NYC might be the city that never sleeps, but you’ll need to crash eventually. While we shipped out most of our belongings (via K2 Moving – who I’d recommend), we didn’t bring out a bed – partly because we weren’t sure what kind/size of place we’d be getting and also because we rented out our home back in the UK furnished.
I think a good bed is one of the most important purchases a couple can make. Not for those reasons, smutty mind, but because a good night’s sleep can create all sorts of harmony in a household. And with the high ceilings and generous square footage of our Brooklyn brownstone, I thought we could get something quite grand.
Our first stop was Sleepys – a top-of-the-range place with all sorts of fancy computer equipment to determine what firmness of $6000 mattress would support our lumber and slumber. So, we played around on that for a while and, like all good bargain hunters, then took the NASA-grade information (me, slightly firm; H1B, firm – and definitely not the weirdly goopy Tempur-pedic memory foam for either of us) then went to find somewhere cheaper…
Ikea was an obvious budget choice (there’s one in New Jersey and one in Brooklyn, to which you can get a shuttle ferry from Wall Street Pier, which is free at the weekend, $5 weekdays) but I wanted something a bit sturdier and made of iron to suit the vintage/traditional feel of the apartment.
Next stop was Pottery Barn – which is a middle-class cornucopia of 1000 count thread sheets, twinkling Christmas decorations and sumptuous sofas in look-I’m-so-wealthy-I-can-afford-white linen covers.
Under the raised (and perfectly plucked) eyebrow of one of the immaculate male attendants, we then shadow-punched our way a few stores down to Raymour & Flanigan.
What is it about mid-range furniture stores that feel so 1990s? Must be all that polished leather, mass-made art and glass-topped tables. However, the staff were excellent, unpretentious, and didn’t flinch when we said we wanted something more reasonable than the top-tier mattresses (even after we’d bounced up and down on every single expensive one, Bill made us feel like we were indeed actually very clever for going with the cheaper option).
We ended up buying a mattress, box spring and the Winslow bed frame ($329) from the store (Pottery Barn don’t sell mattresses or box springs – just the frames) for just over $2100 ( including tax and delivery – and build), via an interest-free 12 month repayment plan.
The sensible pricing, one-store purchase and old-school chivalry of Bill and his colleague Carlton helped seal the deal but I suspect the final decision to hand over the cash was largely down to them finding the H1B’s Rocky impressions funny.