The Story Of The Iconic IKEA Cross Stitch

The IKEA cross stitch mailout is fairly well known in our community, however, whilst researching another story, this old chestnut came back with a rather interesting video, as seen below, and I wondered just how many of you knew the story of the mailout in the first place.

It all starts with a brief, and in this instance, IKEA wanted to collect email addresses of high purchase buyers that hadn’t yet given it. The marketing agency LIDA took up the call and looked into IKEAs brand promises. The one that stood out the most? Handmade. The second? Craft.

Ikea Lida cross stitched email (source: Lida)
Ikea Lida cross stitched email (source: Lida)

To all of you reading this, that should scream cross stitch, and with good reason too. Cross stitch has always been a craft that uses the hand, and for a very long time, something that only the hand could do, machines just weren’t able. However as the above video shows, new embroidery machines can match the cross stitch action, and whilst they can’t hit the holes in aida very well, they can make a very good facsimile.
Machined and sent out to 40,000 IKEA family members, the marketing campaign was the best the company had ever produced and sparked a follow-up campaign using a printed cross stitch postcode, which won a whole slew of awards.
Ikea Lida cross stitched email close up (source: Lida)

Jonathan Goodman, Managing Director at LIDA says “The Handcrafted campaign is IKEA through and through. It engages their customers by showing them appreciation and the message is delivered with craft and care. It was a pleasure to be given the brief to ‘send an email without an email address’ and to be given the freedom to create something that will demonstrate both the effectiveness of high-value DM, as well as the relevance of email communications.”
Whilst for most the IKEA mailout was a fun marketing idea, for us cross stitchers I think we need to look at just what our craft represents. We are handmade.
If you want to know more about how robots can cross stitch, we’ve looked at that.

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This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Jeremy

    The link to “how robots can cross stitch” is dead. Is that article still available? I’m interested in reading that!

    1. LordLibidan

      We got a bit ahead of ourselves there… That post will be up on the 11th! Sorry for the confusion :/