* Prices may differ from that shown
I always like to have somewhere to work, I cannot stand working off of the sofa or my bed, it annoys me that I cannot have my papers everywhere and when in my last house before I moved into this one and bought my dining table, I needed somewhere to work. Of course as I knew I was moving soon I didn't want to spend a lot of money on something that would not be used for too long and so I decided to browse the Argos catalogue and came across the Malibu range which features many items of furniture such as wardrobes and bedside units. This particular review will focus on the desk which is named as the 'Malibu 3 drawer desk'.
*~* PRICE AND AVAILABILITY *~*
I paid just £25 for this desk in the sale which I am very happy with, the regular selling price is around £35-£50. For the higher price mark I think that this is too expensive for what it is. Especially with the few flaws it has which I was elaborate on later in the review. This is available from Argos and Homebase in a range of finishes. The desk seems to be made of chipboard which is then coated in various colours, around 4 in total. Both these websites allow reservation to then be collected instore. It is also available for delivery but with around a £5 delivery charge to add onto the price it should be considered if it is worth it.
*~* PACKAGING *~*
The desk comes flat packed which makes it easy to transport from the store to home if you are using Argos' reserve and collect option. The box is made of simple cardboard and has a couple of those plastic strips keeping the pieces inside the box. Within the box is a set of instructions, a small bag containing all the fixtures you might need.
I found that building this desk was not too difficult, I found that a couple of the holes were not exactly aligned but it wasn't too much of a problem as once you started inserting the screws they inserted into the holes just fine. In total it took me around 45 minutes to build the full desk from scratch which for someone who doesn't regularly build flat pack furniture I am rather pleased with.
*~* THE DESK ITSELF *~*
The desk itself once built has plenty of storage. On one side there is 3 drawers stacked on top of one another, the other side has 3 book shelves so there is a lot of storage in this desk. The desk I found was not too big but was big enough for use, wherever I situated it I found it fitted in fine there was no problem with fitting it in any room despite them being awkward shapes and sizes. I found the weight while empty was strong enough to stand alone but was light enough to be moved around easily with no problems.
I found the drawers were big enough to hold what I needed them too, a variety of stationery fitted in well with another drawer holding papers and what not else. When I had finished with the desk my son's dad took it to his house and he used it to store his Xbox games and the drawers seemed perfect to hold many of these games that lined up well so there is multiple uses for the drawers as majority of things will fit in them. I did find however that if the drawers had too many things in there the bottom would start to bend and sag and it would be difficult to open the drawer underneath so you do have to be mindful of what you are storing in them. The plastic runners which hold the drawers in place I found on the whole to be effective but I did find on a few occasions that when there was quite a bit in the drawers but not too much that it slipped off the runners a few times which isn't what you need at all. The runners however are held in with screws which I found more effective than some of the other flat packed furniture I've had that has the runners just sat within a hole as these seem to drop the runners more often than this desk seemed to so on the whole I was pretty pleased with this feature.
The shelves I found were exceptionally sturdy, they are far enough apart to hold books but I wasn't able to fit any folders or box files on the shelves, I would have been happier if there was some way of adjusting the height of the shelves to accommodate folders.
I found that the desk was very withstanding, my son during his monkey years climbed on top and jumped around many times and the desk withstood his weight without as much as a creak. There was also an old PC monitor sat on there at one stage and again the desk held the weight very well.
*~* OVERALL THOUGHT *~*
Overall I am very pleased with this desk, I feel it does the job I require it to do well. As I said there are a few flaws with this desk, the first is the height of the book shelves that they cannot be adjusted, although they can be positioned in various ways there is no option of changing the height which is a bit of a pain as it means I had to store my folders elsewhere whereas I would have preferred them to be next to me as it provides less distractions.
Secondly there is no keyboard tray, this normally doesn't bother me as I have a laptop and I prefer not to have the keyboard tray but I found when using this desk with the old PC that a keyboard tray would have been useful.
