January 04, 2005
IKEA Tea Lights

I was in IKEA the other day. I live so close to an IKEA store - it’s practically a local corner shop. I have to admit that I quite like IKEA - in small doses. Anyway - whilst I was there I couldn’t help but notice huge mountains of those bags of tea-lights. They’re all over the place when you get into the “market place” part of the store.

Seeing them made me remember someone had mentioned them in a blog I was reading the other day - can’t remember which one right now - but it was written about in a kind of satirical, parodied fashion. Is this because EVERYONE who goes to IKEA comes back with a bag of 100 tea lights that they never use? We did the very same once. On our very first visit. That was years ago - and we still have that very same bag of tea lights in a cupboard somewhere.

Does EVERYBODY go home with a bag of tea-lights after visiting IKEA?

I think it’s the psychological effect that in-store arrangements of products into “mountains” or huge piles or clusters of the same thing cause an urge to compulsively buy the product. I notice that IKEA do the same with their energy-saving light bulbs. With the tea lights - I think it’s also the fact that they’re only £1.50 - and you get 100 of them in a bag. Not bad eh? - I’m sure they’ll come in useful next time there’s a power cut. Oh - and they’re called “Glimma” - which sounds quite cute.

Posted by jag at January 04, 2005 06:38 PM
Comments
Ah! Not Guilty. We made a visit to IKEA a couple of months ago and did not fall for the delights of the Tea lights. However since then we seem to have more pairs of scissors than we know what to do with! Posted by: Brom-man on January 4, 2005 09:04 PM
Guilty. On tealight and low energy lightbulbs count. Also small frames 2 in a pack for 1. Never seem to get used. Posted by: stroppycow on January 4, 2005 09:37 PM
I've moaned about people only buying tealights in IKEA on many occasions - and now I know the perpetrator! Posted by: Vicky on January 4, 2005 10:15 PM
Been there. Done that. Finally gave the tea-lights away to a charity shop last year. *blush* Posted by: Pewari on January 4, 2005 10:28 PM
I bought a bag of tealights from the student market in my first week at university, over seven years ago. I've still got about 95% of them in a bag in my wardrobe. Posted by: Chris on January 4, 2005 10:41 PM
Ha! I use 'em all the time! We go through two of these bags in 10 months easily (which is about the time in between Ikea visits I can handle). I too love going to Ikea in about these intervals. Does anyone else love going through it 'the other way round', i.e. from the exit backwards all the way to the tea-lights right at the front? There are also these handy shortcuts everywhere escaping the cattle trail. I even used to collect all the aluminum vessels of the tea lights for recycling, but no one here really seems to want them as seperate waste. Now call me 'nerdy' again. Posted by: Snappy on January 4, 2005 11:31 PM
I buy Ikea tealights on a regular basis, but I *do* use them. Get a few of those nice glass tealight holders. The tealights make better romantic candles than you might think. Also they have these useful contraptions to put serving plates on to keep the food warm. Very handy if you cook Asian food on a regular basis. Also powered by tealights. Posted by: Horst on January 5, 2005 09:45 AM
Brom-man: how strange - we never seem to have enough pairs of scissors in our house. We seem to be forever buying them though! Strop: We're as guilty as you are. Light bulbs too! But no picture frames. Instead: those metal racks you get for the kitchen table! Vicky: looks like there are many of us who fall for it! Pewari: We are not alone. Nice idea re the charity shop. Chris: Well at least you didn't get them from IKEA! Marcus/Snappy: We do IKEA backwards occasionally - but only on those occasions when you need to get just one or two things - and we go just before closing time so. I'm amazed you actually get through those tea lights - I think they have a very "petrochemical" type of smell - don't you think? Horst: Yes - I will event admit that we have a few of the glass light-blue tea-light holders - we used them once - I have to say it was indeed romantic - but for the smell. And also have those table-top contraptions for keeping food warm - but have never used them! (Yet.) Posted by: Jag on January 5, 2005 10:50 AM
I got them too... and also from my Uni freshers party. What's with freshers parties and IKEA? Posted by: Anand on January 5, 2005 11:16 AM
Anand: not sure - but obviously a connection somewhere! ;-) Also: Am so sorry about the events back in your home town Anand. I can guess how it feels to be so far away from it all. Posted by: Jag on January 5, 2005 07:55 PM
Well, there was a massive discussion about this on a fabulous blog called bird a few months ago. I thought going backwards through IKEA was par for the course seeing as the whole place is designed to confuse you, keep you there and make you want to buy tealights, plant pots and bits of assorted useless kitchen frippery. Yes, I have a bottomless pit of tealights - delved into it the other day. They are as old as my son - three and a half - I remember we went to and purchased a bumper bag of 'glimma' the pre-birth trip to Ikea - enough to give you pre-enclampsia at the best of times. Don't get me started!! Makes me feel quite glummr!! Posted by: astrid on January 6, 2005 12:22 AM
Astrid - I found the article you were referring to in "Bird's" archive: http://www.bird.co.uk/archives/2004_10.html Excellent summary! Posted by: Jag on January 6, 2005 07:54 PM
Strange, I'm always running out of these tealights! They're very easy to use, guys - simply place on fireproof surface, use match or lighter to light up and enjoy :-) Especially now (winter time), when the days are short... Posted by: mybrainhurts on January 8, 2005 09:26 AM
Hello mybrainhurts - I agree with you - but the problem I find with the IKEA ones is that they smell very "chemical". Looking forward to Spring and Summer! Posted by: Jag on January 9, 2005 09:12 PM
Whatever happened to the good old teacosy? Here in Germany guest sometimes give us an odd look or an "Isn't that cute/odd/who'veeverhavethoughtofthat" when I plonk the teapot on the table with its teacosy. But it's much more practical. One day it's time will come again. And you can also get 100-packs of regular candles at IKEA if you just want a bit of candlelight. Posted by: David on January 10, 2005 11:19 AM
Hi David: I have to admit - I've *never* seen a teacosy being used at all. I remember seeing them being used on TV when I was a kid though! I think we could set a trend with something like that! Posted by: Jag on January 11, 2005 12:32 AM
i always bought those tealights, and never used them, my husband is pyrophobic(?). i moved three bags from vienna to boston 4 years ago and went through two just last week during a blackout. and i miss ikea, the closest one is a 4 hrs drive away. Posted by: nora on January 12, 2005 01:31 PM
Hi Nora - thanks for your comment. 4 hours drive is a LONG way. We get a lot of daytrippers to our local IKEA - but I suspect that the longest they have to drive is around an hour. I think there's pretty much an IKEA within an hour drive from most populations centres in the UK. See - we are all guilty of buying tea-lights from IKEA! ;-) Posted by: Jag on January 12, 2005 09:40 PM
Ditto - me too even way down here in Brisbane Ikea. I think I have used about 10 so far and got them Octbober last year. Posted by: Lushlife on January 16, 2005 09:45 AM
Lushlife: I am know convinced that there must be thousands of the little things lying around unused in the back of people's cupboards the world over. Thanks for your comment! Posted by: Jag on January 16, 2005 08:36 PM
yes, of course. (in answer to your question about tealights) Posted by: mamatha on February 4, 2005 06:58 AM
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