PDA

View Full Version : Questions about furniture and interior design...



spman2099
June 17th, 2014, 11:08
So, I have seen pictures of my apartment... It is small. That, however, was to be expected. Now, while some people will surely be happy to just leave their apartment as it is, I would prefer to make it my own. Before I can do that, I need to know how to dispose of the crap that is already there. If it is just a previous alt's furniture I can obviously just take it to the dump (I know this may cost me a little), but what if this stuff belongs to the BOE? What is the protocol for that? I assume this will be one of those notorious ESID situations, but I would love to hear other people's experiences with ridding themselves of their BOE's furniture. I would just stash it in a corner, but there simply isn't the room.

Secondly, I am going to want a decent TV; is there a good place to purchase TVs that people know of? Does Japan have regular sale days like in NA (such as boxing day)? Unfortunately, there isn't a Costco in my area. So I think I may have to go online... Obviously I will scope out the local shops as well, I have just found in the past that smaller towns don't often have great prices on this type of thing (probably due to their limited turnover).

Lastly, has anyone done anything interesting with their small apartments? I am always interested in people who innovate and create multipurpose spaces; has anyone done, or seen, anything like that? If anyone wants to share pictures of their place that would also be cool.

Antonath
June 17th, 2014, 11:14
I believe it was Lianwen that invented the doosk. You should talk to her about multipurpose spaces.

If you're in a small town, the internet will likely be the cheapest place to get a TV. Some places have sales, but other than New Year, there aren't really days like Black Friday, etc. However, many retailers will have random one-day sales: you just have to keep an eye out in the local press for them. A friend of mine got his TV for less than 1man during one of those one-day sales, but if a mutual Japanese friend hadn't told him, there's no way he'd have known about it.

mrcharisma
June 17th, 2014, 11:15
If it's BOE furniture you are pretty much stuck with it unless you come to some sort of arrangement with them. TVs are readily available for much the same price as back home. Unless you're in the middle of nowhere you'll have a large electronics store but online will still be cheaper.

Most JETs are happy to live in a stinking hovel, surrounded by decades worth of junk and wallowing in their own filth. Mine is fairly nice by comparison but by no means creative or innovative.

ihatefall
June 17th, 2014, 11:16
I am in the middle of slowing turning our "futon" closet into a computer desk.

spman2099
June 17th, 2014, 11:23
I am in the middle of slowing turning our "futon" closet into a computer desk.

That is very interesting. I was considering doing something similar. I don't know why, but my apartment appears to be one quarter closet space. One wall of the main room (it is a 1k apartment) is completely dedicated to closets that reach to the ceiling (in an apartment that has a pretty high ceiling). There appears to be significantly more closet space than there was in my hometown apartment which was, approximately, four times bigger.

Jiggit
June 17th, 2014, 11:46
Any idea how much you're going to be paying for this place? It may well be that you can find a way better apartment for the price and it might be worth it if you're going to stay for more than 2 years. Especially if all the junk in your apartment belongs to the school and they refuse to let you get rid of it. Then you get to laugh at them running around trying to figure out what to do when they could have just been more helpful in the first place. A friend did that to his school when they lied about having sent a cleaning company in and I wish I could have seen his supervisor's face.

coop52
June 17th, 2014, 12:02
Japanese apartments has huge closets relative to the room size since you're supposed to fold up and store your futons in there. I sleep on a bed, so I can actually put stuff in there. Nitori sells drawers and closet organizers for real cheap.

Back when I lived in a one room, I divided the room up into different areas, like a sleeping area and a living area with the TV and sofa and such. It helped make the room seem bigger. You can also get the measurements and use one of those room planner sites to rearrange your furniture to see how different layouts would look. There's ways of using curtains and colors and whatever to make your space seem more open, too.

TVs are almost always cheaper online. The only time I'd recommend buying one from an actual store is during one of those one day sales or maybe around New Year's.

spman2099
June 17th, 2014, 12:06
Any idea how much you're going to be paying for this place? It may well be that you can find a way better apartment for the price and it might be worth it if you're going to stay for more than 2 years. Especially if all the junk in your apartment belongs to the school and they refuse to let you get rid of it. Then you get to laugh at them running around trying to figure out what to do when they could have just been more helpful in the first place. A friend did that to his school when they lied about having sent a cleaning company in and I wish I could have seen his supervisor's face.

