live lagom budget post

Living LAGOM: How we spent our £300 budget

live lagom budget post

Not long ago, I wrote about the Live LAGOM project that I am currently working on with IKEA. The project is focused on helping us live more sustainably and whilst we already do quite a bit (more on that in a future blog post), we knew there was still lots more we could be doing to reduce our carbon footprint, our bills, and to teach our children how to create less waste, recycle more and live more healthily.

A large part of the project involves a personal shopping session at IKEA following a home visit, where we had the opportunity to pick up £300 of products that would help us on our journey to living more sustainable lives.

Here’s what we bought and why:

Bedding, Textiles & Rugs

RODTOPPA 7.5 tog duvets – £40

LJUDLIG & HEMMAHOS duvet and pillowcase sets – £16


The kids have been using their crib bedding which is a lot smaller and Yusuf in particular was growing out of his. Now that they are in single beds (we have the KURA midsleeper) we figured we’d get them larger single duvets that were a good tog – suitable for both summer and winter – and bed linen to go with it. Yusuf loves his – he often names all the vehicles on it and Nusaybah’s is so quirky – it’s basically little hand drawn graphics of IKEA products so it has been fun pointing out lamps, beds, rugs and other household items to her. I don’t like ‘busy’ prints or gender specific prints so these were perfect. It also means that if we have a guest over, they can use the duvet too. It serves multiple purposes and we now don’t have several different kinds of duvets/ bed linen sizes taking up room that we don’t have.

We laundered the kids smaller duvets and bed linen and donated them to a charity collecting items for the Syrian crisis.

VIVAN curtains – £10

GLANSNAVA curtain liner – £25


A while ago our bedroom window was vandalised by people whose idea of fun seems to be damaging others’ private property. An entire pane of glass from our double glazed window was shattered which made it considerably colder in the winter in our room. I refuse to have it repaired until we are close to selling/ moving out because I worry they’re just going to do it again. So in an effort to cut down on the drafts in our room and switch on the heating less, I bought the GLANSNAVA curtain liner that helps to block out light as well as provide a thick layer of insulation so we won’t have to switch the heating on as high as we have been. The liner hooks on to your curtain so you could take it off and use it in a different room if you’d like to in the future. I love it when products can be used in multiple ways. There was quite a bit that we had to take off the bottom, so I am saving that fabric for a future project.



Image courtesy of the IKEA UK website

HAMPEN rug – £40


I umm-ed and ahh-ed over this for a while and then decided to get it because it was so much cosier and warmer for our living room than what we had. I got it in beige and it took me over budget by £13.50 which I was happy to pay. We love the look of our living room now and are working hard on keeping it clean and having a strict rule that means that no snacks, drinks, food are to be consumed anywhere but the dining room table!

Lighting & Batteries

IKEA LED bulbsRYET LED bulbs – £60

LEDARE LED bulbs (GU10) – £30

KOPPLA B22 to E27 converters – £1


None of the bulbs in our home were LED bulbs. I don’t consider our electricity bills high, but an electrician pointed out we were running six 50 watt bulbs in the kitchen for instance, which cost a fortune. We had terrible spotlight fittings in the kitchen – we literally had only 3 or 4 out of 6 fittings working properly and it was so frustrating cooking under lights that were hot and uncomfortable and that didn’t even work or worked only sporadically! I purchased some fittings elsewhere and got GU10 LED replacements at IKEA. We LOVE how much light there is now and the ceiling looks so much better. We have the same ceiling lampshades around the house for a uniform look and each fitting contains two bulbs so we went with a 1000 lumen bulb and the difference it makes is remarkable. We replaced 10 bulbs around the house, along with two others that were in pendant lamps. I happened to find a spare LED bulb when I was reorganising our boiler cupboard and I used that to replace the bulb in the boiler cupboard too! We used KOPPLA B22 to E27 converters which were only £1 for 2 – and that was all we needed so it was perfect.

STORHOGEN battery charger and storage

8 LADDA AA rechargeable batteries – £5.50

4 LADDA AAA rechargeable batteries – £2.75

12 LADDA AA rechargeable batteries (high energy capacity) – £16.50

STORHOGEN battery charger + storage case – £25


We use a lot of batteries in this house – I didn’t realise how many until I started counting. Remotes, game controllers, the kids sound puzzle boards, my keyboard and mouse – the list is extensive! I’ve had rechargeable batteries in my mouse and keyboard for a while and if I was buying regular batteries, I’d have generated a LOT of waste by now. I’ve got IKEA’s LADDA charger which is £10 and charges 4 at a time but have always wanted to splurge on the STORHOGEN. I love it! It stores the batteries and charges them, and when charged – goes onto standby mode. It will charge and store both AAA’s and AA’s and since I bought my husband the high energy capacity batteries which are great for game controllers, cameras, toys etc – there is no arguing over which batteries belong to whom. I am also no longer asked where they are when he needs them as they are all stored in one place and charged and ready to go.


