Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Got an Ikea Couch!

 photo IMG_0100_zpsnhma7bw0.jpgWhen Mike and I got married, we were on a very tight budget, and since we married young, we weren't coming into our marriage each with homes full of furniture, so we needed to furnish our apartment entirely from scratch. Because of this, we tried to keep things as low cost as possible, getting certain things refurbished, some second hand, a lot free... There was only one piece of furniture we bought new- a set of wooden bookshelves, bought from a really cheap store.
Over the years, some of our furniture got replaced, with either free or second hand furniture, and we ended up building two pieces of furniture ourselves- a loft bed and a shoe box/couch.

The thing is...
Much as I like our shoe box couch, there were some flaws in the design. Namely that it was first built into a shoe box, and only after that turned into a couch, so the dimensions of it are not the most comfortable for me- once the cushioning is on it, it ends up being just a little bit too short for my tall legs- I end up feeling like I am partially falling off when I sit on it... My kids like it, and it really is an awesome shoe box... but in my opinion, it is more shoe box, less couch. And I still needed something else to sit on.

We got a hand me down reclining upholstered armchair that my sister inherited when her grandmother in law passed, and it served us well for a while, but its age showed, and it fell apart completely. My kids loved sitting on it, and to be honest, so did I, and it made me sad that it was destined for the trash.

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I think we could all agree- there's no place this belongs more than the trash

I decided that if we were going to get a replacement, I wanted to see if it could be a couch, but a couch that actually would fit in to our very small home, and the very specific dimensions we had available. And if it could turn into a bed that we could use for any potential guests? Even better.

It was a long shot, but I sent out feelers asking if such a thing existed- a love seat that opened up into a bed... And I was told that there was- the Ikea Solsta!
I first looked to see if we could find one second hand, but it wasn't happening- probably everyone loved theirs so they kept it until it died....

I thought about it a lot, discussed it with my husband, and decided that we would buy it new.

Eeek! Our first piece of furniture since our wedding that we actually were buying new!

Yes, it is much cheaper than other furniture available out there- but it still was a lot. Approximately $200 dollars, plus the price of delivery. But for us, we felt it was worth it. Especially since it was wider than the arm chair we had, so our kids wouldn't need to squish into a small area to sit together like they would do on the arm chair. And that it fit our dimensions perfectly.

The added bonus, of course, being that it opens up into the bed.

Before we got it, I read reviews.
I heard that the biggest flaw is that when it is opened into a bed, one third of it is actually made of wood and not padded. so it isn't actually soft. But we decided to get it anyhow. Since the real reason is to have the couch, and the bed is just the bonus. There are ways to make it softer, like padding it with an extra blanket, and if you put your feet there instead of your head, it isn't the biggest deal, in my opinion, so...

This morning at 6:30 am my order arrived.
Fortunately (or unfortunately) Rose woke me up at 5:45 so I was already up when it arrived. As Mike was just leaving for work when it arrived, I decided to put it together myself.
Yes, I did it myself. I didn't pay extra for assembly, because I figured- how hard could it be?

The instructions that came with it weren't so clear, but I googled it, and found videos showing how to assemble it (with the note that it is possible to put it together backwards- so I made sure that I didn't do it backwards) and then it was clear.
It would have been easy if I didn't have 4 kids climbing on top of me as I was trying to screw it together...

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Imagine putting together furniture, with this going on...

Fortunately, within 45 minutes of it arriving, I brought it down into the living room, and put it all together, kids climbing on it/me and all.

And now, voila- we have our couch.

This is really exciting for me and for the kids. We already love it!

We're going to be keeping it covered with a couch cover, because we don't want it to get ruined too quickly.

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Are you a fan of Ikea? What have you bought there? 
If you generally buy second hand furniture, or get hand me downs, are there any pieces of furniture that you bought new? What was it, and why did you get it new instead of second hand?


  1. Nice! I'm tempted at some point to get a bed like that. We sleep on foldable beds which has been a blessing for space (plus I snore lol). I like Ikea, it's CHEAP! I got 9 silicone muffin things for 2 euros, they have pillows for 1 euro, I brought my kitchen out of the stone age for about 20 euros as a gift from my parents around Christmas.

    We generally get used furniture since it's so cheap. I buy used computer keyboards since about every 6 months I dump accidentally water/coffee/tea on them :/.

  2. I have a couch from Ikea too. The "Ektorp" one. All the rest of our furniture is used. Much of it was given to us for free, including our mattress and box springs (for those thinking "Eww, who uses someone else's bed?!", it was this person's guest bedroom bed, hardly ever used, and had a waterproof mattress cover on it the entire time they had it so it was essentially brand new when we got it).

  3. I love ikea. I bought my kitchen cabinets there, along with multiple kitchen items, as well as the book shelves, coffee table, and tv stand in my living room. I also have multiple of their grundtal rails in the kitchen and one above my oldest daughter's desk to hang pencils, etc in cups.

  4. Our house isn't as small as yours but it still doesn't fit "standard" size US furniture. For a long-time we had a hand we down couch that dominated out living room. We got rid of that, and inherited an upright piano (which was actually smaller than the couch by a noticeable amount!) and then we needed a couch. So we bought an IKEA Ektorp. I guess technically it's a loveseat but it's perfect!

    Enjoy your new couch!

  5. We have an IKEA futon in our rec room - the kids hang out with their friends there and it makes a bed when we have guests. I love IKEA! There furniture is so reasonable and it lasts.

  6. My whole entire house is from IKEA, bought piece by piece over the years. Our bookshelves, our beds, my kids' bunkbed ( which survived a major move), computer desk, dressers, coffee table, futon, arm chair, kitchen dishes and glasses, all my Pesach kitchen pots...
    The rest of the furniture we either got as hand-me-downs, bought in scratch-and-dent, or got it for free. With five kids, last place I want to invest money in is furniture that is not cheap or easy to replace.
    I found that IKEA bookshelves do not survive moves, but everything else holds up well.

  7. I'm not a fan of buying new furniture. Ikea do have good environmental practices when it comes to wood but when it comes to couches the new ones never last. The wooden frames on older couches are invincible. If you can find a second hand furniture store or even a neighbor who has finished with their couch then I would go for that option and get it reupholstered if you need.


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