Posted on October 14, 2012 by Ching under Home Ownership.
When we moved in to the new house, we weren’t really sure how to configure our living room furniture. Our living room set consisted of a couch, a loveseat, a chair and matching ottoman, a sofa table, an end table, a media table, and a large storage ottoman that we were using as a coffee table (because Brian and I aren’t coffee table kind of people). We like the tufted storage ottoman because that’s where we store most of our toys and board games (to keep them from cluttering up the place), we can prop our feet on it and our guests are welcome to do the same (next time you’re at someone’s house, try propping your feet up on their coffee table and watch the look on their face), and it doubles as seating when we have more people than we do chairs. We love, love, love our ottoman. We’re actually going to opt out of the coffee table thing when we get around to furnishing the basement a year or two from now.
But I digress, all of our living room furniture was pretty much clustered together as you can see in the photo below. It was a little tight, but it worked for us. (You can’t see the sofa table because it’s behind the couch.)
With all of the space we have at the new place, you’d think we’d have enough room for everything in our living room but our formal living room area is actually quite tiny. We were able to put the couch and the loveseat facing each other (perpendicular to the window so that no one has their back to the front door and the window/view of the pond is the focal point) with the storage ottoman (that serves as a coffee table) in the middle. The end table is next to the couch which is along the wall that separates our bedroom from the living room. We couldn’t put the sofa table behind the couch so it’s now against the short wall that separates the kitchen from the living room. The wall and the sofa table are the exact same length so it worked out well.
After getting most of the big pieces situated in the living room, we didn’t have a suitable place to put the chair and small ottoman but I had this idea of putting it in front of the fireplace in the hearth room and turning it into a reading area. I actually love going out there to read or play on my Mac when Brian’s still sleeping (so I don’t disturb him). Here’s a picture of my special reading chair:
We got a soft, 5′ x 8′ rug (we probably should have gone with a 6′ x 9′ rug, but we already spent more than we actually wanted to — I budgeted only for a 4′ x 6′ but we agreed that would be too small for the space) from Pier 1 last weekend to make the space more cozy, but we kept thinking that there’s something missing. We didn’t have a table to put your drink on, whether that be a morning coffee in Brian’s case or a mimosa in my case. LOL.
Lucky for us Slumberland still carried the same line of tables that we got almost three years ago. They don’t carry our living room set anymore, but they still had the Kenwood tables. We agreed that the small “chairside” table would be perfect, not only for its function but it would actually match the rest of our living room furniture. So we got one. Here’s an updated photo:
It’s no longer just a reading chair, it’s now full fledged reading area!
Speaking of Slumberland, I’m done buying furniture from them for a while. Besides the fact that I’m now completely broke, I just wasn’t impressed with the level of service they provided this time around. I’m not sure what happened in the span of three years, but it’s like dealing with a totally different company.
When we bought our living room furniture and our counter height dining table for our townhouse in February 2010, I was so impressed with the service that told Brian we would have to return to Slumberland for furniture for the new house when we moved. So we went back there to get furniture for our master bedroom and our formal dining room, but the experience wasn’t the same. I’m not grumpy because I didn’t get a thank you letter from the CEO this time around (even though we did spend more money than we did a couple of years ago — maybe they raised their cap — who knows?). I don’t know if I’ve changed (I think going through customer experience training with Roy Barnes has ruined me for life — I had high expectations before but now I’m really paying attention to all of the details) or if it is Slumberland that’s changed. It may be a combination of both.
There wasn’t really anything major that happened this time around (except I didn’t get that thank you note from the CEO — maybe that’s it — ha!). Delivery delays are not out of the norm when you’re buying furniture. For instance, we had to wait a really long time for our living room furniture to be delivered because we wanted it a specific upholstery fabric instead of the green color that they had in the showroom. Yet I was still happy and more than willing to give them my money again almost three years later. This time around I think I was paying attention to all of the little things that made me realize it’s time to give my business to someone else that is more proactive and attentive to their customers’ needs.
When we purchased this last table, we told them that we wanted to pick it up on Saturday (rather than having it delivered) because it’s only one item and it’s relatively small. We were told that they got their deliveries a certain day of the week and that it shouldn’t be any problem, “but call us later in the week to make sure it’s here.”
I didn’t get this at all. I’m giving them my money. Why am I doing their work? If the table doesn’t arrive at the store as planned, shouldn’t they be the ones to call and tell me that? Whatever. It’s not a big thing, just annoying especially to a couple of busy people such as Brian and me.
We follow instructions really well so, like clockwork, Brian calls on Friday to confirm that our table is there and ready for pick up and to tell them what time we will be by. They told him that our table is there and ready for pick up, but we need to call an hour before. Why can’t I tell you know what time I will be there? Why do I have to call again? Are all furniture stores like this? I guess I had no idea that this was their process because I’ve always had my stuff delivered to the house. Although if they kept good customer records, they would realize how much I’d spent with them in the last three years (and how much more I’d be spending in the next few years — I still have an entire basement and two more bedrooms to furnish) and probably would have offered to deliver the table at no charge. LOL.
Again, nothing to really complain about, but enough for me to take my business elsewhere. I guess I expected a little more. Surely there are furniture stores out there that can meet my expectations. Thank you, Roy Barnes, for ruining my life forever.