What’s in an IKEA Product Name

15th February 2017 by in category Blog tagged as , , , , , with 0 and 23

Why are IKEA products so called. In other words, why is their best selling bookcase known as Billy?

IKEA warehouse image by Tomas Skopal (via Shutterstock).

An IKEA warehouse floor: lots of Billy bookcases. Image by Tomas Skopal (via Shutterstock).

Before we begin, A.D. Woodcraft prefer to undertake bespoke joinery work. The idea of trawling around IKEA does not appeal to us, though we have come across their furniture in our property management role. One thing which racks our brains is this: why do they call their bookcases Billy and Benno? Today’s blog post isn’t only useful for interior designers. It is also a good bit of ammunition for pub quizzes (compilers and contestants).

Firstly, what does IKEA stand for?

The name stands for Ingvar Kamprad Elmtaryd Agunnaryd. The IK is the founder’s name, which is followed by the name of his farm and the village of his birth.

Bathroom articles

They are named after Swedish lakes and watercourses.

Bedroom textiles

They are named after flowers and plants.

Beds, wardrobes and hall furniture

Norwegian place names are used for IKEA’s bedroom furniture.


Scandinavian boys names (Billy and Benno for example) and professions are used for their bookcases.

Boxes and Wall Decorations

Swedish slang and place names are used for their boxes and wall decorations.

Children’s products

Mammals and birds, and descriptive words inspire the names of IKEA’s children’s products.

Desks, chairs, swivel chairs

As with the bookcases, Scandinavian boys names.


Scandinavian girls names.

Garden furniture

Scandinavian islands.

Kitchen accessories

Fishes, mushrooms, and descriptive words (which reflect their product uses).


Again, descriptive terms describing their product uses. Sometimes, Swedish slang expressions and place names are used.


Measurement units, seasons, months, days, shipping and nautical terms are used to describe IKEA’s lighting units. Swedish place names are also used.


Danish place names.

Sofas, armchairs, chairs and dining tables

Swedish place names.

A.D. Woodcraft, 15 February 2017.

Add comment

Web Design & Optimisation by SEO Manchester Ltd | Sitemap