Photo courtesy of Mannarino Designs
Sure, designers have access to to-the-trade only showrooms, but guess what? They shop at plenty of mainstream stores too.
NJ HOME asked nine interior designers to spill the beans about where to find gorgeous furniture, both custom and ready-made, and the reasons why they shop at these stores for themselves and their clients. Here’s what they told us:
Though many chains boast large showrooms, small, independently owned shops can also feature sizeable collections of top-quality furniture. Katy Champion-Uras and Elissa Palamara, founders of Swell Design Co. in Atlantic Highlands, do much of their shopping at Nest in Red Bank. “It’s a great local place to be able to see items you’re interested in,” says Champion-Uras. Not far from Nest is Zakson’s in Brick Township, a shop that Anna Maria Mannarino, owner of Holmdel’s Mannarino Designs, frequents. It has an “exquisite showroom, beautiful vignettes and wide array of styles,” she says.
For those shopping further north, you can scour Urban Natural Home in Bloomfield, a hidden gem with an eco-conscious showroom stocked with top-notch furniture and custom upholstery for living rooms, dining rooms and bedrooms. “It’s an intimate and manageable space,” says Noel Gatts of Bloomfield-based Beam & Bloom, “with plenty of room to view the selections.”
Additionally, Marina Umali of Marina V Design Studio in Ridgewood recommends two Paramus shops: Saloni Furniture and Dogtas Home. “I’ve purchased good-looking pieces for my clients at Saloni Furniture, and recently I was introduced to Dogtas, a new showroom with some updated looks,” she says. Sarah Elizabeth of her eponymous firm in Upper Montclair loves Ampersand Interiors in Upper Montclair, which sells “practical and stylish furniture, some with easy-to-open extensions for family-friendly dinners and entertaining.”
Don’t count out chains
On any given weekend, many furniture chain stores are usually packed with customers (and designers)—and for good reason: They often have a large selection of well-made pieces in stock. Lauren Tobias, principal designer, LT Designs in Ocean, likes Macy’s Furniture in Eatontown for sectionals, Raymour & Flanigan in Oakhurst for mattresses and World Market in Shrewsbury for affordable tables, chairs and décor.
Diana Weinstein of Diana Weinstein Interior Design in Glen Ridge is a fan of Crate & Barrel for “great looking, current styles”—many of which are in stock when you need them. Megan Pisano of her eponymous design firm in Chatham loves both Bassett in Livingston and Arhaus in Short Hills, both of which boast “a wide variety of styles for beds, dressers and nightstands; the quality is great, the service is spot on and the pricing A+.”
Consider custom creators
New Jersey is also home to furniture makers who create unique and custom pieces made specifically for designers or individual clients. Window Treats in Red Bank, for instance, is one of Tobias’ go-to spots. “They can make custom banquettes, beds, benches, reupholster your dining chairs—anything you need!” she says. “You can provide your own fabric or choose from their great fabric library.”
Meanwhile, Wendy Wallin, founder of Impeccable Designs in Ramsey, goes to Arthur Parks Upholstery in Clifton for her custom furniture needs. Diana Weinstein’s go to is Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams in Paramus. “It’s such a great resource for upholstery and case goods for living rooms,” she says. “The styling is very transitional, and they have a great selection of fabric options to customize.
Sarah Elizabeth is a big fan of White House Designs for Life in Wayne, which offers “high-end customizable furniture lines like LEE Industries and Century Furniture, and also have a wonderfully vast fabric library with all of the vendors we know and love.”
Tell us your favorite places to shop for furniture on Instagram @njhomemag. And for more design, decor and shopping tips from the pros, check out the latest issue of NJ HOME, online and on newsstands now!