Does it get any better than IKEA? Don’t we all love getting lost in those labyrinth-like superstores filled with colorful toothbrush holders, rubber ice trays in the shapes of hearts, hard-to-pronounce home furnishings – we’re looking at you, BEKVÄM and INGOLF – decorative bedspreads, meatballs . . . ? The brand has been a true staple for apartment dwellers, in particular, who do not want to sacrifice style for budget.
IKEA, being the astute, pragmatic, Swedish geniuses that they are, are now paying attention to the inevitable reality of us city folk— we are running out space! Studio apartments are being traded in for even smaller micro apartments – a 242-square-foot one will run you a shocking $3,000 per month in New York City! – and residents are scrambling to utilize any space-saving option they can. Enter Flexible Space.
Flexible Space is essentially a room-within-a-room that can be folded into itself, with two rolling walls on either side. Amazingly, with the device the consumer can turn their studio apartment into a one-bedroom, then back to a studio again.
Right now it’s just a prototype, but Robin Williams (no, not that Robin Williams), the resident who is testing out the nifty contraption, is enthusiastic about it. “The walls change the way I use my home because it’s all compact, it’s a lot neater; I can just put anything away and close the wall without anyone looking.”
With a closet, end tables, bed, and storage existing inside its rolling walls, it’s safe to say that cleaning can be done lickety-split, with only a couple of quick pushes.
IKEA of Sweden’s Research Manager, the blazered and dapper Mikael Ydholm, says that for this project the designers are focused on paying close attention to the user’s emotional well-being in the space. Ydholm says, “If you bring up emotions when you do something than it means something for you.”
With the tiny house craze and increased levels of urbanization in full swing, Flexible Space has already garnered quite a bit of attention. Though the project was first made public in the summer of 2015, the model is not yet available for purchase. Nonetheless, for you impatient space savers, various DIY copy-cats have already surfaced on the Internet.
Would you add walls to your small space? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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