November 2013 archive

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours.  I hope you had a wonderful holiday celebrating with family or friends.  We just got home from a wonderful traditional Thanksgiving dinner with our friends.

We’re just relaxing now at home and checking out the online Black Friday sales.  I don’t plan on doing any in person shopping tomorrow since it is just too crazy and I don’t feel that the deals are worth braving the crowds.

Right now I’m looking at presents for my daughter and for friends.  I don’t know about you, but I love the whimsical toys at Land of Nod.  They are just so darn cute and since they don’t get marked down all the time, I think now is a good time to buy since they are doing free shipping and 15% off.

 

The Wee Wonderful dolls are particularly cute.  I’m trying to decide between Agnes and Winx.  Agnes is such a cute little ballerina but Winx’s hair is awesome!  I also love that Land of Nod works with artists to produce their work for a national audience.

Will you be braving the crowds tomorrow for Black Friday or will you be shopping online or neither? :-)

Shutterfly Coupons to Share

I have 2 Shutterfly coupons to share.  They are each for $10 off a $50 purchase.  This would be great for making Christmas cards or other photo gifts.

Email me if you’d like them.  They should be stackable with any other % off promotion with Shutterfly.

I just ordered our Christmas cards yesterday from Shutterfly :-)

Christmas traditions

Ok so I know it’s not even Thanksgiving yet but I am seeing Christmas decorations go up at the mall and I’m loving it since this is my favorite time of the year.

One of the traditions I hope to start with my daughter is counting down the days to Christmas with an advent calendar.  I saw this gorgeous wood calendar at a unique gift shop at the mall.  It is extremely well made and beautiful but I would like a more affordable option as it was a little pricey.

Byer's Choice Advent Calendar (Macys $82)

Byer’s Choice Advent Calendar (Available at Macy’s)

I found a more affordable option that was really similar at Target. I thought it was really cute and while it wasn’t perfect the way the Byer’s Choice one was, it would do.

While I was searching for advent calendars I found that they come in all shapes, sizes and styles.  Here are a few more that I thought were cute!

This one caught my eye in the PBKids catalog.  It is gorgeous and already sold out!

There are also options on Etsy, though the best ones are already sold out for this year.  I’m totally in love with this one and I’m seriously considering buying the PDF to make my own!

 Do you share any special Christmas traditions with your family?  I’d love to hear them!

HauteLook now offers returns to Nordstrom Rack stores

I don’t know about you, but I haven’t ever been a big fan of the flash sale shopping sites like Gilt, Zulily and the like because of the high shipping costs and I hate that you can’t make returns easily.  Gilt charges $5.95 for economy shipping (on any size order it seems) and Zulily starts at $5.95 but the S&H charge slides up as your order grows.  Gilt will only issue store credit if the item is $199 or less and Zulily doesn’t even accept returns on most items.

Imagine my surprise when I just noticed an HauteLook email telling me that shipping is free for orders over $100 and items can be returned without any charges to a Nordstrom Rack! I love it!

Seattle & National Furniture Store Reviews

After buying a dining set last weekend I kind of had second thoughts and wanted to explore my options a little more so on the weekend we visited a whole mess of furniture stores.  I wanted to provide a quick review for posterity.

Kasala – Southcenter

Kasala is stocked with amazing modern pieces.  A lot of stuff is made exclusively for them by manufacturer in China, but they also carry some “name brand” pieces as well.  Generally the affordable stuff is their house brand and the stuff that is a few thousand more is the name brand.  For instance, they carry the Miniforms Otto dining table which is a work of art.

The Southcenter store is almost exactly like the Bellevue store in terms of size and items that they carry.  We looked at the table again and decided that we still loved it and after viewing the sideboard again, I was still very “meh” about it.  One nice thing is that the Southcenter location carried slightly different options than the Bellevue store so if you’re trying to decide between different finishes and can’t figure it out based on the little sample chips, you might want to ask if they are displaying the finish at the other store.

Kasala – Outlet

The last time we went to the Kasala Outlet was years and years ago and it has totally changed since then.  It actually is a showroom now rather than a bunch of furniture piled up.  There are a few things that are “outlet stocked” but most of it is damages and returns.  We saw a really cool “origami” coffeetable that opened up to reveal storage but alas we don’t need one of those right now.  The prices are pretty great considering I couldn’t even tell where the damage was unless I looked at the tag indicating the problem.  For instance, the table that we purchased was here for 20% less than the sale price.

