Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Barter and Haggle!

I am super bummed! I used Murphy's Oil Soap to clean my vintage table and it ate the finish. So, word to the wise, don't use the stuff on antiques. While the table looked impeccable, I am assuming the finish wasn't as solid as it appeared. It is over 50 years old, after all!

In any case, I have a solution to my dilemma. I have never refinished a piece of furniture before and certainly did not want my table to be the guinea pig. I was looking at an unhappy price tag of about $200 to have it professionally redone. Enter the subject line of this post (Barter) and my friend Bart of Killer Junk. Ha, "Bart"-er. I made a joke!

I consulted him about my table issue and, furniture fixing being a favorite pastime of his, he offered to repair the finish in exchange for more home goods (I gave him some IKEA planters in exchange for repairing a chair awhile back). What a great deal, and what a nice guy! Check out the Killer Junk blog often - they are currently running a series called "How to Anger a Purist". Good stuff.

Bartering and haggling is not a common practice in the US the way it is in other parts of the world. It's a great thing though. A trade of services or goods is often more fulfilling for both parties than a monetary one. Craigslist even has barter listings. I highly recommend haggling as well. I always try to get people down on price, even in big box stores like IKEA. About a month ago I was looking at a piece in the "AS IS" section of IKEA and got the price down from $50 to $35. In this economy, people often just want to make a sale. It never hurts to ask!

On that note, let me know if anyone is interested in trading my organizing services for a sweet piece of Mid-Century furniture (or a nice home cooked meal).

Kristen Ziegler

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The verdict is in. I didn't do as much damage as I had thought, any easy fix. Phew!