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IKEA cladding repairs

IKEA cladding repairs

IKEA cladding repairs

Key information

  • Project – New IKEA store, Exeter
  • Client – McLaughlin and Harvey – a Scottish firm
  • Repair type – Comprehensive respray and repair to powder coated grey panels required in time for IKEA’s new Exeter store’s opening
  • Project time – 2 finishers x 7 days = 112 hours’ worth of repairs – all conducted at night.


With IKEA’s new store opening in Exeter in May 2018, the first for the company in the UK since 2016, it was an event that created a lot of excitement amongst local residents as well as further afield, while also seeing considerable interest from the press and on social media.

A big investment for the Swedish retail giant, the store needed to be in top condition for its unveiling – which is where Plastic Surgeon’s skillset came into play.

Brought in 3 months ahead of project completion, the team attended multiple site meetings to gain an understanding of where their repairs would fit within the wider process of the store’s opening preparations, waiting on standby for the greenlight as to when they could go in and complete the work.

For this particular job, the finishers had to be there when there were as few staff members in the building as possible – which meant working nights was in order. They worked right up to the very eve of the store’s opening to ensure timely completion.

A particular challenge was conducting the spray repairs around the already constructed showrooms – needing to avoid damage to existing displays and causing requirement for any further repairs.


Given the complex nature of a store opening on this scale, Plastic Surgeon’s finishers’ ability to seamlessly blend in amongst other trades and the wider workforce enabled them to get the repairs done with minimal disruption.

Timed to perfection, the job was completed in time for the influx of visitors – with press reports suggesting some people travelled up to 100 miles to be there, while over 1,000 people were queuing to get in upon the doors’ opening.

What did the client say?

The client – McLaughlin & Harvey, the main contractor that brought us in – was delighted with the results. In addition, given the myriad details involved in the preparation for a store opening of IKEA’s prestige, the brand was also extremely pleased to know it could rely on the services of Plastic Surgeon to get the job done.

Interesting facts

  • Marketed as IKEA’s most sustainable store to date – Plastic Surgeon’s ‘repair over replacement’ approach ties in with the Swedish brand’s environmentally friendly ethos.
  • The finishers were shown a secret shortcut into the store so they didn’t have to go through the whole showroom each day to get to the job at hand. Sworn to secrecy, their lips are sealed on what that shortcut involves…
  • Did you know? Plastic Surgeon has been working with IKEA for over 5 years on its customer care. With lifetime guarantees on its kitchens but with a kitchen portfolio that changes every 5 years, Plastic Surgeon’s finishers are tasked with rectifying any damage for customers who activate their warranty outside of that 5-year window – when replacement isn’t an option.

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