(October 3, 2010.) Evermore de-lofting.
Early in our loft days when we stilled regularly combed Salvation Army and Goodwill for furniture, Tom and I came across The Leather Sectional on a 50% Midnight Madness sale. When his eyes met its smooth, creamy, perfectly broken in leather cushions, Tom fell in love a little, I think. He had to have it and I can’t even remember how we got it home. The little guy has since inhabited almost every couch-designated area in the loft but had lately been relegated to parlor status near the front door. I felt guilty about picking out most of the furniture that was going into our LA apartment and I wanted him to have his gorgeous mid-century vintage leather couch, so along it came in the moving truck.
Horrors. It did not fit well in the new living room.
What appeared to be such a wee little sitting thing in our warehouse loft was now an inflexible beast. No matter what arrangement we tried, it just didn’t seem like it was going to work. Further emphasizing the impracticality of keeping it was the fact that I already had a couch down here that fit the existing decor (okay, whatever, so the only existing decor is actually the kitchen at the moment…). With a heavy heart, I put The Leather Sectional up on Craigslist. Look how happy and snug he appears in the U-Haul! We had to stage the couch in the U-Haul in order to get serviceable photos.
Oh, and I sold a bamboo kitchen cart also purchased at a Goodwill 50% off sale. His absence is not as noticeable.
Sunday morning was a day of shopping! After brunch at Amandine, we headed over to West Elm in the downtown Santa Monica area because I had seen some bed frames on sale. Side note about Amandine; it’s a great, cute French style cafe/patisserie close to where our new apartment is, and we had been there once before last year and that first experience had been miserable. This place is so well-liked by the neighborhood that it is really fucking packed. Not to mention that people were rude, pushy, and vultures when it came to getting tables. This last experience was less frenetic, but I will never want to come ever again after 11 a.m. (In contrast, on Saturday morning, Tom and I had breakfast/brunch at a small French cafe called Ingrid’s in Beverly Hills. It was super cheap and laid back, and there was even an older French couple who were regulars having the most Frenchy breakfast of coffee and little croissants. I had a Croque Madame. They served us butter and jam in little ornate glass dishes.)
At West Elm, I finally picked a narrow-legged dark wood frame that fits most of our existing bedroom furniture. I had to order it online since they didn’t carry it in the store, but they waive the shipping (although not a “delivery processing fee,” bastards) since they didn’t have it stocked. West Elm customer service here totally sucks, by the way. Tom and I inquired about the bed, left to think it over for about 20 minutes, and when I went back to the register to say that I decided to order the bed frame that they told me they didn’t have and would order for me, the woman at the counter looked at me blankly yet annoyedly (something that could only really be perfected after years in retail, as I totally have given this look to customers when I was a bookseller in DC). I wasn’t expecting her to understand the entire context of what I was asking for even though she had been standing there listening to us and talking to us with the other guy not 20 minutes earlier, but her tone was so hostile when she said, “Who said that? We never do that.”
She wasn’t exactly rude, as she did end up helping me with my order, but she had a very confrontational attitude and while I was inputting the order into their computer, another customer was complaining to a manager behind me about her unsatisfactory experience. In the store’s defense, however, this customer was totally pushy and actually rude, and pushy, rude people don’t mesh at all with confrontational, abrasive salespeople. This was a totally quintessential LA experience to me.
Another quintessential LA experience was shopping at TJ Maxx. Not only did they carry Philosophy bath products, they were selling Dolce & Gabbana heels. I bought a Le Creuset 8 quart stockpot (in blue to match my blue cast-iron knockoff pots from Ikea!) and a Ralph Lauren houndstooth wool blanket, and Tom bought complete sets of Lacoste coral/melon-colored bath towels to de-pastel-pinkify our bathroom. I’m going to try and decorated the bathroom in an apothecary/science lab theme. I’ll probably buy some beakers for accessory storage and framed vintage medical prints to hang on the wall. My and Tom’s matching MRIs will also probably go up there, too.