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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

106 Farewell IKEA, Farewell Target....

OK, not really.  But sort of.

I recently had a little bit of a moment.  A wake up call if you will.  I wrote a post about our organized entry and almost dreaded hitting the publish button.  Why you ask?  Well, because IKEA struck again.  And in my case, again and again and again.

Being a busy mom of three and living in the middle of nowhere, I have let myself fall to the quick and easy worlds of Target and IKEA.  Target is the only home store within 20 miles of our home {that I really know of}, and IKEA has great prices so if I "hack" something from there, I feel little shame or guilt.

Not only do I love Target because it is close to home, but I also get school girl giddy every time I spot a designer knock-off for a fraction of the price.  Oh yes, it seems as though Target is glorious at taking the fabulous things we see at Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barn, Williams-Sonoma and West Elm, and selling a similar version for far less.

Here are two I have personally taken advantage of.  Pouf for the kids?  Yespleasethankyou!


Bedding for my bro's apartment!  Another score!


Target is magical.  And how is it that I can go to a Target and find myself wandering the aisles aimlessly for hours?  It is such a time suck.  But it is also known as my "happy place".

And don't even get me started on IKEA.  Have you seen their catalog?  Room after room filled with all things IKEA and they still look lovely, cozy and functional.  And they have everything!  Couches, dining chairs, storage {and even more storage}, cooking supplies, bathroom accessories, ice cube trays, you name it, IKEA has it.  Sigh...

{source}

Recently BHG came so we decided to finally upgrade our dining table {since it has been on our wish list for what seemed like an eternity}.  We found an incredible table at a small furniture shop in Minneapolis, Nadeau, and when it came time to search for the perfect chairs, guess the first place I went?  IKEA.

At that moment, I stopped to look around our home.  Every single room was beginning to look like an IKEA showroom.  Expedit desk, check.  Expedit playroom benches, check.  Lack floating shelves in every room, check.  Besta school cubbies, Hemnes shoe storage and Billy bookcases, check, check and check.  Ingolf bar stools, Aspelund wardrobes and Malm dresser, check again.  Oh boy, what have I done?

We also have a few pieces of furniture in our home which we have given new life to with a little elbow grease, a fresh coat of paint or even built from scratch.  And those seem to be our favorite pieces.  So although IKEA may be a quick and simple solution to most of our storage problems, it isn't necessarily how I want every room in my home to reflect.

Therefore, I have decided to take a little break from Target & IKEA.  I am already shaking, but I think I can do it.  I am going to challenge myself to look at every other option first as we continue to work on our home {kitchen reno, bathroom overhauls, pre-teen boy bedroom and studio}.  Thrift stores and locally owned shops that I haven't explored yet, here I come!  Even Home Goods, because that is only an extra 15 minutes away from Target, and they seem to swap out their inventory frequently with new and unique pieces.

Speaking of HomeGoods.  I popped by one while I was exploring the Twin Cities and I couldn't resist sharing some of the awesomeness that I spotted:


When it comes to baskets, they always have a variety of inexpensive options.  I also love their unique lighting {which also often mimics higher end pieces at lower prices} and their upholstered chairs and benches since the patterns are always so fun and interesting!

HomeGoods will be a great way for me to bring in new textures and accessories that are more unique than those found at the giant box stores.

But taking it even further, I decided to head back to Junk Bonanza this year.  Last year I did the same, and found a few pieces which have been very loved in our home since.  So this year, Emily and I travelled the 70 miles to explore the endless booths of old and new, shabby and chic, common and unique items.  


It was so much fun to look at such a large variety of furniture, all with character and charming features.  Talk about inspiring and about as opposite of IKEA as possible.  My favorites were the funky tripod lamp bases {the blue one came home with me}, the colorful frames, the black spindle bed, the pharmacy cabinet, the oversized typography and the gold side table/stool {which also came home with me}.  It is such a different exciting feeling when I whip out some cash for a piece I know will be original to our home.

Then, one afternoon I was feeling quite stir crazy and decided to take a 20 minute trek to our local Habitat for Humanity ReStore.  I always love exploring their stores, as they are filled with old woodwork, lighting and furniture.


