Taking on IKEA {A Newbie Tale}

Taking a solo trip to IKEA, for me, is much like taking a trip to the bathroom… I’m never allowed to go alone.  Despite numerous visits, I’ve never left the store with more than a handful of small accessories.  I guess I’d still qualify as an IKEA Newbie.  That all changed Saturday.

IKEA Furniture AssemblyMy sister took my children with her and her family this past weekend to Great Wolf Lodge in Concord, NC to celebrate my nephews birthday.  With the upcoming office project, operation “take back the play room” is in full effect.  Step 1 – Figure something out to get the toys from the play room into the boy’s bedroom.  Simple enough, except that the boy has so many trucks and tractors… ugh!  Knowing I needed more than Target could offer, we headed to IKEA.

Silly husband.  He thought a kid-free trip meant it would be a quick trip.  No such luck!  Do you know how packed IKEA is on a Saturday afternoon?  It’s a wee bit insane.

IKEA Check Out Line CrazyThat was only 1 of many lines that were a mile long.  I knew what I was getting into though.  After walking the showroom and weighing our options, we knew what we wanted for the boy’ room.  With that settled, I could relax a little a do some office decor shopping!  I picked up a few things, mostly things in my accent color (yellow), but you’ll have to wait for the big reveal to get the details on those.  I also scoped out some decorative lighting options, but I couldn’t settle on what I liked best, and left with only photos and memories instead.

Table Lamp IKEAOne thing we did come home with was a plant stand, but with no intention to use it as such.  Since the girl’s American Girl obsession started, I’m always on the watch for something that can be repurposed or altered to fill an American Girl need.  And there, in the outdoor furniture, I found this cute little plant stand that – to me – looked very much like an American Girl dining table.

American Girl Table IKEAI knew in picking it up that chair making would be on my to-do list, and well, I’ve already made a sofa…so, why not?  For less than $20, I’ll have a full dining set for the girl and her dolls.  It’ll take me a little time, but I’ll save a ton of money – and more importantly, I’ll make the girl happy.

While putting the table together took all of 5 minutes, that was not the case with this bad boy…

IKEA Expedite Entertainment UnitI had heard IKEA horror stories, so I was prepared for assembly to take me a while.  What I wasn’t prepared for was my own impatience and inability to leave the boxes alone until the weekend.  Instead, after rolling in from a 12 hour work day, I decided to tackle this beast with the assistance of a very eager 4 year old.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen a kid more excited about a piece of furniture.  He was busting at the seams to have somewhere to arrange all of his tractors and heavy equipment.  He has quite the collection.

Assembly wasn’t near as bad as I thought it would be, even with my 4 year old assistant ‘helping’.  I had about 90 minutes into the project.  I still need to get the bracket to mount his tv (it’s going to look so tiny in there!) and add a few more bins, but we have almost moved everything from the playroom into this bedroom.  If all goes as planned (and it never does!), I’ll be painting my new office sometime within the next week!

Are you an IKEA shopper?  Have you scored any amazing deals there or seen any unbelievable IKEA hacks?  I’d love to see/hear about them!

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11 Responses to Taking on IKEA {A Newbie Tale}

  1. Oh god, just the word Ikea gives me anxiety. I really try to steer clear of that place. Mostly because of the insane crowds, though.

  2. Holy cow! That is a line there! 😀

  3. Paige says:

    Lol, we don’t have an ikea so I’ve never been! Looks fun though!

  4. We don’t have one by us, but I did venture in one while we were on vacay in California because everyone swears by that store AND I drool over every.single.one. of their rooms in their catalog. I was so overwhelmed. Even tho I enjoyed myself I left with nothing. FAIL!

  5. Carly says:

    Ha, I’m seriously AFRAID of ikea on the weekends!

  6. I just LOVE Ikea!!!! I’m always really intimidated by the lines but they have always moved pretty quickly all things considered. It’s worth it, though!

  7. I love Ikea! I’m not a fan of the lines either, but it’s worth it! I love how much stuff they have to help organize a house.

  8. This was great! I remember a funny episode of 30rock where they talk about not going to ikea with someone you date. Seems like you did a good job of making it through without a fight! Look forward to reading more!

  9. Happy SITS day to you! So happy I found your blog. It sounds like we are living parallel lives (between working full-time, raising kids AND spending tons of time blogging)! I remember my first trip to Ikea. I was NOT at all prepared and wound up totally overwhelmed. NOW I am an experienced Ikea shopper and love it! I look forward to following you on social media!

  10. Jennifer S. says:

    I LOVE ikea… but I haven’t been in ages since the nearest one is almost 3 hours away 🙁 Hoping to take a road trip with a girlfriend this summer… I need bookshelves!

  11. IKEA is seriously one of my favorite stores. If you go during the week, the crowds are a lot less. And Tuesdays, kids eat free 🙂 Glad you liked and I will have to check out the AG dining table!!

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