A woman holding a white lamp in front of a handmade drawing on the same lamp.

Kenya meets Sweden in this year’s winter collection

When IKEA invites two designer families, from two different parts of the world, to create a collection that makes the winter holidays even greater, the outcome is VÄRMER. Beautiful, personal, and functional pieces of furniture, textiles, decoration (and more) designed for all kinds of celebrations, for kids and adults, and – above all – for being together.

A games table, an easy chair that’s a perfect fit for an adult and a child, a sturdy bench, a clever candlestick – everything in VÄRMER is about creating the right winter vibes. Designed by Kenyan couple Bethan Rayner and Naeem Biviji, and Swedish Sarah and Jens Fager, the collection combines two different expressions to create a great whole.  

A hand pointing at a technical drawing.

Technical drawings, notebooks, bowls, a mug and a measuring tape on a wooden tabletop.

“We were curious to see what we have in common and what separates the way we spend the winter holiday season in Kenya and Sweden. It turned out that it doesn’t matter whether you live in the Northern or the Southern Hemisphere – we do pretty much the same things. We eat, we play games, we hang out together”, says Mette Nissen, Creative Leader IKEA.

Instead it’s the four designers’ personal aesthetics that broadens the scope. Although the collection as a whole share a Scandinavian expression the items signed Swedish Sarah and Jens are, not surprisingly, most Scandi in their feel. With their own family life as a starting point they’ve created products they hope will last for generations – and that will work all year round.

A man and a woman with two white lamps on the table in front of them.

Two persons working with pieces of wood on a wooden workbench.

“We really love the holiday season, cosying up with family and friends, cooking, crafting, and playing games, so the items we’ve designed for VÄRMER are very personal. We’ve created functional objects, with a high design value, made in materials that will last for many years to come”, says Sarah Fager.

Nairobi-based Bethan and Naeem have their own take on the design. “We’ve been inspired by typical seasonal activities, like the avocado harvest, and getting together for a cup of mulled wine. On the whole, our products are about making it easier and more fun to interact, whether sharing a meal, playing games, or just having a chat”, says Bethan Rayner.

Two women and a man at a wooden workbench, working with a laptop computer and a tablet.


– Consists of pieces of furniture, decorations, textiles, tableware, and more, designed for a great winter holiday season.

– Created by two designer couples, Kenyan Bethan Rayner and Naeem Biviji, and Swedish Jens and Sarah Fager – who have used their own families and everyday life as the starting point for a truly personal collection.

– Launching in October 2019.