We Finally Know How IKEA Got Its Famous Name

It might not be as exciting as their delicious meatballs, but it has meaning.

IKEA storeJustin Lane/Epa/REX/ShutterstockEveryone knows IKEA as their go-to furniture store for trendy items to fill their living room with. And let’s not forget the incredible IKEA furniture hacks you’ll want to DIY immediately. But where did the letters that make up the name come from? You might think it has a fun history behind it, but it’s actually not quite as exciting as scoring some of their famous meatballs for lunch.

The name is an acronym standing for Ingvar Kamprad Elmtaryd Agunnaryd. Ingvar Kamprad started the furniture company in 1943 in Sweden when he was only 17. As you might have guessed, that’s where the first two letters come from. His father rewarded him for doing well in school by giving him money. He decided to start a furniture company with that money. Inspiration for the E and A in IKEA came from the farm he grew up on. The name of the farm was Elmtaryd, and the name of the village, Agunnaryd. By the way, you’re probably pronouncing IKEA wrong. Here’s how you actually say it.

And that is how the yellow and blue store name came to be. While the name might not be as creative as their store layout, the furniture and accessories that they sell make up for it.

Next time you head to the store, avoid buying this metal bowl. It can start a fire!

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Morgan Cutolo
Morgan is an Associate Editor at Reader’s Digest. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2016 where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. She writes for rd.com, helps lead the editorial relationship with our partners, manages our year-round interns, and keeps the hundreds of pieces of content our team produces every month organized. In her free time, she likes exploring the seacoast of Maine where she lives and works remotely full time and snuggling up on the couch with her corgi, Eggo, to watch HGTV or The Office.