Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Smokin Deal

Bargain Hunting 101

Not everyone is a bargain hunter.  Some people don’t have the patients for it. Some think it’s unnecessary and some like it, but just don’t have a knack for it, so they give up.

I became a bargain hunter because…… well……….I was always broke. I usually still am, but it’s not as tough as it once was.

I enjoy the thrill of the hunt.

To be a successful bargain hunter you have to be patient.  You can’t just go out and buy something because you want it right now. 

That my friends will get you FULL PRICE!

I have been looking at the Pottery Barn Basic chair and ottoman for years. 

Pottery Barn Chair and ottoman I’ve always had a vision of my living room looking like this 
for the last 4 years.  It’s been a dream

Pottery Barn Chairs But it hasn’t happened yet and probably never will. 

Also I’m just too thrifty of a shopper (or calling me cheap is fine) to spend that kind of money on chairs.  They are stinkin expensive!

I know, I know, you get what you pay for.

You’re right!

Which leads me to the next part of this story.
When I started filling up our living room with furniture, I took another route because I couldn’t find Pottery Barn Chairs reasonable… or something similar.  PJ kept saying “Just go buy them” but I was too thrifty (cheap ) to trot my happy ass down to Pottery Barn and pay full price.


I found this cute little couch (bottom right) on Craigslist and had a slip cover made for it out of an old chenille spread. I loved it, but it just seemed like we had too much furniture in the living room.
Now mind you , we seldom use this room.  As you can see Charlie uses it to look out the window most of the time.


This year during our Ugly Christmas Sweater Party we had to take furniture out because of the amount of guests we were expecting
So we edited.
I ended up really liking  just having the big couch in front of the window and the couple chairs with the little table. 
But then PJ said “can’t we get some comfortable chairs?”


They so don’t get it!!!

So the search was back on!
I got rid of the couch and started looking for some chairs. 

Yes, THE chairs.

The Pottery Barn Basic Arm Chair and Ottoman!

Now…way  back when… When I was looking for chairs in the beginning, I used to go visit IKEA about every 6 months looking at the EKTORP chairs and ottoman.  Very similar to the PB brand, but less than half the price.  Every time I would go there I would leave thinking
“those are so cheap that they are going to fall apart”  
Then the other part of me was like
“you never use that room, who cares?”

So again  I would let go of the idea.

After I got rid of the little couch I made PJ take me IKEA again where I revisited the EKTORP chairs and ottoman.
Again I left IKEA with no chairs.
During all these trips to IKEA  past and present, PJ is saying

“ Just go buy the damn chairs at Pottery Barn

I refuse!
I decided to stop Farkling (stupid game on Facebook for those of you not addicted yet) and get diligent about finding some chairs.


2 very similar chairs that the owner says are from JCPenney  and  look to be in excellent condition. 

Email ASAP

Set up a time to go take a look


I’m the owner of two like new Pottery Barn similar chairs!
One problem…………….they have beige slipcovers on them. 
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No problem I’ll call my slipcover lady to come make some.

PJ suggests I see if the Pottery Barn slipcovers might fit before I go contracting custom made ones.

What PJ fails to remember is that custom doesn't always mean expensive.  In my past experience custom was a lot less expensive than purchasing ready made.

BUT…..I’ll look

ARE YOU KIDDING???   $450 for just the slipcovers.  NO %#$*ing WAY!!!

So then I get to thinkin…………………………

I wonder if that EKTORP slipcover will fit on them?

PJ and I do a little measuring, get dressed, jump in the car and head back down to IKEA to pick up a couple slipcovers to see if they really will fit.
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They fit almost (you wouldn’t notice) perfect!  $29 each!

So now PJ is lovin these new chairs as well as I am because they are super comfy.

We need an ottoman!

So back to craigslist…………….
I find an EKTORP ottoman with a beige cover on it for $80.  Owner say “ used in house for staging” 

Ok, that means it should be in fairly good shape.  So I email them.  Yes, she has it but she won’t be available until tomorrow or the next day.  No problem.


