Sunday, October 15, 2006

House Pics

We picked up our new living room furniture yesterday, and took some other things to the house with the truck we rented. We'll need to figure out how to arrange the furniture: even though the room is large, there are 5 doorways which makes layout awkward. We were thrilled to find the Natuzzi furniture set in stock in a color we loved: our original furniture set would have taken 8-10 weeks to arrive. I want to make a valance over the window out of the fabric that's draped over the loveseat.

Living Room
Living Room

Here's the dining room so far. It looks out into the foyer, and beyond that is my office.

Here's the foyer: the big blank space is where the shelving from Home Decorators will go (IF they ever bother to order them), and on that will be a display of McCoy pottery. We love the art deco clock that used to belong to Doug's Aunt, and the lamp was a garage sale find from awhile back.

I'm going to use the formal living room as my office. We have one more coat of paint to go on the red wall (if I don't change my mind and do a different color), so the blue tape is still up.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Home Decorators Frustration

When ordering something online I'm usually fairly careful to find out about the company I'm doing business with. When I can go into a store and talk with someone face to face it doesn't seem like there would be that much of an issue.

Doug and I ordered two items from Home Decorators store last Monday. Yeah, ordered, because the store doesn't really stock most items, they're pretty much just a front for the catalog business. One was a large area rug for our living room, and the other was a set of shelves for our foyer.

I was pretty surprised to have to give them my billing address when I was shopping at an actual store: I mean, it's not like I was shopping online or like they were actually going to deliver something to my house (we have to pick it up at the store, or get charged some pretty hefty shipping charges). Out of habit I gave them my PO Box address, but that didn't match and I realized I have that statement sent directly to the house (it's never been an issue before because I don't use this card online, it's for face-to-face purchases). So I gave them the correct address and the lady put it in the computer.

Evidently that didn't lift the hold, and even after my husband called them yesterday all they could do was take a message and later someone left a message on our machine that "there's an address problem." Ummm, duh! But they didn't bother to lift the hold and fix it.

I called again this morning and ended up speaking with a manager, who was (supposedly) able to lift the hold off the order. I cancelled the area rug part of the order and just kept the shelving (although I'm having second thoughts about that, too). I've just found too many nice-looking area rugs (some online even have free shipping) to spend that much money with a company that doesn't want my business.

The manager told me the in-store orders go through their same catalog system, and they have this problem a lot. (Hmmm... if even the store managers know it's a widespread problem, why doesn't anyone fix it?) Looking on a couple different consumer opinion sites I see that their ability to fulfill orders on-time is, at best, spotty. Must be nice to have a business where you don't have to care whether customers are happy or whether you even bother to take their order.

Would I do business with them again? Maybe in a pinch. They have a few items (like the shelves I ordered) that I haven't been able to find anywhere else, especially not for the price. I might order again if they are a) the only place that sells the item I'm looking for, b) the item is relatively inexpensive compared to substitutes I've found, and c) I'm not in a time crunch. But would I recommend this company to anyone else? Sure, if you like crappy service, you don't care whether your order is taken or fulfilled, and they were the last store on earth.

Yaaaaaay!!!! Container Store is Coming to St. Louis!!!!

We have been soooo busy in the last month trying to get the house ready for move-in. If I had a dollar for every time I've said "I wish we had a Container Store here," the house would be halfway paid off by now!

Just imagine my joy!