This is the kind of store where you need to have a DIY spirit and an open mind.  But you also get items at amazing prices!  I love using the $5 cabinet doors for all sorts of projects {like our chalkboard menu and kid's art display}, and if there would have been two, the oversized gold boob light would have made its way into my cart for our hallway.  Although they often sell donated home items {such as doors, lights, windows, moldings, etc...}, they also have furniture which always has potential.  The black headboard and footboard above, yeah, I snagged that up as well.  Happy Birthday to Preston.  And I almost grabbed those dining chairs, thinking that if they were white and reupholstered, they could be pretty marvelous!  I was just too nervous to add more fabric to our kitchen table with the kids. And the green chair.  I know what you are thinking, but it had fabulous lines!

Target and IKEA are amazing, but there is so much more out there.  And I am excited to dig and find things that will bring additional character and charm to our home.  How long will this big box store strike last?  I am aiming for 6 months, which I believe will give me ample time to find more shops and botiques to fall in love with and explore.

Over on my Facebook page, a few of you stopped by to offer up some suggestions on great local Twin Cities places for me to check out, feel free to leave a comment below as well to help a girl out.



Who else is doing something similar and taking a break from your favorite shopping places {or joining in on my challenge}?  What are your favorite places to find home and storage pieces?  Anyone wanna place bets on whether or not I can do it or how long it will be before I cave?

106 comments:

  1. What a great idea! I love our Habitat Re-Store. I get so many ideas there. Can't wait to see how this goes. Good luck!

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  2. I like Home Goods too. I purchased my area rug under my table from there. I have a few other pieces here and there, like bath towels, kitchenware, photo frames. You can even snag a toy or two. ;) I found a cool dino play thing for my boy for Christmas last year. I do venture to Target, which I have found smaller baskets like your big ones. I think you scooped up all the others. :) LOL (J/K)

    Oh, check Bed Bath and Beyond once in awhile too!! Just on the other side of the interstate from Home Goods. I just scooped up some new draperies for my dining area, and a new rug for my 1/2 bath.

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  3. November 5th, 2005, my husband and I decided that we would no longer shop at Target or WalMart (for political/moral reasons). Since those were the two go to stores in our town, it was difficult for a bit -- although the first time I listened to friends complaining about the slow lines at WalMart and how much they were spending at Target, I started getting over it. I do miss Target (seven years this fall!) especially when I see the knock offs that might be fun, but all in all, I think it has been good for me.

    IKEA opened nearby last year and yet I only made a couple of trips. I might be back again soon as we need bookshelves in our new (much smaller home) but I think we can keep it under control -- especially since this much smaller home is already filled with a number of our personality pieces.

    So, good luck: it can be done and you'll wonder about your time and energy at those stores when you get over the hump -- which it sounds like you are well on your way to doing!

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  4. Good for you! I keep meaning to drop by our local Habitat store to check it out and donate a light fixture, and now I'm inspired. I've found some unique accessories at Joss & Main and One King's Lane, and I desperately wish there was a World Market in Massachusetts. I always drool over their website and drag my husband to the brick & mortar store when we visit his family in CA. I've also had good luck with Overstock for things like rugs, and Etsy is a no-fail for unique artwork (and jewelry, too!).

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    1. I agree that OKL and Joss are great places for unique items. I have been quite happy with both sites. And World Market just came into our area {within 45 minutes anyway}, so I am pretty excited about that as well. :)

      xo,
      Jen

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    2. Where is World Market? I haven't been there since I lived in NY over 12 years ago. I looove that store!

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    3. If you are in the Twin Cities, I think it reopened in Roseville??? I haven't been there yet. They used to be in Woodbury, MN, but closed awhile back.

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    4. I believe Roseville and also Edina. May have to google around to find out for sure.

      xo!
      Jen

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    5. World Market is open again in Edina/Bloomington and Roseville! So happy to have them back in the Twin Cities area!

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  5. This just happened to me. And then I watched another episode of "Home by Novogratz" and thought, "I needs to get me some vintage pieces!" I'm about to rehab a $40 mid-mod solid wood console -- what it might lack in perfection it will make up for in character! (PS the piece was originally $80 at ARC, but on Saturdays furniture is 50% off!)

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    1. Maybe it was watching the "Home by Novagratz" show that subliminally did this to me as well. I looove their eclectic style!

      xo,
      Jen

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  6. I hadn't thought about checking out the Habitat Restore for items. I may have to swing in for next project. Thanks for the idea.

