Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Tuesday's Customer Inspiration - Jennifer's sunny chairs!

Jennifer grew up with a mom who is incredibly talented around design and re-purposing pieces with "good bones" and obviously - based on the following photos - has developed that muscle herself.  Here's Jennifer's email:

Hi Susan,  My mom, Amy, helps out at Jubilee occasionally (and alerts me of any great deals she sees when helping out/shopping...not sure what she does more of!).  Anyway, she bought a table/chairs set and she only needed the table...so I lucked out and scored the chairs!  Yay!  So I thought I'd send you some before and after pics. 

They were a little beat up and the fabric was definitely not for me, but I loved the sleek style and thought the unique "squiggle" backs and medallions gave them such personality.  I had originally planned to lightly sand and stain these, but they had some kind of super gloss finish to them and rather than spend hours sanding I opted to paint.

I used a mustard yellow paint (to coordinate with some artwork and other accents in the adjacent living room) and several coats and a topcoat later...here they are.  I added some new foam for padding and picked out a neutral (but interesting) fabric for the seats.  I'm loving my happy "new" dining room chairs.

P.S. I also bought a children's table/chairs set for my kids and I plan to use the leftover yellow paint on those chairs.  My husband is a little concerned I'm going to paint all the wood furniture in the house...haha, I just might!

Wouldn't it be fun to gather around that great looking table in that sunny spot on those amazing chairs?!  I absolutely love what Jennifer did!

A big THANK YOU to Jennifer!

Have you purchased something from Jubilee Furniture that you've transformed - as Jennifer did - and you'd be willing to take some photos and email me at sgalbraith@outreachcommin.org with the thought of inspiring others to see used furniture in a new way?  Or, have you purchased something from Jubilee Furniture and done nothing but dusted it off and gave it a new home in your house and you'd be willing to take some photos and email me at sgalbraith@outreachcommin.org with the thought of inspiring others to see used furniture in a new way?  If so - that's great!  Whatchawaitingfor?

Enjoy this good day, dear reader!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Restoring hope. Providing opportunities.

What a difference a week makes!  Last Friday after I left for the store and before my husband returned home in the evening – a water line to our refrigerator – which had been incorrectly installed through our attic and had frozen – unfroze and burst bringing down both our kitchen ceiling and our family room ceiling and soaking the wood floors in the kitchen and the carpeting in the family room (which had been replaced about a year ago due to another water related incident).

My normally optimistic outlook first kicked into high gear (This won’t lick us!  What’s a little water damage in the big scheme of things!) but then deserted me last night and I found myself feeling incredibly sad and hopeless.

Thankfully, my husband was feeling hopeful enough for both of us but it really hit home how important hope is and how it impacts…everything! 

Which is why I love working for Outreach Community Ministries.  Outreach has this beautiful tag line – restoring hope and providing opportunities (to those most in need in DuPage County, Illinois).

You’ve heard this many times – but it’s worth repeating – the proceeds of everything we sell at Jubilee Furniture are helping to support the amazing work of restoring hope to men, women, children and families who are feeling hopeless, through the programs and services offered by Outreach.  By shopping at Jubilee Furniture you are helping others.  Simple concept.  Life-changing results (to read some of the stories of those impacted by Outreach’s work visit our sister site – Hearts of Grace).

So, you ready to shop?  Good!  Here are some of the things you’ll find in our 30,000 square feet of warehouse today (Friday) from 1 to 8 and tomorrow (Saturday) from 9 to 4!

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gorgeous Empire style antique chest and highboy – had been in donor’s family for over 100 years – some minor veneer damage on both pieces – highboy also has a mirror but there’s some missing hardware (which we hope to replace).  We’re selling each piece for $395

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Klaussner sofa w/chaise – chaise can be flipped to other side of sofa OR replaced with a spare seat cushion and you don’t use the chaise part at all – all this versatility for only $145

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lovely wingback chair priced $75; matching love seat for $65 (love seat seat cushions are worn and there’s some spot cleaning that needs to be done on love seat – thus the lower price)

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oval coffee table for $50; matching oval end table for $40

