One thing that I really needed in our new apartment was a desk. I needed somewhere to be able to do my homework and study during the school year and a space for my computer to go while designing things and writing blog posts. I knew from the start exactly what I wanted it to look like. I wanted a dark wooden desk with plain, simple lines. I didn’t want it to have any drawers or anything because I knew if it did, it would be way too heavy and hard to maneuver up the stairs to our apartment by ourselves. ¬†We had more than enough issues trying to get Drew’s desk into our old apartment (read about that, here) and then we ended up having to get rid of that desk when we got to our new apartment because it was too big and too heavy for the stairs.

So anyway, usually I have a hard time finding anything that fits my mental vision of what I want for a room. However, in this case, I must have struck gold. I found exactly what I wanted and at a really good price too! Enter IKEA’s INGO dining table. Solid pine, straight, simple lines, not too heavy or bulky, the perfect size and only $69.99! The only problem however, was the fact that New Orleans does not have an IKEA. ūüôĀ This is a very unfortunate fact because there are always little things that I find that I want from there and they usually have such great prices.

However, I wouldn’t have taken the time to bring you this far into a post, if it just stopped there. Enter this service. If you checked out the link, you will see that there is this company in New Orleans that basically just travels to the IKEA in Houston every week to buy things for people that want them but that don’t want to travel all the way to Houston, Texas just to go to IKEA. There is a 20% charge added to all orders that are under $1000 and a 15% charge added to all orders over $1000. Which is obviously more expensive than if there was an IKEA in New Orleans where I could have just gone and gotten it myself, but isn’t that bad really since shipping would have been more than that (if IKEA even offered shipping or sold hardly any of their products online).

I found out about this service through Drew’s former landlords whom I also babysit for and we have done a couple web design projects for. They were planning on ordering stuff from IKEA to furnish Drew’s old apartment in their house, so they offered to let us also add whatever items we wanted onto their order as well. (getting us the 15% price charge instead of the 20% charge). That made my table $69.99+$10.50 for the service charge + tax. Still, not a bad price for a solid wood desk. (Plus we also got some bookcases for the hallway while we were ordering things)

Therefore I ended up with this in my office:

You can just ignore all the clutter and the million other projects that I still need to do in this room. I don’t have any other furniture for this room yet, so I don’t have any place to put the things in those boxes and on the floor.

It was just what I always wanted. Except that it was a little naked. I wanted it to be dark (I like dark wood, plus it covers up pencil/pen marks and scratches better than lighter stains or paint colors)

So off to the foyer it was. We have our foyer closed off from the rest of the house right now since it just has storage in it anyway so that we aren’t cooling it. I opened all the windows in there for air circulation and got to staining.

Two lovely coats of stain later and I had this:

The stain was still a little wet in that picture, so that is why it looks so wet and shiny. It also isn’t quite so red in real life either. I decided not to add polyurethane or any kind of coating to the top because I didn’t want it to be shiny. I wanted a more natural look that sort-of would look weathered over time. I might change my mind later, but for now it is fine.

I love it! It will obviously look better once the rest of the room looks nicer as well. I’m loving that I have a space to work and blog at now! I really, really love the size of it. It looks kind-of small in the picture, but it is really actually quite big for a desk. (it originally was a 4 person dining table) I love that I have room for my computer and papers and everything on my desk all at once. Yay! ūüôā (Now Drew is jealous because we still haven’t gotten a new desk for him since getting rid of his old one)

Oh, and if you live in the New Orleans area and are interested in IKEA products but don’t want to travel to Houston, Blue Bag is a really great service as far as my experience with them goes! (My desk originally came with the holes missing in two of the legs to connect them to the table top and they switched the legs out at IKEA the next week.) I would definitely recommend them and plan on placing an order with them again soon!

  1. Hi! I am wanting to do this exact type of stain on an identical IKEA table! I may have missed it somewhere, but do you mind sharing what kind of stain you used? And has it held up well? Thanks! ūüôā

    1. I’m pretty sure I used Minwax’s Provincial stain on this desk. It did hold up well! I do have to say though, after living with it for a while I started to not like the stain color. It has too many red undertones for me. I prefer the more caramel colored undertones of Minwax’s Dark Walnut stain. I don’t use this desk anymore, we re-did our office to function for both my husband and I. You can see the updated office (and the stain color I like better), here:



  1. […] My¬†desk¬†is from¬†IKEA,¬†desk chair¬†is from World Market,¬†white bookcase¬†is from IKEA,¬†baskets¬†are from Target,¬†tufted pink chair¬†is from World Market (in before pics), rug is from Target, curtains I made out of sheets from TJ Maxx, white pedestal side table is from TJ Maxx (in before pics), small easel is from Hobby Lobby (I stained it darker), big easel is from Craigslist, pink curvy glass lamp is from Home Goods (got it on vacation years ago in Charleston, SC), standing lamp is from Target, shelves DIY built-in out of IKEA Extra-Deep Billy Bookcases, Painting Taboret is IKEA kitchen cart, big white ornate frame is thrifted and turned into bulletin board, big ornate gold frame is thrifted, tiered cake stand was made out of thrifted vintage plates for our wedding, elephant print from this¬†Etsy shop, Live Simply print from this¬†Etsy shop, small purple/yellow print we got in Portland, OR but is Old School Stationeers,¬†green elephant piggy bank¬†is from Urban Outfitters (in before pics), jewelry stand was a Christmas gift from my little sisters years ago (was from Urban Outfitters), glittery gold frames on wall are from Michaels, top print in those is from Katie Daisy (The Wheatfield), and the big hanging artwork is by me. […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *