Its been a few months, but since I left off at the point of the sofa, let’s pick up there.
The last few weeks before Christmas were spent in this weird limbo where I had resigned from my job, and suddenly, after a year of doing absolutely nothing of use, had Things To Do. This got in the way of my 12 hours a day of sofa shopping, let me tell you.
I would like to think I looked at every goddamn sofa for sale in the United Kingdom over that period, but that is probably insane. I had however managed to narrow it down to two, a click-clack sofa bed from loaf.com (on ebay for £450) and the Delfina Shout 3 seater from Lovesofas.co.uk (on ebay for £399).
Every few years or so I try and push back against the form my personality has shaped me into – mostly in two ‘improving’ matters: I try and grow my hair out, and I decide that I won’t buy any more florals. I will put away childish things, and through sheer force of will, will both grow Cheryl Cole-style glossy brown locks and develop a chic and slimline capsule wardrobe in black basics that will be the envy of anyone who looks closely. This lasts precisely three months, and then there’s a dress on ASOS, or my hair reminds me that I should contact BP and ask if they’d like to drill my scalp for that sweet sweet oil. I cut it all off, buy the goddamn floral dress, hang up the tasteful minimalist necklaces, and give up.
Therefore, it should be considered inevitable that I bought a floral sofa. A velvet floral sofa. In green.
I was so close to buying the navy blue sofabed as well. So practical! So generous! I could have friends to stay and still be able to fart myself to sleep. My father said he thought the floral sofa would be hell on a hangover. That it was too small. But it was perfect, and it was in my budget, and fuck it, you can always buy a £20 inflatable navy blue velvet mattress from Argos on a moment’s notice like every goddamn person on this island.
So the Wednesday morning after I moved in, I racked up £25 of nectar points and ordered the fucking sofa of my dreams.
It was delivered the same Sunday of the week I ordered it at 7:30AM by two very nice Yorkshire gentlemen who squeezed it in, unpacked it, got me to sit on it to prove I liked it, and then left. It was a sign, being a Yorkshire lass myself. This sofa was coming from my ancestral home. It was meant to be.
Am I doing a review? I think I’ll do a formal review of the whole process of buying a sofa off t’internet, but basically its nice and soft, I can lie down on it and watch stuff, everyone who sees it thinks its pretty, and its the cornerstone of my living room.
I choose my flat to look like I live there, which can be difficult. It is sometimes so tempting to just go on Ikea and fill up an order with all the bestsellers, to have this done. To look at Apartment therapy and see all the pretty mid-century inspired scandi designed beautiful places in cool tones and get caught up on whether contact paper is the devil or a perfectly cromulent option for people renting ugly apartments. (Did you know that what americans call contact paper is what brits call sticky-back plastic? Did you know that sticky-back plastic was not a Blue Peter euphemism for sellotape? I did not know this. This may be why my Tracey Island was such a failure in 1993.)
I still get such anxiety about the flat. I tell myself that furnishing a flat is a process, not just in terms of waiting for the next paycheck so I can buy a lampshade that looks like a cloud, but also in that hopefully I will be in control of my surroundings for the rest of my life. Nothing needs to be perfect immediately. My very modern flat with its white walls and archaic heating system feels oppressive sometimes, I cannot conceive on how to bring my very white bedroom to reflect my personality, and whether its even worth it if I’m just going to drop clothes fucking everywhere so do I even fucking need a rug because this is like battling the tide ffs robbo you are useless.
But then I come into my living room and there’s my floral sofa, my toile de jouey curtains, my parrot lamp, my stupid broken antler lamp that made Jamie call me Hannibal Lecter, my gold cutlery, my wayang golek puppets, my peony and flaccid dick print cushion – and it doesn’t really matter.