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  7. I love it. I think it's so much more fun to have things that you don't see all of the time, too. Now don't go crazy and think I am ditching my Expedits anytime soon, but I love vintage stores and Home Goods is always nice for random pieces. I also like taking things from thrift stores and giving them my own touch. Cheering you on, girl!

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    1. If anyone can do it, you can! You are always such an inspiration when it comes to creating the high look on a low budget. Love ya girl!

      xo,
      Jen

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  8. I love it! I'm all for unique pieces with a good backstory...I couldn't tell you when I got my Target bookshelf, but I can tell you exactly where and when I got my china hutch (unfinished wood store, just after getting married, stained and assembled it with my new husband, sighhhh).

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  9. This makes so much sense to me! My fall-backs aren't Target or Ikea, but they're just as big box-y. I've had to outwardly force myself to stop shopping at these places because I don't want my house to look like I work there or something (even if I still love their stuff).

    I love that you're honest about it.

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  10. To address the fear of fabric on chairs in the kitchen...

    We reupholstered some dining chairs a while back and used clear vinyl over the fabric to keep it kid-friendly. It happened to be a 50s dinette and the vinyl chairs fit the look perfectly, but I think it could work for lots of different styles!

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    1. Came here to say this too. There's some gorgeous oilcloth about at the moment, check out Oilcloth Addict on Etsy...
      http://www.etsy.com/shop/oilclothaddict

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    2. I have considered oilcloth, wondering how it is from a durability standpoint? I have seem some designs I really like, but have yet to give it a whirl.

      xo!
      Jen

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    3. Check out this post by Dana over at Made. She made slipcovers for her IKEA barstools a while back and they look awesome. Might be worth emailing to ask how they're holding up?
      http://www.danamadeit.com/2010/03/orange-you-glad-oilcloth-chairs.html

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    4. Thank you so much for that post!! I just may have to go back after those chairs after all! Fingers crossed they are still there!

      xo,
      Jen

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    5. Awesome, I hope it works out for you. Funnily enough, I've lately been considering recovering our gross brown pleather dining chairs and that was my inspiration! It's on the long list for the moment though :)

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  11. Sigh... yes, my house looks like an Ikea showroom. I'd better hop onto your mentality bandwagon and spice it up a bit, and think more out of the flatpack box.

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  12. I don't shop IKEA or Target as we are trying to find American-made products. Although they aren't always easy to find, thrift stores or Habitat stores often have these items. I also feel better buying used items as a means of conservation. All the new stuff means the old stuff is getting tossed into landfills. Not a great scene. Congrats on making a change. You can do it!!!

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  13. If you're worried about having fabric on those dining chairs, you can always cover them with a printed vinyl shower curtain!

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  14. With your good imagination & ideas it will be fun to see how you transform any quirky finds. A mix of random and Ikea pieces could work really well. Here in the UK, I have been finding a lot of great, individual-looking bargains on Ebay to re-finish which has been a lot of fun.

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  15. Ikea is finally opening here in November, and Target is supposed to come to Canada sometime next year and there'll be at least one here. :) So I'm excited about it. We have a habitat restore here too but it's clear across town so I've never been. Maybe someday I'll make it out there.

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  16. I routinely put myself on a break from Target. I find myself buying storage bins/baskets there without any plans and then my husband complains LOL.

    I hit up Ikea every 3 months or so. I can't quit that place :) Our house is a bit of an Ikea showroom as well, but I think there are ways to make it yours so that it is more YOU than Swedish, ya know?

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    1. Oh totally! I have nothing against IKEA at all, I obviously have had a major love affair with it and totally get excited when I can hack something. I just need a little break and am pushing myself to mix things up a bit! :)

      xo,
      Jen

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  17. I am learning to make or build what I need or go without. Refurbishing is a lot of fun too. I am not a big shopper anyway, but I like nice things and love getting ideas from your site.

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  18. I found you blog on Pinterest! I'm in love!! You must be from MN too?? I completely avoid Target for home storage & decor, though it's so tempting. I buy most of my baskets/storage at Homegoods.. but have had amazing luck at Goodwill lately! For example, I just bought 6 apple {orchard} baskets & 2 wood crates for $8 & spray painted {& distressed} them. They are adorable! Good luck!

