How to shop at HomeGoods like an interior designer

Annie Elliot gained an enormous social media following following her recommendation on on the lookout for low cost shops for decor that solely appears to be like costly. So, we took her buying.

Aside from the plant, the whole lot right here got here from a HomeGoods buying journey with inside designer Annie Elliott. (Marvin Joseph for The Washington Submit)


Who higher that can assist you store for dwelling furnishings than somebody who does it professionally? Enters DC inside designer Annie ElliottAnd who’ve TikTok movies Crouching the aisles of supermarkets providing her styling ideas has made her a Era Z sensation — her first HomeGoods video has garnered 4 million views. (She’s additionally taken her followers to Ikea, Goal, and HomeSense.)

Elliott and I just lately went to Maryland HomeGoods to see how the designer appears to be like for high quality amidst the low cost retailer decor. “That is one factor about HomeGoods: You need to actually examine issues out, as a result of they put on out loads,” she says. “Simply because one thing is affordable does not imply it is a cut price.”

So which objects deserve a spot in your house and which of them are finest left on the cabinets? Right here, Elliott shares her ideas for spending properly on the decor retailer.

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Put the furnishings to the take a look at

Elliott usually recommends not skimping on giant, upholstered items on the retailer. If you happen to see one thing you want, she suggests analyzing the material extra intently. “Heavier woven materials are positive, but when a sample is printed on it, it might look low-cost and it might not put on as properly,” she says.

She additionally recommends making an attempt the products: Sit to verify it is actually snug, then examine the body. Nobody desires a rickety chair, so Elliot suggests shaking it properly to verify it is steady and made sturdily. “Once you seize the armrests, you do not have to really feel the piece of wooden that makes up the arm,” she says.

Lastly, contemplate the associated fee. Throughout our buying journey, most front room chairs price round $500—not unhealthy, however as Elliott factors out, “When you get to that worth level, it’s important to ask your self, ‘Is that this higher than Crate & Barrel, which has good options?'” Actually high quality? The decision: Solely proceed if the value is correct and it appears to be like properly made. In any other case, you might need to spend money on higher items elsewhere.

Study situation items rigorously

Be certain that doorways on facet panels and cupboards align, and that each one drawers open and shut easily. Whereas buying, Elliot stopped by to present a contemporary dresser a re-examination solely to find that its entrance confirmed seen licks of paint on the end and that its doorways have been warped. “If you happen to’re helpful, I suppose you possibly can tinker with the hinges and make the doorways even, but when it’s important to take it dwelling and repair it, it may not work,” she says.

When requested if fashionable items of furnishings are a superb funding at HomeGoods, she advises, “If the value is just too low, and it will not final without end, by all means go forward.” Nevertheless, it’s progressing A extra sustainable different: booze. You’ll be able to paint a chunk of wooden your self Discover it in a classic retailerand the standard is 9 instances higher out of 10″.

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Elliott says the retailer is a good supply for trendy and cheap facet tables. A $130 mid-century-inspired wooden finish desk caught her eye, as did a small rattan desk for $60 that would double as a plant stand. I additionally beloved just a little stay edge occasional desk for $100. “You’ll be able to’t actually faux a stay edge, so one thing like this can be a good purchase,” she says, inspecting the woodwork. “It is just a little worn out, however since that is the look of the piece, it feels intentional and it really works.”

Nevertheless, not all tables have been successful. She pointed to these with flimsy or cheap-looking steel legs and joints that seemed like they have been soldered poorly. “The factor I counsel individuals to keep away from is issues that look low-cost or poorly fitted,” she says.

HomeGoods is a windfall for well-designed-looking lamps, and you may typically rating an identical pair. Elliott says he is all the time looking out for ceramic patterns, and marks lots of the designs that have been poached with worth tags within the $35 to $50 vary. What to skip: Lamps with all-metal bases, “as a result of when there’s lots of steel in a single place, it does not look as costly and the end may not put on out as properly,” she says.

Look in mirrors, however go on artwork

Elliott recommends trying out the mirror part as a result of you possibly can typically rating smaller, hard-to-find sizes that measure 24 inches or much less—excellent for small powder rooms. Nevertheless, on the subject of wall decor, the designer handles it rigorously. “Artwork may be very subjective; I’d moderately individuals purchase artwork at a neighborhood artwork faculty, vintage retailer, or get a print off Etsy than purchase one thing actually generic,” she says.

Make a beeline for the hampers

Elliott is an enormous fan of HomeGoods’ many organizational options, with woven rope and straw baskets topping the record. Most of the types rival Moroccan-inspired variations from high-end retailers like Serena & Lily, however at a fraction of the associated fee. “Massive ones are particularly nice for hiding firewood or blankets in a household room,” she says.

Try the equipment

With the whole lot from hourglasses to obelisks, the shop’s ornamental objects part is a treasure hunt by itself. What made Elliot’s story? “Animal collectible figurines, as a result of they arrive in attention-grabbing shapes and are a non-controversial technique to fill a gap on a bookshelf,” she says. One other endorsement: ornamental trays. “If you happen to’re making an attempt to declutter, put it on a tray and all of the sudden it appears to be like intentional,” she says.

Many decorators and interior designers—not simply Elliott—will let you know that HomeGoods is their go-to supply for outsized glassware for showcasing artfully organized branches. “A lot of the glassware says it is made in Spain and the standard is nice for the value,” says Elliot, who has used a number of glazes to decorate an unfired hearth.

Elliott says the shop is usually a dependable place to choose up additional units of sheets—simply learn the label to verify they’re 100% cotton, linen, or bamboo, and keep away from man-made supplies like polyester or microfiber. “I do not fear an excessive amount of about thread depend, however search for the phrases ‘percale,’ in order for you a pleasant, crisp look to your sheets, or ‘Egyptian,’ in order for you a softer, smoother really feel—each are cotton,” she says.

Decide up pillows and sheets

In line with Elliott, no journey to HomeGoods is full with out strolling down the pillow aisle—excessive reward coming from the designer who’s accustomed to custom-made creations from luxurious materials. She suggests on the lookout for pillows with detachable, zippered covers (as a result of they are often simply cleaned) and avoiding pillows that snap closed. Her solely pillow is grumpy: laborious, cramped, no-tender pillows. “I actually object to pillow stuffing when the pillow bounces again into form,” she says, and her favourite: a mix of multi-feather and down-feather filling.

When shopping for throws, Elliott says to search for pure fibers. She believes the extra practical fake fur throws may have an extended life than the shaggy choices, which appear to disintegrate and disintegrate already on the shelf. “You need to suppose that if it does not look good now, when you get it dwelling and use it for some time, it actually will not look good,” she says.

Michelle Bruner is a Washington-based author who covers inside design and tradition.

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