the Ikea test

– Posted in: dating, moving

A wise friend once told me that Ikea is the place where relationships go to die. This past weekend I crossed my fingers as Bryan and I zipped through the showrooms and headed to the warehouse to purchase various odds and ends for the new place. Up until that point, I had been riddled with insecurity and apprehension about the move (I couldn’t help but question whether or not I was making the right decision and even if–after a year and a half of being together–we were ready for such a huge change).

Our trip on Saturday quelled a lot of my fears and I eased into–and finally embraced–the idea of our upcoming cohabitation. I’m excited for this next step in our relationship. After making a list of the things we needed (and making subsequent stops at Bed Bath and Beyond and the Christmas Tree Shoppe–an incredibly random collection of non-Christmas-related items), we picked up odds and ends we needed (chair so my back doesn’t spazz out while working from home), some we just wanted (juicer), and a few we’ll find a use for later (dog harness!).


I’m happy to report that we passed the Ikea test. I also take it as a good sign that we didn’t see a single argument transpire in the labyrinth of Swedish furniture, which is something I’ve witnessed each time I’ve been there. I will say that extended shopping excursions tend to make us both crabby. I can deal with this. I have dated guys who loved to shop in the past and I’m perfectly content that after a while, Bryan is just as ready to call it quits as I am. After tackling those three monster stores in one day, I was beginning to see double.

Have you heard of the Ikea test before? Do you go shopping with your spouse, or do you prefer to go at it alone?

10 Comments… add one
Rachel June 18, 2013, 12:15 PM

I think the real test comes when you actually try to put the furniture together!!

Krysten June 18, 2013, 3:29 PM

Is it weird that Iz and I love Ikea? We could wander around that place for hours.

A mall test would be better for us. I get super stressed with the crowds and all the stores. Somehow that’s more overwhelming that Ikea.

Blond Duck June 18, 2013, 10:58 PM

IKEA scares the hell out of me.

catherine gacad June 19, 2013, 1:28 AM

that’s funny, i had never heard of the ikea test before. i’ve heard of going on long vacations and trips, but no ikea. i do the majority of my shopping online and yes even groceries. we have a delivery service her in san francisco.

Single Mom in the South June 19, 2013, 8:47 AM

I have never done it was a SO…only by myself or with a friend. Where I am down here it’s almost a weekend trip as the nearest one is 3 hours away… romantic weekend getaway anyone? 🙂

Brandie June 19, 2013, 11:15 AM

Visiting Ikea is on our list of things to do this summer. I never thought of it as a “test” – how funny! Stopping by from SITS and hope you’ll return the favor! Have a fabulous Wednesday!

Mrs. Match June 21, 2013, 6:06 AM

I saw a great episode of 30 rock with the Ikea test portrayed. So funny! I’m glad to hear you survived ikea together, and so excited for this next step for you!

Liz in the City June 21, 2013, 2:17 PM

I agree with Rachel — the real test is dealing with the d**m screwdriver guy staring maniacally at you. Where the h*ll are the words!?

Anyway, glad you passed the test. I think Dave and I don’t get into arguments, necessarily, but just realize how not-Swedish and minimalist our current lifestyle is for the furniture displayed — and then we get dismayed. It’s always like “this would be a great bookcase — if we only owned 10 books instead of 150.” Or “this sofa set would look great, if we had a house that wasn’t built in 1903 with the dinky rooms to match.” Good luck with your move!

Shelly February 1, 2016, 12:09 PM

We’ve survived quite a few trips to IKEA, but this last one….


We’re just so indecisive the two of us, so it becomes this thing where we’re just standing around taking up space saying “I don’t know, what do YOU think?” It gets draining after about 15 minutes. And then we leave with nothing (except those delicious Swedish cookies).

Dara July 18, 2016, 8:07 AM

My husband and I love Ikea! We have so much fun when we go there, it is basically the only place we enjoy shopping because it is such an adventure 🙂

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