APT: Washington Heights + Scavenging

Damaged goods = love.

I’m a sucker for a bargain, and the DWR Annex in Secaucus (almost) never fails to disappoint. This Saarinen side table looks totally fine, right?

From this angle, too! I can’t see anything wrong with it. Why would it be marked down EIGHT-FIVE PERCENT??

Ah-ha! I see why now—there’s a chunk missing out of the edge. Oh well. Doesn’t bother me! It’s near a wall, anyway. You have to really look hard to see the damage, and even if it were more visible, who cares?

I’ve gotta say, I highly recommend that anyone who thinks IKEA is somehow inferior to so-called “high-end” goods in terms of overall durability spend an hour at the DWR Annex. Trust me, a $430 laminated side table chips just as easily as an $80 (for two!) version (and looks just as bad afterward). You need to look at the quality of individual products. Don’t worry about the brand name!

(Also, tulips. They make everything more beautiful.)

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  • Reply meghan February 2, 2010 at 11:23 am

    What a total spave!

  • Reply michelle February 2, 2010 at 11:27 am

    it is a rather delicious looking table, perhaps someone took a bite out of it.

  • Reply lisa February 2, 2010 at 11:29 am

    Awesome score!

  • Reply Pam February 2, 2010 at 11:36 am

    Good lesson!! Especially for all of the design snobs who think that if it isn’t designer, then it’s crap. So not true!!

  • Reply Chroma Lab February 2, 2010 at 11:39 am

    It definitely pays to be relaxed when it comes to a piece’s condition! Sweet find.

  • Reply AHJ February 2, 2010 at 11:41 am

    Nice score. You could try to repair the table. The hardest part would be to make a crverd mold for the edge. Might even be worth hiring a pro… you know, if you cared about the chip.


  • Reply kat February 2, 2010 at 11:45 am

    You have admirable qualities. I think that would drive me insane! But then I have issues. 😉 (Perhaps comforting, though, in the sense that it wasn’t *me* who did the damage.) Great looking, though!

  • Reply kat February 2, 2010 at 11:46 am

    PS: good choice of reading material 😉

  • Reply Tess February 2, 2010 at 11:49 am

    It looks great! I find it to be very charming. Nothing is perfect anyway. What a deal!

  • Reply heather February 2, 2010 at 12:11 pm

    I love them with marble tops. I think it looks great with the chip – it just aged ahead of its time. I like my furniture a little dinged up and not so perfect. 🙂
    These make excellent bedside tables too. I put one in my guest room and considered having a marble top made for it from the leftover countertop scraps. But that expense on a bedside table in a guest room didn’t really make that much sense to me!

  • Reply AHJ February 2, 2010 at 12:20 pm

    *curved mold. /iTypo

  • Reply verhext February 2, 2010 at 12:56 pm

    & if anyone notices, just say “that fritz! he’s so crazy!” and have him growl at them.

  • Reply christiana February 2, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    Great find! Too funny, I just found a similarly awesome deal on a damaged Saarinen table: http://fermliving.blogspot.com/2010/01/filling-time.html.

    Your table looks lovely in the bedroom with those tulips. Ahhh, is it almost spring yet? Love your NYC apartment!

  • Reply Michelle February 2, 2010 at 1:06 pm

    tulips! my favorite flowers! and wow, that stand looks great! i want one now too! my mom doesn’t like ikea very much, but i think it’s more not being her style than the quality of the materials. i, on the other hand, could stay allllllll day long in that store. =)

  • Reply Heidi February 2, 2010 at 1:09 pm

    Can you please please post pictures of your entire new apartment, the whole thing? I can’t tell if this is in there or at your house, and I’m dying to see the room! It looks amazing!

  • Reply jennifer in sf February 2, 2010 at 1:23 pm

    Oh how I wish there was a DWR Annex near me.

  • Reply Anna at D16 February 2, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    AHJ/kat: I really don’t care about the chip. Living in a 125-year-old house (and now having an apt that’s about the same age) makes you get over that kind of stuff quickly!!

    verhext: Your comment made me snort really loudly. 😀 😀

    Heidi: This is at the apartment. You can always tell where the photo is taken by checking the “filed under” categories at the beginning of the posts.

  • Reply Anna at D16 February 2, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    Christiana: That is AMAZING! What a great deal you got!! (Your new place is so cute!)

