Last Saturday, my family and I ventured to IKEA in Charlotte for the very first time. Though I didn't know exactly what to expect, I did enough research ahead of time to at least have an idea. Since we were driving a while to get there, we wanted to make sure we had the best experience, and got the furniture I was looking for. That's exactly what we did!
I read all sorts of tips & FAQ's for shopping at IKEA before hitting the road, so hopefully this review of my experience will be beneficial to someone in the same boat! Of course I'll be featuring some of my fab purchases as well!
To our surprise, we arrived at IKEA on Saturday morning right as they were evacuating the building for a fire drill! (Only us right!) This gave us time to decide on a game plan before starting to shop.
When it was time to go inside, we could either go straight to the warehouse area to pick out and purchase our items, or walk through the many IKEA showrooms. Since this was our first time in the store, we chose to walk through and see all the products in action. During my next visit (because I'll definitely be going back,) I'll probably head straight to the self-service furniture area to save time and avoid the crowds.
As we made your way through each room, we were able to look at items for each room of a home. There are separate sections for the bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and office items, as well as a multitude of others.
Walking through the showrooms gave me the opportunity to see the items that I'd looked at online, and stumble upon some new ones along the way. In order to keep track of items that I hadn't originally picked out, my Dad took notes using the IKEA provided pencil and shopping sheets. These are helpful, especially when an item's tag shows the aisle and bin where you can later pick it up.
This fabric belongs to a pair of curtains that caught my eye while shopping.
After checking out the tag, it let us know the measurements, price and exactly where to find the item later on in the store.
The tag system worked the same way for this acrylic desk chair. This piece wasn't featured on the IKEA website, but as soon as I saw it, I knew it was what I was looking for! We were able to write down the tag information and pick it up in the self-service furniture area just before checking out.
By sticking to the main path and following the blue arrows (thank goodness for those,) we eventually ended up at the end, where you can either make a pit stop at the IKEA restaurant, or go downstairs to the self-service furniture/checkout area.
Though I didn't try the IKEA cafe this time, I've heard it's definitely worth giving it a try! After two hours of shopping and scooping up our small items, it was time to find the couch and loveseat. These came in two large boxes, and each had to have a cart of their own. We each ended up pushing a metal pallet to get everything to the car.
Here's my Mom with the chair, curtains, wall mural and couch covers!
My Dad was in charge of pushing the couch, while I had the loveseat.
So happy to be in line and finally buying my finds!
Once we got outside, IKEA made it super easy to get everything to the car. They also had friendly staff outside to help load our purchases with ease.
Carts 1, 2, & 3!
Shopping at IKEA was fun, but two hours later, we were tired and starving!
We then headed to Gary's BBQ in China Grove for a great lunch and old-fashioned ice cream!
We went home that day feeling accomplished, and so excited for the update to my living room! Thanks again to my amazing family for going on this little adventure with me! I couldn't have done it without you.
If you're looking for inexpensive furniture that looks great, IKEA is definitely a must-see! Now that I've seen firsthand how it can transform a plain space, I know I'll be back!
Don't forget to check back tomorrow to see the before/after pictures of my living room. You won't believe your eyes, or at least I couldn't!
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As always, Have a Sweet Day!