Client Question: "will you make me buy a $10,000 couch?"

First, the answer - no I will not.  In fact, I will never insist that you buy anything and I've never recommended that anyone buy a $10,000 couch.

 

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A new client asked me that very question last week, with more than a little fear in her eyes.  It turned out that several years ago she worked with an interior designer and was still stinging from the purchase of a $10k couch. It's a beautiful couch, but it's NOT coming to the new house. Every time she looks at it she still feels the sticker shock.  Also, it's not very comfortable--the back is very low.  It's being sold!

This isn't the $10k sofa she bought, but it looks similar. Sleek, but not very comfy.

This isn't the $10k sofa she bought, but it looks similar. Sleek, but not very comfy.

I told my client what I tell everyone: I will shop for you like I'm spending my own money.  Just like you, I want style, function, comfort, quality, ease of maintenance and longevity--at a reasonable, competitive price.  I'm a frugal New Englander at heart and, while not penny wise and pound foolish (are you too young to get that line?--look up Ben Franklin--it means don't buy cheap stuff in an espresso finish that gets delivered in a flat box and then be surprised when you have to replace it way too soon), I pay attention to the price tag.

 

This one, for example, has clean lines, a nice back to relax against, made with high quality leather and costs WAY below $10k.  I can make it look very modern or very traditional.

This one, for example, has clean lines, a nice back to relax against, made with high quality leather and costs WAY below $10k.  I can make it look very modern or very traditional.

You've got things to do, places to go and you're not slaving away at your job just to furnish the house.  I get that.

Now please understand that I place a HIGH VALUE on how your home looks, feels and functions.  To me, nothing is more beneficial to your life (and family, health, job, hopes and dreams) than a home where you can be comfortable, productive and happy.  I'm always going to pair quality with style and that can't be found at The Dollar Store.  But I'm not a store snob.

  

Some of the best accessories are often inherited or even found.

Some of the best accessories are often inherited or even found.

While I don't shop heavily at Ikea nor favor trendy disposable (meaning poorly made) items, I know that great products can be found everywhere. Last month a client insisted that I meet her at Kirkland's to look at a foyer chest she had seen there.  I haven't been to a Kirkland's in many years (in case you don't know, it's a home decor store), but off I went.  It was an AWESOME find-- perfect for her space, reasonable quality (it's going to sit quietly in a corner) and at a great price.  Score!  

 

The chest is from Kirklands and the lamp is a Target find!  These gave us more room in the budget for items like custom window treatments (shown) and hand knotted rugs.

The chest is from Kirklands and the lamp is a Target find!  These gave us more room in the budget for items like custom window treatments (shown) and hand knotted rugs.

 

I look for products that provide value for my clients.  Here's my criteria for the places I shop in:

  1. competitive pricing
  2. good quality
  3. varied selection of styles
  4. real customer service

Experience has taught me that this list equals the best price.   If you've been on the planet for awhile, you know it's true.  That, and the fact that there is NO SUCH THING AS FREE SHIPPING, is the same as money in the bank.

Pretty, squishy pillows - sometimes they're custom, sometimes they from a discount store!

Pretty, squishy pillows - sometimes they're custom, sometimes they from a discount store!

 

Over the years, the nicest people have asked me to design rooms and even entire homes for them.  They appreciate the personal, comfortable spaces I create, while respecting their budget every step of the way.  Mixing special pieces with very affordable "finds" strikes just the right balance--and results in a better room.

Small changes--like changing the room colors, tackling DIY projects or choosing a new area rug: 

 

 

Or larger changes - involving creative use of materials, reimagining the floor plan or exciting remodeling projects:

 

can add up to create a room that goes from drab to fab.  From yucky to yummy. From embarrassment to "let's have a party"  (partly because you've got enough money left over to have one)!

Call me today.  I look forward to meeting you!

Ciao

Anne