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    1. Yeppers, I live outside of the twin cities area. And yes, I have had much better luck at Goodwill lately as well, which makes me a very happy gal! Your baskets sound so charming!

      xo,
      Jen

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  19. Thanks for inspiring me to look beyond the big box stores too! It struck me as I was reading your post, that we have so much stuff floating around- either being thrown out or marked for donation- I can do my own small part to cut down on adding to the landfills by browsing second hand stores or refurbish the items we already have- and at the same time keeping a few more bucks in my OWN pocket!

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  20. I'm more amazed that you can afford to buy the things you do as often as you seem to. I love your site and come to it daily, but I'd be in foreclosure if I spent like that. I wish I had the budget you seem to have, but we've been living debt free for a few years now and are throwing everything at our MTG so we can be completely debt free. Unfortunately decorating isn't a priority. However, when it is, I'll be using your site for inspiration!

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    1. Soup cans and scrap paper! lol! Well it's a start maybe? I'm actually amazed at Jen's budget-mindfulness (is that a word?).

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    2. We are definitely a mix of some splurges and some saves. And we try and spread things out when we can {there are times when we purchase and project something in march and post about it in june so it may seem like some bigger purchases happen together, but that may not be the case}. I have never met a paper covered soup can I didn't like. Or a thrifted decorative bowl or dresser. :)

      xo!
      Jen

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    3. Regarding the comment "I'd be in foreclosure if I spent like that." Decorating may be where Jen (and hubby) choose to spend their money because it benefits her business and and therefore comes back around and makes her money! Kept under control (which is obvious by her many budget smart posts), then it's really an intelligent decision to continue to update her spaces and just maybe....a huge magazine or design show will take notice:) Oh yes, they have!

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    4. I live in Germany (relocated from Boston last summer) and there is no Target - fortunately or unfortunately. I do miss Target a lot though. Nearest IKEA is a good 1 hour drive. So I shop here all the local stores and they are just fabulous. France, Belgium and Netherlands borders are not so far and we go vacationing and shopping almost every month :). But the sad part is I live in a fully furnished rented house and hence cannot buy or change furniture. Its the accessories that I buy mostly to give this house my own personality. When it comes to home decor and organizing Europe has sooooo much options that IKEA and Target seem a matter in the past. I just hope that you survive happily without Target and IKEA. :)

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  21. I can give up IKEA but not Target. Good luck with that! Especially with the new Nate Berkus line debuting next month!

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    1. Haha, I know, I am nervous about Target. I squealed when I saw Nate Berkus was coming to Target. I just keep humming, "I think I can I think I can...." :)

      xo,
      Jen

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  22. Wow... that's ambitious of you! I like the concept but I would have to at least visit Ikea for their swedish meatballs :)

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    1. I may visit for ideas {walking their show room always sparks something for me}, but I will just have to be sure to leave my wallet in the car. :)

      xo,
      Jen

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  23. Good for you! Target and Ikea have served me well over the past dozen years or so (an Ikea and 4 Targets are within a 10 minute drive of my home). But I think Ikea and Target are to homes what Old Navy is to clothes. You may be excited about a great item you got at a great price. But when you see your friend or neighbor has the same item (maybe in a different color) and you suddenly feel ... unoriginal. My home's floor plan is very popular in my neighborhood. But what I put in it should be a reflection of me and my family. Target or Ikea are not the only stores worthy of that honor. Thanks for the reminder! :)

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  24. Wow! I know what you mean. Where I live there are so many other options and yet I still gravitate towards Target and Ikea. I may not stop "window" shopping but I really should explore more options for more "unique" pieces that you can't really find. I'll try along with you (emphasize on try. Lol!)

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  25. Ooh, this is gonna be tough! Can't wait to see what you come up with as I've fallen into the Target & IKEA rut myself. If anyone can get me out, I just know it's you ;).

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  26. Love this post! I'm the opposite of you, that's why I love your blog. You have just inspired me to take the bridge into Philly and hit up our Ikea. I might sound like a snob but I am TOTALLY not because I get everything off of craigslist but if you walk around my house it is like a pottery barn/homegoods showroom. I HATE it but LOVE it at the same time. I need more modern pieces and I'm guessing Ikea is the closest cheapest place to get more of that transitional look. I just hate making that trip and going in there not sure what to buy. I'm blessed that I have a Homegoods and Target 5 min away in the same shopping center, so I can go and wonder and not feel guilty if I walk out with nothing. Do you have any tips before heading into Ikea? Do you make lists, do you search online first or do you just go & let your mind create when you are there?