It is partly subsidized, I won't be paying much (about $150 Canadian). Personally, I don't actually want to cause problems for my BOE. Also, I am personally thinking that two years will be the length of my stay; I already feel like crap dumping my dog on my mother for that time, and I will miss him quite a bit.

What is your place like, Jiggit? I kind of have you pegged as the sort of guy who will have a pretty well put together setup.

BeckyJones
June 17th, 2014, 12:12
your closets are there to store everything you are not currently using. Heater, Futons, etc... The idea is, you pull everything out of the closet to use when you need it and then put it away when you are done. If the shit is your BOEs it is ESID, as a lot of BOEs won't let you throw that shit away.

Jiggit
June 17th, 2014, 12:19
What is your place like, Jiggit? I kind of have you pegged as the sort of guy who will have a pretty well put together setup.

Tidy enough but pretty personality-less. I should probably put up more personal shit but I'm never going to bother looking at pictures of my favorite bands or TV shows. I suppose I could put up stuff that I would look at but I'd probably freak people out if I had 100 pictures of Girl's Day in my bedroom.

word
June 17th, 2014, 12:47
MG and I have a lot of wildly inappropriate stuff up on our walls; most folks don't seem to mind too much. Our setup is pretty sweet now; treadmill desk, regular desk, couches, multiple networked Xboxes and TVs, guest bed. We've got a lot more room than most, though.

Jiggit
June 17th, 2014, 12:48
Yeah but it's probably artsy creepy stuff. Mine would just be creepy creepy stuff.

word
June 17th, 2014, 12:53
Yeah but it's probably artsy creepy stuff.
Well, that's usually my fall-back defense; yeah.

Edit: Also, who doesn't love tits?

Lianwen
June 17th, 2014, 13:08
I believe it was Lianwen that invented the doosk. You should talk to her about multipurpose spaces.


My place has space for 1 table and 4 chairs, 1 sofa, 1 bed, 2 wardrobes, 1 China cabinet, 1 wall heater, 1 phone stand/side table, 1 TV and TV stand, fridge, and a stacked washer dryer. My BOE owns everything but the washer and dryer. My place is small. There's about a foot-two feet of space to move between everything, but I don't use my kitchen that often anymore, so I get some space in my 1DK (it's more like a 1K, honestly) by shoving my table and chairs back to the kitchen and claiming some space. I don't have any other storage besides a very shallow closet and what I can fit in my wardrobes.

If you're BOE is nice, and they own the majority of your things you don't think you're going to need/use, they might come and cart it away to a storage place (usually in one of the schools, etc). It's nice to have BOE things though, because if something breaks that's there's, they'll usually feel obligated to fix it. For example, my aircon broke and my BOE sent a man to fix it, no cost to me. My friend's stove broke, and since the BOE owned it, they fixed it. Etc. ESID. If they do own it and are jerks about it and say it has to live in your space, do not fear. I'll let you guess what mine were. I don't even have a balcony, so drying clothes is super duper fun.

Here's what I do. I live on my bed or sofa. Yup. My first two winters here, because I don't have any space (HAHAHA, it's funny even imagining trying to fit one), I had no idea what a kotatsu was so I took a chair and placed my space heater, that yup, takes up the majority of the space in my closet, and set it on there. From there, I lived on my couch and let the warmth over flow onto my beautiful body. Doing that, I was able to use my sofa as 1) a seat! 2) a bed! 3) a desk! 4) a table! 5) a laundry sorting place! 6) a kitchen!

This year I got smart and actually started using my bed to do all the things I did the years before with my sofa. ONLY. I didn't need my heater! Turns out, that not only could I do 1-6 as well on my bed, but I could also use it like a kotatsu to keep warm and use an electric blanket. As a result, I only bought 10l of kerosene this year, because hahahaah, my landwhale butt lived in a nice warm bed.

