shopping...does just thinking about it make you feel tired and run down? Wood,
Leather, Upholstered, style, function, lifestyle etc. Just thinking about it
can wear you out! It doesn't have to be that way. Doing your homework can take
the chore out of it.
Start by spending
some time studying this site...you'll find tips and secrets that'll help you not
only save time and wear on your body...but...they'll save your pocketbook as
top Five Furniture Secrets...
- Make a diagram
of the room or location where the furniture will be used. On your diagram
note the location of windows, doors, shelves, fireplace, air-ducts, TV, etc.
Don't forget to measure the hallways, doors, stairs and any other entrance
that the piece must be taken through. I've seen more than one person miss
this step and have to return a piece that was to big to get into the room.
- Know where and
how you will use this piece of furniture...make sure the piece you're looking
at will meet those requirements.
- You're now ready to start shopping.
Let's get physical...sit in it, sit on it, lay on it, stand on it, etc.
Better furniture is usually more ample sized...it's more substantial...it
contains more raw material, more springs, stronger frame with more members.
Generally speaking, a better piece will be heavier than the poorer quality
- Neat, well-defined corners and curves, securely attached buttons, strong
unobtrusive seams, properly and evenly distributed filler material are the
marks of a quality piece.
- Turn it over...how well is it constructed? Are there loose or missing
screws or bolts? Is the padding sewn correctly? Is the padding and fabric
protected from the framework and hardware?
Getting Started Furniture Shopping...Make a List
list...write down your needs. If your purchasing for more than one room, make a
separate list for each room.
Keep in mind what
you're trying to accomplish.
Are you starting
from scratch or are you trying to coordinate with existing pieces? Maybe you're
replacing existing pieces.
Give your needs
an honest evaluation...make a list of all your needs.
basic needs. Are you looking for...An office desk? Basic seating? pieces for
the lounge? A place to sleep? A conference table? A large family table? Book
shelving? Etc. Once you answer these questions, look at your budget and the
It's a heck of a
lot easier to prioritize from a written list than to wander aimlessly through
furniture store after furniture store with hardly a clue as to what you need,
what will fit and what you can afford.
Before you trot
off to the store it's a good idea to browse magazines, catalogs, websites, etc.,
to get an idea as to what's available and what styles you like. This will help
you narrow your search and target in on what you need without wasting hours
trudging through showrooms.
falls into one of two style categories...
- Informal or casual
Here are some
examples of Formal Furniture
- Louis XIV
- Queen Anne
And here are some
examples of the Informal Style
- Early American
- French Country
originated in the rural countryside and were first designed by local
cabinetmakers. Each of these styles can be further divided into traditional or
styles can be identified by the Cabriole legs, claw and ball feet, lyre shaped
backs and carved details. Woods tend to be walnut, cherry or teak and fabrics
usually include brocades, damask, and silk. Oversized sofas and chairs with
deep, fluffy cushions and durable easy to maintain fabrics exemplify casual.
styles include Scandinavian, Modern and Oriental, with wood or laminate. They
are identifiable by their sleek overall design elements.
Style is also
defined by shape, color, texture and is reflected in accessories, floor and
should make a statement about your attitude and lifestyle. No one style is
perfect for every room or for everyone.
that you like, whatever your style may be!
may try to talk you out of recliners. They consider them the ugly duckling of
the furniture world. This is outdated advice...recliners are better than ever
and they are in style.
Today, more than
ever, upholstered furniture is available in a wide range of styles and fabrics.
To be a good buy for you, upholstery must be...priced right...colored
right...sit right...right for the room...right for you.
another option you should consider.
Leather is a
natural product. Good leather will rarely wear out...but it will change in
appearance over time...maybe as frequently as week to week.
Many people love
natural coverings, like leather, that change with wear and tear. But, you
better be clear in your mind with what you can live with when it comes to
New methods of
tanning and manufacturing have brought leather into an affordable range for many
By now you should
know what piece or pieces you want and have pinpointed some basic styles that
feel "Right" for you.
It's time to
target a budget and begin to shop. As I'm sure you're aware, prices vary widely
and are often tied to the quality of the piece. finding good furniture that
works for you involves understanding how pieces are made and then deciding if
the quality of the piece will stand-up in day to day use. Know your needs and
your budget...buy the best quality you can afford without going over your
budget. Even the best made chair will not be comfortable if you can't afford