The Trials and Tribulations of Furnishing a Place From Scratch
I've been in San Diego a month now.
In the month that I've been here, I started working, met a few new people, got my very first car (better late than never), and upgraded my living situation from the wrinkly disaster that is the living-out-of-a-suitcase scenario to chic(ish) studio livin'. The living situation is what I want to focus on now, since it is what has taken up most of my time over the last few weeks.
I named this post 'trials and tribulations' because of the emotional and physical tole it took on me to furnish my small studio apartment from scratch. I thought it would be fun and carefree to design a place from its foundation, and while it was fun 70% of the time, the other 30% SUCKED.
I laughed, I cried, and legit screamed. The crying and screaming came when I was in the process of assembling my bed frame (that wasn't from IKEA, surprisingly enough). It all ended up working out well but I'm covered in bruises and my nails took a hit.
MEH, all will heal as I sit on my newly assembled furniture, sipping wine from the enormous glasses I got myself...
Here are the aforementioned trials and tribulations:
When you order online (which is what I did for every single piece of furniture) make sure to give yourself AT LEAST two more days past the estimated delivery date to get your stuff.
FedEx and UPS did a good job most of the time, and then really f**ked it up other times. Example: FedEx decided not to deliver the chair and ottoman I ordered because I wasn't home. While this sounds rational, it wasn't. No one advised me that I needed to be home, no one called me, and the FedEx guys (who have access to my building and apartment) decided to just leave me a note on the gate of my apartment building. Not cool.
A Twitter chat with a FedEx rep got that cleared up right away, though. So props to that.
Side note: if you ever have an issue with a company, post your beef with them on on Twitter and tag them. They are sure to respond a whole lot faster when it's so public.
UPS only fibbed a little. They delivered 2 out of the 3 pieces of my bed frame on one day, and the other piece on the following day. This was just plain annoying, not gonna lie.
Make triple sure that what you are ordering is the right size!
No one wants to have the shower curtain incident that I did the other day.
FINEEEE. I'll tell you. I ordered a shower curtain and liner that arrived without hooks (which I proceeded to order from Amazon - thank you Amazon Prime!). Then, once I got the hooks, I went to put up the curtain only to realize that it was entirely TOO WIDE. Epic fail.
Why yes, I've been showering with just the shower liner. Thanks for asking.
Ask the delivery companies to leave the packages at your front door and not the lobby/outside.
Why, you ask? Because when you order something that's 60 lbs, there's no way in hell you can carry it up the stairs to your two floor walk-up. UPS and FedEx were kind enough to do so when the packages were heavy and large (the smaller ones were left in the lobby), but only AFTER they left one super heavy one downstairs and I had to haul it upstairs at my own peril.
Make sure to look at the weight of the packaging when you place a furniture order.
Just. In. Case.
I designed my entire apartment with pieces from the following places:
Homegoods - the prices are unbeatable and the selection is INCREDIBLE! They also deliver, although I never needed to. I got my kitchen and bathroom accessories from here - I kid you not - pots and pans for $7-10!
Wayfair - 99% of the furniture and accessories for my place was purchased on Wayfair - mattress, bed frame, chair and ottoman, trash can, ice tray, pillows, comforter, sheets, food containers, and silverware.
Urban Outfitters - UO has a great apartment department. A lot of their stuff is expensive, but they have a great sale section and certain unicorn pieces that are lower than others. Their stuff is more unique than the basic pieces you would find at IKEA.
IKEA - speaking of... IKEA was where I got my dining table and chairs. I needed small space designs and this was the best stop. I went to the San Diego store and got the pieces delivered (same day - God bless America!) as well as other accessories such as, extension cord, laundry basket, baking pans, and glass jars.
Amazon - Amazon Prime is the BEST. Two-day free shipping and so many other perks are worth the $99 a year for Prime. I also got the Amazon Fresh subscription (for now) and had my first grocery shopping delivered to me - the biggest shopping trip of all as it had all the cleaning supplies, and anyting else that I didn't have (which was literally everything).
I started ordering things for the apartment on October 9th, got the keys to my apartment on October 11th, and got everything I ordered (that you see in the photos and was described to you) by October 18th. All in all, you can do it in a week.