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    1. Hi Michelle,

      I actually always try to go to IKEA with a pre made list and a plan {yes, found from browsing their catalog or online}. It can be overwhelming if you don't have a goal and know exactly what you are looking for, so much to see.

      Have fun!! :)

      xo,
      Jen

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  27. Oh my, this was so funny. I had to go through and still currently am going through a 5 step program because we DO NOT HAVE A TARGET in Calgary. It's soooo hard. I miss it and I hate Wal Mart. I guess I should thank my lucky stars that I do have an IKEA, but oh how I miss that Dollar Spot. I'm headed to Vegas in January to watch my niece in Miss America and I told all my girlfriends the first place we are going is Target cause Miss Missy here is bringing an empty suitcase....Good Luck!!!

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  28. I loved this post--even the irony of thinking your house looks like a catalog spread when you've actually made it into a magazine!:-) You go girl! What was even more fun, was to read it and think, hey wait perhaps she needs to visit some junk markets, and lo you went there! It got me thinking about blogging about some local folks who are trying some "hacks" on former junk! http://reeniesruminations.blogspot.com/2012/09/a-challenge.html

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  29. You mean there are other stores besides Ikea and Target?? Haha! I love the idea of the Habitat Restore and repurposing. I have started hitting Good Will and a local church resale shop for projects too. And for ready made I like Kohl's Kirkland's and Tuesday Morning. I hope you don't have too many withdrawals!

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  30. I'm so excited for your new adventures! I'm new to your blog but it looks like you've got great taste no matter where you shop. I can't wait to see your finds )

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  31. I love Home Goods, Marshall's, Ross, and Hobby Lobby. I have quite a few things from IKEA, but nothing huge, just some accessories and storage bins. I love to hit up antique malls for one of a kind pieces. Occasionally I find good stuff at Goodwill. I rarely shop at places like Pier1 and Pottery Barn. I think the items I do have from there, I got on sale. I just refuse to pay full price for ANYTHING lol. I have found that people sell almost new furniture for next to nothing on Craigslist. No one believes me when I walk them through my house and show them what I've bought on there.

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    1. I also looove Craigslist. I have bought and sold some great items on there.

      xo!
      Jen

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  32. Just looked it up and there's a Habitat Restore down the street from me! Never knew they existed. I'm going to check them out as soon as possible.

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  33. That's an AWESOME Habitat Restore! Ours doesn't have cool furniture like that. I love HomeGoods and thrift stores. I cannot wait until they open the HomeGoods less than 10 miles from our house. (I screamed when I saw they were moving in, and scared the bejesus out of Brad.) I'm excited to follow your new shopping adventures!

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  34. I heart this post, Jen! I completely agree with you - I adore Ikea for the occasional item, and Target is awesome for storage and organizing. But most of our home is filled with Salvation Army and Craigslist finds. I am a sucker for eclectic, unique pieces, and I think it's what makes a house into a home. But yes, I believe I have Lack shelves in every room as well, LOL...

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  35. What a tough goal! I hope you an do it.

    I live next door to IKEA. (Well, not exactly next door... but within 2 miles of IKEA...) At any rate, it's interesting that I too first go to Target and then IKEA (ugh!) if necessary. (Don't get me wrong; IKEA is great - but the traffic is INSANE around ours.) I was even shopping for shelving at Target.com as I read your post! I guess I could give up IKEA but definately not Target! Good luck!

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  36. I love that Target is your happy place. Mine too Sister!

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  37. Bah! I can't believe you were in my hometown and didn't pop in for coffee! Haha!

    I almost bought that green chair to reupholster last Thursday...but I have no place to put it just yet. So I sadly left without it. You should seriously check out tags in Hudson. It used to be called Piece by Piece. They almost always have some majorly adorbs colorful chairs.

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    1. Thanks for letting me know, I have never heard of it. Just did a search, and will be adding it to my list of places to check out. So excited!

      xo!
      Jen

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  38. I really, really appreciate this post. I don't live anywhere near an IKEA (and I'm sure I'm not the only reader in that situation) and there are times I think "Well, great for you but what about the rest of us?" So I am so looking forward to project ideas and "finds" that aren't from IKEA. I have no doubt you'll continue to amaze us all.

