Choosing Your First Bespoke Home Furniture

Identifying A Competent Bespoke Furniture Manufacturer

The first step towards your purchase is listing the manufacturers that can do the job you want. Recommendations from friends are great – you know their history and you can see their craftsmanship too. But wherever you find a competent designer and manufacturer, before hiring them, be sure to see their portfolio. If their work is inclined to one particular style, that is, if you do not see versatility in the designs, you may not want to entrust them with reflecting your persona. What you are looking for is evidence that a maker will be able to see your vision and realise it as an extension of your personality and style.

Ask Questions!
Once you have ascertained the competence of the establishment you want to hire, get specific about your project and list what you expect out of the process – designing, measuring, choosing finishes, manufacture, aftercare and guarantees. The process of getting bespoke furnishings takes time, and you want to be sure that you can effectively communicate your needs throughout the process. For instance, how would the team in charge of your project feel about slight revisions to your plan; what would they charge for the same? And at what point are changes refused? Will you get a qualified designer to give you ideas and when you indecisive about what you want? What can you do if the finished product was not what you were expecting?

What to Expect, What to Demand
One of the advantages to choosing bespoke fitted furniture is that you are not a nameless face in the crowd of consumers… towards whom most high street product styles are loosely targeted; you are the most important priority to a bespoke furniture manufacturer. Request a co-operative effort and willingness to share ideas. The usual time frame for delivery of a regular order is between 8 and 10 weeks; so take care to discuss the estimated duration of delivery beforehand. Maintain regular correspondence with your furniture manufacturer to stay on the same page as the designers and fitters – this will help ensure your delivery targets are met.

Aftercare and guarantees – a good furniture maker will be on hand to respond to any aftercare queries too, like which cleaning products to use and how often, and what to expect while your furniture is ‘settling in’. Your furniture will be crafted to last as long as possible. Expect guarantees of 10+ years!

5 Things to Consider When Looking for Quality Home Furniture

As we’re all too aware, choosing the right furniture for your home can be a lengthy process, though ultimately pleasurable when you eventually get the job done. It’s about falling in love with particular pieces that will not only transform your home, but also effectively tell your story to all those who are a guest in your home.

Below we have compiled a few different tips on how to make sure that you select the right furniture for your home absent any major issues along the way.

All in all, take your time and try not to rush the process. It can be stressful and it is all too easy to grow impatient and rush into big decisions. Just remember that there is a wealth of resources out there, giving you access to all manner of delightful pieces for your home. Enjoy it!

Step 1 – Construction:
One of the most fundamental steps in selecting the right furniture for your home is ensuring that the piece feels sturdy and heavy. You should avoid light aluminium frames and stick to solid wood construction, given that wood is renowned for lasting much longer and sets the standard when it comes to fine quality furniture. That being said, it is important that the price is consistent with your expectations – it’s no good spending over the odds if the piece in question isn’t designed to last a lifetime, or at least comes with an attractive guarantee.

Step 2 – Shape:
Shape or ‘silhouette’ is the general shape of the piece that you are looking at. Is it a trendy, modern piece or something that will surely stand the test of time? It all depends on how often you tend to update or renovate your home and what sort of style of décor you are going for. Our advice is to choose a shape that you love now, but will also thoroughly enjoy in the future. There is nothing worse than buying a piece of furniture that you grow tired of after a few short months or a year. Either way, regardless to the style of furniture that you desire, you will find a wealth of incredible, well priced and top quality furniture all over the market.

Step 3 – Finish:
With any exposed wood you need to ensure that the finish has been added appropriately. It’s all very well having the right colour, though you must make sure that the stain and lacquer is designed to withstand a lot of use. Also, it is important to note that just because a particular piece of furniture that you love doesn’t come in your desired colour or finish, you can always opt to have it re-conditioned. Often it is better to go with your gut and order a piece because you love the shape and solid build, and then have it conditioned in your desired colour and finish.

Step 4 – Fabric:
Fabric is one of the most important factors to consider when renovating or decorating your home. For example, lighter coloured fabrics are appropriate for the living area, bedroom or a guest room. Then again, if this particular piece of furniture is something that will be frequently used, then we would suggest using a slightly darker colour perhaps. The key is to plan thoroughly and consider every possibility.

