CHARLESTON, W.Va. — If you are like me and many of my friends and family, your mailbox is constantly stuffed with catalogs of beautiful furniture with a “Restoration” theme and a hefty price tag.
Do you ever wonder how to achieve this look without breaking the bank?
Every day at Yeager Design & Interiors, our clients come in and have a hard time pinpointing their design style, but most of them have one theme in common: They all love that Restoration Hardware look.
Due to the area that we live in, the nearest store to view those items in person can be anywhere from three to four hours away. “Finishing” a room could take as many as three to four trips to actually see these items with your own eyes, try them out for size and comfort.
Who has time for that?
Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to buy these items locally and for a realistic price? The truth is, you can!
Let’s break down the Restoration look piece by piece.
First, there is usually a neutral-colored linen sofa that is either slip covered with loose back pillows or is a tufted back tailored sofa.
Second, a coordinating chair or pair of chairs in the same khaki or “greige” fabric is used.
In some cases, a worn leather accent piece is used for an ottoman, or even an old trunk is repurposed for a coffee or side table.
Oftentimes, the occasional furniture is large scale and ranges from mirrored to bleached wood and iron pieces.
Accent pieces include: oversized antiqued mirrors, earthenware in both white and black, gray framed art with subjects like ancient city maps and architectural items such as shutters, columns and pediments.
Lighting commonly includes mercury glass table lamps mixed with iron antique hanging lights shaped like orbs with crystals to dress the room up.
Most local furniture retailers either have a neutral linen sofa/chair in their showroom or can access them from their catalogs.
By choosing a simplistic linen fabric and noncustom frame, you can keep the cost of your furniture down tremendously and still achieve the same look.
If you are wary of choosing a light-colored fabric for your family to live on, washables and Sunbrella fabrics are an extremely realistic option to try.
Interesting ottomans and cocktail tables can be easily found locally for less as well. You can even find an old trunk at your local flea market or antique mall.
These items, when repurposed, add interest and drama to an otherwise matchy-matchy furniture set. Breaking up the pieces and mixing your finishes can be a fun process of acquisition.
When choosing your accent pieces and art, it is important to remember: “Buy what you love, and you’ll love it forever!”
Just because you see a gigantic map of ancient Paris in a magazine doesn’t necessarily mean it is right for your home.
Black-and-white photographs and sepia-toned images of local points of interest can be taken to a frame shop and made to seem as antique as you want.
Similarly, art found in small businesses near you is oftentimes more reasonably priced.
It may be a bit more difficult to find large antique mirrors in our area, but a designer can always hunt one down for you when they visit markets.
This way, you can at least get a competitive price for what you are looking for.
The lighting you are seeing in these catalogs is also easily found. In years past, as a designer, I have found it difficult to find lighting that was somewhat “outside of the box.”
Because magazines like those from Pottery Barn, West Elm and Restoration Hardware have made great moves toward modern lighting, showrooms across the nation have had to catch up to be competitive and current. This makes it easier for we everyday customers to find what we’re looking for.
Whether it be an extra-large rustic orb chandelier, a sleek chrome pendant or something gorgeous with a touch of sparkle, your heart’s desire is waiting for you in a showroom nearby.
Finding each of these pieces can be a bit more time consuming than just opening the catalog and purchasing it all, but wouldn’t you much rather have a more customized and personalized home than saying, “I’ll take everything on page 53?”
Seeking the advice of an interior designer is a great way to speed up your search and let someone else do the legwork for you. It is their job to keep an eye out for special finds for you when they visit markets, and since they know their product catalogs inside and out, they can often find what you are looking for in no time at all.
Elizabeth Yeager Cross is the owner of Yeager Design & Interiors in Scott Depot. You can follow YDI on Facebook, and Yeager Cross can be reached at 304-760-8914 or by email at Elizabeth@YeagerInteriorDesign.com.
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