Donna calls
Not kidding……….right after I got off the phone with ottoman lady.

She wants to know if I can take her to IKEA in the truck to purchase a coffee table that wouldn’t fit in her car.
”of course!” “ I want to go down and get a new white slipcover for an ottoman I’m going to go buy on Craigslist  so let's go!”
So we head down the road to IKEA.

We get Donna’s coffee table, we pick up my slip cover, I price the ottomans ($139) and think…….the craigslist one will be fine. I’ll just go get that and save myself about $40.

Donna and I are on our way to checkout and we decide to stop and look at the “AS IS” section just for fun.  Well on our way there we see a pallet of EKTORP ottomans with no covers. Brand new $80.  

Donna and I decide it would be better to just get one of these, not mess with the Craigslist one and be done with it. 
PERFECT!  Load it up!

Then when we get to the “AS IS” section.  There in the back is another pallet of EKTORP ottomans, only these are marked down to $40!

"Get me someone that works here" I shout at the top of my lungs in the middle of IKEA.

Not really, but we did go chase someone down.  Then we asked “so what’s the difference”  The guy says “nothing actually."   Some random company sent them ottomans and corporate said “no we don't want them, so half price them”  So same as the $80 one,  just from a different company.
SHOOT! I don’t care. 

So we unload the $80 one and load up the $40 one.

We are standing in line to checkout and Donna says “Oh hey, I signed up for IKEA discounts to receive on my phone let me see what coupons I can get today”  So she downloads her coupons, goes over to the coupon reader and ……..

DING DING!  Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

25% off all AS IS items!
IKEA was very good to me!

Donna and I were so excited that we immediately had to call everyone we knew and tell them.
It was the deal of the day
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January 2010 043

What do you think?
I’m lovin my new chairs and slipcovers

I’m having a hard time trying to decide how to arrange them. I do love the fact that I can sit and read, talk on the phone, use my lap top and look out the window.

I know your sitting there wondering……………………….”so how much did you get these little gems for?”

Well let’s just say………….I got both chairs, ottoman and slipcovers for almost half the price of ONE Pottery Barn slipcover.

So what’s been your best deal of the day? Let me know.

Happy Hunting!


Susan said...

you lucky little twit!!

WSU Laura said...

My big "score" was my beautiful beverage dispenser at Goodwill still in the box for $24.99.

Maison Douce said...

Good hunting, Timi!!!!! That's just how I feel when I come out of Oshkosh with $400 worth of merchandise for less that $100....!!! Love how it looks!

Queen of Tarte said...

OMG...I am just sitting here laughing at you and your advice. Go back and get one more ottoman for the other chair! You will want it later!! xo Cindy

Donna said...

That was a good shopping day!!!

Andy's Attic said...

Oh what a fun adventure. Just love it when everything comes together. I agree with Cindy on getting one more ottoman. They can be for feet or a table or a seat.

Barbara said...

It looks great!

Gail said...

That's the funniest...and best...bargain-hunting story ever! Thanks for sharing it, I just wish we had an Ikea in town....

Halo Hill said...

Wowser! Everything is BEAUTIFUL!! You are such a good "wheeler dealer"! Hurray for you!


Amy'svintagecottage said...

I was getting an adrenaline rush just reading this story! I'm with Cindy go back and get another one.

Auntie Joy said...

Great score! I am however in agreement with the QUEEN, you will for sure wish you had 2! My sister Toni, has 2 IKEA sofas, and 2 chairs they have lasted 8 years, also white. They are amazing, maybe I should go a huntin!
See ya soon

Our really empty nest said...

What a deal, i love to hear that!! Good for you!

Miss Charity said...

HA! Now that I know another of your many talents, I have a job for you...

Terra said...

Love it! I love trying to find what bargain I can find!