Sunday, 26 May 2013

Are We Sitting Comfortably?

Back in November hubby fitted an island in the kitchen, after months of debating where it should go, how big it should be and, indeed, whether we should have one at all.

Ever since then it has been a very handy place on/in which to store things, on which to make things, and against which to lean.

But it hasn't been used to its best advantage. You may be able to tell from the photos above that we specifically had the work surface made longer/wider on two sides, to form a breakfast bar.

And while it may suit the Continental types to stand up at an above waist-high table to down their espressos, it doesn't suit those of us who like to ingest serveral bowls of Cheerios (DC), Shreddies (hubby) or coffees (me) at leisure/in comfort of a morning.

So, since November we have been on the hunt for the perfect bar chair. Bar CHAIR, not bar stool. Because we are all about the comfort in this house and it had to be a chair with a back to lean against, not a stool that can only be perched on. The seat (ie the bit that you rest your derriere on) also needed to be comfortable and it needed to be easy to keep clean (DC doesn't yet understand the concept of not wiping chocolate/jam/food-covered hands all over everything.) And it had to be not unattractive.

So that's a comfortable, easy-clean, attractive CHAIR. Not too much of an ask then. In an ideal world it would also have been old/vintage, but that really was a huge ask. Luckily good old John Lewis (of couse, because I find it almost impossible to shop anywhere else) came up trumps with all boxes except the 'old' one ticked.

This is the Miso chair, in cream leather. Yes, I know cream isn't a hugely practical colour when you have a small boy child with hands that are sticky or muddy, or both, more often than not, but the only other colour this comes in is dark brown which we thought would stick out a bit in our kitchen with its cream units and wooden worktops. So, after sitting on this chair and many others for comparison purposes during several visits to the Mothership (aka John Lewis), we decided that, yes, this one definitely suited our bottoms, backs and dishcloths. Unfortunately, what it didn't suit was our wallets. £149 each is the retail price, and needing three (for now, and possibly another at some point if we think it would fit/get used), we were looking at a grand total of... £447. Big ouch.

And thus began the search for a similar chair, but cheaper, or the same chair, but cheaper. We've used the John Lewis outlet in Swindon successfully before now for all sorts of great items, but that was mostly when we lived a lot nearer or when we were in the vicinity more often. So this time, I turned my attentions to eBay. The odd one or two of these chairs would pop up, but never in a convenient location. But then, almost six months after the island was first installed, we hit paydirt - three of these beauties for a good price in a location not too far from hubby's parents (well, about an hour's drive) ending on a weekend when hubby was actually at his parents. And they were brand new. Too good to be true? Nope. I contacted the seller to see if they had a 'Buy It Now' price and they did - £190. For all three. Yes please and thank you very much. And a couple of days later they were ours. Three chairs for the price of one-and-a-half. Apparently the sellers had bought them to dress a show home but the show home was sold before any of the furniture even went in. Lucky for us.

And here there are in all their impractical cream glory.

Note George the teddy giving one a test drive.
This photo shows that the chairs don't stand out too much when tucked under the island.

 And here's DC showing how the chairs can be used as a handy spot for playing with Power Rangers and drinking juice.
 Or for having breakfast. Note unseasonal pyjama top (it's his favourite and he often wears it out and about as a t-shirt. Ho hum)
And so, the moral of the story is that patience (as well as being a virtue) often pays off, as long as you don't mind standing up for six months.


  1. well worth the wait - they look flipping gorgeous.

  2. Really like them, I always start my search at Amazon, then go to ebay and finally etsy. Also we have a good furniture store that has an attached warehouse for slightly damaged furniture.
    Love the white, as long as it's not cloth you can always wipe it down.

    1. eBay is always my first port of call when I'm after a bargain, not to mention when I'm trying to sell something!

  3. What bargains! I know what you mean about needing backs to them and not just stools to perch on - my back needs support.

    1. I've never been good with bar stools; I hate having to perch on them in pubs, I feel so self-conscious!


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