HARTE LED work lamp

Image courtesy of the IKEA UK website

HARTE LED lamp – £15


I can only often get work done .in the evenings when the kids are in bed. Since my husband is up early for work, he tries to get to bed early so sometimes I’m still on my desk getting  things done – the lamp has been super helpful with me not having to strain my eyes or switch on the pendant light that uses more energy than the lamp does. It’s also SO small and I love how not clunky it is. I move it between my desk and bedside table and it doubles up as a lamp for both.

KOPPLA extension with usb port

Image courtesy of the IKEA UK website

KOPPLA 3 way socket with 2 USB ports – £13


I really needed this in our bedroom – I’ve got a desk lamp that doubles as a night light (I just move it from my desk to my bedside table at night) that needs power, as well as a phone charger, computer, printer, a FitBit and other USB devices that need to be plugged in. I’m going to try extending this to a spare shelf that I have behind the desk so I can have a little area set up for our laminator and printer.


LOTTORP clock timer thermometer

Image courtesy of the IKEA UK website

LOTTORP clock, alarm, timer and thermometer – £4


How fun is this? It was originally going to be used as a timer for us to take shorter showers. I take quick showers (every mother on the planet does) and my husband ‘thinks’ he’s quick but he isn’t really! This is going to double up as a timer for when the kids brush their teeth so it’s fun for them, and act as a timer for us all so the kids learn about wasting water and how important it is to be quick in the shower/ turn off water when we’re not using it.

Recycling & Indoor Gardening


DIMPA waste sorting bag

Image courtesy of the IKEA UK website

3 DIMPA waste sorting bags – £6.75


I do not recycle. None of the places we have ever lived in have had any facilities to recycle – just a general bin store where all the rubbish goes. I’ve also been lazy and tend to think it’s okay because everyone else recycles. The project has made me realise how important it is and since we still don’t have recycling facilities, I’ve discussed putting these bags in our bin store with my neighbours, to help us with recycling. Now we’re able to pop downstairs and separate our recycling from the large wheely bin things, and when the bags start to get full, we will take them a few buildings down to empty them out into the large recycling bins that are collected by the council. I’m really hoping this encourages the rest of our neighbours to recycle too and makes it easier for the ones that already are!

FROER growing pots and seeds – £1.50

VAXER seeds – £1.50


Because they were £1.50?! These are fantastic! 3 little pots with 3 seed sachets – you can chose whatever herbs you like. I got coriander (because if I’m able to grow this and stop spending on it, I will be THRILLED!), purple basil and lemon basil. The pot came with basil, parsley and mint – very excited about the mint!

I’ve been hard at work putting things where they need to be and there are still a few things we need to sort out. As soon as it’s all put together, I’ll do another post with a walkthrough of where everything is and how it has helped us! Do you own any of these products? How have you found them to be helpful in your home?


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  • Reply
    Bazigah Murad
    January 10, 2017 at 2:51 pm

    Didn’t use any of the products but looks like I have to do it now after reading such a detailed review!
    Thanks for sharing 🙂


  • Reply
    marina farook
    January 10, 2017 at 3:29 pm

    asalamu alaikum, sister Iman, well i dont have a an ikea any where near me but these picks are just my type. love the lamps most!

  • Reply
    January 10, 2017 at 4:59 pm

    Love those lights…perfect for photography….wish we had an IKEA here….you have done a fabulous post….

  • Reply
    January 10, 2017 at 8:15 pm

    I have a few of their DIMPA baskets. Its a good size and I like how it fits in our cabinet lol.

  • Reply
    January 12, 2017 at 12:14 am

    Love the growing pots! My daughter has just started becoming very interested in growing things and the ikea ones are so cheap! Will have to go for a shop!

  • Reply
    January 13, 2017 at 4:13 am

    Love this and I love how your striving to live more sustainable and healthy lives. Definitely inspiring and something we should all strive for…I love IKEA btw =)

  • Reply
    January 13, 2017 at 6:11 pm

    Those LED lamps look so cool! I didn’t even know they done LED lamps

  • Reply
    January 13, 2017 at 8:45 pm

    Love Ikea products and haven’t been there in a while now. And I too picked up a few small pots to start my own mini herbal garden. I started with coriander and basil seeds and the seeds sprouted too but the sapling withered away in a few days. I need to try and plant them again in sha Allah,

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