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this fabulous retro sofa is tied with the antique highboy and chest as my favorite piece this week – great low lines, actually very comfortable, amazing button back, tufted style, excellent condition (second photo is trying to show you one small rip on arm) priced $195

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this sofa is covered in a lovely muted color fabric – appears to be reupholstered by a novice – looks okay but when you sit on it you sink pretty far down and I’m thinking either I need to lose a ton of weight or there might be some structural issues – so priced only $30

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Lazboy leather/pleather (some parts are real leather some parts aren’t) sofa – both ends recline – some wear but not bad – priced $95

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the guys made several trips back to the Hampton Inn in Carol Stream which is under-going a complete remodel and donating their old furniture to Jubilee!  We have more of the green upholstered chairs – priced $30 each – and matching ottomans (not sure why the ottoman in my photo looks like a different color from the chair – it’s not) priced $15 each.  Further down you’ll see several photos of more of the dining room style chairs we picked up in early December which sold out very quickly

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Bauhaus sofa priced $85; matching over-sized chair for $50

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sofa with two ends that recline – needs a thorough cleaning – priced $25

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as promised  - here are photos of the Hampton Inn chairs – chairs with arms are selling for $25 each and the arm-less chairs are $20 each – fabric is green.  In the last photo the chairs are gathered around an oval table with three leaves and table pads (pads are a bit larger than table – but workable) priced $65

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did you ever in your wildest dreams think you could purchase a leather sofa for $3?  Structurally great – needs to be completely reupholstered – if you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at reupholstering but were afraid – this sofa is for you – minimal cash out-lay (actually now that I think about it I think we have a couple of other sofas that are structurally sound but need to be reupholstered and have incredibly low price tags on them)

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photo does not accurately capture this gorgeous square glass coffee table – it’s beautiful and I normally don’t like this style – priced $135

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sweet striped side chair priced $55

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Smithe Craft sofa – need some general cleaning – priced $65

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wing back chair – I noted some pet hair on it and overall it’s worn – priced $20

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great retro pleather chair priced $35

I’m still struggling with the massive repairs it will take to put our house back together (order is very important to me) – but I’m thankful for insurance, sunshiny days, fulfilling work, an upbeat, caring husband and the knowledge I’ll connect with fabulous customers later today!

Maybe you, dear reader?  That would be super nice!  I’m suddenly feeling much more hopeful.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tuesday's Customer Inspiration - Wendi's lovely sofa/hall table!

I love so many things about today's customer inspiration.  First, that Wendi was introduce to Jubilee Furniture by her sister (love when happy customers tell others about us!)  Secondly, that her transformed hall table was inspired by another Jubilee Furniture customer inspiration (Rachel's).  Sigh.  Smile.

Here's Wendi's email:

Hi Susan!  My husband and I had the good fortune of being introduced to Jubilee by my sister, Kari, and have had such great experiences every time we walk through the door thanks to you, your staff and the amazing finds there.  We moved from Tokyo to Chicago recently and are decorating our very first American home from scratch and on a budget, which is where Jubilee has shone.

We've picked up chairs, amazing artwork, frames, an antique lamp, Christmas ornaments and books, as well as this gorgeous sofa table.  It features great quality and craftsmanship, and was a steal at just $65.  It was nice as is, but we wanted to add a modern touch that would pop against all the wood and bright walls in our living room.

I love the finished product, which cost about $10 in paint supplies.  I threw a stack of beautiful hardbound books and a fresh flower arrangement on top and it's pretty perfect.

Thanks for your wonderful store (which makes me feel good about supporting such a good cause) and staff. See you next time!



In additional email exchanges, Wendi shared that the wall color is Benjamin Moore's Mountain Laurel (picked on a whim without so much as a test sample.  But it was a winner; I love how it changes with the light, sometimes green, sometimes blue...) and she got the black and white idea from an earlier customer inspiration post that I fell in love with. 

The crisp white paint on the great lines of the table against that gorgeous wall color is a winner!  I also love that Wendi used the original hardware but painted it black.  Fantastic!

