Flat out for the perfect family Christmas

Couple assembling flat pack furniture

Flat pack furniture represents an affordable way to furnish your new Cruden home, making clever use of available space.

Flat pack furniture represents an affordable way to furnish your new home, making clever use of available space. Most people move house with an assortment of mismatched items that won’t fit their new surroundings particularly well. That’s less than ideal at any time of year, but especially when inviting friends and family to your new Cruden home for Christmas…

Christmas is the one time of year when dining tables suddenly seem too small, so look for extendable tables with hidden middle sections. Since Cruden Homes’ living rooms and dining kitchens are generously proportioned, you can solve festive seating shortages with space-saving folding chairs. A few decorative cushions can even transform patio seats into auxiliary chairs around the dinner table.

Sofa beds allow a home office or family room to serve as a temporary bedroom for people wanting to stay during the holidays and modern sofa beds are much more sophisticated than their ancestors. Ensure they’re equally comfortable to sit or lie on by examining them in-store, even if you subsequently order them online. It’s very difficult to gauge build quality or exact colours from website photos. Also check everything is included as standard, with no pricey optional extras on display.

When you’re visiting furniture stores, take a tape measure, notepad and pen, and photograph items you like. Write down product codes and dimensions, so you can ensure something will fit into the unique spaces in your new home. Cupboards and shelving units can be hidden behind doors, while display cabinets should ideally incorporate recessed storage.

Every household gradually accumulates paperwork and memorabilia, so choose drawers or cupboards over glass doors or shelving. These look nice in showrooms, but they won’t be practical for storing piles of presents on Boxing Day.

Flat pack furniture assembly has inspired many stand-up comedy routines, but careful planning and an electric screwdriver can make this task much easier. Arrange every item in front of you, ticking each one off the enclosed inventory. Build in daylight with regular tea breaks, keeping pets away from harmful polystyrene, twine and silica bags. Follow any instructions as closely as possible (asking for a second opinion if the diagrams are unclear), and don’t fully tighten screws or bolts until every part’s in place. Thoroughly inspect the furniture before disposing of its packaging – and if it needs to go back, return it well before Christmas to avoid huge queues and overflowing car parks…

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