The One That Got Away

I’m about to share a heartbreaker of a story with you guys.  It happened this past weekend and I have not slept soundly ever since…ok so I’m talking about a dresser and it shouldn’t be that big of a deal (that’s what my husband says), but it is! 

Last Saturday morning I drove back from DC to Columbia.  Tom was down there for work so I spent a few days with him for a little change of scenery.  On my drive home I stopped by Goodwill to donate some stuff that I had in the back of my car.  I’ve been going to this one particular Goodwill for over a year now and I have yet to find anything good.  That is, until this fateful Saturday.

I dropped off my donation and then went inside to browse.  I found this campaign dresser, and even though it was tempting (at just $40) I took a picture of it and told my husband that I was resisting the urge to buy more furniture…and he congratulated me on my efforts.  Here is what the dresser looked like:

I decided against buying it for a few reasons: 1) I told my husband that I’d try to stop buying used furniture.  2) I didn’t think it would fit in my car (not that that’s ever stopped me before).  3)  The drawer pulls aren’t the traditional recessed campaign hardware that I’m used to, so I wasn’t fully convinced that it wasn’t just a cheap knockoff.  Plus it didn’t have a manufacturer’s marking.  4)  It was not in great shape, desperately needed a paint job (I have no place to paint anymore), and some of the veneer was damaged on a few of the drawers.

I walked out of the store but could not stop thinking about that dang dresser for the next 3 hours.  I’ve needed to replace my broken Ikea dresser for 2 years now, and this piece would have been perfect.

After doing a little digging on Instagram (because I like to torture myself, apparently) I found the EXACT SAME DRESSER redone in both white and navy…and it looked AMAZING!  

Image via kjcopenhagen on Instagram.

Image via charlestonrevisions on Instagram.

I immediately called Goodwill and the lady went and checked to see if it was still there.  It was, so I jumped in my car drove straight there.  Well, wouldn’t you know that as soon as I walked in the store a lady bought it.  I even offered her $50 for it, which she didn’t take.  She said she had just bought a new bedroom set and that it was going to look good in her bedroom.  I’m pretty sure it would have looked better in my home, but she won fair and square.  I should have asked if I could buy it over the phone when I called, but hindsight is always 20/20, right?

I left the store devastated, and I have since vowed to never listen to my husband again.  At least when it comes to vintage furniture matters.  I’ve never really listened to him before when it came to my habit of acquiring used things, and I have absolutely no clue why I decided to start when I did.  (I’m not blaming him…I accept full responsibility for bringing this tragedy upon myself.)  It was only $40!!!!  I should have snagged it!  He says that he’s sure I’ll find something even better now.  I’m not convinced.

Have you ever let a piece get away and then have it haunt your thoughts and dreams for the following week?  Please tell me I’m not alone.  I’m sure this is common for those of us who thrift, but this is the first time I’ve ever let a piece get away, and I’m not sure I’ll ever fully recover.  

Note: Clearly I’m being melodramatic in this post.  I know it’s just a dresser and in the grand scheme of things it’s not a big deal.  I am pretty bummed though!

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Katie Vail
Katie Vail

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Leave a comment

  1. September 30, 2015 / 10:06 pm

    I absolutely know how you feel. Nothing haunts us like the things we didn't buy. (I also totally relate with you torturing yourself by looking it up online afterwards – whyyyy do we do this to ourselves?) In times like these I like to believe that the universe will understand and put another campaign dresser in your path very soon! I'll keep my fingers crossed for you. 🙂

  2. October 1, 2015 / 12:47 am

    When I dwell on missing out, it's usually clothes! I recently ordered something in a size too big because my size was gone. Of course that isn't nearly as satisfying so I should have let it go. I do hope you find another fantastic piece soon!

  3. October 1, 2015 / 12:47 am

    There was this pair of booties I wanted when I was working in NYC that I didn't get at the store because my husband was hurrying me and I wasn't sure right away. That night I decided I did want them, and online and in-store had since run out of my size. It wasn't meant to be and I pouted about those booties for the rest of the night. Still to this day when I'm being a little whiny, my husband will mock my pouting "booties" night and we will both laugh (I've definitely whined about missing out on a thrift store find I regretting not getting). This may be your version for years to come!
    XO, Amanda @ life on linton

  4. Anonymous
    October 1, 2015 / 12:00 pm

    Just curious since you share so much of your life with us, are you a perfectionist?? Everything seems perfect! 🙂

  5. Anonymous
    October 1, 2015 / 2:57 pm

    What is the address of the Goodwill store you visited? If you haven't done so, you should do a post on the best thrift stores in the area.

  6. October 1, 2015 / 10:13 pm

    I think it means in the near future you will find something even better!! Or at least that is what I have told myself when I missed out on something!

  7. October 1, 2015 / 10:13 pm

    PS The black one is awesome!

  8. October 5, 2015 / 6:53 pm

    That's the worst! Haha my husband mocks my pouting too and says that I torture myself for no reason. Sometimes you just can't get the good stuff you missed out on out of your mind though! I hope you found an even better pair of booties later on 🙂

  9. October 5, 2015 / 6:57 pm

    Thanks Cheryl! I actually did end up finding one that isn't in great condition, and it's a completely different shape, but now it's our tv stand! We have been using my desk as our tv stand for over a year now, so I'm happy that we finally have a piece of furniture with lots of drawers for me to stash all the random things I acquire at thrift stores 🙂 I still wish I had snagged this piece though haha

  10. October 5, 2015 / 6:58 pm

    Thanks Karen! I'm the same way about clothes too! It's the worst!

  11. October 5, 2015 / 7:00 pm

    haha no I'm not a perfectionist…although I am particular about a lot of things and slightly OCD if I care enough about something. Definitely not a perfectionist though 🙂

  12. October 5, 2015 / 7:03 pm

    I've given my sources a few times but I haven't done a full post on it yet though. I don't want to give away my secret spots! I'll be moving to a new state around summer-time though (I think), so I'll definitely do a full post then. To be honest though, I just go to the Goodwills in Jessup and Columbia, the Salvation Army in Savage and the Laurel Thrift Center in Laurel. I recently added the Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Columbia to the mix too. They are off the beaten path yet sometimes get really good stuff. Hopefully that helps!

  13. October 5, 2015 / 7:04 pm

    I sure hope so! I always tell myself that too just to try to make myself feel better. Not sure if I ever really believe it though 🙂

  14. Anonymous
    March 22, 2016 / 12:07 pm

    I just found your blog and I love it! I am constantly going back for what I should have bought the first time!

  15. March 23, 2016 / 3:02 pm

    Aww thank you so much for saying that! And I'm glad I'm not the only one who this happens too lol. It would be so much easier to just buy things the first time around, right? Maybe one day we'll learn this lesson!

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