Behind the scenes: Ikea launches 'Live Lagom' events series

Swedish retailer Ikea launched its 'Live Lagom' event yesterday (22 February), in a bid to encourage its customers to live more sustainably.

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Ikea is hosting a series of events and workshops across a five-day period at Westfield Stratford City for guests to learn about fermenting and waste management, energy efficient cooking and cycling safe in the city. 

Sharon McCracken, sustainable life at home leader for Ikea UK and Ireland, told Event: "Lagom is about not taking too much, but not denying yourself things as well; it's about finding balance. We want people to understand the effects they have on the environment and on climate change. Ikea is a responsible brand; we do a lot and we are passionate about sustainability, and we understand that our customers are passionate as well, but sometimes they just don't know what to do. We wanted to give them a platform and a space to explore that. We wanted to show customers what we believe in, and if they believe in it as well, we can come together and do something positive. Together we can do great things."

Commenting on the public reaction so far, she said: "We're really pleasantly surprised that people have been genuinely interested. People want to know what fermentation is about, and we're trying to make it easy and accessible for people. We're trying to show that it doesn't cost a lot, and those small changes just make you feel good. There's a real feel good factor when they're learning what to do with their leftovers, so they don't become food waste. There's a lot of motivation in it."

The lagom lifestyle is something that the brand wants to focus on. The idea derives from the Swedish phrase 'Lagom är bäst', which translates as 'the right amount is best', and Ikea intends to channel the concept and encourage customers to live in a more sustainable fashion.

McCracken added: "Lagom is a three-year project and we're hoping it's going to go on even further than that. In the summer, we're going to be hosting some of the workshops from this event in every store across the UK. So everybody across the country will be able to book on to these workshops, experience lagom, bring friends and connect with people. We have a huge commitment to it." 

Discussing Ikea's relationship with experiential, she commented: "I think [experiential] is really important to connect with our customers. You share experiences with them, and it really shows home furnishings coming to life. We talk about having an emotional connection with our customers; we're all individuals - we all have wants and desires and needs, but if we can connect with them in an emotional way, it really is like talking to a friend. They can come in, and have a chat about home furnishings, or chat about how sustainable life at home can help. It's that two-way conversation with our customers that we really enjoy, and that's going to be a real focus for us in the future."

The workshops will run at the Ikea order and collection point in Westfield Stratford City until 26 February. Guests can also enjoy the pop-up food bistro opposite the Ikea collection point, which will be hosting talks and activities to help engage the public and encourage them to embrace a lagom lifestyle.

Ikea will be appearing at Milan's furniture fair Salone del Mobile to showcase the future of the living room. Last month, Airbnb teamed up with Pantone to create the 'Outside In' house, which celebrated Pantone's colour of the year; Greenery.

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