  • Reply patty February 2, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    I *love* my Klubbo(s). I especially love that they cost me $80. Heh.

    You are inspiring me to hoof it (figuratively speaking!) from CT to the Annex some day soon. Well, when I have some extra scratch, that is.

  • Reply amyoliver February 2, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    I am pea green with envy. It is a thing of great beauty, chip and all….

  • Reply Danielle February 2, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    Now it has character! Great find!!

  • Reply Agnes February 2, 2010 at 2:09 pm

    Cool find Anna, you just gave a good name to damaged goods. The table fits so well, at first I thought this was a photo from a magazine.
    I love how the little pied-a-terre begins to shape up in a minimal modern way.

  • Reply yansy February 2, 2010 at 2:57 pm

    I can’t believe for the price you scored that table. Love it! It looks fantastic in your new apartment.

  • Reply Lori February 2, 2010 at 4:09 pm

    Oh, I wish I had a damaged goods store near me! And nice punning. Tulip flowers, tulip table … 🙂

  • Reply Jen February 2, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    Score indeed! And it looks lovely and charming, even with the chip. Who will notice? No big deal…And I’m a perfectionist.

    If nothing else, now that it has a chip, you won’t have to be so worried about wrecking it entirely yourself. It has already paid its debt to Furniture Damage-don, so nothing could possibly happen to it from now on. 😉

  • Reply Anna at D16 February 2, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    Lori: That was a completely UN-intentional use of the tulips, I swear! I didn’t even think of that until you pointed it out. How funny!

  • Reply nkp February 2, 2010 at 4:18 pm

    That is a score. Can it be filed down or perhaps filled with a white epoxy? I was afraid of something like this when we finally saved our pennies and splurged on the full-size oval dining version. I have three young boys and I was certain they were going to destroy it. Well, we use it in our breakfast nook for every meal and although the first scratch was painful, it’s taken a daily beating and still looks amazing. That table makes me smile everyday and I know we will have it forever!

    Great buy!

  • Reply juli February 2, 2010 at 7:22 pm

    If only DWR in Toronto had similar bargoons. Yeah right. No warehouse = no marked down goodies (and for some reason they insist on charging US prices and you have to pay for shipping, which feels weird when you physically go into the store. I mean you think it’s $300 but in the end it’s more like $550. Not fun.). Always envious of your DWR deals.

  • Reply carol February 2, 2010 at 7:31 pm

    I agree on all counts. a little damage but affordable is always my choice.
    (same with clothes- a broken zipper, missing button- hey, I can deal with that)!

  • Reply the domestic fringe February 2, 2010 at 7:56 pm

    Great bargain and the tulips really are beautiful!


  • Reply Shilo February 2, 2010 at 8:43 pm

    I wholly support your statement about how the quality of objects should be judged on the virtues of the object itself and not the reputation of the store it comes from.

    Case in point: many years before I met him, my husband bought some $20 yard chairs from Ikea. They broke within weeks of purchase and he forever vowed to avoid the retailer and it’s products.
    When the Brooklyn store first opened, I appealed to him to go with me but he staunchly refused and admonished me for being too eager to part with my money for crap.
    I went alone when he was at work and bought the same Norbo table you have in your apartment kitchen. By the time he came home, the table was almost completely assembled and he was astonished to hear that the solid wood beauty was only thirty bucks!

    Your new table looks great. Even if you completely replaced the marble top, you would still come out ahead. LOVE the black base.

  • Reply Anna February 2, 2010 at 8:46 pm

    The tulips look beautiful on the table. Perfection is overrated!

  • Reply Elizabeth February 2, 2010 at 9:44 pm

    It was really interesting to go to the DWR Warehouse sale last year in San Francisco and to see what things still looked pretty good (most of the chairs and rugs) and what things looked just god awful. I definitely decided against ever buying one of those Twilight sleep sofas after seeing what they looked like after some wear.

  • Reply Gali February 3, 2010 at 1:09 am

    So true about brand items usually being of the same quality as cheaper ones! The only brands I trust for furniture and am willing to pay tons for is Roche Bobois, everything from them is so durable, it’s rather incredible.

  • Reply Jesse Lu February 3, 2010 at 1:18 am

    Here, here… Tulips do make anything look much much better!

  • Reply rebecca February 3, 2010 at 4:05 am

    i am so jealous! can you find me one, too?

    anna, you are awesome and i love reading your blog. it makes me so happy and truly inspires me.

