Confession: interior decorating is not my strong suit. I have not put one thing on the walls since we moved to Texas and that was 3 years ago. Our living room holds exactly this: one sectional, a television and a modest entertainment center. We are extremely utilitarian or at least, we were.
On Friday, my husband tells me we are going to check out the local thrift shops. I am secretly thrilled. In my mind, we are looking for offbeat coffee mugs, old paperbacks and board games. However, he’s on a mission for end tables.
The first place was closed. 10-2 p.m. seemed a little unreasonable but on the bright side we were now off to Goodwill. Truthfully, I only half believed Will that we could actually shop there. We donate to Goodwill at least once a year and I always assumed those things went to needy families. The building was rather large and inside it were well organized rows of everything imaginable.
Will is headed to the back wall where we find 3 sets of matching lamps. 2 navy blue enamel lamps. 2 white enamel lamps and 2 brass enamel lamps. I eagerly volunteered the brass lamps. We could paint them. I had seen it on Pinterest. My husband insists on the Navy set which I am certain matches nothing in our home. Fortunately, they weren’t actually a matching pair. The white ones had the same form as the navy but were a more agreeable color. For the set, we paid $15. We went on to find a wooden giraffe- $5, a picture frame holder with key hooks and 2 old school Campbell Soup mugs $2 each. I was ecstatic.
I wanted to dig through their art collection but guiding two preschoolers through a thrift store was nerve wracking enough. It was getting late so we headed over to our favorite pizza place on the square. This was the perfect way to end a Friday. Will assured me we would go back out on Saturday to continue the search.
Saturday morning came and we were on the road by 11 a.m. The Samaratin Inn had surprisingly good furniture at unheard of prices. Sadly, it was not quite what we were looking for. We moved on to a Sell Buy Consignment. This place had great furniture, most of which came from model homes. The prices were decent but nothing struck my fancy. I suggested we head over to Ashley. Will decided to check out Stacy first. After all, it was on the way.
Stacy was an absolute joke. Everything in the place was overpriced. I fell in love with the Stickley line in the back. This had to be the worst offender. 11 thousand dollars for 1 end table because it was a Stickley Reproduction. “It appeals to the collectors” claimed the sales rep. I could tell the man felt somehow above us but clearly, he was out of his mind. What collector buys a reproduction end table for that price in this economy? No wonder the show room was covered in dust.
I was about fed up with the process. The kids were fussy and I had no intentions of buying anything whatsoever now. Will was insistent. We were getting end tables today. Finally, we made it to Ashley’s. Almost immediately we found living room sets within our style and budget. Great, I thought. Let’s get it and go but Will felt the need to see everything.
I gladly would have adopted an entire litter of puppies before taking another step. The kids began fighting over who drove the buggy. It was too small for both of them and neither would resolve to walk. For the love of all things holy, let’s go. I thought.
“They have c-o-o-k-i-e-s’s at the coffee bar,” our sales rep purred. I thanked the man and made a quick bee line to the cookie bin. It worked like a charm. Incredibly, their feet no longer hurt. They were no longer tired and everything was right with the world. Now if only we could go home and forget the furniture. 5 minutes later, I was being beckoned to the other side of the store. In a strange twist of fate, a sofa and love seat stood in the exact fabric of our sectional. They had been paired with a 4 piece living room set. Originally, the set was $1200. Today, it went for $500. That’s 2 end tables, a coffee table and a sofa table for $500. Yes, it was the floor model and had a few minor dings but it was ours.
We loaded up the car and drove off into the distance with our new coffee table strapped to the roof. Our whirl wind furniture tour had come to an end and our living room was finally complete. Thank God.