Hey Everyone: It looks like there's a buzz in the construction industry again! Yay! It's fun, and exciting and I couldn't be happier for all the wonderful showrooms, tradesmen and manufacturers that are starting to breathe comfortably again. I've missed my sometimes daily connections to them and the smiles on my clients' faces when they see the products and the workmanship.
After my MANY years of experience in the Interior Design biz, I am enjoying new products, new colors, and a feeling of confidence again.
Many kinds of projects have been coming up! Three weeks ago, I chose a pair of living room chairs, brand new and comfy for a few hundred dollars each for a client on a budget. They won't get a ton of wear, and her expectations are very realistic. So why not buy them and treat them well?
Most of us need to watch how much we spend. My comment when talking to clients and prospective clients is always: "you'll get what you paid for – unless you are lucky or very careful". You can't expect a BMW for the price of a '98 Tempo. Nothing's wrong with having to budget for less expensive items, but please don't think it's all the same. When you decorate a whole room for the price of a well-made-but-not-fancy sectional sofa, your cheaper sofa will likely feel lumpy sooner, the fabric will probably wear or fade a bit faster and it won't be worth re-doing it in 5 years when it starts to "go". But, if you're younger (or older), a 5-10 year plan may be all you want to rely on!
I would say that nearly all retailer stores sell mid-priced (or lower-priced) items. Volume is important to them, especially if they warehouse pieces (like the aforementioned chairs). For the first time in a while, I've become quite familiar with what many local retailers sell. Buying on line can help you acquire mid-priced furnishings, too, but I wouldn't want to buy upholstery I can't sit on first. Some areas don't have the convenience of so many stores, showrooms and the Mart, but we do!
Over and over (and over) we've heard that if one industry gets busy, salesmen, workers and artists will have more money which they'll spend, increasing other people's coffers! This is how we keep each other going financially and (hopefully) everyone can have a bit more.
I've blogged before on accessorizing at my favorite outlets: Home Goods, Tuesday Morning and now Ross'. World Market is great and so is Pier 1. It's so important to complete what you start, so save some of your budget for (what I call) the "fun stuff". Those might be the finishing touches that will personalize you place.
And don't be afraid to call a professional designer for help either. You can do a bang-up job on a budget. I've done it for me AND for others! Some designers won't work with retailers, others will. Stores have designers/decorators, but remember that they are tied to selling what they represent.
Enjoy your Spring (at last) Project!
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