The desk drawers can be a little flimsy and I was a little scared to over fill these drawers in case they fell off the runner as it happened on a few occasions. I also found that the finish on the desk chipped a little too easily for my liking. By the time I was moving and giving the desk away I had been using it around a year and there were a few missing chunks on the edges of the desk. I feel this desk would be perfect in a bedroom, for a child of any age. I also think that this could be used as a dressing table easily especially if you can find a finish that matches your furniture. At the cheaper end of this scale this is a good buy but I would have to think exceptionally hard whether I would want to pay the higher price as there are a lot of flaws that a more expensive desk doesn't always have.
Argos sell what they call there Malibu collection, which consists of several pieces of furniture, from bedside draws to wardrobes, even dressing tables as well.
This collection of furniture are all are made of 'chipboard', covered in a single veneer of either maple, beech, oak and something called Wenge, which is a dark colour, almost black.
And it is one particular piece of Argos's Malibu collection that I am going to tell you about now, with this unit from the collection being the 3 drawer desk.
Before we begin...
The first thing you'll notice, due to the box that it comes in, is that this desk is a flat pack and has to be put together at home, or where ever you want to have it.
But don't let that put you off it as actually putting it together is pretty easy, especially if you read the easy to understand instructions, but as it consists of mainly panels, with screws, pins and nails it doesn't take too long to get it all together.
It took me about 20 - 30 minutes, after checking the bits were all there, and is easy enough to do on your own.
What I do recommend is that you go through the list of items in the box before you start to put it together as I have had packs like this that have had parts missing and I haven't discovered it until I needed the missing piece.
Now for the desk itself...
This desk has more than just three draws, it has three shelves as well, so it gives you more storage space than you think.
The whole unit itself is not massive, being 720mm high by 1200mm wide and 490mm deep, so it can happily sit in most sized rooms. It's quite a good weight as well, being about 21kg, which makes it easy to move yet not too light to knock about the room.
The draws themselves are about 210mm high, although the insides are 150mm high, which is deep enough to keep many things in, about 400mm wide and 450mm deep, and have a lovely little silver 'metal effect' knob for a handle really do stand out.
The draws open nice and smoothly, gliding along on plastic runners, which do have to be screws into place, but as the screw holes are pre drilled there's no danger of getting them in the wrong place, ending up with tilting draws that just won't close properly.
As for the shelves, they are spaced about 230mm apart and run along the entire side, plus they are about 200mm deep so they can hold a standard size hard back book, or equivalent.
The bookshelf section can be adjusted so that if you have to have this desk pushed up against a wall you can have the shelves on the inside of the desk, or you can even have the shelves and draws on either side, the choice is yours.
The instruction state that this desk can take the weight of an 8kg monitor, which is a bit misleading as I've actually sat on the desk and it has taken my body weight without as much as a groan.
In fact, if I owned a monkey I would definitely let it sit on this desk without worrying about it collapsing under its weight.
As I said, they do a few different finishes, such as maple, beech, oak and something called Wenge, which is a dark colour, almost black, (the colour in the dooyoo image), plus there's also a choice of having either pink or blue draw fronts as well, which may be more suited for a children's bedroom.
I have the beech effect one as it was on offer at the time, although for some reason the others weren't? which was strange.
As for the price, this lovely desk sells for between £35.00 to around £50.00, which, at the lower price, is great value for money, although at the higher price I'd have to think twice.
In all, if you're after a low cost, nice looking bit of furniture for the spare room, office or even the children's bedroom, then you can't go wrong with this desk. Plus, if you like the look of this one then you can always add to it with more bits from the Argos Malibu collection.
I nearly forgot, I do have to mention that as it has a veneer covering, which is only one layer, this veneer can be easily pulled of. So don't do what I did and hang sticky tape off the sides when wrapping things up as the veneer will come of with the sticky tape leaving nasty little white patches in its place.
© Blissman70 2012