Have I got a yarn to weave for you today. I've got my partner in crime Emily from Chez V over for Fess Up Friday today and we've got a good one for you. Freshen up your drink and enjoy. And Zuck, if you want to use us for a Facebook commercial, we're open to offers. Emily, fess up with Part 1...

Is there anything better than the thrill of the chase?  Well here is a little ditty for you about a desperate chase, the power of social media, and the
kindness of strangers. 
As a linking participant of the One Room Challenge, I was on a frenzied search to locate a pair of affordable sconces for my bedroom plan aka Project Chinoisy Safari Chic.

With little time, I knew my search would be a lot like trying to avoid bread and cheese.  Not gonna happen.  On a Wednesday, mid-challenge, I headed to IKEA in search of some drapes to hack.  Imagine my glee when I stumbled across the Ranarp clamp spotlights.  I was completely smitten upon first sight considering all the other sconces I was contemplating for my ORC room carried hefty price tags and long lead times.
Ranarp - $19.99.  Say what?!  Done and done.
But like all too-good-to-be-true dreams, I awoke from my design euphoric nirvana state only to realize that they were sold out.  Of course you are, little gorgy industrial glam thingy, you!  Immediately, I sent out a request on Instagram asking if anyone knew of any in stock anywhere.  Like the shot heard round the world, my fellow design soldiers started rallying to the call, one of which was one of my favorite gals in all of blogland, Elizabeth.  It seems she too was on the hunt for the coveted Ranarps.
In the meantime, while my little was busy hopping herself up on a cinnamon roll, I sweet talked a very accommodating IKEA customer service guy into doing a country wide inventory search (which I do not necessarily suggest as it took forever and garnered a lot of evil side eye from the long customer svc queue) only to discover that the lamps were indeed, sold out everywhere with the exception of 17 in Paramus, NJ and 3 in Houston, TX.  I shared this info with Elizabeth and thus began a dual mission to score these lamps through one of our varied networks.
We schemed, we commiserated, we called, emailed, blogged, IG’d and FB’d in an attempt to reach anyone who had peeps near Paramus, NJ or Houston all to no avail.  I even contacted my master finder-of-all-things bestie in Berlin, Germany.
This is the
kinda gal who has a vast network of contacts willing and ready to do her bidding.  She said, yes, she could probably pull it off but to keep checking with other sources as it would take a few to orchestrate.
, on Friday evening of that same week, at 7pm, my sister’s father-in-law, who lives in NJ, happened to be near the Paramus store, and agreed to go pick some up, but would I mind calling to verify stock first.  Hoo-ray!!!!  No problem!!!! Except when I called IKEA another very nice customer svc lady informed me that no, in fact, Paramus did not have ANY in stock.  Is it possible that all 17 sold out in 2 days?!  No, turns out that when my customer svc dude did the country wide search, the 17 he ‘found’ in the Paramus, NJ store where actually in the Elizabeth, NJ store.  Which was no where near where my sister’s father-in-law happened to be at said moment.  Wha wha wha.

Are you still with me?
I know, me neither.
I am exhausted just retelling it. 
Clearly it was time for wine and more commiseration.  Off went another email to Elizabeth detailing how the Holy Grail had slipped through our fingers, yet again.  At which point, I hand off the story baton to her which involves that Friday evening spent feverishly exchanging updates via email over many glasses of wine on my side and probably many G &Ts on hers while my much ignored and frustrated husband could not understand even a little bit about what all the fuss was about. 
Thankfully, Elizabeth’s hubster could!

kisses,  mrs. V

Part 2...

It was not a good night for Emily and me. As y'all may have gathered, I can get myself a wicked case of tunnel vision when I want something. I am like Miley Cyrus when she sees a foam finger - I cannot be stopped.
After days of back and forth, and a Friday night spent emailing at a rapid pace, we were left empty handed. Damn that IKEA customer service rep and his lack of New Jersey geographic knowledge. My New Jersey adjacent sources were tapped as well and worst of all I was running out of gin.

Luckily this happened just as the hubs was finishing his movie. "Are you two still talking about those dumb lights?" he said (in an ultra supportive voice). I updated him on the latest and he said, "let's just put this on Facebook". And like that he sent out an SOS on his feed.

Just an hour and a half later he had a response from a friend from high school (which was in Chicago) who now lives in Dallas. Yes, Dallas is not Houston, but she has a friend who lives in Houston who would probably be up for it. "She loves to shop."

Good lord, we might have a winner. I told Emily right away and we both held our breath as my husband texted Dallas and Dallas texted Houston and back again. Houston was in, we just needed to confirm in the AM that the IKEA store did in fact have the lights in stock and she would be there as soon as they opened.

So a perfect stranger agreed to go to IKEA on the worst IKEA day of the week a Saturday to pick up three lights, the LAST three lights in stock in the lower 48, for two crazy ladies in two different states that she had never met. Emily and I squealed and lit a candle that some early bird Texan wouldn't get our lights before our shopping angel arrived.

I had already committed to go to an auction that morning with a client so I called IKEA on my way and they were as (un)helpful as ever, telling me that it 'looks like there are 3 available' but they couldn't be sure. Awesome.

So we waited, and waited, and just as I lost a bid on some fab ginger jars this popped up on my phone.

Three left and they were all ours. I cheered silently and forwarded the picture to Emily. IKEA, I love you again.

As if this woman couldn't get any better, she sent a few more texts asking if there were any other forms of the RANARP we wanted while she was there (the desk lamp is especially lovely). Can this wonderful person please move to St. Louis so I can hug her?!

She shipped them out first thing Monday and on Wednesday morning I had the best package on my doorstep along with the sweetest note (on fab monogramed stationary I might add). Not only did this woman make this trip for people she doesn't even know to a store that is crazy on a quite day but she did it all while sick. And my favorite part - "I took it upon myself to also buy the lightbulbs that were recommended for the light, just in case." I love her.

So in the end this

and this

would not have been possible without our little slice of heaven in Texas. Thank you Marnie and Ann for your kindness. Emily and I would like to buy you ladies a drink.

Have you ever been desperate to get your hands on something? Ever need something and then when you find out it is hard to get it becomes an obsession? Ever want to kiss a stranger?


Post a Comment