When I was going to art school, one thing that was often stressed was to stay away from square format art. It’s very difficult to make a successfully balanced composition in a square format, while rectangular images can easily be off center and still retain equilibrium. Think the “fibonacci sequence” or “Rule of Thirds”. But rules are meant to be broken and I’ve long been pulled towards the square format. Along comes the Ikea Ribba frames in 9×9″ square and my heart sang. Add in the supreme quality, basic style (not to distract from the artwork you are framing) and very inexpensive price tag and you have a product made in heaven. I can’t say I was alone in this because if you have spent a moment on any home decor website, or visited any craft or art shows you will have seen these frames EVERYWHERE.
I’ve personally based so much of my own artwork to be formatted to these frames, as seen above. It wasn’t unusual for me to make an Ikea run and drop a couple hundred dollars to stock up on these frames. Earlier this year my sister went to Ikea and I asked to pick me up some of the frames, but when she got there she said they didn’t have any. No problem, they are probably just back ordered, it’s happened before. A month or so later I dropped into an Ikea and I found the same thing. They had the white and black shadowbox frames, but none of the wooden square ones. Fortunately I still had a bunch in stock. But sadly, this morning I had an order that used my last birch wood frame, so I finally had to break down and make the dreaded call to Ikea. As I feared I was informed that they don’t have any in stock. She said that most likely what has happened is that since they are such a popular frame the supplier who makes them couldn’t keep up with Ikea’s demand, and so Ikea discontinued them out of frustration for not being able to keep them in stock. Ugh. My heart sank. Immediately I had to go to my Etsy shop and put almost all of my framed yoyos, as well as original artwork and prints in “edit mode” because the productd were all pictured in those frames.
I’ve just sent an “email” to corporate Ikea inquiring about the frames, hoping I might get better news from the top, but I’m not holding my breath. In the meantime I will have to start the hunt for a replacement product. Square frames are almost impossible to come by, and when you do see them, they are usually gaudy and/or decorative. I’m so sad right now.