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  39. While I do like many things about Target, one of the other things I don't love when I stop and think about it (which I don't do as often as I should) is that many, many, many of the things sold at Target are manufactured at cut-rate prices in possibly questionable situations in China. I don't love supporting that, even though I do love a cheap price. The issue isn't quite as big in that respect with IKEA, but it's still a slight concern. My husband and I have actually handmade some of the items in our home using Ana White's awesome blog - http://www.ana-white.com We have a spot behind our front door that is an odd width, and most standard benches and shelves were 1.5" too long for it. So we took one of Ana's great plans for a Pottery Barn knock-off bench, adjusted the measurements by 1.5", and we have a perfect fitting cubby bench and coat rack shelf for about $60 total for both (the Pottery Barn inspiration was about $500 for both and was too big for our space anyway). Just another idea. She has plans for everything you can think of - beds, tables, chairs, benches, cubbies, even coffee tables with hidden lego storage inside, etc.

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    1. We have also used Anna's plans to build, we did an outdoor farmhouse table and love it! We will definitely be using her site again. Sounds like you have made some really incredible pieces!

      xo!
      Jen

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  40. Jen, where is there the Habitat Restore in our area?? I have never seen them before. We always have projects going on here. Would be a good place to look too.

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    1. Hi Michelle,

      There is one in New Richmond. If you check out the link in my post, I believe they have a store locator with the exact address. It's so much fun!

      xo!
      Jen

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    2. Ok... I read your post, but totally didn't catch the link. :o Looks like I will be heading out to New Richmond one of these days here. Thanks Jen!!! :)

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  41. I just found your blog the other day and have been loving it! I am inspired to get out of my post-preemie-blues and start some serious nesting! I'm also excited to see what you do with more vintage acquisitions. I try to avoid the major chains because what I've gotten from them feel brittle to me - flimsy and cookie cutter produced. I heart all enameled furniture! MMM, medical cabinets!!

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  42. The first place I look when getting ready to make any furniture purchase is our local online classifieds. I have found so many great an inexpensive pieces that are sturdy and totally unique! This weekend we found a dining room table and 8 chairs that go beautifully with it and our other furniture from two different sellers (both of which we were able to bargain with). Plus, recycling furniture is good for the environment.

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  43. I love that you're pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, Jen! I'm going on a project spending freeze for Oct and maybe Nov. I have so many supplies on hand (paint, fabric, craft stuff, etc), and I'm hoping it will force me to flex those creative muscles again. But just to taunt me, Home Goods opened here on Sunday :) I would maybe add craigslist and etsy (which I've seen you source from a lot on the blog). You've been so creative with IKEA and Target finds, so I can't wait to see what inspiration will strike from new stores and unique pieces! And hey, revisiting IKEA and Target after the hiatus will be new inspiration all over again too :) You can totally do it!

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  44. Haha, this really made me laugh because I made the same realization about our home when we were back in the States. Any furniture that wasn't a hand-me-down was from IKEA or Target and I think there were a couple of things from Walmart in there,but I can't remember what they were now. When we were first married the IKEA was about 5 minutes down the road and we went there 5 or 6 times in the first week and a half. As we were driving by on our way to church that next Sunday my husband said, I feel like I haven't been to IKEA in a long time... I think it's perfectly fine to use them so much when you live far from other places, but it'll be interesting to see what other good things you're able to find!

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  45. Good for you! I have been discouraged with my blog reading habit recently, because it seems like everyone is writing about their homes/IKEA/Target showrooms. It's not inspiring. And I can't stand the thought of someone walking into my house and thinking "That's from IKEA... Target..." because I do it at other people's houses! That said, I've been hemming and hawing for a year about bookshelves for our huge book collection...drive an hour for an Expedit or not? I've finally determined that I just can't pay that much money for fake wood. I'll spend more on a real piece of furniture, paint it myself and keep it forever. Good luck!

