In the world of furniture, items are big and mistakes are costly. We compiled a list of starting points: Essential-and affordable-NYC home furnishing spots.
Thu Oct 18 2007
ABC Carpet & Home Warehouse Outlet
ABC Carpet & Home Warehouse Outlet
Einstein’s theory of relativity applies to bargains, especially when the price tags on Chesterfields and Chinese curios still orbit in the four-digit range at this discount branch of the chichi Manhattan department store. But you can still easily score deals at this 300,000-square-foot, tri-level emporium where elegant, boho loot—reduced by up to 75 percent—arrives weekly. We spotted Le Corbusier–style, clean-lined love seats on final markdown for $495, Indian silk throw pillows for $20 a pop and cotton rag rugs tagged $16. Getting here is a trek and requires traversing a dodgy bridge, so skip the 15-minute walk past auto body shops from the 6 train stop and take the Bx4 bus or call a car service.
What to get Antiques or reproductions of classic styles, bedding, beds, chairs, curtains, dressers, pillows, tables, rugs and sofas
Delivery From $90. ABC will hold your purchases for a few days if you’d like to arrange for your own pickup. Tip: If you buy a carpet, ask a salesperson to call a car service and you’ll save at least a Benjamin on delivery.
1055 Bronx River Ave between Bruckner Blvd and Watson Ave, Bronx (718-842-8772)
Baxter & Liebchen
Specializing in midcentury Scandinavian design, this Dumbo vintage resource is crammed with more than 800 striking pieces. But be prepared to pay for blasts from the past (rosewood dining chairs usually cost $500 each). Thankfully, B&L also holds twice-yearly markdown bonanzas offering up to 75 percent off. If you can’t wait for a sale, typical windfalls here include ’60s rosewood coffee tables ($500), a pair of ’50s teak chairs ($600) and a storage unit ($1,000) by Danish designer Borge Morgensen.
What to get Vintage chairs, desks, dressers, lighting, sofas and tables
Delivery From $50
33 Jay St at Plymouth St, Dumbo, Brooklyn (718-797-0630)
Catalog-phobes can finally test-drive mod sofas (from $900), rolling desks ($149), starburst-print accent tables ($199) and the like from this hipper, more wallet-friendly spin-off of domestic-goods behemoth Crate & Barrel. Beloved by design addicts for its boxy, modernist basics that are scaled down for apartment dwellers, the Chicago-based company will plant its first NYC flagship—and third outpost—in Soho Nov 6. The 8,000-square-foot digs will proffer more styles than are seen in the catalog.
What to get Beds, bookcases, chairs, dressers, lighting, nightstands, rugs, sofas, tables and TV/media stands
Delivery Perhaps cheaper than a cab ride home, shipping for purchases under $200 starts at $15. Getting larger furniture to your third-floor walk-up ranges from $55 to $69.
451 Broadway between Grand and Howard Sts (no phone yet)
If you know your Saarinen from your Starck or would like to invest in pieces with a shelf life longer than a celebrity marriage, hop a train to the heart of the Meadowlands to Design Within Reach’s discount trove. A quick bus or taxi ride from the Secaucus station, the year-old warehouse—roughly half the size of a football field—brims with an army of midcentury gems. Shipments arrive weekly from the Kentucky warehouse, including floor samples, surplus goods and discontinued styles along with returned items. Spanking-new reproductions of designs such as Eero Saarinen’s womb chairs are usually nicked by a paltry 20 percent, but if you don’t mind a few dings, you can save up to 70 percent on damaged pieces.
What to get Chairs, lighting, rugs and sofas
Delivery From $95 for the first piece and $35 extra for each additional item, regardless of size
55 Hartz Way, Secaucus, NJ (201-325-8411)
Gothic Cabinet Craft
When shoddy particleboard and flimsy plastic won’t do, this 38-year-old chain, which dots NYC with 26 locations, is a go-to spot for cut-rate traditional styles of bookshelves (from $49), platform beds (from $99) and TV carts (from $99) hewn from pine, birch and oak. DIYers will save even more cash by opting for unfinished works (staining will set you back a whopping $45–$80 on a small bookshelf). For custom pieces, expect to pay 30 percent to modify the size of a standard item, and $500 and up for a true made-to-measure job—not dirt-cheap, but worthwhile for dwellers of 400-square-foot studio apartments in need of built-in should hit the two Queens clearance centers, both of which abound with overstock and floor models slashed by up to 70 percent.
What to get Beds, bookcases, chairs, custom pieces, desks, dressers, entertainment centers, tables and wardrobes
Delivery From $35, plus an extra $5 per floor in walk-up buildings
Various locations throughout the city, go to gothiccabinetcraft.com for more info.
The lure of $39 Billy bookshelves and $15 Rast bedside tables attracts droves of New Yorkers to this retail giant’s blue-and-yellow one-stop depots, but the domestic accessories—not to mention the 99-cent breakfast—also merit the trip across the Hudson. Lamps evoke styles from renowned (and pricey) designers including Isamu Noguchi, textiles feature Technicolor Marimekko-like prints, and supersoft sheepskin rugs will set you back a mere $40.
