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I can't achieve the look I want with this furniture, can I?

(102 Posts)
Interiordespair Mon 17-Apr-17 18:27:52

In a nutshell, I left my marriage and am starting again without any furniture. My parents have very generously offered to buy me some new furniture, but as with all free gifts there is a snag. The snag being that they get to choose the furniture. I have been holding off for this reason but we have one ripped and broken sofa and as I can't afford to buy stuff myself I am going to have to take them up on their offer.

I like Scandinavian style. I like white walls, minimal style, and the odd splash of bright colour.

My parents want to buy me light oak stuff from oak furniture land, and a brown reclining leather sofa. There is nothing wrong with this, but it is not to my taste. If I say it is not to my taste, as tactfully as I can, my mother takes this as a personal insult.

I had intended to buy a few bits from the charity shops and paint them but I haven't found one single piece that appeals to me. I also live a long way from these shops and it costs me a lot in time and money to go there on fruitless trips. We have now been in the house a few years and it is becoming quite uncomfortable.

This is the first place I have been able to call my own and I would so very much like to be able to put my own stamp on it. I know how ungrateful I must seem not wanting the furniture but I have now decided that it is time for me to compromise and accept their gift. I have no experience of choosing my own decoration whatsoever, and I really wondered if anybody could help me to try to get the place looking a little bit like I want, even if I can't get the actual look I want.

I have one large room which is sitting room and dining area, with a kitchen at one end. I have a walnut effect floor, which I don't think will look very nice with the oak furniture. The items that my parents will purchase are a sofa, a tv unit (we don't have a tv) and a table and chairs. I can see that a leather sofa will be practical with young children. I am going to paint the walls white (they are currently very dark grey) but then I feel I will run out of steam and not feel inclined to do anything else. I don't think anything will look right. Please could anyone with experience of choosing decor offer any suggestions?

I know I sound like a spoilt brat and this wouldn't be seen as a problem for most people. We currently stay in my bed room all day because there is nowhere for us to sit downstairs and I would like to make the room more enticing for us to spend time in.

Fragola76 Mon 17-Apr-17 18:38:16


Did you try to check ebay regularly? Some good finds but you have to make sure not to get carried away and overpay!

Or maybe accept the gift and then sell it on ebay smile

Good luck!

Interiordespair Mon 17-Apr-17 18:45:38

I have looked on ebay and gumtree and on local facebook pages too. I've seen some nice thingsthat I could paint but I have a tiny car and need to move things alone, so I have given it up as a non-starter now.

They are not the sort of people who would take kindly to me selling it. Once you have bought something you are stuck with it for life!

Miniwookie Mon 17-Apr-17 18:46:07

"Thanks for the offer Mum, but would you mind if we went to Ikea instead? OFL isn't really my style/will clash with the floor." If she's offended by that then decline the gift. Gifts with strings attached are usually not worth having imo. Good luck in your new place.

Interiordespair Mon 17-Apr-17 18:49:20

Yes, I have declined many times for that reason and there is to be no compromise. It's just that a few years of this have ground me down and I wondered if there was any way to make the place look ok.

I know you are right about gifts with strings, which is why I have resisted for so long!

thenightsky Mon 17-Apr-17 18:51:32

A leather sofa might work with scandi style. I love minimalist look too and I've got a very simple very dark brown leather sofa which looks pretty good against white walls and very blonde wood other stuff.

Do you know why it has to be oakland stuff? Is it because they get discount there or something?

Bluntness100 Mon 17-Apr-17 18:52:44

How strange, why does she wish to pick the furniture? That's weirdly controlling.

But yes if it's that or nothing, I'd probably take it.

FauxFox Mon 17-Apr-17 18:55:51

Paint it. Seriously. It seems mad to paint brand new furniture but if your parents won't listen then get the furniture and paint that shit white grin you can shabby chic it if you want but I would just go with a Matt white finish. You can replace the knobs etc too if you want. Cushions and throws for the sofa.

If she complains say it clashed with the floor but you are so overjoyed with how it turned out painted and thanks so much because she is the best mum ever grin

disappearingfish Mon 17-Apr-17 18:58:03

Your parents actually sound horrible and I would rather sit on the floor than be treated like that.

