Ikea, the largest furniture manufacturer in the world, has teamed up with nonprofits Milbat and Access Israel, to develop ThisAbles, a line of 3D-printed add-ons for Ikea furniture.
The project is aimed to make IKEA merchandise more user-friendly for people with physical disabilities. Its objects are available online as free schematics, and can be 3D-printed and installed on Ikea mainstays like the Billy bookcase or Karlstad couch.
"IKEA has vowed to create a better daily life for as many people as possible, and we feel it is our duty to create this initiative and allow people with disabilities to enjoy a wide range of products, furniture and household items," explained IKEA Israel CEO Shuki Koblenz.
A total of 13 designs are available today. They include items like a Couch Lift for sitting down and getting up more easily; and the EasyHandle, a handle for opening the door with the forearm or the whole hand; and the Glass Bumper, a plastic panel that protects glass doors from the bump of a wheelchair.
All the designs are made to slip right over existing Ikea furniture. Installation methods for all of the 3D modifications are demonstrated on Ikea Israel’s YouTube page, showing how a small tweak can make a huge difference for people with disabilities.
“We do not guarantee that we will be able to find a solution for every need, but we promise to try,” the initiative explains on its site.