Here's some things you can do, I wish I had followed through with or investigated further if your BOE won't take their stuff back or you need to make extra room. 1) ask friends who need furniture if they can house yours. Recover it at the end of your/their contract. 2) throw it all out/sell it anyway and pretend to not understand Japanese. 3) Loft things. I felt so closed in this past summer, I considered getting a loft bed just to get some more space. 4) Buy expandable rods. Especially if you don't have a balcony, you can use these to hang laundry on to dry or to hook a multihook up for delicates. 5) Don't hate people who have 10x more space than you and even have whole rooms dedicated to their gardens (seriously, I know a JET who does this and has a whole garden growing in a spare room), but pay less in rent. You're place is probably newer. 6) Come to accept you will not be the JET that hosts things at their abode, like nabe parties or movie nights. It's okay. 7) Realize you aren't too proud to find and utilize storage space in such a way you'd never do in your home country. My cardboard for next cardboard day is being stored on the floor of my genkan. I have to walk on it to get out the door. 8) The cleanest your place will ever look is before you open your suitcases and unpack.


*sob* I'm so happy I'm moving. You can always move if it's too small.

spman2099
June 17th, 2014, 14:01
Wow, thanks for the huge post, Lian. There is a lot of good stuff there, some of it doesn't apply to my situation (I do have a balcony), but it is still solid advice. Hopefully this topic can be a think tank for all ALTs with limited digs.


3) Loft things. I felt so closed in this past summer, I considered getting a loft bed just to get some more space.

I have been seriously looking into loftbeds. My only hesitation is that they tend to only support smaller beds, and they don't give you much head clearance (they are almost all at the perfect skull bludgeoning height for me). Still, once I actually get into my space I am going to see what I can do.


5) Don't hate people who have 10x more space than you and even have whole rooms dedicated to their gardens (seriously, I know a JET who does this and has a whole garden growing in a spare room), but pay less in rent. You're place is probably newer.

Ha, the first thing I was told is that my place is newer. As for hating other, more lucky, people... I embrace the lottery element of the JET programme. I know some people get a house for nothing, but I also know that some people are heavily abused. Everything I have heard about my BOE sounds very positive, so I will take the good with the bad. Also, a small place isn't the end of the world.




8) The cleanest your place will ever look is before you open your suitcases and unpack.

It is going to be a challenge, but I am convinced that I can work something out that will be hyper efficient. On the bright side, at least my kitchen is sizable.


*sob* I'm so happy I'm moving. You can always move if it's too small.

My place is going to be super small, but I am going to be paying about a fifth of what I did for my apartment in Canada. I am totally okay with that.

Ini
June 17th, 2014, 14:36
you people live like dogs....

SomePeopleJustSaySnow
June 17th, 2014, 15:30
3812

spman2099
June 17th, 2014, 15:32
3812

Brilliant. Your reply is only made better by your avatar... It is like you were being targeted.

SomePeopleJustSaySnow
June 17th, 2014, 15:36
I did feel personally offended.

kenkennif
June 17th, 2014, 16:40
You can get a decent TV from any of the 2nd hand shops (2nd Street, Hard Off, Manga-Soko) and such, a TV of a decent size won't cost you much over 3man if you shop around.

As for the rest of that stuff, if it's the BoE stuff then you might have a bit of a hard time getting rid of it without upsetting the office a little. Best to ask your pred...

spman2099
June 17th, 2014, 17:05
You can get a decent TV from any of the 2nd hand shops (2nd Street, Hard Off, Manga-Soko) and such, a TV of a decent size won't cost you much over 3man if you shop around.

As for the rest of that stuff, if it's the BoE stuff then you might have a bit of a hard time getting rid of it without upsetting the office a little. Best to ask your pred...

Yeah, her reaction to me asking about a place I could buy furniture probably says it all... I didn't want to push the issue as my pred has been absolutely amazing (I sincerely doubt anyone has ever has a pred even half as helpful as mine). I hope I can feel this situation out while simultaneously avoiding ruffling too many feathers. However, that means I am going to have to put my plans on hold until I am actually there. I have a couple of things in mind, so I am not super worried.

Gizmotech
June 18th, 2014, 13:19
If your place is like mine, the apartment is very small, but it also has an outdoor storage shed thing. I store about half of the BoE owned stuff in there that I don't use.