When you think of Ikea you don’t usually associate their products with works of art… but it has been revealed that several Ikea designs are now sold in art auctions for prices much higher than their original selling price.
According to Barnebys, the world’s leading auction search engine that tracks art market trends, many items sell for ten times more than when they were originally launched. The most expensive Ikea furniture sold in auction is the furniture group ‘Åke’, which was manufactured between 1952 and 1956.
The group includes sofas and armchairs, and the so-called ‘Mushroom’ or ‘Clam’ chair has become one of the most sought-after items, climbing in value by thousands of pounds over the past few years. Some chairs have sold for a whopping £50,000.
Other designs that have rocketed in price include bookshelves by Gillis Lundgreen (£3,000), the Amiral steel and leather chairs by Karin Mobring (£875), and chairs by Eric Wörtz (£1,500).
If you have any of these retro items at home, you might want to head to the auction house!
Ironically the most expensive Ikea auction items today are almost always items that didn’t do well and were quickly discontinued due to lack of sales figures or expensive production costs, according to Pontus Silfverstolpe, co-founder of Barnebys.
An example of this is the Vilbert chair by Panton, which was sold in 1993 for just £60 and was not a big success. Now the chairs fetch upwards of £700 at auction.
What can we expect to see as the next big Ikea trends at auction?
‘Currently more and more people are watching Ikea's production from the 1970s to 1990s. When a new generation becomes financially established and begins to trade at an auction, they usually start to buy what they saw around them when growing up,’ says Pontus Silfverstolpe. He also predicts that Ikea's PS series will be in demand in the future.
So while it’s probably fine to throw out your Billy bookcase and your Poäng chair, make sure you keep hold of items from the PS series, and get any items you have from the 1970s to 1990s priced up. You could be sitting on a gold mine!
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