It’s been a long time since I’ve posted a Five Minute Friday tip, but this one is just too good not to share! I think many of us would agree that often times the hardest part about assembling IKEA furniture is opening the dang boxes. I mean, I appreciate that the boxes are really sturdy because I’ve never opened an Ikea box to find the contents inside damaged, but the glue they use makes the boxes nearly impossible tear open.
It’s one thing when you’re assembling one small thing, but when you’re assembling an entire wall of bookshelves (like I’ve done a few times recently), that big stack of ironclad boxes can seem pretty daunting! This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase something I recommend, you’ll pay the same price, but I may receive a small commission.
I’ve broken nails, given myself cardboard paper cuts, and said a few choices words @#*$! while trying to open IKEA boxes. Not only is it extremely frustrating, it also adds a lot of unnecessary time to an already time-consuming process! I’ve seen recommendations that you wedge a screwdriver, a pocket knife, or a putty knife between the flaps to open IKEA boxes, but watching the videos of these methods you can see that none of them are smooth and easy. With each of these sharp implements you run the risk of damaging the furniture inside, the floor below the box, or worst of all, your fingers!
I’ve heard people joke that IKEA should include instructions on how to open IKEA boxes. It’s funny because it’s true! But guess what?! I’ve actually got the instructions and they come straight from an IKEA employee. On a recent trip to IKEA, my husband spotted an employee opening boxes at lightning speed so he went in for the details. The employee showed him his very special tool… wait for it… a plastic lettuce knife!
If you’ve never used a lettuce knife before, it’s simply a lightweight, serrated plastic knife. Lettuce browns quickly when the leaves are torn or when sliced with a metal knife. An inexpensive lettuce knife is ideal for prepping salads because it’s serrated edge is sharp enough to provide a clean cut, and the plastic keeps the lettuce from turning brown. Additionally, these knives won’t damage counters or non-stick surfaces and they’re safe for fingers (making chopping lettuce a great task to delegate to kids who are eager to help in the kitchen).
The same characteristic that make a lettuce knife great in the kitchen apparently also make it the perfect tool to open IKEA boxes. The serrated edge slides easily through the glue between the flap and you don’t risk any damage or injury in the process! Watch this video to see just how easy it is…
This makes opening an IKEA box so quick and easy that I can’t believe this tip isn’t more widely known! I don’t know if all IKEA employees are taught to open boxes this way, or if we’ve just got some really clever folks at the store here in Denver, but either way, I’m so glad we learned this little trick! I’ll never open an IKEA box any other way!
Ok, now that your boxes are open, I guess you’ve got no excuse not to assemble that furniture! Sorry, not sorry 😉