Tuesday, 26 June 2012

IKEA Fatigue


IKEA. It's not you, it's me. I am feeling claustrophobic. We've been seeing too much of each other and I need to take a break.

I have been to IKEA four times in eight days. The Saturday before last - a lamp. Tuesday - curtains. Wednesday - a tv cabinet. Sunday - exchange the new tv cabinet which, upon opening the box, turned out to be scratched and dented.

I really like IKEA. Scandinavian design, value for money, meatballs - these are all good things in my book. I even quite like assembling flat pack furniture. But I think I have reached my limit. 

One corner of our front room was strangely absent when I showed your our newly decorated room last week. The tv corner. I have yet to see a tv cabinet that looks good. I think televisions, and most electrical equipment for that matter, are ugly and a necessary but unattractive part of modern life. This is what we had before:


This tangle of wires is the after photo - see how John lovingly labelled each plug?


And this is our new tv cabinet. The doors either side roll up to reveal (or, more importantly, hide) games consoles, DVD players, etc. Actually, I really like it. I like the colour, the mid-century design influence, the handles that remind me of my grandparent's G-Plan furniture. If it didn't have a television sitting on top of it, it would look quite nice.


I dug out my Meakin Poppies tea set, purchased for £10 in a charity shop a few years ago. I like the way it looks on top of the cabinet. If I stare hard enough, and ignore the huge television (can you believe that John thinks this tv is "too small"???) I can pretend it is a beautiful, retro sideboard.


While I'm rambling, thank you ever so much for your kind comments and love for the grey paint and new room. Do you share my tv cabinet dilemmas? What is the solution, I wonder. Maybe one with doors? Curtains? No television at all *shudders*?

Have a lovely day everyone, and thank you again for being here.

37 comments:

Jen Walshaw said...

I adore the new TV unit, it has a very mid century feel to it and the Meakin Coffee service too. I have a blue one that I got from my mum. We live over an hour away from an Ikea (Leeds one way and Newcastle the other) so it is a rare treat for us

Rainbow Vintage Home said...

Wow, 4 times in 8 days?! No wonder you're feeling a bit over it! I love Ikea too but I have to build up a wishlist and go in and blitz, it's always exhausting and we always end up spending at least 3 times what we mean to because of all the 'oh look, it's only 2 quid' items that find their way into our bag.

I do know what you mean about TV cabinets, but I have to say that I LOVE your new one! It looks very mid-century retro and I'd be very pleased to have it in my home. And yes I can believe that a man would think that TV too small - our living room is tiny but when our old TV died recently we somehow ended up with a 50" monster, I feel like I should be twice as far away from it but Frank thinks it's perfect. x

Col @ Hello Olive said...

In LOVE with your tv cabinet!!! Is it from the 'Stockholm' range? Totally worth all the trips to Ikea to have that beauty in your home. x

Rachel said...

Ahhh I am so with you - twice in 2 days this weekend. The second time to buy the things I forgot in my eagerness to leave the first time!

I love the cabinet - If you hadn't have said I would have assumed it was a lovingly sourced vintage piece - very good choice!

Husband in I are in a constant debate over whether our TV is to big (me) or too small (him) and I can almost undertsand those people who had their TV's hidden in faux regency cabinets in the 80's. At least modern TVs though wider are at least slimmer

...Nina Nixon... said...

That does look lovely and it fits perfectly - love the meakin....it seems to set it off wonderfully.

Do you know I've never stepped foot inside an Ikea - ever!

Our nearest is about an hour away and hubby refuses. Plus stories of people getting lost and stranded for days on end just kind of always put me off. I do love your new cabinet though.

Nina xx

Hazel said...

TV units- the thorn in my side! Our nearest Ikea is 2 and half hours away so a trip is rare and always planned and executed in military fashion! we ended up with the Expedit tv stand in dark wood and I have to say I am (now) ok with the fact I can see all of the paraphenalia that comes with husbands games consoles, sound system, games and dvds.

It's my bargaining chip when I make the living room "too pretty" or "girly! :) I love your side board though, it is very retro in a cool way and your tea set was the first thing I noticed. Not the TV... but then I think I might be wired that way! :)

Andrea @ little buckles said...

That's a perfect fit. It looks great! I miss IKea and its meatballs so. The nearest one is 3 hrs away! As for the tele, we have a huge plasma and surround sound system which I truly hate! But its the only thing Scott has left from his corporate days so I guess I'll let him off x

mags said...

Very stylish! Haven't been to IKEA for years ... think I might need a fix. Was in Leeds today though!

Donna said...

4 times in 8 days! You're a braver woman than me :) I do love IKEA though and your TV cabinet is very stylish. Your coffee set finishes it off nicely xx

galant said...

My goodness, what goes around comes around. We have an old G-Plan teak unit with sliding doors, similar in height but not on legs, just a flat base to the floor. We even had a swivel top on which to put the TV (this was 1969, we were very forward thinking) and our stero (also teak, as was the ITT 23" screen TV!) sat next to it. Indeed, it all looked very smart and wouldn't have looked out of place in your alcove. We still have the teak unit and the stereo somewhere - I think the stereo is in our loft, the teak unit at our other house where our elder son lives. I never thought teak would return to fashion!
Margaret P

Gillian said...

A Meakin coffee set in blue, that sounds lovely. We live possibly too near our Ikea!

Gillian said...

