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Friday, October 5, 2012

61 Let's Chat: Expedit Inspiration

So I already know how this is going to go down.

I am going to show you all these super inspirational photos of Expedit bookcases.

And you are going to be all like, "Jen, didn't you juuuust say no more IKEA?"

And to that I will reply, "Yes, no more IKEA.  I haven't been to IKEA in a month and have no intentions on heading that way in the near future."

And you are now looking at me all confused and wondering where my bi-polar posts come in....

So I say, "Although I am not planning on purchasing another Expedit, there is something to be said about the ones we do already have.  We have three functioning sets of Expedit bookcases in our home.  One in our laundry room, a pair in my studio and a pair in the playroom.  All which we love for many various reasons, such as their versatility, their storage capacity, their durability and their clean lines."

Here they are now:


The point of this post isn't, "Hurry and go buy an Expedit".  For me, it is about loving the ones I already do have.  And hopefully helping you love the ones you have too.

It should be no surprise that styling doesn't come naturally to me.  I see things as functional first.  Yes, I love to paint and DIY and design, but the styling side of it all just isn't my strongest skill.  I use bookcases for storage purposes, so ensuring that they are also stylish and aesthetically pleasing comes second.  As it should right?  I have the hardest time adding items and accessories that have no function other than looking pretty.  Clutter makes me nervous.

But there are these moments.  Moments in which I look at other Expedits and forget they are one of the most common pieces of household furniture, and just drool and swoon.  How does one drool at an Expedit?  What am I doing wrong that I am not drooling when I see mine?  How can one take the Expedit to the next level?

I thought it would be fun to have some Expedit eye candy {for inspirational purposes only of course!}  Here are some Expedits I have found around blogland that I feel have been used in a great, stylish way.


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So what is it about all the inspiration photos that make the multi-functional Expedit look so appealing in all those spaces?  How does the overall styling make an impact in the rooms?  Let's brainstorm:

  • Majority of the Expedits above have some sort of natural element, woven baskets are a big winner.
  • In some of the rooms, it's not at all about the Expedit, but how the entire room is styled around it.
  • Added height.  Many of the Expedits have additional height added to them through interesting and sculptural objects.
  • Lots of books.  And stacked both horizontally and vertically to offer a mixture of patterns and colors.
  • Randomness.  Some of my favorite Expedits look as though there was zero intention of styling or placement consideration.  
  • Many of my favs offer a mixture of both concealed and open storage.  A few woven baskets mixed with a stack of books or an over sized vase give an eclectic feeling.

What else caught your eye?  Any favorites found?  How about other styling tips for making the Expedit look more classic and less mass produced?  I would love to hear your thoughts on the subject!



 

61 comments:

  1. I love IKEA Expedit!!! In fact, I just redid my office with all Expedit stuff!
    http://www.ramblingsofasuburbanmom.com/2012/10/the-office-makeover/

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  2. I don't currently have any, but we are getting ready to buy a bigger home, and I def am getting some. LOVE <3

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  3. Never even thought about stacking them....oh my...

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  4. I love our Expedit! In fact, we just purchased another one this weeekend - thanks to you, I am motivated to organize all of my crafts in a functional way and turns out Expedit is the trick! Thanks for all the inspiration Jen! You are great!

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  5. We love our Expedit as well. It's so functional, especially with our kids play room. Here's what we have done.

    http://doubletheblessings-amyh.blogspot.com/2011/09/expedites-rug-tubtrugs.html

    This is not the most updated picture as we now have a flat screen in the middle. I do agree with you though that sometimes it can look like you could open your own Ikea store in your house. I'm trying to think outside the box as well and be a little bit more creative with furniture choices!

