Wednesday, January 14, 2015

"I'll Make It Fit": A Story of IKEA Failure

On Monday, Sean and I ventured to IKEA to stock up on some new house essentials, like bookcases, a kitchen cart, shelving and other little doodads.

Have you been to IKEA? I didn't grow up near one, so the first time I went, I thought I'd died and gone to heaven! It is heavenly...for the first two hours. And then somewhere around the first bend of the "marketplace" downstairs, it turns to this:

We were fading fast by the time our cart rolled into the warehouse, where you pick up a million boxes to take home and somehow turn their contents into the dream house rooms you saw in the showroom section. Our wish list included the Billy bookcases, the Hemnes daybed to trick out our additional guest room, a pair of Kallax shelving units for Sean's man cave and a kitchen cart, PLUS shelves for the walls. We knew it would be a stretch to fit all of it, so we started with our first priority: the bookcases.

Sean took one look at the boxes for the bookcases and informed me there was no way they'd fit in our car (a crossover SUV with seats folded down). I didn't believe him, so he literally took one of their freebie measuring tapes out to the car to check. Let's just say I was wrong, and my Evil Stepsister tactic of "making it fit" was not going to work.

At this point, after realizing we'd driven 2.5 hours for this purpose and spent nearly 3 hours in the store already, I had a mini panic attack and my brain cells all shut down.

So What Did We Do?
Our options, as we saw it were:

  • Go home with what we could fit in the car and plan to come back with a UHaul, which would probably add about $300 on top of the purchases.
  • Go home with what we could fit in the car and try to find a generous friend with a bigger car who would make the trek with us...again.
  • Go home with what we could fit in the car and shell out approximately $240 ($199 flat rate shipping + $40 for IKEA associate assistance) to have an IKEA associate pull our items from the shelves and ship them. The max IKEA will ship from a store is 4 hours' distance...and we fall just in that margin.
We ultimately opted for the last choice and decided to go ahead and get everything on our wish list since we know it won't ever fit in our car no matter what we do. It still felt foolhardy and dumb, but every piece will make our home much more functional and having it delivered saves us a lot of headaches.

HOT TIP: If you do have it delivered, you can save on service fees you'd be charged online by going to the store and physically picking up what you want, paying for it and then marching it straight to their shipping area. If we'd been available, we could have had our items delivered within just 2 business days, but we weren't going to be free! Good to know, though, right?

It was definitely embarrassing and frustrating to realize our items wouldn't fit, but I think we landed on a great alternative option and learned a little in the process. Now, we just have to actually build all this stuff!


gina-mom said...

I'm so glad you're getting your bookshelves!... I wanted to get an Ikea gift card to insure that you would but kept not ordering one (god knows you can't get one here!)

Unknown said...

Last spring I went to DC for an Ikea trip, took my Honda Civic instead of my husbands SUV, bought an already assembled bookcase in their clearance section, and then tried to make it fit in my car. Spoiler alert: it didn't work.

Since all sales were final, I had to figure something out. So I went inside, got one of their tools and took the stupid thing apart in the middle of their lobby and then wheeled it back to my car.

Definitely not one of my finer moments.