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  46. Jen, I'm totally in the same boat. When I first moved out on my own I was all about Target and IKEA for the same reasons you love them. Now that I have my first HOUSE, I'm trying to be more selective about the pieces I bring in, especially since I've inherited some nice furniture. Instead of buying the cheap stuff that lasts a couple years, I'm investing in items that are high quality and aesthetically pleasing. Sure my new place may look empty for awhile, but as it grows, eventually it will have pieces that I think my future children would be happy to inherit one day.

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  47. Oh, which Home Goods did you go to in the TC area? The ones I frequent must not be as cool, I rarely see things like that at mine and definitely not all at the same time!
    I can't really recommend a good used place in the Twin Cities although I'm a regular shopper at Goodwill (but I really think with that you need to be in the right place at the right time with those sorts of places...most days I find nothing and then I'll hit the jackpot). For me garage sales are the best way to find things for cheap. I usually change/re-purpose the things I find a little to make them more personal. I'm going to have to check out Habitat Re-store...it is about 30 mins away (much farther than Target and Ikea!!) but I've heard good things about it.

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    1. I went to the one in Woodbury, MN. I have always been excited about their selection.

      xo,
      Jen

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    2. Thanks! That's good to know.

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  48. I keep stopping at Restore looking for a dresser. They tell me they're donated one day and often sold the same day. I may have to move in for a week or so.

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  49. Since Ikea is 2.5 hours away, I don't consider that an option. I do love church sales and garage sales though.

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  50. I haven't had a chance to read thru the comments so I apologize if these are duplicates...Have you ever been to the HomeGoods in Burnsville off 42? HUGE! And not that far from Ikea, geographically. :-) Also, World Market is coming back, and might already be open, I've heard a rumor it is...

    I know what you mean about everything looking Ikea, we were starting to end up with that, because I do love Ikea...but Craigslist has been an awesome source for a few things (including a vintage dealer who listed things and I pre-paid for something I fell in love with based on just the pics which I had my dad hack...a dining room sideboard turned TV stand (at our last place) turned "landing strip" (current place).

    Also the ARC thrift store in Richfield is a gold mind and turns over often if you're making the trip to that area, they get a ton from Edina (so high end stuff at thrift store cheap...I scored a newly recovered in a great [stain resistant, even!] fabric 8 ft long couch with down cushions for a mere $35!! It was such a good deal I couldn't pass it up and put it into my bedroom at the time, it's our full time couch now that our last one bit the dust.

    http://www.bizjournals.com/twincities/news/2012/08/13/cost-plus-world-market-reenters-market.html

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    1. I should also say I have only been to the HomeGoods in Woodbury briefly but my girls were fussing (twin toddlers) so I didn't get to stay long, it might be the same size as Burnsville, now that I'm thinking about it.

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  51. Jenn, I have 2 Target, a Home Goods, TJMax and more within 5 miles of me. I have to drive about an hour to get to an IKEA. I went to IKEA last week and bought too much stuff I needed and need to go back for more for my daughter's birthday (she needs stuff for her room). Since I've been married for 24 years and both my husband and I had handmedowns to start with, our house has always been a hodge podge. I love IKEA and Target is my home away from home. One Target is in the mall and is huge and the other one is a self contained building and much smaller. When I want to go big window shopping I drive to the mall and when I just need to stock up on basics I go to the small one. I'm always having fun in there. lol Have fun this year exploring outside the Big Box Store. :)

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  52. Funny you should post this....Ikea just announced this morning that they are putting one in our town. SO pumped! I do love thrift and Home Goods but our nearest Ikea is 8 hours away right now!

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  53. Whenever we are in the Twin Cities, we hit Unique. You never know what you will find there! It's like a large Goodwill with very reasonable prices and all sorts of things. Have fun!

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  54. I like Target and IKEA, I just don't want my house to look like I live there. It's funny though, everyone thinks everything is IKEA now. I posted some photos of my office, which has hardly any IKEA in it, but that's what everyone kept assuming all of my furniture was IKEA. It killed me a little.

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  55. Which store was the green chair at? I would seriously consider traveling to get it! It's what I call "perfect green". This label applies to several shades, but I looooooove it. And my bf finally conceded to painting a living room wall a shade of not-tan!

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  57. You hit almost of my favorite places to treasure hunt. The other places that I like to go are consignment shops such as Goodwill or the Salvation army and garage sales. Also, I like craft stores such as Hobby Lobby and sentimental stores such as Kirklands.

