Thursday, May 20, 2010
Today's guest blogger is Emily from the eponymous blog Emily A. Clark. I came across Emily's blog a few months ago and I've been hooked ever since. If you're looking for some great low cost/high style DIY ideas that look anything but DIY, then Emily's blog should be your go-to resource.
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I'm happy to participate in Averill's "Shop Like a Design Blogger" series, and since a big part of my design business consists of creating rooms for online clients, I am always looking for reliable, budget-friendly sources that are accessible to everyone. I am also a firm believer that you can achieve a high-end look on a tight budget if you're willing to be patient, look and use a little creativity. While my sources may seem rather practical, it's all about how you use the pieces in your home.
1. Craigslist. If you read my blog, you'll know that Craigslist is my #1 go-to for great furniture finds. While you do have to be willing to search, some wonderful pieces are out there for a fraction of what you would pay elsewhere. Some of my best scores for my own home include this almost new sofa for $150 (as well as the huge original canvas art for $125!):
I also refinished these bookcases for our family room that I picked up for $20 each:
2. Consignment shops/furniture warehouses/yard sales. Along the same lines of Craigslist, I believe unique pieces are worth getting out there and looking for. While I'm shopping, I am always thinking "what color can this piece be painted?" or "how could I use it in another way?" By thinking outside the box, you may score a wonderful piece that others have passed up. I found this campaign-style dresser (originally painted in a dull gray) for $40 and brightened it up with a kelly green. I now use it in my office for storage.
3. Mary Jo's Fabric. I am lucky enough to live within 10 minutes of this 32,000 square feet mecca that has every fabric you can imagine (and at very reasonable prices). They also offer a selection of fabrics for sale online. I recently picked up this bright floral there for $12/yard:
4. Overstock.com. With its frequently changing inventory and extremely low shipping, Overstock is a regular source for me as I search for pieces for online clients. Some of my current favorites:
5. Ross Dress For Less. While I like HomeGoods and TJMaxx as much as the next person, I have come across some surprising finds in the home section at Ross, as well--and usually for even less then the other chain home decor stores. This is where I look for the trendier pieces, ceramic pottery, and a few weeks ago, I spotted 5 x 7 seagrass rugs for $35.
6. Etsy. While you can find just about anything on Etsy, I especially love to search for art. If I'm working on a wall gallery, I like to search for notecard sets to frame. I used these from Etsy seller Matou en Peluche for my bedroom:
7. IKEA. While it sometimes gets a bad wrap in the design world, I still say IKEA is one of the best sources for inexpensive, basic pieces like pillows, frames, and curtains. My general rule of thumb when shopping there is to buy only those items that aren't IKEA-specific. Instead, I like to buy the items that can easily blend into your decor and mix with more expensive pieces. I used their $3.99 throw over my chair and their 98" grommet panels as a neutral back drop in my family room:
Averill, many thanks for allowing me to participate in such a fun series!
Next Week's Guest Blogger: Skyla of Sanity Fair.