When you think eye-catching, cutting-edge, functional and fantastic furniture design, you probably don’t think of flat pack furniture. Popularized by IKEA, flat pack furniture comes un-assembled in a small, efficient box. Most flat pack furniture is made from inexpensive and easily attained materials, like MDF and synthetic fabrics, which lower its appearance and its quality. You can find flat pack furniture at almost any big box store, including Target and Walmart.
However, the flat pack can be so much more. Because of its efficiency, flat pack has greater opportunity to be sustainable and eco-friendly; it can be more creative in shape and style, and it can be more experimental with materials than traditional furniture. To prove it, here are some of the wildest flat pack furniture creators, producing pieces that are the epitome of fashion and art:
String is a Swedish flat-pack company, which might immediately draw thoughts of IKEA furniture — but totally unlike IKEA, String’s pieces have been legally classified as “applied art.” Timeless, simple yet customizable and utterly unique, String’s offerings bring functionality and form to any space. What’s more, String has been around for more than 70 years, adapting and improving its design, meaning that String has perfectly captured the modern, Scandinavian style.
Currently, String offers only a variety of shelving units and surfaces, classified into different collections based upon form and function. String even makes office furniture, found in their String Works line. However, any unit in any collection can be mixed and matched; because the shelves are modular by design, you should be able to fit them into any space to suit your practical needs and style.
Danish rather than Swedish — but Scandinavian nonetheless — Normann Copenhagen is the vision of interior design guru Hans Hornemann, who created the brand with the intention of merging flat pack functionality with high-society style. While the pieces sold by Normann Copenhagen are created with space-limited city-dwellers in mind, the truth is that anyone anywhere can benefit by placing furniture like this in their home.
Normann Copenhagen offers a bevy of furniture and room accessories, but where they really shine is in their chairs and sofas. These tend to feature sumptuous and comfortable curves reminiscent of Mid-century Modern but with enough uniqueness to fit into any design scheme. Because this flat pack furniture isn’t cheap, you might consider hiring a trustworthy Chicago furniture assembly service to assist with setup, so your investment can last into the future.
Moving away from Scandinavia but sticking close by, Polish company Tylko is also trying to improve on typical flat pack furniture. Like String, Tylko specializes in modular storage solutions; their slogan is “shelves that stand out because they fit in perfectly.” The reason Tylko can make such a promise is that they use an algorithm to calculate the most optimal unit given your aesthetic and practical requirements.
Shopping at Tylko is more like customizing a video game character; there are all sorts of sliders and presets to choose from to create your most perfect shelving unit. As with the luxury flat pack brands above, it might be wise to hire professionals in your area to help you set up your Tylko purchase simply because designs can become beautifully complex relatively quickly.
Flat pack furniture-maker Floyd got its start with legs — a simple, clamp-on industrial-style leg that could transform any flat surface into a coffee table. From there, Floyd has grown, offering alternative options of the Floyd Leg as well as couches, beds, lighting and more. Most of this brand’s offerings remain industrial in look and feel, which is exceedingly trendy and unique in the flat pack world.
It’s notable that Floyd is a bit more DIY than other flat pack producers. While some of their furniture comes all-in-one, a typical flat pack kit, much of it requires you to find odds and ends to transform. Some creative surfaces to make into tables, shelves and desks include antique doors, live-edge wood, upcycled pallets and more. Typically, any flat surface can become a fantastic and custom piece of furniture in your home.
You can find flat pack furniture almost anywhere. Even if you are looking for something unique, you don’t have to ignore flat pack options. The above four furniture makers are working hard to deliver out-of-the-box designs for cutting-edge styles, and you should take full advantage of their creative craftsmanship.