When it comes to decorating your home it can be hard to feel like you’ve accomplished anything. Decorating one room can really eat up a budget quickly, however, this does not lend acceptance to buying cheap goods. In my experience I see two things, a person gets inspired from a magazine or TV show and rushes out to buy things in haste, or they have guests coming for X.Y.Z. event and rush out and buy things in haste. Obviously both are not good options. Neither is poor planning. I get phone calls all the time from people wanting to create beautiful spaces. Oh how I get that. I mean, who doesn’t want a jaw-dropping gorgeous space? But again, don’t rush out and try to buy 100 things without a plan, if you do you’ll be disappointed and you’ll end up replacing many of those items which is a waste of time and money.

How to choose quality furnishings

Build a plan. Know what you are going to spend, and have some flexibiltiy. Also, do some research on brands that you want to have in your home. I recently went to High Point, and I’m going to list five vendors below that I saw and loved, and think you will too. They sponsored us during the High Point Bloggers Tour, and what an amazing adventure to see new lines, and experience known lines in a new way. I definitely have to thank Esteem Media for putting it all together because the adventure continues on with what I share here today.

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So again, start with a plan, and if you don’t know where to start, here’s an article I wrote to get you started. Also, don’t buy things in haste. Buy things you love, even if that means you have to save up for them. You’ll appreciate them much more and cost will long be forgotten when the item is still in pristine condition five years from now. And finally, cheap products will yield cheap results that cause disappointment and frustration – and that is not a good feng shui. It depletes your ch’i when your lamp eats through bulbs, your sofa cushions are crushed and your accessories wobble because they are crooked. So build that plan!

Here are five showrooms we covered on Day 2 of the tour that I would definitely recommend to build that dream home of good quality furnishings.

How to choose quality furnishings

  • Vanguard – The first showroom of the day was Vanguard. If you are unfamiliar with this line head on over to their website. They have so many amazing collections, including one by Barry Goralnick that I loved. Vanguard truly has something for everyone: Mid Century, Traditional, Transitional, Modern, you name it you’ll find something you love. And if you have any questions about their quality or how something is made, head on over to their awesome videos that take you right along side their artisans.


Isn’t this bedroom vignette above gorgeous? Vanguard has many bedroom options to choose from, perfect for a guest room or Master bedroom.


Mr. Barry Goralnick himself. What a lovely gentleman he was to meet! His line was fresh with Mid Centruy lines and as you can see, he loves color!

IMG_2042Another thing that I love about Vanguard are the details. No surface is left unturned. Door hardware, finishes, seam detail – it’s all there to give you a custom curated look that will last for decades.


  • Universal Furniture – Now this one gets tricky because they offer two divisions. One division is exclusive to-the-trade, which means you need to work with someone like me to buy it. But Universal also has a consumer division that is sold at your local furniture store. Universal is a great line that carries numerous products, including a killer kids division. Universal has really great lines, fun colors and styles that add instant wow factor. I also love that they stock at about 98% all the time, so no waiting 8-10 weeks to get your killer rad piece of furniture. And like all the on-trend items we saw for 2017, Universal hit it big with the hardware details and color!





  • Nourison – rugs can be a bit of a pet peeve for me. Too often people run to inexpensive places online, buy a cheap rug made of substandard materials that off-gas, and throw it down on the floor. I guess the thinking is that there’s no point to invest in something that is on the floor. However, that’s exactly what you want to do. Rugs can take a beating – they’re on the floor! And good quality rugs, made of good material will last hundreds of years. So invest in a good quality one that will add life to your space. One of the places we visited was Nourison Rugs. I’ve used Nourison for years and can tell you, they are excellent rugs and I would have no problem letting my baby or pets play on one. And just like the lines above, their selection is vast, so its easy to find a quality piece for your design aesthetic.





  • Harp and Finial – This is a great little accessories line that hits my need for purchasing items of the right scale. Anyone who reads this blog knows how much I hate to decorate with a bunch of small things. I’d much rather use one or two choice items that are BIG! Harp and final checks all those boxes. Most of their lamps were 35″ tall or more. Love that! So if you are really wanting to hush up your space and add drama, start here!




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  • Hillsdale – So hillsdale was a fun showroom to visit. I have actually never visited them at Highpoint before, but I’ve used their barstools and Counter Stools for years. They are also a terrific line if you need a pre made kitchen island! I did a project a couple of years ago that had zero counter space but had room for an island. The cost of building one didn’t make sense so I turned to this line to make it happen!




I think the greatest point I can drive home is to take your time. When it comes to decorating it always costs more than you think and takes more time than you thought. Put together a plan of action for your room:

  1. What do you do in the room, what activities?
  2. What do you need in the room to make it comfortable for those activities?
  3. Do you have any existing items you want to use?
  4. Once you have a check list of what you need, build a budget
  5. Research lines and invest in pieces you love

Dont buy things in haste. Our consumer driven society has made a disposable mentality acceptable. Instead buy things you love that are made to last. I think so many lines have lowered their quality that many people don’t even know what quality is any more! In fact I have some clients that think Restoration Hardware is “high end” and I’m sorry to say folks, it’s not. So do your research, have fun with it and if you’re still overwhelmed, hire a professional in your area to help you out. Or contact me, Im just a phone call away!




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