Oh, those two quid items, they are fatal! I spend as much on batteries, lightbulbs and paper napkins as I do on the actual item I went in there to buy!

50" - wow! I am not telling John that as it will just fuel his large tv ambitions. ;-)

Gillian said...

Thank you! Yes, it's from the Stockholm range. They have some lovely stuff in that collection.

Gillian said...

You are right, at least modern tv's don't have to go on those massive corner units. I remember our first tv was as deep as it was wide... Things have improved!

Gillian said...

Never set foot in an Ikea? Oh Nina, you must go, it's brilliant! If only for the meatballs in the cafe! Seriously, we only go so often as we live 20 mins away, so it's very convenient. It has it's pros and it's cons. (I have nearly lost Angus three times in his little life - two of those were in Ikea!) x

Gillian said...

Ha, Hazel, that made me chuckle! I love how you use the audio visual paraphernalia as a bargaining tool to get your own way on other things, excellent idea!

Gillian said...

three hours, oh no! I am so glad you have a huge tv, that makes me feel better. I am of course a total hypocrite as I am more than happy to loll on the sofa watching the stupid thing!

Gillian said...

Were you? Pop in for a cup of tea next time you are passing! :-)

Gillian said...

Thank you. It took John two days to notice the coffee set was even there! The trouble is we live only 20 mins from Ikea so you can just pop over there without it becoming a massive trip...it's fatal! x

Gillian said...

Margaret it sounds wonderful. If you are no longer using it, then put it on ebay - it's probably highly collectible! I think teak is very fashionable now, i see it everywhere. I like it!

Julia said...

I love the new tv cabinet! It's very sleek and modern...perfect in your new room! The tea set is just precious! Love the colors! I need to make a trip back to Ikea as Charlotte has been asking for their yummy meatballs!

Grayseasailor said...

Gillian, I live 20min. from the Portland, OR, IKEA and my favorite room in the house looks like it :) My husband wanted a large screen TV[egged on by our adult kids] so I feel your pain :) That set is where I do not have to view it but I have a little flat screen that I did not want to be the focal point of our living room so I have a favorite seascape propped in front of it. When we want to view the set we just take the picture down. Here is a picture from my blog.
http://grayseasailor-onesaylorslog.blogspot.com/2011/12/mantle-holly-and-handmade-ornaments.html
This might not be practical in your situation, but I am grateful it works in mine :)
Gracie <3

Caroline South said...

I love your new cabinet and the Meakin set is so pretty. My partner too thought our tv was too small so we now have a massive new one which is on our wall. We still have not got around to hiding the leads though - which look horrible! We don't go to ikea very often. I love it - but don't like collecting the furniture bit, the kids have always had enough by that point! xx

Debs said...

Not only do I have sofa envy, I now also have tv cabinet envy. Maybe I will need to lounge in your fab new living room for a little while to get my fix:):)
I totally relate to your IKEA fatigue. I love going and spending hours (and lots of money) in there, but not 4 times in 8 days. And I always make sure to avoid the school holidays when every teacher in Yorkshire goes.

Simon (ChangingDad) said...

Not only do I have t.v. cabinet envy, I also have t.v. envy: 50in... plasma.... I think the cabinet looks really lovely but we would probably have to completely redesign how we wanted our new lounge to make it work. As for the t.v. ours broke recently and I was unfortunately not able to engage in a 2 month research project to search for a replacement as we inherited a perfectly serviceable (and effectively new) 32in. Maybe when that one breaks.

galant said...

Isn't it funny, what one generation now doesn't like (orange teak!) the next loves (yummy orange teak!!!) I don't think I will sell the 'unit' (it was the princely sum of £66 in 1969, that was a lot of lolly then, plus the little teak stand with a swivel top on which we had our TV, which was also made of teak, and like a piece of furniture.)

Gillian said...

Thank you. My two love the meatballs there too (and so do i!)

Gillian said...

Hi there Gracie, thanks for stopping by and your suggestion! That is an excellent idea but I can just see my three year old pulling it on top on himself causing all sorts of injury and damage! And I can already imagine my husband's mutterings...

Gillian said...

Yes, I have usually had enough by that point as well! We usually bribe the kids with ice creams at that stage in proceedings.

Gillian said...

Lounge away, for as long as you like! Good point about avoiding it in the school holidays - we go in term time usually as there is one less child to moan. x

Gillian said...

John says our tv is only a "measly" (his word) 32 inch screen. I didn't believe him and got the tape measure out to check as it looks so much bigger! John remembers our tv dimensions like I remember the weights of the children at birth.

Gillian said...

You should keep it, especially if it holds lots of memories. It is funny how these things go in and out of fashion though.

lou said...

oh wow! How did I miss this post? LOVE that sideboard. It's gorgeous! xx

Gillian said...

Thank you! No-one need ever know it's not a vintage classic... ;-)

mama sunshine said...

Your sideboard is just lovely! I think I would have to be carted away if I went into Ikea 4 times in 8 days though...you deserve a meatball medal.

Gillian said...

Ha! I've only been back once since then - the curse of living only 20 minutes away from Ikea! Thanks for the comment.x

Caz said...

Love the sideboard. I had one similar but it wasn't retro when I had mine [1970's]. I hate big t.v's too. I got rid of mine over 3yrs ago. [ more because of the rubbish that passes for entertainment than the actual t.v.] You stand no chance of going without as your kids would give you hell. They do grow up and leave though...ah one day you will be able to please yourself. Love reading your blog Gillian.
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