A Special Issue of Design Review: Your New House
Shopping — Furnishing on a Limited Budget
Furnishing on a Limited Budget
This is how the new package furniture comes to you. The arms, legs, dowels and webbing are neatly parcelled together with all necessary screws and tacks, glue and sandpaper.
Assembly is quick and easy with a hammer and screwdriver. The timber is selected pine and any finish can be applied from paint to clear lacquer or oil.
The illustration shows the parts of the chair on the opposite page, one of the range of the ‘Charm’ productions.
Confronted by the bare interior of your new house and with pockets nearly empty, furnishing can be a big problem. On these two pages we offer a few suggestions for cheaper furniture, based on the idea that reducing costs means doing some of the work for yourself. The work is not difficult, nor do you need to be a cabinet maker, and as most of us are craftsmen at heart there is much enjoyment to be gained.
Think twice about four or five piece suites if you have children. Wear and tear will mean covering all of them at intervals, while the loose chair will be found more useful in the room. A combination of divan and individual chairs will bring more flexibility and value.
If you are any sort of carpenter you can save money by building the storage units into the house before it is complete. They can be built as partitions or screens, assembling the parts as you want them.
A good idea has come forward in package furniture and some of the possibilities are illustrated on these pages. The idea is simple, you buy the parts and build them yourself. The parts available range from chairs and stools to cupboards and sink units.
Apart from package furniture, other cheap kinds can be had today, though probably not always living up to the finish of the more expensive. However, having been built for simplicity they are often well designed, and the small windsor chairs come into this category. A rasp and sandpaper will transform them into quite elegant chairs only requiring oil and polish or perhaps loosely covered foam rubber cushions. Their cost varies from 18 to 25 shillings.
For those more adventurous, why not watch the auction sales for sound simple furniture? You can always scrape the varnish off. If it is good timber it can be cleaned and oiled, if not it can be painted.
A new surface can be stuck on the badly handled table, and with the old chest of drawers a new top and sides can be built around the old drawers after dressing up with sandpaper or paint.
Here is a bedroom fitted with “Easybuilt” units constructed from parts to form storage cabinets. It is a good example of their use and also shows how flexible the unit system can be.
The range includes all sizes of drawers and cupboards with sink bench and bed units.
This the “charm” packaged living room chair in selected pine assembled from parts and available in cherry red, apple green, and cyclamen coloured webbing.
Price £3/157/- from Premier Products, Wellington.
The “charm” table and bookcase suitable for books, magazines or records; you assemble it yourself.
Price £5/5/- from Premier Products, Wellington.
A living-room cupboard unit showing the possibilities of assembling the Easybuilt units.
This example price £7/17/3 without the glass from Builders Hardware Ltd., Wanganui, and W. H. Long Ltd., Wellington.
An example of chest-of-drawer unit that can be assembled from Easybuilt parts.
The choice of drawer size and arrangement is yours as is the choice of handles.
This example price £12/3/9 from Builders Hardware Ltd., Wanganui, and W. H. Long Ltd., Wellington.