hacks Ikea
How would you like to customize your dining experience while eating out? Well that’s exactly what you can do during IkHa courtesy of Oatmeal Studio.
Begun in 2011 by Annika Syrjämäki and Rosa dalle Vedove (both Royal Academy of Art, The Hague graduates) Oatmeal Studio is an interior design and styling studio which combines the duo’s backgrounds in graphic design and textiles.
The two creatives aim to get the maximum out of every project and every space, which is where IkHA comes in. IkHa is a dining experience in which the concept of IKEA has been dismantled and translated into a restaurant interior. It’s not a self service restaurant in the usual sense of the word. Instead, visitors are invited to participate and customize their surroundings while dining.
While ‘IKEA hacking’ – creating spaces using the budget-savvy Swedish brand’s products in new ways – is a popular trend, the designers say they wanted to extend this concept.
IkHa is based on the showroom of IKEA itself and is currently set up at the Filmhuis/Den Haag Theatre in The Hague. Here, visitors find themselves in a maze of shelves and rooms to navigate, often multiple times as they reconsider their choices. They even sell Ikea’s famous Swedish meatballs.
Patrons are seated not at conventional Ikea dining tables but find themselves dining within a network of shelving units, either sat close to their neighbours or at a more private spot, like a standardised dream. Displayed onn the shelves is a collection of vases, plants and other vessels by the Swedish furniture brand.
Guests fill in their ordering forms with pencils and dinner is served on trays, delivered to the furniture construction where they’ve chosen to sit. They can create their table setting from a selection of materials and cut out their own tablecloth or placemat from a selection of wallpapers, ready to measure and cut.
“Even the Swedish meatballs are hacked”, and very nice, according to one patron of the restaurant.
One of IKEA slogans is ‘Big ideas for small spaces’, an important aspect of the IkHa restaurant. Everything is collapsible and foldable and when not in use can be quickly broken down to fit within a two square meter space. This makes it ideal for temporary solutions, events, and festivals, according to the designers.
The restaurant is located in the Filmhuis/Den Haag Theatre in The Hague, the Netherlands, and can be visited until 30 July.
Photography: Nadine Stijns
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