The IKEA Sketch Project

Happy Monday, friends! Today I’d like to invite you to participate in the first ever (well, first that I know of) IKEA Sketch Project. The project is 100% endorsed by me, and IKEA have not paid me a single meatball, yet!

Before we dive in, let’s catch up a little.

Hello! Is the sun shining where you are? It is here, and it’s delightful. Spring is only days away, and that’s making me very happy. Buh-bye winter, it’s been real. I’ve basically stopped coughing up a lung, which pleases me mightily, and I’m wearing a fabulous plaid shirt today, so I’m feeling very snazzy!

How are you? Are you longing for spring? Or heading into fall? Do you have a shirt that makes you feel snazzy? I highly recommend it.

After catching up with the Kardashians this morning (Is Rob having all his tattoos removed? They look very faded.) I hot-footed it down to the library, where I nabbed my favourite spot in the quiet study area.

I’m sitting by a long, narrow window, so I can see sky and trees and grass, and hear not much except the clackity-clack of keyboards and the noise of the snack pack of the lady next to me, and an occasional cough. It’s heaven in my ‘hood.

Back to the invitation to this IKEA thingymajig; as I think you all know, I’m a teensy bit addicted to all things social media, sketching and Swedish furnishings.

You could say I’ve got a bad case of Triple S syndrome. In that respect, I’m totally anti-vax!

The much anticipated arrival of the new, shiny, ‘designed for you’ catalogue from my favourite Swedish retailer got me thinking that a great way to find inspiration for my my daily sketching practice, and work on drawing tricky stuff like chairs and tables would be to go all Julie/Julia Project on that glossy tome, and sketch something from the catalogue each day. Gosh that was a long sentence. Sorry grammar gods.

So I busted open my catalogue to page 245 on the weekend, and sketched myself an Applaro outdoor chair.

Theirs. Mine.
Theirs. Mine.


FullSizeRender (10)

Whoops, technical WordPress hitch, I don’t know how to make the double dots appear over the a and o, sorry about that to any lovely Swedishian readers. I even forgot them over the A in my sketch, ay carumba! (That’s Swedish for yikes.)

I shared my sketch on Instagram, as is my daily habit (using #IGYTsketch), and my friend Emily from Squiggle and Swirl said she’d had a similar idea about sketching from the IKEA catalogue, and Claire from Cats Eat Dogs was on board faster than you could say Swedish meatballs.

We’ve decided to take an ad-hoc sharesy approach, and take turns choosing a page number to sketch.

Earth shattering announcement – the IKEA catalogue is not the same the world over! *picks self up off floor*

When I announced that I’d sketched a chair from page 245, and Claire flipped to page 245 in her St Louis, USA version of the catalog (eep! they lost some letters too), she found an entirely different page of products.

You can check Claire’s cool Instagram account, right here and Emily’s lyrical Instagram drawings can be found here.

Would you like to sketch along with us?

For those of you thinking, I can’t draw, you’re wrong! Everyone can draw, it’s a totally true fact!

Here’s what you need to know:

We’re all on Instagram, so we’ll be sharing our sketches there.

It’s as easy as sketch, snap and tag. We’re using #IKEAsketchproject.

For the moment, either Emily, Claire or I will choose a page number or maybe a specific item (I haven’t actually run any of this past them in an official, sign up and lay your money down kind of way, because it’s a fun thing, with NO silly rules or tut-tutting), and then whoever wants to can join in and sketch and share. 

And if you just want to sketch anything that catches your eye in the catalogue, that’s okay too. 

Fun, right?

You could even create an IKEA masterpiece from macaroni, or macrame. The sky’s the limit!

Let’s also say from the get-go that this is not at all a competitive thing, it’s a we love drawing and sharing thing, okay?

It’s very important to note there are no #IKEAsketchproject police, you can dip in and out as it pleases you, but how fun would it be to see lots of hand drawn Vardagen bowls and Garnera serving stands, not to mention slightly wonky, whimsical Lisabo side tables.

So, pens, markers, watercolours, macaroni, paper and IKEA catalogue/log at the ready?


This is your official invitation to join in, just for fun, because sometimes fun and silly and wonky is a fantastically effective antidote to having to be oh-so-exacting about things, don’t you think?

Creative play, that’s where it’s at.

Come on! Join the #IKEAsketchproject, we’ll even modify the catalogue’s sub-heading:

IKEA — Designed for you. Sketched by us! 

I look forward to seeing your amazing, sweet, wonky, unbelievably stunning drawings on Instagram.

If you don’t follow me there already, you can find me here. Don’t forget to follow Claire and Emily too, they’re great!

I’m off to sketch page 175.

Page 175, here I come!
Page 175, here I come!

How do you reckon you pronounce Inbjudande??

Yours in the promotion of creative fun,

Annette xx


PS If anyone at IKEA notices this and wants to start a fabulous new range of sketched IKEA furnishings, call me!


Getting to know you… the speed dating sessions

name tagPicture this. A crowded room, people with name tags on milling around, some full of confidence because they’ve been here before, some nervously shuffling in their toe-pinching shoes, all hoping to make a good impression and maybe a lasting connection. Drinks are nursed, or thrown back hastily – acting as tiny glass shields against stomachs full of butterflies and the urge to bolt. Out of the corner of your eye, you spot a suave guy in a designer blazer and Italian loafers – and you think, what the hell is he doing here – shouldn’t he be throwing back cocktails with George Clooney and a harem of lovely ladies, while the sun sinks over Lake Como?

This sends you into a tailspin of re-thinking your outfit and cursing yourself for not wearing the third option you tried on, even though now that you’re in the room, it’s far too late for that. This is who you are, and how you look, and you’re praying to the gods of vodka, lime and soda, that you’re not the only one who feels like this. 

This is kind of how I feel about blogging – like I’ve stepped into a crowded bar full of clever, fascinating, technically proficient folks who have no trouble with Google Analytics or creating an Instagram hashtagging frenzy overnight… and I can’t help but feel like a crazed fangirl with no right to be in the room, let alone to be wearing a sticky name tag saying, Hi, I’m Annette from I Give You The Verbs.  How did I get into this bloggy pseudo speed-dating scenario? Where are the exits again? What is this fantasy I have about becoming ‘one of them’? And what does that even mean anyway? Gulp.

For me, it’s about finding a place where I can write, and I’m not sure I know much more than that at this stage. I’ve been doing a fantastic online bloggy course with Pip Lincolne – blogger, smile maker, author and lovely lady extraordinaire. She’s really helping me work out why I’m typing this sentence, and the next one.

There’s a heap of us tinkering away out there in cyberspace and asking so many questions that I’m astounded Pip’s head hasn’t blown off – we are crafters and makers and writers and we are spread all over the globe and it’s amazing to be in the company of so many creative souls. It is also really great to know that I’m not the only one who struggles with buttons and pingbacks and plugins, oh my!

So this is my way to segue from wow, look at this cute cake I made into, hi I’m Annette and I’d like to chat about stuff. There are topics I’ll probably orbit around – my obsession with IKEA, my love of graphic bed linen, adoption, coffee, architecture, Melbourne, family, what it’s like to be a single girl in a couples world…. who knows where we’ll end up.

I hope you’ll indulge me if I babble a bit initially – being in this space is kind of nerve wracking for a newbie. I think it’s time for another drink. Oh no, Italian loafer guy is looking my way…. gotta run!