If you've purchased something from Jubilee Furniture and would be willing to take a photo (or three) and email them to me at sgalbraith@outreachcommin.org with the details - I'd be grateful and you just might inspire someone else!

I hope you have a great week, dear reader, and I'll see you back here on Friday!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Verbal ticks and fabulous furnishings!

I was driving with a friend recently as he was telling me a story about something that had happened to him that week.  He very much wanted to get the day this event happened correct and kept backtracking – No wait, I think it was Tuesday night.  No, no, Monday evening.  Then again it WAS Tuesday because I had had tacos for lunch and that was on Tuesday! – and the whole time I sorta wanted to laugh.

Don’t get me wrong – not at him – at myself!  This is something I do all the time!  Though the actual day/time whatever I’m talking about often doesn’t matter at all to my listener – somehow it’s super important to me that I get it right – like there’s some accuracy police listening in ready to bust me!

I also find it virtually impossible to leave a one sentence voice mail message.  Seriously, I explain why I’m calling – in detail – and then often run through it a second time before I can hang up!  No wonder most people simply phone back and ask what I wanted instead of listening to my message!  Is there some kind of name for that?  Like when you check to make sure a package or envelope REALLY did go into the mailbox?

Thankfully, my many quirks aren’t as noticeable when you’re simply reading the blog.  Unless I point them out – which now that I think of it – I do often!  Oh well – they say recognizing you have a problem is the first step toward change!

Speaking of change – there’s a lot of new-to-us furniture in our inventory since last weekend!  Let’s take a look!

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amazing mission-style double rocker priced $175

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sweet black computer desk (drawer opens and front panel folds down for a key board) priced $65

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very dark, dark, dark brown four piece leather sectional – one piece an armless chair which could be used to make either side longer or as a separate piece – leather torn in two places – one not visible, one on one of the seat cushions – otherwise in excellent condition priced $295; leather ottoman priced $75

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fabulous leather chairs – badly stained – priced $45 each

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bluish purple loveseat in so-so condition that opens to a bed – priced $45

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great leather sofa with nail-head trim – back seat cushions were originally attached to the back part of the sofa and they have come away (ripped – but it’s not noticeable) priced $195

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fabulous old teacher’s desk for $65 (not original hardware which is too bad)

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wonderful IKEA Varde kitchen island/cabinets (probably technically NOT an island since there is no overhand to pull stools up to – isn’t that part of a kitchen island definition?) – drawer hardware never installed but included – tons of excellent storage and counter-top space – priced $325

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fabulous Guzzini rolling cart – each tier has a lift out server – priced $65

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here’s another IKEA storage piece – narrower than the Varde one – but again provides excellent storage and counter-top space – priced $165

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though chairs need some refinishing/cleaning – this is a very nice oak table with two leaves (when both leaves are installed – there’s a noticeable bow – some added leg support is really needed) and EIGHT chairs – all for $225

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sweet wicker sofa with five throw pillows – priced $75

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lovely painted writing desk priced $50; matching wall hanging shelf for $20 (shelf is on it’s side on the desk – couldn’t stand it up properly without actually hanging it)

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crappy photo of a very nice Lexington full or queen head board, foot board and side rails priced $125

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sorta butcher-block style twin head board with foot board, side rails, and under-mattress support rails – priced $95

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amazing dressing table with sweet mirror priced $125

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very nice sofa priced $65

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Schweiger sofa for $75; matching love seat for $85 (love seat is in better condition than the sofa)

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Room and Board 80” Clarke sofa in “ink” – excellent condition, no fading that I could see, really no issues at all! R & B original price $1,999 Jubilee Furniture price? $425 (that’s a little more than 78% OFF the original purchase price!)

I hope whatever snow they’re predicting doesn’t stop you from coming out to the store either today (Friday) from 1 to 8 or tomorrow (Saturday) from 9 to 4!

Again, drive carefully if we do get all the snow they’re predicting for the Chicagoland area and remember our hours are 1 to 8 on Friday and 9 to 4 Saturday.

Yikes – my repeating is spreading!

I know, embarrassingly corny and somewhat predictable, eh.

Take care, dear reader!