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  58. I have no doubt about the amazing-ness of the lovely and inspiring things you will create from your fabulous finds going to other shops. You are so very talented and I would think that going "junking" would be right up your alley! A match made in heaven in my humble opinion. Have fun!

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  59. Don't forget all of your local Mom and Pop craft/thrift/antique/secondhand shops. And of course, those of us who are Mom-preneurs (perhaps an Organizing Consultant with Clever Container) appreciate the support as well! www.mycleverbiz.com/cleverlisat

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  60. I think I am thankful that I don't have an IKEA or Target within an hour away. :)

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  61. Love this post! Our first apartment was almost exclusively Ikea and Target, but when we bought our house we have gotten almost everything from antique shops, thrift stores, Habitat ReStore, and Craigslist. It's cheaper than Target/Ikea! Something I've been inspired to do lately is to check out free furniture on Craigslist and give it a make over - Chalk Paint maybe. Can't wait to see what you will find!

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  62. Some comments are a little uncalled for! Someone's budget is none of anyone's business. This blog is meant to inspire...how dare someone comment about how much it must cost to have all you have. Jealous much?!

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  63. I would love to see a post on mixing IKEA/Target stuff with items from thrift stores. When I try it, it just doesn't look "pulled together". When I go to a thrift store, I end up coming home with something that I liked there because it was a good deal and I think I can DIY it but then have a hard time integrating it or it just sits there in a never-ending DIY pile...

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  64. DO you shop the New brighton Habitat Store? If so, I need to be checking that one out!

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  65. Good for you !! :)
    Although, I must say that if I lived in the US and I had the choices that you have / prices at Ikea/Target I think I'd be tempted to shop there all the time too.
    I'm in Australia, and our Target stores are NOTHING like yours. Nowhere near as many homegoods unfortunately. Ikea prices here can be double what you pay in the US too, so not as 'cheap' for us here. Love your blog, and you have great ideas !! Donna

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  66. Love this post--so funny! Just wanted to say that I recovered my dining chairs in a laminated cotton (with a green and white damask print) after baby number one destroyed the original fabric! Two years and another baby later, they are still in perfect condition and stain free. My second sweetheart is just moving to a booster instead of her highchair and a much messier eater than her sister, so I am VERY happy with the chairs in that regard. That said, they are still "plastic" chairs and as soon as they are older I will definately switch it out for fabric again.

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  67. Love this post! I love that you show the high and lows of a similar product!

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  68. Love all your finds!! Love the finds at the Junkstore! I have read so many blogs giving love and props to Habitat ReStore and props to their great prices..... but the ReStore near me prices their items way too high! Not even worth the trip. Disappointing.

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  69. Love your blog. I've missed lots of post and was wondering is there a list of posts by date? If not, what's the easiest way to see all of the ones I've missed other than scrolling to the bottom and clicking older posts? Thanks. One other thing, didn't know how to leave a comment under anything but Anonymous. Clearly, I've got a lot to learn about this blogging thing.

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    1. There is an archives section on the sidebar that may help a bit, however, my apologies that navigation is not exactly the easiest on this site. Hoping to improve that soon.

      Thanks so much!

      xo,
      Jen

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  70. Love this!!! You have to tell me the best new places you find to shop or take me with you! I just finished a 30 day home spending hiatus (recap here: http://www.tealandlime.com/2012/09/home-spending-hiatus-recap/) and I am looking to continue on a limited spending plan. I want to be more thoughtful about my home purchases, too.

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  71. Finally, had time to sit down an read this post. I must laugh, so many of friends as me where I shop and very proudly I say my local neighbors. We are a blended family 2nd marriage for both of us on top of that we are military. With that said, we need to be on budget. So, all I do is buy from 1st garage sale, couldn't find it then Craigslist is my next stop, 3rd Restore (Habitat for humanity) still couldn't find thrift shops/consignment store. I have many famous name brands items which I have rejuvenated to our household needs. It is only as a last resort that I go to 1st Marshalls, TJMaxx, HomeGoods and last to Tuesday Morning. Otherwise it can wait. I have a quick mental note, if I can't find and can do without then I don't need it at all.

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  73. I can see Ikea from my office window. Literally. No way to take a hiatus! But funny enough, having such easy access to it, I actually go less than I did when it was a journey.

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