Dining Room Updates: The Chairs

After about seven months, I finally have dining chairs. It would not have taken this long if I remained focused on completing my dining area.  During the process of pulling my dining area together, I started and stopped. I got frustrated and excited. I was even bored, but I finally made the decision to add a proper table and chairs to the dining area. I didn't share the process simply because many of the chairs I wanted were limited at local stores and I didn't want to lose them based on someone buying them from my post. It has happened before, and I didn't want it to happen again.

Before I show you the chairs, let me walk you through what happened.

When the new year came around I wanted to redo my apartment with high and low end pieces and take you all on that journey. I first came across this chair.
I have never felt so connected to a single chair a day in my life! I wanted them. I wanted six of them. They were $200 each. That's $1200 altogether, plus the cost of a U Haul. I wanted them. I just simply could not afford, nor justify spending $1200 on a set a chairs, living in a rental apartment.

Even if I bought two a month, the way this particular store is set up, there was no guarantee they would be available months later. Truth is. They are sold out everywhere at this current time.  

I lamented over these chairs for about three months. I gave up and put no more thought into my dining room.
Dining Room Inspiration 

Yes there are chairs on other websites that look similar to these chairs, but they are not high enough and I never purchase anything if I am not truly in love with them.
While I was out thrifting one Wednesday, I came across 3 cane back chairs for $2.62 each. Yes. Crazy price.

I bought them.

I figured this would be the push I needed to finish up my dining area. Confident I would find what I needed I decided to try my luck at one of the biggest thrift stores in my area, that often had cane back chairs for $10 - $25 each. Unfortunately my confidence was shot dead. While they had a few cane back chairs there weren't eight matching chairs and neither was there a set of eight chairs

I drove home thinking about a few things.

1. You can never predict or anticipate what a thrift store will have no matter how well you think you know their inventory.

2. Even if you can predict the inventory (which you can't), you never know what price point they will be.
3. Even if you could predict the inventory and the price point you can NEVER predict who will show up looking for perhaps the same thing you are. I was too confident over something I could not control and all of these lessons were learned. lol

I decided I needed to take my search to craigslist, where I could at least search from the comfort of my apartment without wasting gas driving around to every thrift store.

Here are some examples of what I was looking for.
finding these exact chairs would be ideal

Now that I am taking my search to Craigslist, I had to set up parameters for my search.

When I am working with clients who opt to use a majority of second hand pieces in their design,  I always request they send inspirational images to me so I can narrow down what pieces I am looking for. Per my own advice, here are my parameters for my craigslist search.

1. I wanted high back chairs. The sight line walking into my open concept apartment is my dining area. It is important to make sure the chairs made a statement when you walked up. I also wanted turned legs. Most of the current anchor pieces in my apartment are traditional, but black or gray so I wanted to make sure I kept it consistent. I knew this wasn't a challenge to find...when I found it.

2. I needed 8 chairs. I needed them to match. Although a lot of people like mismatched dining chairs, I don't. I need them to all match because I am not going to do captain chairs, but rather all side chairs.

3. The price needed around $100 - $300.

4. I needed the chairs to be fairly close in location so I wouldn't have to spend an exorbitant amount of money on a U-Haul.

With these things in mind, I started my search.

Within a short period of time, I found this set on craigslist.
These were PERFECT. They are the exact chairs I bought from the thrift store.  It was only four chairs, but I was confident I could find a single chair to make it eight (I already have three chairs). The set was priced at $375. I emailed the seller offering a lower price as well as requesting to buy only the chairs.

Nope.

They didn't want to sell just the chairs and they really were proud of their Shabby Chic product and wouldn't reduce the price. Later on they ended up reducing the set to $295. Still too much for four chairs when I needed 8 and didn't want the table.

So I kept searching and landed on these.
I'm not sure when I came across this set, but I was in heaven. It was 8 chairs and the exact style, I wanted. Unfortunately, not all of my requirements were met. All of the 8 chairs didn't match, only the six side chairs. The arm chairs were more of a triangle shape, which is completely different as you can see in the corner. The seller didn't want to break the set up. There was a table, hutch, and some other stuff and they wanted $3,200. lol.

Some people really love their furniture pieces. While my desire for this style of chair is apparent, I would never spend $3,000 or craigslist for chairs. Apparently I am not the only one because they ended up reducing the price. Never went back to see if the listing is still up.

I saw a few others that were 6 chairs or 8 chairs, but they were either too far away or the pricing just wasn't right.
When I am shopping second hand, I am always flexible. In the case of dining chairs and a table, I was willing to buy 6 chairs if it was the style I was looking for and the price was right. I was willing to buy chairs there were not my style if was a set of eight exact chairs. For whatever reason, none of the options I contemplated came to fruition.

Without any warning I came across EXACTLY what I was looking for.
-8 matching chairs in the style I wanted.

The chairs looked to be in an old warehouse, everything looked dusty and musty. There was stuff thrown about everywhere. My kind of second hand shopping. I figured this would be great, simply because it looked as if they were trying to get rid of everything.

I am going to stop right there.

Why? Because the story will continue on tomorrow!


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