Ever been stressed putting IKEA furniture together? Of course, you have. Ever shouted about it on social media? Probably – you need an audience other than your partner if you fell out with them assembling the furniture. While only 6% of couples regularly argue while shopping, that figure jumps to 17% when we get home and whip out the Allen key.
IKEA flatpacks have a special power to draw out your innermost frustrations. Maybe because your home decor is delicately mapped to your emotional identity. Psychologist Ramani Durvasula observed that couples tend to argue about cooking while walking around the kitchen section of IKEA, sex in the bedroom section, and so on.
HouseHoldQuotes wondered what else flatpack assembly stress says about us. We analysed nearly 50,000 IKEA-themed tweets using TensiStrength to identify stressed homeowners. And then we figured out where in the world all the shouting is coming from, which designs cause the most anger, and even how your name and gender might connect to the stress IKEA flatpacks cause.
Our world map shows which cities send the most angry IKEA tweets. Zoom in and out to explore, hover over a bubble for more details, and then scroll on for the rest of our findings.
● Iceland is the nation that gets most stressed about IKEA – 64% of IKEA-themed tweets are stressful in nature.
● Moscow, Russia, and Quebec, Canada, are the joint most-stressed cities, each with 60% of IKEA tweets manifesting stress.
● Men tweet their IKEA stress 40% more often than women overall, but when a woman tweets about IKEA, her tweet is marginally (<2%) more likely to be about stress.
● The IKEA furniture most likely to cause stress is the sofa, with 50.57% of IKEA sofa tweets showing signs of agitation.
Half of IKEA Sofa Shoppers Ready to Drop
The thing you desire the most during the stress of furniture assembly is a sofa to collapse on. Maybe that’s why just over half of IKEA sofa tweets are stressed. The IKEA cupboard is the second-most stressful piece of furniture to assemble, with exactly 50% of mentions smoking at the virtual ears.
This is swiftly followed by the bedside cabinet and the dresser, showing that cupboardy things, in general, are sent to test us. In fact, Dr Durvasula has nicknamed the Liatorp combi unit the ‘Divorcemaker.’
Icelanders Most Likely To Lose Their Cool Unpacking IKEA Furniture
We found tweets from stressed IKEA customers in 48 countries. Icelanders stand way out ahead of the rest as the most troubled screwdriver-wielders, with 64% of Icelandic IKEA tweets being stressed. By comparison, Sweden – the homeland of IKEA – is the sixth-most stressed, with 37.89%.
South Korea is the most chilled IKEA territory. “Cigarette, red nail polish, ikea vanilla scented candle,” tweets one user, listing the things they buy even when broke. Chilled. Only 7.69% of South Korean IKEA-themed tweets showed a trace of anger.
America’s Capital State of IKEA Rage Has No IKEA
IKEA-less Mississippi is America’s capital of IKEA rage, with 48.48% of furniture-themed tweets showing signs of falling apart. IKEA assembly instructions may as well say, “heres a pine tree and some nails,” reckons one sarcastic Mississippian tweeter.
New Hampshire and Maine are neck and neck for second place. And the coolest IKEA operators in the US are in Kansas, where less than a quarter of IKEA tweets betray an angry tone. Instead, Kansans say things like “Yo!!!!!!! I put a piece of furniture from IKEA together by myself. This is seriously an accomplishment.”
Johnny, Russell, Rose, and Ruth Most Likely To Lose it Assembling IKEA Furniture
You know the song “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” (You just slip out the back, Jack/Make a new plan, Stan etc.)? We wondered if it includes breaking up while assembling IKEA furniture together. So, we calculated which names were most associated with IKEA-based anger on Twitter.
The top grumps? “You could drop it on his toes, Rose” (60% of IKEA tweets by someone called Rose were negative.) And, “Just… um… pack your things in an IKEA DRÖNA, Johnny” (55%). You get the idea.
If you recognise the stress of assembling IKEA furniture, take steps to avoid it next time. Wait until you have twice as much time as you think you need. Keep the temperature cool and the cool drinks flowing. Make enough space to work. And tell Rose you love her. It might be what you need to hold it together.
METHODOLOGY & SOURCES
Using the Twitter API, we collected 48,405 tweets featuring the keyword “IKEA” in English. Then using the academic TensiStrength tool, which analyses the stress level of language in short texts, we classified every tweet as stressed or not.
Then we ascertained the location of each post using the post coordinates or user location and broke down the names into gender using NameBerry lists for girls and boys names. We then created the list of furniture types and extracted the tweets that contained each type.