Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Second Hand Furniture

As promised, heres my second hand furniture post featuring all the great bargains I got for my new place!

I've noticed there's quite a stigma around second hand furniture which I find really odd. Everytime I mention to someone that I have second hand furniture I can just see it on their faces and I don't get what the problem is? Maybe it's the term 'second hand', i'm sure if I said 'vintage' or 'retro' they would be all over it but without using those words it suddenly becomes cheap in most peoples eyes. But I think it's great when we live in a world where there is so much waste - why not reuse perfectly good things!

You don't have to travel into London to find great second hand gems

Just head down to your local charity shops and second hand shops and you'll find loads to choose from. All I did was a quick search for second hand / clearance furniture shops near me and I found two that seemed good. Dropped them a quick text to ask if they deliver and what time they closed (I would recommend calling before you go to any second hand shop because many don't stick to their opening hours). Then me and Alex measured up all the areas we wanted to put furniture and jotted it all down, this is really important because you can get really carried away in second hand shops because you feel like everything is so cheap but you can easily leave spending far more than you wanted to. I would also recommend taking the tape measure with you so you can double check any furniture you want to buy will fit because you can't just return it and get your money back.

Large solid wood sideboard - around £70

Solid wood shelved unit (had doors but we took them off) - around £50-60 

It's all about value for money and getting something exclusive

Once we got to the shop me and Alex were really lucky to find a perfect unit straight away and it was the perfect size! But don't show that it's perfect and get excited, this is your opportunity to haggle a little on the price. Don't be scared to do this either, these guys are used to it and do it themselves when they buy the furniture off people to put in the shop. But if you are a little shy about negotiating the price go for something simple and ask if the delivery could be reduced or chucked in for free - why not! Me and Alex ended up getting quite a few pieces and the owner was really lovely and gave us a discount as well as free delivery and a cheeky lift home in the van!

When looking for good value pieces always go for solid wood or as near as you can get. Think about it, you buy a solid wood side board for around £400-600 new but you can get it second hand (all intact and may just need a quick wipe over) for around £70-80 - you can't beat those prices!

Your also going to find some unique bits as well which are great for statement pieces and to jazz up a room. We found this cute little filing cabinet which needed a bit of a scrub when we first got it but it was fine after a bit of soapy water. It works so well as a bedside unit and the draws actually hold quite a lot which I didn't expect. I love that it's a bit worn but in a funky red and blue, bagged it for around £30-40 I think and it's unique!

Metal filing cabinet - around £30-40

Don't expect to find something amazing first time

Every shop you go into will be different depending on the area and what the owner looks for so don't give up on the first shop! Second hand shops are fast paced and are always getting new pieces in, some days they will be packed and other they will be a bit sparse. Don't be shy asking the owner what days are the busiest and what times they normally get the new pieces. They want you to be interested and to come back!

Hope this has helped and I would love to see what your great second hand shop finds are :)
Let me know in the comment box below, i'd love to hear from you!



  1. This has been a really helpful post! We're moving again soon to an unfurnished property and were starting to worry about having to buy furniture. Will definitely look into this option before hitting any furniture shops! :) xx

    1. Hi Rebecca!

      I'm glad you've found this helpful :) I know it can be stressful moving when you have to buy all the standard furniture as well. It will save you so much money even if you just get some of your furniture second hand. And you'll find that a lot of it will be cheaper than Ikea but FAR better quality (look out for solid wood units).

      Best of luck and I look forward to seeing what gems you find in the secondhand shops!

      Danielle x


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