Verity Johnson: Why is garden furniture so expensive?

Verity Johnson: Why is garden furniture so expensive?

Verity Johnson is an Auckland-based writer and enterprise operator.

Belief: I despise chain household furniture stores.

Largely for the reason that I think home furniture is a metaphor for the lustful pleasure of daily living. And inevitably each chain store will take that vibrant chaos and chops it up into blocks and blocks of equivalent, brick-like sofas the colour of the beige sack you drown wild cats and childhood innocence in.

But a lot more importantly, have you seen how pricey the typical out of doors lounge sets is!?

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They’re all about $4000! On sale! For a rattan couch that seems to be like two dung-coloured Tetris blocks smashed with each other from straw and PVC glue in a junior university art class!?

My god. No surprise they are all named soon after exotic destinations. It’s a reminder that you could have a 7 days in paradise for the exact same cost as a lounger that is as comfy as a carrot grater.

I’m positive you have been imagining this just lately way too. After all, this is the time of the yr when we all acquire outside household furniture. We have got the optimism of January in our blood. New 12 months, new you, new sunlight-kissed loungers for glamorous functions with your mates … and this is the week when you go on-line, glance at the price ranges and cry.

All the things new is in the countless numbers. Even on TradeMe anything decent is however above a grand, and even the rubbish stuff is going for hundreds of dollars.

“After all, this is the time in the year when we all buy outdoor furniture. We’ve got the optimism of January in our blood,” writes Verity Johnson.


“After all, this is the time in the year when we all acquire outdoor household furniture. We have received the optimism of January in our blood,” writes Verity Johnson.

I watched 7 individual bidders battle like rabid jackals around the corpse of one particular, rotting, $1 reserve, picket out of doors bench. It went for $250. I stared at the victorious winner and wished quite a few extensive, gangrenous splinters upon them.

“You,” I whispered, “are the problem.”

And to some extent, they are. If we’re all inclined to pay back extortionate amounts for outside furniture then it keeps the current market price tag high. Anyone out there – I never know who? Drug sellers with aspirations of center class acceptance and serving tiramisu on the deck? But an individual out there is paying hundreds for outdoor home furnishings sets. Which is why retailers can provide them for the exact price as a nose position or a 2nd hand Mazda.

But to a bigger extent, the consumers aren’t the trouble. It is the furnishings-seller-cartels.

See, there’s a rationale why we’re inclined to commit so substantially on sunlight loungers the colour of gentle disappointment. It is simply because the soul of our country lives on the deck.

Verity Johnson: “I watched seven separate bidders fight like rabid jackals over the corpse of one, rotting, $1 reserve, wooden outdoor bench. It went for $250.”


Verity Johnson: “I watched 7 different bidders struggle like rabid jackals over the corpse of a single, rotting, $1 reserve, picket outside bench. It went for $250.”

We do not have several nationwide rituals. But occur summer months, we all collectively wake up and decide to weed the backyard, stain the deck, and invite the neighbours above. Then we’ll all get drunk and complain about a thing when we burn sausages. And it is the only time in the year when Kiwis are equipped to in fact speak about things.

Here, in the boozy, bitchy bonhomie of the barbecue, we at last really feel protected sufficient to get over our emotional constipation and link with every other. And wherever does that materialize? Exterior, on a couch, preferably staring into the center distance to avoid immediate eye contact.

So outside furniture shops know they’ve acquired us by the heartstrings. They know that when we invest in rattan seats, we’re truly getting the possibilities for friendship and loved ones time. And they know that we’ll pay back by means of the nose for that. So they know they can be gangsters and charge extortionate prices. Cos what ya gonna do about it, guv?

Absolutely nothing, definitely. You can pay back major greenback, you can drag your couch outside the house just about every afternoon, or you can do what I do and rely down the days until IKEA opens and breaks the price tag stranglehold.

But right until then, the Malibu Daylight Robbery Established in Beachy Teak will remain our weak place. And we will retain shelling out a significant tax on our souls.