Ikea Sells Swedish Manga-Inspired Designs

posted on 2010-08-17 23:57 EDT by Gia Manry
Ekström's work also shown in Swedish manga mag, UK's Mammoth Book

In its February 2010 catalogue, furniture and home decor retailer Ikea launched a line of textile fabrics called "Charlotta" which features art by Swedish creator Åsa Ekström. According to Ikea's PDF documentation, Ekström decided to become a "mangaka" (manga creator) at age 13.

Prior to her work for Ikea, Ekström says she published several works in the Swedish manga magazine Shojo Stars, published by Manga Media from 2007-2008. Ekström has done other work for Manga Media over the years and was also featured in the 2006 edition of The Mammoth Book of Best New Manga, published in the UK by Running Press.

In 2009, Ikea also announced that it would carry a limited edition version of its Billy bookshelf "inspired by Japanese manga." In Italy the company has also advertised to businesses by showcasing manga and figures. After a first failed attempt to expand into the Japanese market in the 1970s to 1980s, Ikea opened a new store outside of Tokyo in 2006, and now has five stores in the country. The Saitama store now feature otaku and Gothic Lolita rooms decorated with the Charlotta set, as well as Bandai's kaijū (monster) vinyl toys and Gantz manga.

[Via CNN Go, Patrick Macias, Japan Inc., Business Week]

Image © Ikea

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