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  6. We don't own any expedits, but my husband made a set of corner cubbies for my daughter's room similar to the expedit style. It was obviously time consuming for him to build, but it was just what we wanted for the room.

    http://www.charlieton.blogspot.com/2011/07/mackenzies-new-shelves.html

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  7. I LOVE Expedit!! it's so perfect in so many places. I have a plan to utilize them in our finished basement, and we already have 2. One in the living room for toy/media storage and one in my daughter's closet (not revealed yet). Perfecto!

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  8. I love how it brings order to all of the spaces, and must say... I may have to go to IKEA to check it out...because I need some order!

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  9. I love my Expedit! Thanks for sharing the eye candy, but yours are my favorites!

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  10. Did you see Ikea how carries many of them in COLORS?! Oh the possibilities!!!!!

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    1. I think my most fave way of sprucing up the expidit is one I saw (sorry forgot where exactly) wherein the inside was painted metallic - gold or silver - and it was spectacular!

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  11. Love all this eye candy! I have one that we use as a bench at the foot of our bed. It's currently waiting for a cushion to be made.

    I can't WAIT until we are in our own house to be able to go out and buy bigger ones to use. Love them!

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  12. I have a big expedit in my scrap room. I love it.

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  13. My husband and I just bought the five by five Expedit this last week! Thank you so much for all the inspiration :)

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  14. I know that it's kind of simple, but I really appreciate the way that you compile your inspiration photos and break down the similarities in such a straight forward way. It's something I'm working on getting better at, and appreciate seeing how other people do it and what they notice.

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  15. I love my Expedit. I have one with the desk that attaches to it. I love it because it holds so much in the 8 cubes that I have. :)
    I actually would love another one maybe in our Family Room one day. We have a lot of pieces from Ikea. Let me think quick how many...we have other 10 pieces of furniture/shelves from Ikea. WOW. But I can't help it, it's functional and cost effective. Win win in my book. Can't wait to see what you buy next Jen. :)

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  16. I'm just going to throw this out there. I drool over your Expedit set-up!! You may think its not styled but I sure do. Thanks again for the continued inspiration. I want to be you when I grow up even if I already am in my 30's. haha.

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  17. Your expedit are my favorite because they look so simple, clean and organized. The inspiration expedits are too crowded and busy.

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  18. I love the Expedits. Our closest IKEA is in Charlotte (we are in Charleston, SC. I just love the look of cubbies and actually, I had hubby replicate your desk (without the Expedits, he just built the cubbies). Once we can get to IKEA, I plan on getting some of these, they are so versatile...definitely worth buying...I think they are the type of piece you'll always find use for no matter how much you change things around in your home. Thanks for all the inspiration! xoxo www.styleoyster.blogspot.com

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  19. I have a 2x4 that I put on 6 - six inch feet...we used it first as a landing strip/bookshelf and now it's in our girls' bedroom with spots for books, shoes, pjs, etc. Love it!

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  20. One of the big selling points I've found with the Expedit range (yes I work for Ikea here in Australia, holla!) is that it fits 12"x12" scraobook albums no matter which way you use your Expedit. Namely the 2x4 Expedits as you can have them vertical or horizontal and all your albums will fit. I've run out of space in my house to put a 2x2 Expedit so all my albums are stacked by the couch here in my living room. One of my favorite ways I've seen the 4x4 or 5x5 Expedits used is for a sideboard in your dining room. Some of the cubbies are filled with dishes, others with serving platters, others with cups and vases, others with a nice soup bowl, etc. The bottom with the additional drawers and doors to hide items you don't want on display. <3 Expedit!

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  21. This is a wonderful post! Thanks for sharing your knowledge with us! I hope to read more of your post which is very informative and useful to all the readers. I salute writers like you for doing a great job!
    regards
    home plans

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  22. Great post! I "heart" all the inspiration. I wish my nearest Ikea wasn't three hours away.

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  23. Does it help that I drool when I see your Expedit? Also, the benches are all over Pinterest....maybe you're just too used to see them.

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  24. See, IKEA is not all bad;) I've fallen into the trap too though of heading there when we need a piece of furniture - it's easy to do living less than 10 minutes away from one!

