21 July 2012

How to Get a Good Deal at a "Designer" Brand Furniture Store

This is my master bedroom and the iron bed's scrolls and finish are quite beautiful in its simplicity.
I want to tell you how I came to purchase this bed.

I combed through many advertisements in back issues of A.D., H.B. etcetera.  My favorite dealer EA didn't carry a similar product.  (They are my favorite because they are willing to work with any budget; they have free interior design services; they replace or repair anything that arrives to your home in the wrong condition; they will even repair a manufacturer's defect years later if it is still under warranty; the only caveat is that one has to wait for delivery because each item is custom unless it is a franchised dealer that keeps a warehouse.)

Getting back to my original story.  

I cannot remember the manufacturer of this iron bed, but they advertised in A.D.  So I headed to a store that is affectionally known as"Rob & Stuckup"; the bed was available from local interior designers associated with this place; they have since gone out of business.

I was not interested in the 10K Ralph Lauren bed she showed me on the floor, not because it was not beautiful, but because it did not fit my budget.

I told her that I was aware that I could purchase the bed I wanted from any authorized dealer.  She asked me what my budget was; she made a face when I told her.  She took me to the back of the store and in a huff she pulled out a bunch of source books and put them on a table for me to browse through and left.  After an hour of looking with a then two-year old in tow that I set up to look through another source book because she loved books and didn't tear pages, I narrowed it down to several choices; then I went and found the employee.

When she looked up the price she could not believe that I found a bed from the manufacturer I wanted in that price range. ( I knew the range because I researched on the internet, but I wanted to avoid the expensive shipping on an oversized, heavy bed.)

The moral of this story is that with some research and a good eye one can be their own interior designer.  In furniture stores that carry many lines of furniture, not their own brand, if you have done your research and don't see want you want, ask to see the source books.

The other furniture in the room is from Ethan Allen.  I mixed several lines: Tuscany, British Classics, and Country French.

The light is from Ballard's Design probably when they first became a mail catalogue store.  It is very versatile.  I've had it long before I had a child, and I have moved it from five homes now.  It has been in several dining rooms, a foyer, and now a bedroom.

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