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Furniture shopping can be like Rene Zellweger’s Dates

By 07/14/2010February 10th, 201722 Comments

I only remember enjoying dating when I was in my late teens and early 20’s. After that, it was only fun when I was dating ‘the one’. You know, the one you end up with, even if it’s just for a little while. Otherwise my experience of dating was just like Renee Zellweger said in Jerry Maguire, “All of them ran a distant second to a good book and a warm bath”.

Renee on the Plane

Shopping for furniture can be very close to dating, it’s only fun when you find ‘the one’, the piece (or 2 or 3) that makes you happy because you know it’s perfect, especially when it’s at a price point you want to pay.

Accessory shopping is so much easier but you can’t really shop for accessories until the big pieces are installed.

So here’s my confession, I did not find the one in Seattle, mostly because I booked too many consultations and ran out of quality shopping time 🙂 Oops. And it doesn’t help that I don’t know Seattle that well and hadn’t really mapped out a plan of where to go in advance.

Got some cute summer clothes downtown and some great napkin rings and martini glasses at Crate & Barrel and that’s about it!

By the way, all of you husbands out there that think your wife is ‘having fun’ shopping to finish decorating the house, I have a newsflash for you; it’s not always like that. Sometimes it’s frustrating and downright depressing—when you end up finding nothing.

That’s when you start thinking maybe you’re not creative at all, maybe you should hire a designer because it’s never going to get finished. We [designers] think that way too, but mostly when it comes to our own house!

I have a fun consultation I’m going to share with you though; stay tuned!

If you would like your home to fill you with happiness every time you walk in, contact us! We would love to help you choose colours, select the right combination of hard finishes or create a plan to pull your room together. You can find our fabulous e-design consultation packages here.

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  • Between you, me and the Fencepost says:

    Just about everything lately is coming in to a far second, third or fourth to a bath and a good book (with a bag of S&V chips too of course) Here I thought you would be coming home with all sorts of cool stuff! Hurry up and post about your consultation!


    What a great title and a equally great point.


  • Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions says:

    I would look at that as it just wasn't meant to be this trip, Maria. The pieces you're looking for may not be in Seattle. I do know what you mean though. When I am having a problem finding something for a spot in my own home, the area to be filled is left blank and empty. I'd rather that then just filling the space with "something".

  • Mary says:

    Ha! I had never thought of it like that before. But how true!!

  • pve design says:

    We are about to begin a major addition and all I seem to get from "the one" is "are you done?" Mind you he has done a ton of work, but I cannot even begin to tell you the hours I have spent editing and selecting. In the end he will say it was his idea, his idea all along.
    Love at first site. It is better to wait for the right one.
    (love those glasses and the square rings)

  • Ivy Lane says:

    this is so true! I am still hunting for "the one" in my bedroom…a new bed that is!!

    Have a wonderful Wednesday!!

  • Dale at Hospitality Design Inspirations says:

    I run into this problem all the time. Sometimes what you're looking for, and know in your gut what you're looking for just isn't out there. And it's not that you're being too picky…it's just bad timing.

    I love those napkin rings btw..

  • Mary says:

    Why is it always so hard to decorate your own home?!?! Sometimes I have such a hard time with my OWN space, it makes me question if I really know what I am doing! Ha!

  • Anonymous says:

    Yeah, Seattle isn't the most exciting place in the world for furniture – or clothes! – shopping. But i hope you at least saw Angie while you were in town…

  • Lisa says:

    Great post and so true! That perfect something can be very elusive.

  • DesignTies says:

    I enjoyed this post Maria, largely because I can SO relate! In addition to the challenge of actually finding the piece(s) needed for a room though, I'm limited – like so many people actually – by a lack of decor funds (rule: money to renos first, decor after – darned hubby!)… that means that I run the risk of not being being able to purchase the perfect item if I DO find it!! Geesh! 😉
    Hope you're well!

  • Ideezine says:


    Remember being a visionary designer means that what you're looking for hasn't been created yet. So enjoy the journey because what your looking for will show up and the price will be perfect. I've experienced this many times along the designers path of hunting 'n gathering.


  • Kelly Berg says:

    Maria, you are too funny! I don't think there is anyone else out there that is gonna make a connection between Renee Zellweger's character in Jerry McGuire and furniture shopping. Kudos to you for originality! 🙂
    (Do you not have access to C&B in Canada? ok …just answered my own question. Just 2 of them? I feel like we have one on every block here in CA!)

  • traci zeller designs says:

    You are so funny! I know exactly what you mean. I love going to factory sales, etc. — but really, they are only fun when you find "the one!" Can't wait to hear about your consultation, though!!!

  • Kimberly Grigg says:

    I am just embarking upon the beginning stages of a major redecorating project at my house…And how RIGHT you are about what a struggle it is when we designers have to make the time to design our OWN homes! I have put this overhaul off for a couple of YEARS now, but I am proud to say that I am FINALLY started with my foyer, as I have been showing in my blog this week. What a production! Whew. Thanks for making me feel like I'm not alone! 🙂

  • Mona Thompson says:

    Here! Here! I agree 100%. Why is it so much harder to decorate for yourself. Then you even start to question your talent. Since I have started blogging, it has been nice to hear that others have this same frustration. It makes me feel a little better.

  • Just A Girl says:

    This describes my moment in Ikea with my husband yesterday. I was getting frustrated and then realized that accessories are the hardest part, and that I need to finish the main events first, Ugh.

  • Christina - The Diva's Home says:

    Shopping can be frustrating! I find it so here in South Texas because we are limited in our options. There aren't any really big name furniture stores here. We have to go to San Antonio (4 hour drive) or Houston (6 hour drive) for that. At least we have the internet! 🙂 Hope you have better luck next time!

  • barbara@hodge:podge says:

    How frustrating. Sometimes the right stuff comes along in the most unexpected places! LOve Crate and Barrel, wish we had one here in Vancouver. I have the same martini glasses, they are the best!

  • Donna says:

    I love Rene Zellweger! I can see her saying exactly what you did–and I agree!

    Wow–you are right to about the shopping. I spent several hours in town only to never come up with the gold fabric I wanted for the livingroom cushions. I felt so glum! I KNOW I can find it, but I just need more time. And I didn't have my color card with me. Live and learn!

    Donna @ Comin' Home

  • Marlis says:

    I love what you said about finding the right things as being work. 'Ain't that the truth!!!" It took me 3 years to find the perfect headboard and then it's still not 100%, but I can fix the 10% so I'm delighted..

  • Liz, Viive and Benji says:

    Well, I think shopping is all about spending years of finding nothing until the AHa moment comes. It's like giving birth. I do have to say,even with the thousands of showrooms right next door to us we have been frustrated. Things are much improved since the pangs of the early China transition. The loot is great, you all should come!

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