    Expedits can have their place though when styled with eclectic and meaningful pieces which can take time. One of the pictures you posted was from Karen @ The Art of Doing Stuff {yay Ontario, Canada} who did a great job of doing this and said it took her months to get her bookcase styled the way she wanted it.

    The bonus for Expedits are that they are pretty durable compared to other IKEA pieces {which is why I hope to shop for a new coffee table today:)}.

    Great post!

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  25. I'm not quite the Ikea shopper but these are great pieces. I'm a big fan of buying furniture mainly for it's functional use instead of just for decor. These are great photos to help do both :)

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  26. Love the Expedits! We have 3 as our entertainment center, 1 in the playroom, 1 in our bedroom and 1 in our office. They are perfect!

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  27. HI Jen! I have been reading your blog for awhile now, and I just wanted to chime in my own 2-cents about how my hubby and I used our Expedit, because at the time it really saved our sanity.

    While the hubs and I were engaged, we had a roommate which quickly turned into our roommate and her boyfriend. Both of us are Ph.D. students in the Humanities and we have ALOT of books.

    We had a very large master suite in a lovely condo, but we were just not using the space well, so we bought an expedit and used it as a room divider AND a bookcase on BOTH sides! (Yes, we have that many books...it was an organizational NIGHTMARE.) It made our single room into a type of "studio apartment" with a small loveseat, ektorp chair for working and the other side had our bed in a cute little nook.

    The expedit is the most versatile piece of furniture I've ever owned...I feel like IKEA should give me some sort of promotional gig!

    Love your blog--you are so awesome!

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  28. Love your blog, and especially this Expedit eye candy! I have a few sizes/colors in our living room and playroom and can't get enough of their functionality! I even have a Pinterest board called Expedit Love which has my fave ideas for using them...your post just got pinned! :)

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  29. I LOVEEEE IKEA and organizing, so I am in love with all of them! Luckily, I live 5 hours away from an IKEA, otherwise I would be in MAJOR trouble!

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  30. I love Expedit so much that, living in a non-IKEA country, I got my inlaws to ship it to me for a Christmas present!! The 5x5 with a bunch of door/drawer add-ins, and the desk. It's now the hub of my crafting/sewing/etc room, and I couldn't be happier.

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  31. Totally unrelated, but I bought the same light fixture you have in the play room from ikea and can't figure out how to get the darn thing flush to the ceiling. What the heck?? I mean you hook it and then how do you get it on tight against the ceiling? It doesn't screw onto the silver plate??

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  32. Repeated elements caught my eyes. In all of the pictures, you see a repetition of the same things - boxes, baskets, bowls, books, colors, etc. I think that's what I like most, repetition of the similar or like items. :)

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  33. I re-did one of my expedit shelves and it has made a world of difference. Here's the link to my spiced up expedit:

    http://mydailyphotojourney.blogspot.com/2011/08/spiced-up-ikea-expedit.html

    Amazing the things you can do with these units!

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  34. Thank you for gathering so many fab ideas in one place! I am planning to do something like this in our spare bedroom to create an office/craft room and these ideas are exactly what I had in mind!

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  35. I too love that open and concealed storage the Expedit provides! Not only that though, there is so many different textures within this clean shelving - it's a pleasure to look at these!

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  36. I didn't read all the comments so possibly someone else already said this, but sister you are talking crazy! I think it's fairly likely that you are the only person who doesn't drool, swoon or sigh when looking at your bookcases. I'm not a designer but I think they look fan-freaking-tastic just the way they are!

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  38. You inspired me to give my Expedit a makeover today!
    http://ordinarygrits.blogspot.com/2012/10/bookshelf-makeover.html

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  39. We have the 4x4 in our living room. In the 2nd from the bottom row we put in those little circle lights to shine down on my glass sea creatures collection. There are different sized woven baskets from Lowes in the other 3 rows holding books, DVDs, and misc junk!

