Take a Peek at How IKEA Is Celebrating its 75th Birthday

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By Jennifer Baum Lagdameo
After 75 years of iconic design, the Swedish furniture megastore is paying homage to the past by relaunching a tight selection of hand-picked favorites.

Named the Gratulera series, IKEA will be rolling out these nostalgic styles in three separate collections that embody distinct periods in the company's design history: the 1950s-1960s, the 1970s-1980s, and the 1990s-2000s. 

"Each launch is very different, signifying its time period—from dark woods with a classic expression, to a very playful style with strong colors, to a more minimal look with natural light woods and graphic colors," explains the company's creative leader, Karin Gustavsson. Here's a special look at what's in store.

The 1950s-60s: Launching in August 2018

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The designs from the 1950s-60s capture the midcentury period, embracing classic lines and darker woods.

The designs from the 1950s-60s capture the midcentury period, embracing classic lines and darker woods.

The STRANDMON armchair was a favorite of IKEA founder Ingvar Kamprad. Now, it will be relaunched in a new color. 

The STRANDMON armchair was a favorite of IKEA founder Ingvar Kamprad. Now, it will be relaunched in a new color. 

The KNÄSJÖ floor lamp was launched in 1958 as TRINETT and described at the time as being "super modern."  While the lamp shades came in different colors when it originally hit stores, the 2018 version is all white.

The KNÄSJÖ floor lamp was launched in 1958 as TRINETT and described at the time as being "super modern."  While the lamp shades came in different colors when it originally hit stores, the 2018 version is all white.

"The LÖVBACKEN table (previously known as LÖVET) is such a cool statement piece. It was our first knockdown product," recounts Gustavsson.

"The LÖVBACKEN table (previously known as LÖVET) is such a cool statement piece. It was our first knockdown product," recounts Gustavsson.

IKEA originally launched the handmade GANGET armchair in 1958 with the opening of the first store in Älmhult, Sweden. The chair’s round design represents "an optimistic future."

IKEA originally launched the handmade GANGET armchair in 1958 with the opening of the first store in Älmhult, Sweden. The chair’s round design represents "an optimistic future."

The 1970s-80s: Launching in October 2018

IKEA's beloved KLIPPAN sofa sums up all the color and fun of the 1970s-80s. "I just love the covers that are like puffy jackets—they’re cool and colorful. It’s a tribute to the Memphis group," says Gustavsson.

IKEA's beloved KLIPPAN sofa sums up all the color and fun of the 1970s-80s. "I just love the covers that are like puffy jackets—they’re cool and colorful. It’s a tribute to the Memphis group," says Gustavsson.

When it launched in 1983, the RÅANE armchair was called JÄRPEN. Designer Niels Gammelgaard wanted to challenge the idea of an armchair and see if it was possible to make comfortable seating without the use of filling or fabric. 

When it launched in 1983, the RÅANE armchair was called JÄRPEN. Designer Niels Gammelgaard wanted to challenge the idea of an armchair and see if it was possible to make comfortable seating without the use of filling or fabric. 

"The KLIPPAN sofa was one of the first affordable sofas we had to offer, which is why it’s an icon of its time," notes Gustavsson. "During the 1980s, Åsa Gray made some beautiful, colorful designs for IKEA.  I particularly like the rugs and cushions—they’re significant for that time period."

"The KLIPPAN sofa was one of the first affordable sofas we had to offer, which is why it’s an icon of its time," notes Gustavsson. "During the 1980s, Åsa Gray made some beautiful, colorful designs for IKEA.  I particularly like the rugs and cushions—they’re significant for that time period."

The 1990s-2000s: Launching in December 2018

In the 90s, IKEA mixed minimalist, untreated Scandinavian woods with graphic patterns. "During the 90s, we went for a more natural expression," explains Gustavsson.

In the 90s, IKEA mixed minimalist, untreated Scandinavian woods with graphic patterns. "During the 90s, we went for a more natural expression," explains Gustavsson.

The BJURÅN chair, formerly known as ÖGLA, is still manufactured with solid wood bent by artisans in the exact same factory in Poland.

The BJURÅN chair, formerly known as ÖGLA, is still manufactured with solid wood bent by artisans in the exact same factory in Poland.

A look at the IKEA PS 1999 armchair and the IKEA PS 1995 coffee table.

A look at the IKEA PS 1999 armchair and the IKEA PS 1995 coffee table.

"I think the sculptural furniture of Thomas Sandell is iconic. The small bench with wheels on one end and legs on the other was a design piece desired by so many people at that time," adds Gustavsson. The PS bench launched in 1995 and immediately became a classic piece thanks to its sleek and functional design.  

"I think the sculptural furniture of Thomas Sandell is iconic. The small bench with wheels on one end and legs on the other was a design piece desired by so many people at that time," adds Gustavsson. The PS bench launched in 1995 and immediately became a classic piece thanks to its sleek and functional design.  

Find out more about IKEA's limited-edition GRATULERA collection  here