Monthly Archives: August 2014

Cabin and Green Leaf products 369

Photo: House of Smiths

With the advent of the internet and e-commerce, the options are endless and no longer are you confined to a few local stores when purchasing furniture for your home or cottage.   Buying furniture online seems pretty daunting considering you can’t see it in person and touch it to verify that the quality is what you would expect.

In the absence of some of the tangible ways that you may traditionally use to select furniture, I have created a list of tips for you to use while making your decision:

  • Find a reputable store that you trust.   If you are working with a small retailer, read the about page of their website, follow their social networking, and even contact them directly.  How do they interact with you? Do they seem trustworthy? Is the store accredited by the Better Business Bureau and are there any complaints filed?  If it is a large retailer, do they have a good reputation and excellent customer service?  If you trust the store, it is much easier to trust the quality they represent.
  • Are there any reviews available?  If reviews aren’t available for the store itself, check the reviews of the furniture that customers have given.  Have customers mentioned quality and how the customer service is?  If the particular furniture piece that you would like to purchase doesn’t have a review on the website, check other furniture reviews on the site to gauge the quality.  You could also do a Google search for reviews on other sites for the furniture piece you are looking for and once you are satisfied with quality, can purchase from a store that you trust.
  • Mitigate risk up front.  Furniture that is custom made is rarely returnable but that shouldn’t deter you from the benefit of ordering exactly what you want in the finish that you want.  Use measurements provided by the retailer to determine how well the furniture will fit into the room you are redecorating. Use masking tape to map out the size of a table for instance on your floor. Request a sample of the paint color or fabric you plan to choose so that you can see it in person and match it against other decor in your home.
  • Lead times.  Custom furniture often takes up to 10 weeks to be completed before shipping which could take another week or two beyond that.  Wood should be cut, assembled and painted in the manufacturer’s plant which takes time, often a great deal of time. Plan your timeline accordingly.
  • Understand the shipping policy.  Shipping furniture can be costly as it is heavy and requires a freight carrier. Getting your furniture delivered by the lowest bidder may not always be the best choice.  Free shipping is offered by many retailers but having  furniture delivered destroyed by careless truck drivers is the last thing you want especially with custom furniture. Check in with your retailer to determine their policy for free shipping.  A good retailer will check in with the manufacturer for the freight companies in their service area take good care of their furniture.  Depending on the area of the country, freight companies have different reputations. Paying a little extra for delivery will be well worth it if the freight company has a better reputation. Delivery is often curbside which will require the customer to help unload and will end at the driveway. White glove delivery is brought into the house and could be worth the extra charge incurred by retailers. A lift gate is also a good idea for helping heavy furniture down from the truck when you don’t have a loading dock.  It is often an extra charge but is well worth it.  Having the furniture delivered to a business costs far less than having it delivered to a residential area if that is an available option.
  • Insure your shipment.  If God forbid, something happens to your furniture in transit, having insurance on your furniture will prevent a headache from becoming a costly headache.  Freight companies will pay far less than the cost of the furniture for claims that you make which makes insuring the furniture a good idea. It seems a bit ridiculous that you must insure against the freight companies not taking full financial responsibility but unfortunately, it can be true.  Spending the money for insurance is a great way to achieve peace of mind that your investment will be protected in the event of damage.

Sound overwhelming? A good retailer will walk you through the process and be available to answer questions for you. Buying furniture online doesn’t have to be as overwhelming as it sounds and with these tips, you will be better equipped to make a sound decision. 

The Simple Life Decor takes great pride in providing high quality products and personalized customer service!

When you are creating a relaxing environment in your home or cottage, a TV can be a distraction if it becomes the focal point of a room.   It’s hard to break away from a TV completely in a home but there are some ways that you can help to hide your TV so that it isn’t an eyesore and can blend in nicely with your decor.

There are several ways to hide your TV.  Above a fireplace is a popular place to put a flat screen TV.   Furniture is often arranged around the fireplace to make gathering around the fireplace easy so naturally, it is a easy vantage point when placing a flat screen TV. However, it is not an ideal focal point and there are several ways to hide a TV so that it doesn’t become a distraction.

A wall mount TV cabinet such as the Caleb Wall Mount TV cabinet by Chatham Hill Furniture is a personal favorite of mine.  Not only can you hide your TV behind beautiful bi-fold doors, but you can also use the top shelves for storing cable boxes.

caleb wall mount tv cabinet

There are other wall mount TV cabinets variations such as the ones listed below:

Jake TV Cabinet

Jake Wall Mount TV cabinet

 Alton TV Cabinet

CHD Alton Wall Mount


The Sophie Wall Mount Cabinet offers a unique flair and a twist on tradition.



Another great way to hide a TV above a fireplace is with a mirrored TV such as this one by Seura.  A beautiful mirror when not in use or a TV when in use, this is a great way to completely disguise your TV.

Another great way to hide a TV is in an armoire with doors that can be closed when the TV is not in use.  Choose armoires with doors that fit your style and choose from drawers or doors on the bottom half depending on your needs.  These work well in bedrooms where space may be a bit more limited.
The Layla Media Cabinet with doors at the bottom can easily hide your cable box, Blu Ray player or sound system
The Large Arch Entertainment Center offers drawers for you to store clothing, blankets, movies, or whatever else your heart desires.
If you have an old projection TV, hiding it can be a bit trickier but certainly not impossible.  Cabinets are made for these types of TV’s as well.  The High Tide Wall Unit shown below is a beautiful unit that can disguise your projection TV when not in use.
A great option is one that hides your TV while not in use but yet still serves as a gorgeous display unit.  TV lift cabinets can be raised and lowered to display your TV when convenient and hide it when not in use.
No matter the size of your room, there are plenty of options for disguising your TV.  By choosing a cabinet that you are able to customize, you can create a beautiful display that will complement your decor perfectly.
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My name is Wendy and after leaving a stressful career, I am on a journey to a simpler life. I have started a business called The Simple Life Decor ( specializing in mid to high end cottage style furniture and decor for cottages and primary homes. My blog is focused on living a simpler life whether it be through creating a serene environment in your home or simple living tips! Subscribe to my list and shop!

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