    In the dining room I have 3 of the 2x2s put together to create a buffet. In the bottom row I have 6 blue file boxes holding all sorts of business things. The top row is cookbooks, cake stands and wine glasses.

    Going to IKEA next Monday for chairs!

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  40. I love the photos! We don't own anything from Ikea. I know it's crazy but the closest one is 5 hours away. I've actually only been once and it was overwhelming to say the least. But now I think we need one of these bookcases. I am amazed that people use them as benches. Are they that strong? I understand my 25 pound child would likely be fine sitting on one, but what about my 200 pound husband? All I can say is Wow!

    P.S. I am a fairly new reader and I love how you break things down. You provide very clear explanations. And you've given me lots of inspiration in organizing my home! So thanks!

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  41. We have two Expedit units in my Son's bedroom and they are perfect for storing things away at a height he can reach. I think they look great lined with books, love all the colours.
    I love how you have used the single ones as seating - might pinch that idea!!
    I have only just found your blog and so glad I have looks right up my street :) xx

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  42. I love the Expedits, I currently have 5 in my house (living 2 miles away from Ikea is dangerous). The most recent one that I purchased was for my craft room. I wrapped banker boxes in fabric and then added a chalkboard label on the front. Here are pictures of how I did the fabric wrapped banker boxes:

    http://www.bkdarr.com/2012/05/craft-room-reveal.html

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  43. I love how you use yours in the laundryroom. I have never thought of that.

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  44. You are introducing me to so much!!! I love it! First I am finally getting my house organized with fantastic tips, then Dave Ramsey, now the Expedit! I never would have thought to use it as a bench and storage to put under my kids bedroom windows...I can't wait to save up and go to Ikea...however I am a little nervous of what else I may want to get! I am finally making my house a home and because of you I actually am finally loving my home! I am not sure where you live, but I am in Lindenhurst, IL and would love to have you over to see what else I can do to my problem areas in this house (raised ranch) :) ... really I am not a stalker, just so happy to finally love my home!!

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  45. I don't live near an Ikea, but I'm in love with how you have used these bookshelves. I might need to find one or get online. : )

    I don't know if I'm just loyal to you or what, but I like yours better than all the other examples. I guess I tend toward a more minimalist style lately and the others seem somewhat cluttered compared to yours. But I've become an "i heart organizing" junkie recently so maybe that has clouded my judgement. : )

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  46. i love all the inspiration but please can someone please tell me where to find those little suitcases like the ones in the second picture from the top. i have been looking all over for them and now i think they are just haunting/taunting me....PLEASE

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  47. I have a set of 4x4 EXPEDIT shelves instead of a headboard for my bed with a set of narrow BILLY bookcases on either side - it makes keeping my bottle of water and my phone charger handy without needing end tables, and I love it! All of the EXPEDIT configurations are so versatile and customizable with the insert and baskets and other ways to utilize the cubes, and it's inexpensive enough to get several to make a space more storage friendly while still looking great.

    Love your blog!

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  48. Talk about inspiration. I showed this blog to my wife the other day and she hasn't stopped begging me to go to Ikea. The options they have are endless! looks like it will most likely be a few hours in the wonderful world of ikea this weekend... thanks!

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  49. Thanks for adding the Pin It button! So much easier!!!

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  50. We are huge Expedit fans! We use two 4x4s, side-by-side for my daughter's changing table / dresser: http://paperwhitesblog.blogspot.com/2011/08/reveal-maris-nursette.html. PS: love all the great tips and pretty suggestions from your blog posts!

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  51. Jen: i found your blog about 2 years ago and i have read it every. single. day. since then. I love, love this post and had to log on just to tell you how many times i have thought about it since i read it. Now i kinda get it....first you think about what you need in a space, then you make it pretty....right? i was doing it all wrong before. :-)

    Thanks for sharing all you do. you are blessed!!

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