What to get Bedding, curtains, frames, lighting and rugs
Delivery Don’t even think about it, since shipping a Malm four-drawer dresser can cost more than the piece itself. If your boxes won’t fit on the free weekend shuttle bus from Port Authority to Elizabeth, rent a car or hire a delivery service such as Ikea Delivery Alternative (ikea-delivery-alternative.com; from $80 plus tolls). IDA will pick you up and help you schlep your new acquisitions home. Tips: The Paramus location is closed on Sundays, and the Elizabeth outpost offers slightly lower taxes.
100 Ikea Dr, Paramus, NJ (201-843-1881); 1000 Ikea Dr, Elizabeth, NJ (908-289-4488)
This Tokyo-based line with a cult following (mujirushi ryohin means “no-brand quality goods” in Japanese) specializes in deliberately unflashy housewares that design purists adore for their simple aesthetics and smart, streamlined packaging. Its office supplies and coffee tables are currently carried only at MoMA shops in the U.S., but come November, this 3,200-square-foot shop will win over local conspicuous consumers with its utilitarian-looking shelves ($14), sofas ($265) and steel chairs ($112).
What to get Beds, chairs, dressers, sofas and tables
Delivery Muji will offer a delivery service but prices are unavailable at press time.
455 Broadway between Grand and Howard Sts (no phone yet)
Head past the $3,245 Eames leather lounge chairs for the furnishings inspired by English, Scandinavian and Chinese antiques at this Minneapolis-based chain’s Soho boutique. They arguably have the best clean-lined sofas—at totally reasonable prices—in the city. Sure, you’ll pay more than at Ikea (a nightstand fetches $399), but you’ll be rewarded with items that won’t max out your credit card or fall apart the minute you try to move them to new digs.
What to get Beds, chairs, dressers, lighting, sofas and tables
Delivery A flat rate of $69 regardless of your order’s size
105 Wooster St between Prince and Spring Sts (212-334-4343)
Meander though the packed aisles, where you’ll find Mies van der Rohe’s metal-and-leather BRNO chairs ($325) perched atop Danish coffee tables ($350) at this standby for pristine midcentury styles and industrial-steel office furniture. Beyond preloved stock, the shop also carries brand-new styles by award-winning companies like Cherner, Emeco and Blu Dot, such as the latter’s watermelon-pink Strut console for $399.
What to get Bookcases, chairs, desks and tables
Delivery Two Jakes doesn’t offer delivery, but will help you arrange for outside shipping, which starts at $25.
320 Wythe Ave between Grand and South 1st Sts, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-782-7780)
Williams-Sonoma’s more accessible sibling has grown up from a fledgling catalog with a handful of stark, bare-bones pieces to a design-conscious powerhouse. But its Shakeresque wood beds (from $199), clean-lined modular sectionals (from $269) and dialed-down nightstands (from $159) still exude a minimalist aesthetic that marries well with other decorating styles.
What to get Beds, bookcases, chairs, desks, dressers, lighting, rugs, sofas and TV stands
Delivery From $85. Tip: If you’ve mastered the wordless instructions of Ikea furniture, you should skip the $45 assembly fee and build things yourself.
112 W 18th St between Sixth and Seventh Aves (212-929-4464); 75 Front St between Main and Washington Sts, Dumbo, Brooklyn (718-875-7757)
Acquiring knockoffs might leave you with a pesky moral dilemma, but the bargains on Cooper-Hewitt–worthy doppelgängers for iconic pieces from Eames, Herman Miller, Knoll and Fritz Hansen are too good to pass up at this burgeoning chainlet’s five NYC showrooms. Stifle your ethical quibbles with mushroom-shaped fiberglass coffee tables for $200, and $600 chrome-and-leather lounge chairs that bear an uncanny resemblance to Le Corbusier’s chaise longues.
What to get Chairs, lighting, tables and sofas
Delivery From $75 Various locations throughout the city, go to whiteonwhite.com for more info.
After Bed, Bath & Beyond, this punky retailer ranks as the unofficial headquarters of dorm-room decor, but surprisingly, outfitting your studio apartment here won’t evoke flashbacksof your days at NYU. A small selection of sophisticated pieces—superfemme Victorian velvet couches ($550); graphic, enamel-covered metal side tables ($29); block-print curtains ($30)—offer an elegant counterpart to UO’s normally edgy wares.
What to get Chairs, curtains, sofas and tables
Delivery Unless you order online, UO doesn’t offer delivery. The 72nd Street store will hook you up, however, with a man witha van, whose services begin at $50. Tip: Many styles are offered exclusively online.
Various locations throughout the city; go to urbn.com for more info.
At this H&M or Zara of decor shops, this California-based chain’s Soho outpost merges the latest trends with reasonable prices. Luckily, Art Deco–style consoles ($799) and dining chairs ($299), along with rustic floor lamps ($99), won’t make your home look like a victim of the current zeitgeist.
What to get Chairs, dressers, entertainment centers, lighting, sofas and tables
Delivery From $30
443 Broadway at Grand St (212-343-1045)