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10 Reasons your house will never look like a home goods catalog

If you’ve ever felt the thrill of inspiration after thumbing through a home goods catalog or visiting Ikea, only to be disappointed when you can’t replicate the results, you’re not alone. Here’s why your home will never look like the inside of a catalog.

1. Because you do not own a perfect rainbow of books

Ikea Book Shelf
Image: Ikea 2016 Catalog

The insane people over at Ikea imagine that a child’s room might look like this one, with a veritable ROYGBIV of chapter books that are all suspiciously about the same height in their own little cubbies. My child’s books don’t look like this. My books don’t look like this. Whose books look like this? I can only assume it’s people who shop for books only for this purpose.

2. Because you do not own a million books of one color

Resoration Hardware Shelf
Image: Restoration Hardware

Let’s ignore the tree trunk lamps and Roman bust for a moment and talk about how the crazy pendulum swung in the other direction in Restoration Hardware’s source book. If children’s books resemble Skittles vomit, then adults apparently own collections of perfectly arranged, evenly spaced, literally bland tomes. No. You cannot tell me that the people who live in this imaginary house don’t own duty-free, airport souvenir shopped, brain trash thriller novels like the rest of us.

3. Because you do not own a collection of anything in just one color

restoration hardware hutch
Image: Restoration Hardware

Ah. I’m starting to understand that the Restoration Hardware source book is a horrifying dystopia where everything is “greige” and weathered wood. I don’t own a dining room hutch, but if I did I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t stock it with depressingly-colored urns. I might put, I don’t know, plates in it?

More: 13 Kitchen gadgets you never knew you needed

4. Because your television has wires

crate and barrel entertainment center
Image: Crate&Barrel First Look Fall 2015 Catalog

No catalog television has any wires. This is a far cry from your television, which is a hellscape of wires, spider webs and marital fights waiting to happen. Also let’s talk about the other crap on this entertainment center. Who has a bowl and 12 books on the furniture that are meant to contain loose socks and your embarrassing copy of Glitter on Blu-Ray?

5. Because you might, on occasion, need to put a computer on your computer desk

crate and barrel desk
Image: Crate&Barrel First Look Fall 2015 Catalog

What is this person even working on? They have one stupid pencil on their whole desk. As someone who works from home, I lust after a beautiful home office. The only problem is I need a desk with a computer on it. Also, here we see more white reading material. This time, it’s magazines. Whatever.

6. Because you are not stupid or rich enough to put a $1K hutch on your patio

Crate and Barrel Hutch
Image: Crate&Barrel First Look Fall 2015 Catalog

This is a pretty piece of furniture. One that costs the same as a mortgage payment and would almost certainly be ravaged pretty much immediately as soon as you place it on your patio.

More: 10 ‘Little things’ we love from Ikea’s 2016 catalog

7. Because no one’s bathroom looks like this, not even on cleaning day

Pottery Barn Bathroom
Image: Pottery Barn

Unless you clean with Photoshop. Plus, that center vanity has some expensive apothecary jars with sea sponges and river rocks in it. Do you use those in your daily grooming rituals? If so, come talk to me. I want to meet the person who uses sea sponges and river rocks to groom themselves with.

8. Because look at this junk drawer. There isn’t any junk in it!

Ikea Draw Organizer
Image: Ikea 2016 Catalog

No one has a million rubber bands and one solitary staple. Don’t feel bad if this organizer doesn’t transform your junk drawer into what you see above. For that you need a trash can or a bonfire.

9. Because these are the end tables of robots

Restoration hardware bed
Image: Restoration Hardware

I have never, ever met a person who doesn’t have at least an alarm clock and a box of tissues chilling on their bedside tables. This bedroom obviously belongs to robots, which also explains why that bed appears never to have been slept in. Since robots don’t sleep at all.

More: Dear furniture stores, your catalogs don’t look like real life

10. Because no one has this much fun shopping at Ikea

Ikea Shopping
Image: Ikea 2016 Catalog

Probably the No. 1 reason your home will never look like an Ikea catalog is because you will never have this much fun at Ikea, especially as a couple, and never while shopping for a $5 watering can. You will hate each other by the time you get to the couch section and go home empty handed before reluctantly purchasing some garbage sight unseen on Amazon.

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