I have had the same ottoman since I moved into my first LA apartment back in July 2010. I found it at a garage sale and it was exactly what I was looking for. I like to be able to put my feet up when I watch TV so I prefer something soft and not an actual coffee table. But for parties it is helpful to have a place for people to put their drinks and food (couldn't put any cups on my old ottoman). With the removable tray I can now have a place for cups and plates!
I thought I had a better photo of my old ottoman but this is all I can find (from my apartment tour: living room post).
I have always thought it is best to splurge AND save when it comes to furnishing and decorating an apartment. In my first LA apartment, which I moved in to summer 2010, I splurged on a new couch and bed from Macy's. Everything else (tv stand, bar stools, ottoman, etc) was from garage sales, Craigslist, ikea, etc. It was important for me to stick to a budget and save money where I could. I decided not to splurge on a table for awhile. Mostly because I was happy to eat at my bar or on the couch. 6 months later I found a floor sample on clearance at Crate & Barrel (see post here). I had been at my job for almost a year so I felt comfortable "investing" in a nicer table. Only one blue chair was on sale so I got three white chairs and one blue. For me it was worth it to save and not have four of the same.
|I now have the three white chairs at the table and the blue chair is off to the side. When I have people over I pull out the table, put the other side up (so it's round) and add the fourth chair|
In January 2012, almost 18 months after I moved in to my first LA apartment, I finally splurged on a media stand from Crate & Barrel. Previously I had used a rolling media stand (cart?) from Ikea that I found on craigslist. I knew I eventually wanted something really nice that I could use for years but a new bed and couch were higher on my list when I first moved. I saved up over the 18 months and used some of my Christmas bonus to buy the media stand. Of course not even a month later I had to move unexpectedly but luckily it wasn't too tough for the movers to move the media stand.
|the media stand when I first moved into apartment #2 in March 2012|
While it definitely would be nice to magically have everything on my apartment wishlist right away that just isn't possible. Each time I make a "home investment" I smile because it's always worth the wait! I am thinking I will finally get a headboard for my bed in the second half of 2014 (yep, I still don't have one!).
What are you splurging on this year?