Have they always been arseholes?

Justmadeperfectflapjacks Mon 17-Apr-17 18:59:47

Why would they spoil an opportunity to make you happy in your fresh start?
Tell them you will have to refuse as your new life involves making your own choices and decisions as is your right.

Interiordespair Mon 17-Apr-17 19:00:58

I don't know why it has to be oak land. None of their own furniture is from there. They just get fixated on stuff and the more I rail against it the more inflexible they become.

It is weird and controlling, I know. I am really embarrassed posting about such a stupid situation but I think I am becoming depressed from being in my room all the time. I am just going to have to make the best of it as I don't have the luxury of being able to afford choice.

DoItTooJulia Mon 17-Apr-17 19:01:20

How weird. Why do they need to choose it? No wonder you've put off having it. Is there no way at all you can make them see that it's not really to your taste?

If you need the sofa, get the sofa but decline the rest-you can work round the sofa. But a Tv unit when you don't have a Tv? Wtaf?

Bearbehind Mon 17-Apr-17 19:02:14

I'd live sitting on milk crates than have my choice in furniture dictated to me.

It's not a gift worth having if your parents choose what you have to have, knowing it's not your style.

I hate 'conditional' gifts like that.

I'd guess it will be mentioned from this day forth that they bought your furniture.

outputgap Mon 17-Apr-17 19:03:43

God, just looked at the OFL sofas. Um. Very not scandi. Poor you!

I think I could take an oak bench and table.

Will they go nowhere else?

WhisperingLoudly Mon 17-Apr-17 19:04:34

Your parents sound awful.

Enjoy your existing ripped, shabby furniture without strings.

ShebaQueen Mon 17-Apr-17 19:05:09

Do Oak Furniture Land do painted oak? I think one of my friends has a dining table from there and it has cream painted legs.

Manupprincess Mon 17-Apr-17 19:06:02

Agree you can paint it white. Have a look on YouTube for a few tutorials then give it a go. They could look nice with the leather sofa and white walls. It is a bit mean of your parents though but at least you will be able to use your living room.

outputgap Mon 17-Apr-17 19:07:00

Sorry, xpost. I tend to agree that it is so weirdly controlling that a bean bag might be better.

Sorry they're so shit, OP.

Interiordespair Mon 17-Apr-17 19:07:29

Oh god, I am so glad you are all getting where I am coming from. I worded the OP very carefully becuase I thought I was going to get loads of posts about first world problems and being entitled. But it's awful.

It is a very generous gift, in financial terms, but it isn't really generous in spirit.

Ihatethedailymail1 Mon 17-Apr-17 19:09:43

Have you asked them why they have to choose it? Very specifically, not fudging around the answer?
Why do you want to to have furniture I don't like? And then don't speak and wait for the answer?

TondelayaDellaVentamiglia Mon 17-Apr-17 19:09:44

have a scout about for local auction houses, often loads of stuff, and if it's not a really scabby one they will often deliver stuff

I have a massive Lshaped sofa that dh paid the princely sum of £4.67 (including commission AND VAT) has removable covers that go in the washer, came up like new, and it's easy to sniff stuff at the viewings to make sure that the previous owner wasn't FagAsh Lil.

And I found a silver chain bracelet down the back after we had whipped the covers on <score!>

anotherdayanothersquabble Mon 17-Apr-17 19:10:10

Why not send a link to things you do like on Oaklands website. .. this maybe and say.. Oooh, this would be fab!

Interiordespair Mon 17-Apr-17 19:10:28

I'd guess it will be mentioned from this day forth that they bought your furniture.

nail. head.

I did wonder about painting new furniture. I have painted a few things in the distant past but I have always done a rubbish job but it didn't matter because they were junk to begin with. I would be scared of making a complete hash of it.

thenightsky Mon 17-Apr-17 19:11:00

What Faux says could work actually... paint it matt white!

Girlwhowearsglasses Mon 17-Apr-17 19:11:02

Do you have any budget yourself? Have you had a look at British Heart Foundation furniture shops? They don't take rubbish furniture and I think will deliver (they certainly pick up). Not ideal stop-gap furniture is much better than new-and-stuck-with-it not ideal. Get a sofa for a start?

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