This article was originally published in July, but the YPPERLIG collection is finally available, so we're sharing it again.
It’s been a year since IKEA first teased its collaboration with Danish design company Hay in the form of a cryptic promotional video. The video was a trip, depicting, with surrealistic intensity, collapsing furniture and carpets suspended in mid-air inside an unfurnished apartment. The two companies were pretty mum about publicizing any further details about their partnership until last week, when IKEA finally released 30 photographs of the collection.
YPPERLIG is a 30-piece collection—an assortment of storage vessels, vases, sofas made from molded foam, coffee tables, table lamps, benches, pillows—all unified by an aesthetic that aspires to be minimalist and understated. According to IKEA, these items are “brave but will age well.” YPPERLIG will launch in stores across the States in October of this year, and IKEA is still working out the pricing.
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The collection's got an experimental bent; one item is a sofa fashioned after something you'd find in the 1950s, yet it's molded from a single piece of foam. This line was rooted in IKEA's desire to “reinvent” its basics, and, ultimately, to “challenge people’s perception of IKEA quality and design.” For an example, I'd look no further than Hay’s interpretation of IKEA’s FRAKTA bag, that tote’s iconic blazing blue-and-yellow color scheme dulled to more earthy tones.
Sigh! Not even my beloved FRAKTA is immune to the neutral trend. I’ll reserve judgment until I see these items in the flesh. We’re quite a ways from YPPERLIG's actual launch this fall, so let these photos hold you over in the meantime.
Mayukh Sen is a James Beard Award-winning food and culture writer in New York. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the New Yorker, Bon Appetit, and elsewhere. He won a 2018 James Beard Award in Journalism for his profile of Princess Pamela published on Food52.