Thursday, March 27, 2008

More Mundane Details

Last Friday after my ultrasound, D and I got a ton of things done--it's amazing what you can accomplish when you take a day off of work! First we went to Calico Corners to look into ordering custom valances for the living room and the dining room. Given that I had ambitions of sewing valances for the kitchen and the bedroom and haven't even opened up the sewing machine, I decided that having valances made was going to be worth the money. I had looked at non-custom valances, but didn't find anything in the right colors/patterns.

So, we walked around looking at fabrics for the family room and came to one that we liked--it took a little while and I wasn't 100% sure about it. I was, however, 100% sure about the fabric for the dining room--I had seen it the week before and fell in love with it. I'll have to scan the swatch and post it. It's so perfect for that room! Well, I knew custom valances were going to be expensive, but I was pleasantly surprised that they weren't as bad as I had thought. The dining room ones were a bit steep, but the rug I bought for that room was pretty cheap, so I didn't feel too bad about spending on the valances--plus it would mean the room would be finished (except for artwork). Here's a picture of the new chandelier! I called on Tuesday to order the dining room valances (I still wasn't 100% sure on the family room fabric), and it turns out the estimate she gave me was for only ONE valance, not two. Talk about sticker shock--double the price!! No way! So now I've got to go back to Calico Corners and get the name, etc. of the fabric (or buy some) and have someone else make the valances for that room. I ended up ordering the family room ones from Fabric Place and saved almost 30% off of what Calico Corners was going to charge.

After Calico Corners on Friday we headed out to look at bedroom furniture again. We had narrowed it down to 2 sets, and just wanted to double check one more store. We went to Cherrystone Furniture in Littleton which has both a showroom and a factory. We've been in there a few times before and really like their stuff. Because it was a Friday the owner had lots of time to spend with us and really showed us the difference in quality between their custom work and the furniture from Woodforms, one of the other manufacturers we were looking at. There was no comparison in quality--the other manufacturer has nice stuff (also New England made), but his was much nicer. The construction was better (all drawers dovetailed front and back), 3/4" side and back, drawers all solid cherry, drawer fronts made of 1 plank and matched across the 2 drawers on the front of the dresser, smooth cabinet style glides. Plus, he could add doors to the front of the nightstands which is a big plus for me--it means I can hide stuff!

The thing was that this furniture was even more expensive than another set from Copeland which we had already decided was going to be a stretch. The guy at Cherrystone was familiar with the other furniture and insisted that his was better quality. I told him that the price was just too much for us. I actually had with me a piece of paper with the prices of the Copeland furniture on it and this ended up being a huge advantage. He said he really wanted to sell us the furniture because he knew we would be loyal customers (we need an entertainment center and like the ones there), so he ended up selling us his furniture for the same price as the Copeland -- a savings of about 25%. Nice! I'll write a review when the furniture actually arrives (the end of May/beginning of June), but I was very happy with the sales experience. It pays to be an informed customer!

I won't bore anyone with the rest of the day, but it involved a trip to the lighting store to get pricing on some Hubbardton Forge lamps for the family room (ended up being more than I wanted to spend, so I'm going to buy some similar ones from LLBean which are also made in VT). We also had lunch at a place called Ichabod's that we hadn't been to before--they are opening soon for dinner which we will have to check out.

All in all, Friday was probably the most productive day I have had since first learning I was pregnant. The ultrasound was definitely the most exciting part, but the furniture purchase was also very exciting!


Oliviera said...

I agree, Calico Corners is expensive. They once quoted my mother-in-law like $3000 for one room. I personally like Priority Windows. I think their prices are some of the lowest for custom valances.

Natasha Goldstein said...

I have to agree, I CANNOT praise Priority Windows enough. Great products, I can't wait to go back for more.