  • Reply Ninainvorm February 3, 2010 at 6:18 am

    I fully agree! When I see a beautiful vase or some other ceramics with a little crack or a chip off, I just make sure I put the damaged back towards the wall… Problem solved! And yes, a lot of things can get a bit damaged when using them anyway… That’s no drama.

  • Reply lisa February 3, 2010 at 9:47 am

    Embrace the chip!
    Give that table a 180 turn!

    I chipped a tooth when I was 8. Mom got it bonded of course.
    When I ventured out on my own I got rid of the bonding and now I embrace the chip!

  • Reply elisabeth February 3, 2010 at 10:48 am

    Ok, I have asked this before, please come and do some pro bono decorating at my home. I will cook for you and your Evan, give the dogs a biscuit, and show you my ticket stubs from the Cure concerts I attended in the 80’s. Oh, and I will give you a $1.00.

    BTW…in a completely different direction, have you tried any Mario Badescu products? I think you would really like the eye creams!

  • Reply Eric February 3, 2010 at 11:26 am

    If that chip does bother you, I’d find a friend with a wet tile saw and just run it through and cut it straight, then just butt it up against the wall, but it doesnt really matter because I dont think that chip bothers you one bit.

  • Reply becky February 3, 2010 at 11:31 am

    Nice Score! Also, I had no idea Douglas Coupland wrote a Generation A, I’ve only read Gereration X. And Microserfs. BTW, did you see his house in the NYTimes? It was a amazing and totally up your alley (I would presume!).


  • Reply Anna at D16 February 3, 2010 at 11:43 am

    nkp/Eric: Honest to goodness, the chip really does not bother me AT ALL. I’m not looking for a what to fix/conceal/repair it. I swear.

    elisabeth: Thank you for the offer, but I barely have time to sleep, much less decorate a house! 😉

    becky: DC has written a whole bunch of books! Generation A just came out a couple of months ago. (And yes, his house is great — he has excellent taste.)

  • Reply Lindsey Lou! February 3, 2010 at 11:48 am

    WOW! What a find, and for a chipped bit? That’s amazing. I’m the same way, I’ll buy damaged goods or scavenge for damaged goods, so long as it’s fixable or concealable. I found a french nightstand that someone threw out because the drawer was broken. Nothing that wood glue didn’t fix…

  • Reply Lori February 3, 2010 at 6:47 pm

    Doesn’t a bargain like that make your heart beat faster?? The thrill of the hunt is almost as good as the purchase itself. Good job! 🙂

  • Reply micah February 3, 2010 at 10:56 pm

    What a beautiful table and yes, the tulips don’t hurt!

  • Reply kristian February 3, 2010 at 10:57 pm

    not really a fair judgement of quality. for all you know, that could have fallen off the back of a delivery truck or gotten run over by a fork lift.

  • Reply Sarj February 4, 2010 at 4:14 am

    Great find – and I must agree – the tulips are gorgeous!

    PS – after an initial avoidance, I now *love* IKEA – especially when I move house so often. Plus, I get to drink strange Swedish drinks! It’s win-win 😉

  • Reply Suzen February 4, 2010 at 8:08 am

    I say you sand that little area off and call it a “cord channel” or something. You know? A convenient place for your table lamp cord to drop down to the outlet. Just go with it. It’s a cute table regardless!

  • Reply Naomi February 4, 2010 at 4:13 pm

    Man I may have to make the trek up there! I wonder if they have 8 slightly dented Marais AC chairs. Pretty please?

  • Reply OMG-D16 February 4, 2010 at 9:59 pm

    I love this table! The DWR annex sounds amazing! Is it open every weekend? For some reason I thought it was only for one weekend. If not… road trip!!

  • Reply Anna at D16 February 4, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    OMG-D16: It’s not just open in the weekends, it’s open EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK!

    p.s. Love your user name. 😀

  • Reply Shayna February 5, 2010 at 3:40 pm

    Ha, you are the bargain-hunter extraordinaire. Maybe if I wish hard enough some of your luck will rub off on me, virtually?

  • Reply taba February 11, 2010 at 3:26 pm

    you are my design hero.

  • Reply laurie February 24, 2010 at 8:09 pm

    totally agreed. There is not one thing in my house that was not damaged first . . . . (only some suffer a bit more once they get here)

  • Reply down comforter March 4, 2010 at 12:12 am

    Very valid point made 🙂

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