Gemma Speakman | Contributing Writer | Saturday, 14 March 2015

The Best Places To Kit Out Your Home On The Cheap That Aren\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'t Ikea

The Best Places To Kit Out Your Home On The Cheap That Aren't Ikea

The Debrief: Yep, there’s more to interiors than those delicious meatballs

IKEA hit British soil from Sweden almost 28 years ago and so started a complete love affair with cheap and stylish Scandi flatpacks… Oh, and those delicious meatballs you get when you go.

Suddenly everyone knew what an Allen key was but more so here was something totally fresh, fantastic AND affordable. But has anyone else got a tinge of IKEA-apathy? Surely there has to more to life than just IKEA?

The Scandi import has upped the ante on the home front irrevocably which means happily for us that there are now more shops and collections to choose from and most are actually quite reasonably priced. Here are our favourites. Move over BILLY bookcase... 

THE RANGE 

Offering everything from furniture to wall art, throws, cushions, vases and even a dedicated wedding range.  You do have to root around, but you'll find some gems. Check out the zig zag coffee table from their IKAT range - a steal at £39.99 or their hexagonal framed mirror at just £7.99.  Their mythical forest wallpaper is beautiful with a price to match at £12.99 a roll and it’s hard to believe their petal heart print cushions are not actual flowers (£5.99).

IKAT Zig Zag Coffee Table, The Range, £29.99 

TESCO HOME

Tesco’s latest range is a veritable feast for the home with great prices to match.  Kit your dining room out with the Palermo Dining table (£149) along side the Marseille metal dining chairs - (£49) in (a bit crazy but in a good way) Yellow but also wonderful in white.  For extra diners try the low Malmo stool from only £19 (also available high).  Their ‘basics’ Indigo small sofa is perfect for small spaces and a snip at £149. Also take a look at their outdoor range - their tropics inspired folding deck chairs (gorgeous in orange, £30) and their French inspired bistro table and chairs (£75).  For the inevitable accompanying cold drink try their Riviera-esque ‘blue dipped’ jug (£15)

Marseille Metal Dining Chairs Yellow, Tesco, £49 

DECORATOR'S NOTEBOOK

Decorator’s Notebook specialise in handmade home accessories from fair trade groups, social enterprises and artisan co-operatives all over the world.  Their ethos is that design quality and ethics can go hand in hand and allow customers to create a beautiful home without compromising their style or their conscience.

Check out their beautiful double-sided photo frames which come in 3 sizes, from £12.95. The perfect trio for displaying happy memories whichever way you look at them. 

Double Sided Photo Frame, Decorator’s Notebook, from £12.95

HOMESENSE

With 33 stores all over the UK, stock changes regularly but they claim they are 60% cheaper than other retailers. Although you can't shop online, which is a bit of a pain. Their beautiful rustic table is seriously sturdy.  Also their beautiful blue & white cushion with serious top texture is a stand out accessory for your sofa (£7.99). You can’t buy online so a visit to store is essential.

Wooden Rustic Table £49.99 

DUNELM MILL

With over 140 stores in the UK with so much to choose from and is suitable for a range of budgets.   Their home accessories are particularly good for those with less cash to splash.  From their new ‘purity’ range their ombre bud vase at £3.99 is perfect for stems and their wooden grill lantern is just stunning for £17.99.  Also you may not know it yet, but their luxurious knitted pouffe is exactly what you need in your life. (£59.99).

Wooden grill lantern, Dunelm Mill, £17.99

WILKO 

Wilko calls itself the ‘home of family value’ retailer.  And although it sounds a bit like a razor, it's actually just an amazing shop that sells just about everything. You could kit out your entire home this way, but highlights right now are their sleek nest of tables available in shiny black or white at a very reasonable £65. Also check out their demure LOVE wire sign (£15) - which will look totally boss inside or out. 

Love Wire Sign £15

BHS 

You may not know this but BHS has a penchant for great lights. Their latest ‘Columbia Road’ floral inspired collection is is just amazing. A set of 4 gorgeous cake (or starter) plates for £15 will impress any dinner guest and their Columbia Floral bedding set will make you actually want to make your bed in the morning rather than just trying to get back into it. 

Multi Columbia Road Stick Lamp, £16.99

GRAHAM & GREEN

A family-run business with unusual pieces. Their geometric vases are so nice it's hard to know if you'd look at the flowers or the vase and their black distressed whale book ends will make even your crappy old uni books look interesting. 

Geometric Vase in green (£25)

ATKIN & THYME

Launched in October 2014, this boutique scours the globe for handmade pieces which means your mates won't automatically have the same wardrobe as you. We're very into this cookie jar lamp, par example. 

Cookie Jar In Copper, £49

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