Asked on Feb 8, 2012

in the market for a bedroom dresser. how important is quality in choosing this type of furniture?

Marlene SotoRubina johnsonDonna McCrummen


My heart is telling me to go with custom or "real wood" but my wallet is shouting IKEA. For a static piece of furniture does it really matter?
18 answers
  • Salvage an old dresser and restore it. it will have real wood, great bones and will make your wallet happy.

  • How long do you plan on having this dresser? If it is for the long haul, go with the real thing.

  • 3po3
    on Feb 9, 2012

    I agree with Yamini. Split the difference. Search Craigslist as well as thrift stores and antique shops for dressers. It might need a little TLC, but it could be fun. Old, but solid furniture + elbow grease > IKEA.

  • Donna McCrummen
    on Feb 9, 2012

    Hello Chezwhick, I see you are in Lakewood - I'm in Bernardsville. I agree with everyone else. I spend each Monday and Thursday at the thrift stores - I get to the best one before they open and stand in line!! LOL - Mon. and Thurs. my favs Unique Thrift Store (Watchung, Union, Paterson, and other places in NJ google) has 25% off - I've gotten some real bargains. I mean strong, heavy, quality furniture for as low as $15 - my other fav is Habitat for Humanity ReStore, a terrific organization. I'd go there more often but they're an hour away in Asbury Park. Happy Hunting. Check out my facebook page to see some makeovers I've done. (like me if you like me)

  • You can also try some local auctions, estate sales or good olde for some real bargains. Avoid pieces that are glue front drawers....look for something that is solid wood, pull a drawer out and see that it is dovertailed on all corners....better quality pieces will have a dustcover or solid panel underneath the drawers. I recently went shopping for new furniture and the prices were disgusting....and the quality God awful. I bought a gorgeous older European dresser with a unique trifold dressing mirror on the top of it for $400 at a local auction and it's worth about $1,800. I couldn't buy that quality new without spending $5k for it....and now I have a new family heirloom for the kids!

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Feb 9, 2012

    I'm a hands down real wood fan...these are a couple pieces of a 5 piece set I built for a client. In the long run quality always beats price.

    q in the market for a bedroom dresser how important is quality in choosing this type, painted furniture, knotty pineq in the market for a bedroom dresser how important is quality in choosing this type, painted furniture, knotty pine
  • You may want to sign up for this link: It lists estate sales all over the country...they'll send you out a flyer on local sales and I'm sure you will find an awesome piece at a great price! This comes from a man with 5 houses full to the rafters with all my finds. I'm an awesome contractor but a terrible packrat!

  • Shira
    on Feb 10, 2012

    Real wood! Ikea's version of 'wood' starts falling apt after a couple of years.

  • Real wood is very important if you want the furniture to last. The modern imported "composit" or resin products do not hold up and the drawer runners come off. I am personally buying an older cherry dresser from an antique shop. It is not an antique, but it is good construction and I like it.

  • Douglas K
    on Feb 11, 2012

    about 10 years ago I needed a VERY cheep bedroom set for a returning college grad. I went to 1 of the stores that sells overstock items and picked-up a very cheesy plastic topped (made to look like oak) finish. I used a 220 grit paper and sanded all the pieces. Then used a Black gloss enamel paint and a 3" roller. My lord ... the stuff came out looking like Japanese black furniture. Completed the room with some Japanese decorations. It has been used for 10 years and still going strong.

  • Chezwhick
    on Feb 29, 2012

    found this dresser online and they are asking $250. i cant et an exact model number but its from a company called Ashley,- Mahogany 9 Drawer Dresser 37 inches tall, 66 inches wide, 17 inches deep. is it worth that price?

    q in the market for a bedroom dresser how important is quality in choosing this type, painted furniture
  • KMS Woodworks
    on Feb 29, 2012

    If this is built with "wood" and not particle board then 250 seems like a good price. Look at the drawer fronts and how they attach to the drawer body...dovetails would be up an interlocking the bottom would be butt joints and staples ( if that is the case ...forget it)

  • The Ashley furniture line that I am familiar with is not solid wood. You can go online and view their new dressers and determine if this is a good price used.

  • Donna McCrummen
    on Mar 2, 2012

    This dresser is for sale. It is a quality vintage piece built by Conant Ball in Boston. It is headed to the shop but I'm happy to show it to you before it goes. The price is much lower sold out of my garage! Give me shout on this or other pieces I have ready for custom colors.

    q in the market for a bedroom dresser how important is quality in choosing this type, painted furnitureq in the market for a bedroom dresser how important is quality in choosing this type, painted furniture
  • That dresser is a superior piece of furniture. The Ashley piece is not the quality of the vintage piece.

  • Donna McCrummen
    on Mar 3, 2012

    Thank you Lee Anne - Conant Ball made great furniture. I can barely lift the end of this. I only upcycle good quality pieces that will last.

  • Rubina johnson
    on Aug 8, 2015

    Just say no, to Ikea that is. Cardboard backing yuck and the fronts starting falling off

  • Marlene Soto
    on Apr 27, 2016

    Ugh Ikea is such a waste. Visit thrift or flea market for quality furniture and redo it to your liking that's what I did. Got great solid wood mid century high dresser for $75 painted it added new knobs and I'm totally happy.

Your comment...