I bought outdoor patio furniture from Amazon. Solid wood. They delivered it by truck, and they managed to lose the first set. Weeks later they sent it again and managed to damage the surface of the table. That said, the table and chairs are very nice, though I wish I would have known that the arms on the chairs do not fit under the table, so the chairs stick out, making the whole set very hard to cover. If I had seen them prior to purchase, I would have bought the armless chairs.
My short answer is that in the future I will be very unlikely to be buying furniture I haven't seen in real life.
I've bought a few pieces without seeing them in person, but they were picked out by my decorator, and I trust her. We bought a coffee table, console table, table lamp, floor lamp and entertainment center sight unseen. However, our couch (which was from Room and Board) we went to the store to sit on first before buying.
i have purchased pottery barn furniture, so far everything has been as expected...i make sure measurements are correct, so i am not unhappy with the scale. the only thing i hate about it, assembling the furniture! my husband is no help, so i end up in my garage putting the pieces together.
Unfortunately some of the quirky pieces I want aren't available around here and I can only get them on the internet. I think I'll do it as long as I can return the piece if it doesn't work. Shipping is a killer though. And I do have a friend who was disappointed with the quality of an Ebay purchase...but I think there you have to realize that sometimes its not a bargain - its fairly priced.
I bought my 1930's mahogany bedroom set off of ebay a few years ago and I love it- I saw only the pictures that were posted, but there were many of the whole set and each individual piece... It was located not far from me and the antiques dealer arranged for free shipping.
I amend my response. I forgot that I bought my TV armoire in my living room from Overstock.com. I had my dad help put it together and it is actually really nice and was a very good deal. That was fine. But, that's all I've ever bought.
I've bought several pieces online and they all worked out beautifully. I am careful with measurements and if I have any questions, I call and ask. In one instance, I had to decide between two colors for a sofa to put up against my colored walls and the company sent me swatches of the fabric so I could pick the better color. I've been very happy with the purchases I've made so far.
I have bought about 15 thousand dollars in furniture over the Internet but they were all well-known brands that you can see locally before you buy. You save a ton but you have to be prepared to wait, sometimes months, for the stuff to show.