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A Bench and 20 minutes in Ikea.

August 27, 2012  —  Written by Julia Marcum 

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As promised in this pop-up weekend post, I am here to share with you our Ikea haul from Saturday.  We only had a total of 20 minutes to shop (one day, ONE day I will get some quality time with that store) so there was no messing around. I had to stick to my list.

But before we get to lists and purchases, lets back up to what spawned this quick trip in the first place:

I found this bench in the online classifieds that I loved so much.  The contemporary mission style design and price (we actually got it for $30!) could not be beat.  So, we picked her up and I imagined putting the newest member of the family in the empty nook in the living room in front of the window. When we got it home, it was a little more orangey than I liked could bear to look at.

Unfortunately this is the best before shot I have since Chris got right to sanding all of the…orange…stain off.  Although, maybe that is a fortunate event because, woot!, the job got done quickly!! By the end of the evening I was wiping all the dust from our, now naked, bench and prepping it for fresh stain.

We decided to go with a dark, rich, warm stain–Minwax’s Dark Walnut.   It said it would take around 8 hours to dry and it actually took 3 days before it was completely not tacky.

All of the waiting feels worth it because the result is a bench much more up our alley.  It is darker and has a slightly more rustic feeling with the original clean lines even more apparent.

And what did we stop by Ikea to get that has to do with this bench?  Ikea has the best prices on pots, of course! And while we were there we picked up some plants, too.

They are all pretty low-maintenance.  They just need full, indirect sunlight (which makes this location perfect), and watering once or twice a month.  I think I can handle that.  I was actually looking for something that I could water more often because ever since Greta spent a few days with her plant-loving “Papa Ginger” (my mom) she loves to water things. I catch her filling up a Neti-pot and walking around the yard watering our weeds.  Lovely.

I do believe it is safe to say we are anxious to get more plants around the house and even added to this bench.  And can you imagine getting a bold pot mixed in there as well?  Mmmm.

I will keep these alive.  I will keep these alive. I will keep these alive.

So that’s the story of our bench find that got a little life injected into it and on top of it.  The rest of the living room is still in disarray, but this nook feels right.  Anyone else have a dedicated spot for house plants or do you douse your house with them?  We’re working on spreading more life around our whole place.  It makes such a difference.

What do you think?

  1. […] got this bench a while ago, and refinished it beautifully and it sat in our last home just fine. And then we moved […]

  2. Victoria Bradley-Morris says:

    My friends, Shawn and Jess, have a bench like this under one of their windows. It’s overflowing with plants, and it’s the piece in their house of which I am most envious. Of course, I live with two curious cats, who can’t stop attacking the singular potted tree in my living room…

  3. meaganbriggs3 says:

    Dang disqus didn’t post my comment!

    I love the bench, and I am so jeal of ksl. Craigslist is always over priced and sketchy. Honestly, it freaks me out buying anything from Craigslist!!!

    Totally need to get my butt over to the dang nursery down the street and get some plants like this!! This bench looks so inviting and gorgeous. Oh my goshhhh I can totally picture Greta walking around with a netti pot. LOL!! Silly girl….

  4. Jessie McKinley says:

    Love the bench!! Can’t believe you got it for 30 bucks, that is awesome. The plants look perfect on it as well.

  5. Love the bench and the plants! It looks great there under the window!

  6. Kamaila says:

    Good job on the bench, I also bought Ikea plants but so far they are just in my dining room, waiting to be assigned a spot

  7. Beautiful bench! I love the plants you got too. I don’t have any plants around my house because my black thumb kills them upon sight! That being said, somehow I’ve managed to keep a bamboo plant alive that I got at IKEA over a year ago so maybe their plants are better than others? Or maybe bamboo is just hard to kill haha

  8. Lyndsay @ that 70s house says:

    minwax’s dark walnut makes me swoon! IKEA really does have the best prices on plants/pots. I have trouble keeping plants alive normally, but I purchased some bamboo shoots, as well as three cactus plants from IKEA about 4 months ago and so far, so good! The plants you are supposed to forget to water seem to work best for me ;).

  9. Meg @ 18 Preston says:

    I love IKEAs white ceramic pots! They have a size that fits those little $5 plants from the grocery store perfectly. I think that size pot is about $2.50 so they are a perfect thing to stock up on and have on hand for teacher/hostess/holiday gifts

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