Moe’s Home Collection

Moe’s is a modern furniture store down in the Southcenter area.  They seemed to have a range of prices and quality.  They had a set of table and 4 chairs for $500, but they also had another table that was absolutely gorgeous and was $3000.  They stock some name brands like Natuzzi.

They sent me an email telling me they were doing a Dining Event this past weekend.  There were a few things on sale, but it was not the entire stock of dining furniture.

Macy’s Furniture Gallery

The nice thing about the Macy’s Furniture Gallery is that they stocked almost everything they show online.  Their style is more traditional than modern or transitional so there wasn’t a whole lot that was to my taste.  The prices can be quite good.  For instance, this dining set was only $799 for the table and 4 chairs.  However, the quality wasn’t very good. The drawers of the sideboard didn’t glide well and the cabinets were not hung evenly.  One thing to note is that the website lists “packages” of tables and chairs and sideboard for many sets but in the store, you can buy each item separately.

Macy's Dining Set - Slade Dining Room ($799)

Macy’s Dining Set – <a “””href=”http://www1.macys.com/shop/product/slade-dining-room-furniture-collection?ID””&#8221; =845990″>Slade Dining Room ($799)

Crate and Barrel

My local Crate and Barrel has a ton of furniture options displayed so after checking out the website, I had a good idea of what I wanted to check out in person. As a bonus, the website will tell you if items are currently on display in store or not.

Crate and Barrel - Pearse Large Sideboard ($999)

Crate and Barrel – Pearse Large Sideboard ($999)

I absolutely fell in love with the Pearse sideboard when I saw it in store.  In fact, I’m about 99.9% sure that this is the one we want.  It is extremely well made.  The drawers glide out smoothly and the doors hang correctly.  Because it is being discontinued, the price has been reduced drastically.  It originally retailed for $1700.  Crate and Barrel also has a range of options.  There were some sideboards in the $500-700 range as well.

Schoenfeld Interiors

I’ve driven by this store a million times but this was the first time we stopped in.  This was an incredibly high end store with beautifully made furniture.  However, the prices are also astronomical.  Most of it was out of our budget but we did see a few things that were in the realm of possibility, but still more than what we wanted to spend.  That being said, everything in this store was well made, high quality furniture that will last.  Style-wise I would say it had mostly contemporary furniture.

The finishes were impeccable on each piece, drawers move smoothly and most have the soft-close feature, cabinets are hung evenly and everything is just as well made as you would expect at a high price point.  Much of their furniture is also made in America or made in Canada.

We really liked this Huppe Magnolia sideboard.  They showed a smokey walnut finish in person and it looks very different.  The one in this image shows a ton of grain and zebra stripes, but the one in the store was much more subtle. This piece was made in Canada.

BoConcept

This store had amazing modern furniture.  BoConcept is a Danish company where everything is modular. The furniture is well made and fairly expensive.  There are also tons of customization options available.  The floor samples were a great deal if you manage to find something you like and as a bonus, they are listed on their website.

We liked this sideboard from their Occa collection.  We thought it was of high quality.  It was one of the most affordable items in the showroom.  Prices went all the way up to $10k for some large pieces!

Dania Furniture

Dania is a midrange contemporary store.  There are some nice pieces there but I actually think you’re better off shopping Kasala on sale.  I think they show most of their catalog online.  I wasn’t crazy about any of the sideboards here.  They are currently doing a Golden Ticket event where you can get $50 off one purchase by signing up online.

West Elm

Though we didn’t visit West Elm this weekend, I thought I’d include it here for completeness sake.  West Elm has less furniture in store to display than my local Crate and Barrel does.  They were able to tell me on the phone if they were showing particular pieces that I was interested in, and for chairs, they said they could bring one out from the back room if it wasn’t currently on display.

The store had a little design center in the back where you could choose fabrics and finishes. The store felt a little bit cramped with all of the houseware items that they also sell like decor and kitchen items since they don’t have a dedicated furniture area.  It’s just mixed in throughout the store.  I would say the quality of the items is mid-range.

The table and chairs we ordered required assembly and as my husband was putting together the chairs we purchased, I noticed that there were some nice construction details like a basket weave support under the cushion.  That’s not something you’re going to find in an Ikea chair.  Also all of the furniture pieces arrived in perfect condition.  I didn’t see any dings or dents in the wood which is good.  When we bought our Graco crib, one of the pieces was horribly misshapen and needed to be replaced, and I had a huge issue doing that so I am a bit sensitive to this. :-)

Overall, I’ve been very happy with our West Elm furniture and I’d purchase again.

What are your favorite furniture stores?  Do you like to shop local or national chains?  High end or budget?  We’re still figuring things out ourselves. :-)

 

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