Oh Most Fair Chair

I like Craigslist...I do.  I'm a bargain shopper anyway, so anytime I get the itch to do something different--a home improvement project or redecorating project, that is where I start.  I haven't bought a ton of things, but I have acquired a very pretty Pottery Barn wool rug for the girls' room, a piano bench, a coat rack, an ipod and a pillow-top mattress topper.  I've also successfully gotten rid of a few things on CL, but I much prefer just donating to the thrift store...but I'm not so sure they would've taken cattle fence! 

I go in spurts of checking daily for something to rarely even paying attention. Recently, I've been on the hunt for living room chairs. More specifically something like a leather club chair (or two), but the price has to be right, which translates to anything that isn't a recliner, has the potential to be easily slipcovered and is under $40. Those are pretty stiff requirements sometimes. None of our furniture matches, and the majority of it is hand-me-down or second-hand. Weeks had passed without meeting all of the above specifications, but then...then, I found it! A great looking chair for $35! The pictures were emailed to me and I jumped on it immediately. (When I know what I want I don't mess around!) I made arrangements to go pick it up that afternoon, but on the way there, I started nervously reconsidering. It's been busy and I hadn't had a chance to talk to Tim about it at all...not a big deal, but it is Christmas time and spending any extra money probably isn't the most prudent thing to do. "What if it is in horrible shape?" "What if it smells?" See, I'm a fairly passive person in these kinds of situations, and since I'd already said I wanted it, I felt committed...like I couldn't change my mind about it and I would be stuck with an ugly, smelly, rickety piece of furniture for $35! My mom is a bargain shopper too, but without hesitation, she'll always offer a lesser amount than asked, and her offers are typically accepted. For 15 minutes, I psyched myself up to offer $30 instead of $35.

This picture does NOT do the stains and dirt justice!
 When I arrived, I had knots in my stomach...stupid, I know!  When I saw the chair, I had that same initial reaction of "I really like that chair", but as I looked closer, I could see that it would definitely need to be slipcovered.  It was pretty dirty and stained and the owners pets had used it as a scratching post, chew toy, and pet bed.  I studied it and mustered up the courage to ask, "Would you take $25 for it?"  Well, their response indicated to me that they probably would've taken $15, and when I got home and brought it in the house I decided that they should have paid me to take it away!  In good light, it was so gross that I scurried to spray it down with a disinfectant.  When I removed the cushion, I hurried even faster to clean up enough pet hair to weave  a good sized rug.  Blech!!  I was concerned that Tim would come in and see this dirty, hairy, smelly chair and wonder where his wife with any good sense had gone.  I shudder to even think about how disgustingly dirty that chair was. 

To my surprise, when I started wiping it down to remove some of the pet hair, a lot of dirt came off and it actually started looking different, so I kept scrubbing.  Soon, it was really starting to look reasonably clean, with a glimmer of a slipcover being an option, but not necessary immediately.  I decided to see if by chance it was a style and brand of chair that slipcovers are made for...you know, like the high end ones from Pottery Barn or Ballard?  To my amazement, I found a match for the brand and style, and then to my pleasant surprise and utter shock, located the price of this newly acquired trash-to-treasure piece of mine.  The commercial list price of this chair is $1545 (for Class 1 leather it is $2075--whatever that means!)

I think it looks great in my living room!
 Needless to say, I did a little happy dance, scoured the world wide web for more information, or to at least find somewhere that indicated that this chair is also sold to retail stores for resale and are valued at $250.  I found no such thing, only more confirmation that I indeed do now possess a very nice chair originally worth more than all the furniture in my house combined!

It is no where near looking new, but I would have to say it does look 500x better than it did. I like it...I really, really like it! I wish it was feasible to have another one...maybe someday, another will pop up on Craigslist. Maybe someday, I'll make a slipcover for it. I mean, I can't imagine that it will possibly stay clean, but for now, it sits as-is and I like it. Oh, I already said that didn't I?

My new pasttime is to just sit and admire my new treasure.  (Doesn't take much to trip my trigger!)