Thursday, August 25, 2011

You Are Where You Eat

I have been trolling Craigslist to keep an eye out for dining room furniture, and I’ve come to the conclusion that many, many people have bad taste. Or maybe I do, that’s entirely possible. But it’s clear, at the very least, that my taste and the taste of those that post furniture for sale on Craigslist do not match in any way. I’d grab some pictures to show you, but that probably infringes on some kind of copyright law. Anyway, go to your local Craigslist site. Search for “dining room.” Behold lots of crazy-ornate or oh-so-French-Country or lots-of-high-grain-oak dining room sets. The curves and finials and wrought iron and glass tops and brassy hardware. I’m pretty sure I won’t find what I am looking for there. And I apologize immensely if your dining room set is ornate or French Country or oaky-grainy. I don’t mean YOUR set, of course. I love your set.

So where to buy a new set, then? Since the kids are still pretty young and thus messy and destructive, and we don’t have an eat-in kitchen so our dining room sees lots of whole-family usage, we are clearly not in the market for high end furniture. Just something a leetle bit nicer than the rickety (and oaky, curved/country-ish) IKEA set of table and chairs that we currently have. Pottery Barn is out, as it’s too expensive. Crate and Barrel is out, because it’s too expensive and a little bit more modern than the rest of our furniture. I’d like to stick to something online, as I absolutely hate going to actual furniture stores, where I don’t like 96% of what I see and feel like I’m being oversold/cheated even if I’m not.

And here is where I confess that I am actually thinking about buying new dining room furniture from Target. Is this crazy? Does anyone do that? I mean, SOME people do, I guess, as the products I’ve been eyeing have a few customer reviews (all positive, I might add). But still. Target? For furniture? Am I nuts? For reference, the furniture we are considering (like how I just threw the "we" in there, like this is actually something M. is thinking about and not just my own plans and obsessions and machinations?) is this:

The Espresso Dining Table and Peat Chairs (has a leaf that expands the table to seat six, and we would probably pick up a couple of non-fabric chairs to round out the chair set and force the kids to sit on those):

And the coordinating Espresso Server:

The furniture is a little more expensive than I'd like - with shipping, it will run almost $1300, and that's without considering two extra chairs if we decide to buy them. But that's the equivalent of just a table at Pottery Barn, so definitely an improvement. I'm not pulling the trigger yet (since I'm cautious and cheap and whatnot), so I'm keeping my eye out for a sale. Wish me luck!

Also, I have to mention that Target apparently just revamped it's website, and suddenly it is slow, slow, slow. Not that it was fast before, but oh. my. god. If I do decide to buy this furniture, I may grow old waiting to place the order!


  1. Goods and bads of Target.

    We bought some front porch furniture from there that we LOVE. Much cheaper than alternatives and it was exactly what we wanted. But we saw it in person and tried it out.

    So... we are furnishing our screened porch with Target furniture. And we learned they ship it to a delivery place who then delivers to you. Not sure how/if you can return it. I would check this before ordering.

    Oh and did I mention their customer service is outsourced to India?

    Have you looked at places like World Market? They have a huge variety of dining room tables and chairs in all styles plus you can see it in person. We got our coffee table there.

    PS Our craigslist is abysmal. I've been looking for a desk forever.

  2. What about Pier 1? We bought a round table and leather(faux, I am assuming)chairs for our eat in kitchen and I have been really happy with it. The leather-ish chairs wipe clean and are soft for kneeling on and the table is sturdy. We have owned it for a year and it looks great still--and we are messy people.

    World Market is another great idea--we bought a coffee table and a bookshelf from there about 10 years ago and it still looks great.

  3. Alli, I have always been pretty happy with Target but I do admit that I like to see things in person before I buy them. I like to know that I can treat something roughly and it will withstand the beating. And I don't even have kids. ;)

    When I lived in Nashville, my sister and I would walk through Sam's Club and look at all the great furniture. I actually think people will be jealous when they see your beautiful and rather inexpensive dining set, and learn it is from Target or wherever.

  4. Having gone to one of those furniture stores, and bought an oakey, ornate set that cost tons of dollars (all our money from the wedding and then some), not sure I am the best person to respond, but I will.

    Not sure about target furniture. Have you checked the drawers to make sure they have runners? Otherwise the weight of what the drawer is holding will toppled it out of the sideboard. As for the chairs, if they are fabric I would steer away from them. That was my one mistake with the expensive set. Lots of icky spots I can't get out.

    I would suggest a look at pier 1 too. I haven't bought anything of there in ages but what I have purchased, I liked and has held up.