Step 5 – Personality:
Opt for furniture that stands out with an element of personality. Your personal style should be reflected in your furniture and the way that you design and layout your home. It’s all very well being practical, and for the most part you should definitely strive to be so – though at the same time, you need to breathe a little life and memorable décor into your home.

3 Ways to Buy Home Furniture on a Budget

The key to staying on a budget when buying furniture for your home is to take your time. Retail furniture stores are designed with the impulse buyer in mind. They know that you won’t be visiting their store frequently so a lot of care has gone into designing a floor plan for you to simply point and buy the items you like.

There are alternatives to buying new furniture. Depending on your taste whether it is contemporary, shabby chic, country-style, or an accumulation of styles, buying used furniture may be a way to stay within your budget. Well made furniture should stand the test of time and you may just find the furniture at a great price too.

Three ways to buy quality gently used furniture pieces within a reasonable budget include:

1. Estate sales, yard sales, and garage sales
2. Local newspapers / bulletin boards and Craigslist.org
3. Consignment furniture stores

Estate sales, yard sales, garage sales:

There are a number of reasons why a person may be holding an estate sale. The homeowners may:

o be downshifting their lifestyle
o moving far away
o be selling a second home and no longer need the extra furnishings
o have passed and their family has no need for the furniture

The advantage of an estate sale is that if you like the owner’s decorating style, you may be able to purchase an entire room of furniture at bargain prices. Like with yard sales and garage sales, estate sales will really be hit or miss. The disadvantage is that you never know what you will find at each sale which can be very time consuming.

If you do find a high quality piece of furniture that you want to reupholster, consider the real cost against your budget. Reupholstering quality furniture may be worth the time and expense if you know that this piece will stay in your home a long time. Depending on the age of the furniture, you may also need to rebuild cushions and replace throw pillows. This can really add up! For the expense of the new cushions, refinishing, reupholstering, fabric, materials, labor, transportation, etc. you may find it’s cheaper to buy a new piece. Definitely consider all of the costs before going down this path.

Local newspapers/bulletin boards and Craigslist.org:

If a person or business is liquidating their furniture and belongings, they will often choose to sell it via the local newspaper or through Craigslist.org. You may even find for sale ads on bulletin boards at work, grocery stores, and at churches. The seller will usually fetch a higher price for their furniture when sold through these avenues.

Craigslist has the extra advantage of being able to feature color photographs saving the buyer time of traveling around to different locations. If you are selling furniture, try selling it first through your local newspaper, local bulletin board, or on Craigslist since you will typically sell it for a higher price through these locations. If you were unsuccessful at selling your furniture through these outlets, then consider an a yard sale or garage sale. Your last option should be through an estate sale or consignment store since you will share your money with the people helping to sell your furniture.

Remember to donate any furniture that you are unable to sell through a reputable charity or organization. It’s important that you get a receipt for your donation for end-of-year donation write-offs.

Consignment furniture stores:

Consignment stores are a great way to buy furniture at a discount and save time. Of the three choices, this will be the most expensive way to buy furniture but it could save you a lot of time since it typically offers the most complete inventory options for furnishing living rooms, dining rooms, offices, kitchens and bedrooms.

You may find that local furniture consignment shops in your area have made arrangements with builders and interior designers who create model homes. As you know, model homes are beautifully decorated with high-end furniture to sell the home. When a builder has sold all the homes in a particular subdivision, the furniture is no longer needed. The furniture is oftentimes sold at furniture consignment stores for 50% off (or more!) the retail price.

Even gallery pictures for the walls are sold less expensively at consignment furniture stores. You will need to check the store monthly for new inventory as it changes frequently. To find a store in your area, simply do a search on “Furniture Consignment Store” + your zip code. Antique furniture stores may also appear in the listings.

Before purchasing your furniture, it is wise to have a budget in mind. It is advisable that you only buy the furniture and furnishings that you love because you will be seeing it everyday in your home. Often, people end up buying furniture because they need it now, but discard it within a year or two because they end up hating it. Buy for quality and because you really like the pieces. You will end up saving time and staying within your budget if you have discriminating taste when purchasing used furniture.