January 20, 2016

How to buy 2 Ikea bathrooms and 1 workspace set in 1 hour

You might think that I’m exaggerating, and perhaps I am, just a tiny bit. But I learned a great deal about project management these past days – and today in the Ikea warehouse, I even had a moment where I felt absolutely brilliant!

So, this was our latest challenge:
After spending many hours at a bathroom appliances store, and ordering everything we needed for only one of our two bathrooms, we were called by the store a week ago, with some bad news. The beautiful bathroom set, which included sink & bathroom cabinet with matching mirror cabinet, was no longer in stock.

Don’t go to Ikea on the weekend!
No problem, said sweet hubby, let’s check out Ikea! So, to Ikea we went, and that was on a Saturday. Not the worst day of the year, because that would be on Easter Sunday. So, this was the Martin Luther King holiday, which is actually not celebrated in the Netherlands.  However, as happens, kids were accompanying their many parents to Ikea, although mine happily stayed home, and this meant that navigating the many twisting paths of the store was similar to Disneyland an hour before closing, but even more agonizing.

Planning makes perfect
Yes, that day, a Saturday, we did spent 4 hours at Ikea, but JUST LOOKING! And planning, and going back and forth to see what matched with what, and if our initial first impression still held, etc. We collected brochures and lots of inspiration and came home to a house that locusts, um, I mean, my kids had just departed from, so all the leftovers were gone and then dear hubby and I had no choice but to reward ourselves with dinner out.

The next day, I spent a couple of hours doing drawings, floor plans and ‘looking at the wall’ views of our two renewed bathrooms, as well as the workspace that will be added to our bedroom.
I put all the goodies needed from Ikea into the shopping basket on their website, but since I didn’t want to order it online, I discovered that they also have a shopping list. So, I added all my stuff to said list.

When I printed this out, and gave it to hubby to check for errors, we adjusted the list slightly (no, we didn’t need 4 Alex drawers, only 2), and next step was of course to print it out again in the order of where the goods are stored in the warehouse!!!!

The one hour bit:
We took the list, went to Ikea, talked to a man who gave us some extra good advice, and waltzed CALMLY through the warehouse, picking up items 1 to 6 on the list. (This was when I felt absolutely empowered and brilliant!)

Then put all the boxes in our car, (heavy on bottom, mirrors on top), and drove home, just in the space of an hour.

Okay, you’re right, we had to go back for the items 7 to 10 from the second warehouse, but that had been paid for already and it was easy enough to just load them in the car and bring them home.

And yes, all our purchases together cost us only 200 euro more than that fancy schmansy bathroom set (for only 1 bathroom) would have cost us!

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