Insiders’ Guide to Home Décor Websites
Sofa with frames on the wall
Credit: Ellen Silverman
The best online resources for glassware, a one-of-a-kind chair, even a painter.
- lumas.com: Your options used to be limited when buying photographs. Pay up at a gallery, or opt for a mass-produced photo at a museum gift shop. Art collectors Stefanie Harig and Marc Ullrich founded this site to give you something in between―hand-signed photos from established and emerging artists printed in limited batches (typically 75 to 100) and priced from about $100 to $700 each. It’s “the best online resource for inexpensive art,” says New York City interior designer Brad Ford.
- 20x200.com: This site lets you search by how much you’re willing to spend. Prints come in five sizes and five corresponding price points ($20, $50, $200, $500, $2,000); the higher the price, the more limited the edition. “It’s a smart way to collect art,” says DIY Network host Amy Devers.
All-Around Home Blogs
- www.allthebestblog.com: Glasgow-based editor Ronda Carman conducts indepth Q. and A.’s with designers and trendsetters such as Jonathan Adler and Charlotte Moss. “It’s a complete design and lifestyle reference,” says Michael Devine, who owns a furnishings shop in Kinderhook, New York.
- casasugar.com: “I check this site every morning,” says Los Angeles interior designer Kyle Schuneman. “It has a fantastic mix of beautiful design and cheap decorating ideas.” Edited by Elka Karl, an avid DIYer, it has instructions for such projects as painting a cast-iron radiator.
- remodelista.com: Created by a group of design-loving pals, this blog has a feature called “10 Easy Pieces,” a wonderfully edited roundup of items, like coat racks and pendant lamps.
- sohautestyle.com: A fashion publicist by day and a blogger by night, Nicole Gibbons “takes you on her travels,” says interior designer Kenneth Brown, host of Fine Living’s reDesign, whether she is antiquing or shopping for organic bedding. “It doesn’t try too hard to be clever,” says Kelley Carter, Real Simple's home market editor. “When I read it, I feel like I’m getting design advice from a friend.”
Antiques and Vintage Finds
- ebay.com: It’s not just for hawking used dining chairs. “For antiques, eBay rules the roost,” says Griffin. New York designer Glenn Gissler has bought more than a thousand things on eBay, from Asian pottery to African textiles. “I think of it as a flea market that’s open 24/7,” he says.
- 1stdibs.com: If you can afford to splurge, log on to this site. “I look at it almost daily and buy from it all the time,” says Grant K. Gibson, a San Francisco interior designer. With everything from 18th-century Italian wooden chandeliers to circa-1830 gilt armchairs from Russia, it’s like “globe-trotting for great stuff without the trotting,” says Darryl Carter, an interior designer in Washington, D.C.
- rubylane.com: Top your table with a spectacular artglass vase hand blown in New Orleans, or nab a postcard dated 1909. This site is packed with so many collectibles, it’s mind-boggling. Case in point: A recent search for “bowl” brought up more than 4,500 items.
- beehivestyle.com: This marketplace sells wares from 150 or so artisans around the country―including midcentury modern-style nightlights ($25) and stoneware vases ($34). Each product includes a “Designer Profile” so you can get to know the person behind the work of art.
- etsy.com: This site is getting a lot of play, and for good reason. With more than 100,000 vendors and growing, it’s the go-to place for all things handmade. Sellers have their own “storefronts,” where they peddle their creations, like rainbow-colored crocheted rugs ($35) and paper-clip pendant lights ($275), which are cooler than they sound.
- formerfurniture.com: Founded by interior designer Lindsey Dann Miller, this online shop sells everything from new showroom models to vintage goods. “It’s perfect for listing my clients’ old furniture and finding new pieces for them,” says Brown. You never know what you’ll see. How about a vintage Lucite-and-chrome chair ($225) or a wood-and-velvet dog bed ($800) originally designed for Dr. Phil’s pooch?
- overstock.com: This soup-to-nuts site, which recently featured a Drexel Heritage desk for $600 (down from $1,129), has “inventory that’s constantly changing,” says Schuneman. “And with $2.95 flat-rate shipping, it makes shopping locally almost unnecessary.”
- shopgoodwill.com: Stocked with stuff donated from participating Goodwill stores, this auction site features surprisingly sophisticated wares―things like hand-painted compote dishes for $5, brass-plated scalloped bowls for $4, and oak dining tables for $33. Not in the mood for a bidding war? The Buy Now section lists products for immediate purchase.
- franklinreport.com: Founded in 1991 by Elizabeth Franklin, this company solicits feedback from home owners to select the cream-of-the-crop pros in 30 categories, including painters and architects, in five major metropolitan areas―with more to come. “It’s like a Zagat’s guide for the world of design,” says Manhattan-based interior designer Laura Bohn.
- servicemagic.com: Looking for a plumber or a contractor? Use this free site to hire a pro recommended by folks in your area.
- branchhome.com: With goods ranging from cork ottomans to bamboo sporks to hammocks made of reclaimed nylon webbing, this site is like a “green department store,” says Rima Suqi, a product-trends expert in New York City.
- greenglass.com: This earth-friendly company recycles wine bottles, cutting them down and sanding the edges to create decidedly original glassware and vases.
- lolldesigns.com: The chic outdoor chairs, chaises, side tables, and ottomans on this site “are made entirely of recycled plastic,” says Suqi.
Shown here: Handmade recycled-glass pieces (starting at $178) from branchhome.com.
- neenaslighting.com: “This is one of my favorite resources for inexpensive lighting,” says Ford. Among the 10,000 options available, you’ll find classic drum-shade pendants and arty polycarbonate table lamps that look like glowing orbs.
- urbanelectricco.com: “I just can’t get enough of their vintage-inspired lighting,” says New York City interior designer Ariel Ashe. Almost every kind of lamp, from simple lanterns to extravagant chandeliers, is available.
- davesgarden.com: Don’t know what to do with your crumbling stone walkway or the best way to maintain your driveway? Ask all your curb-appeal questions here. “It’s the greatest gardening and landscaping how-to resource,” says Abby Jenkins, a stylist in Stamford, Connecticut.
- westonletters.com: “This site is perfect if you’re searching for modern house numbers and letters to jazz up the front of your place. It features some of the best typefaces that I’ve ever seen,” says Brooklyn stylist Chip Cordelli.
Shown here: Cast-aluminum digits ($33 each) from westonletters.com.
- govinowine.com: Go to this URL for Govino stemless wineglasses ($12 for four). Made of shatterproof plastic, they look uncannily like crystal, and the deeply grooved thumb notches mean even butterfingers will have a hard time dropping their Chardonnay.
- plumparty.com: This site stocks party supplies for 80 themes (luaus, discos, even breakup parties). Visit the Eco-Friendly section for corn-based compostable straws, biodegradable guest towels, and palm-leaf dishes.
- agedwoods.com: By rescuing wood from barns (some of which are 200 years old) and turning it into plank flooring, this restoration company is “able to preserve the environment while providing a strong product,” says New York City interior designer Francine Gardner.
- demolitiondepot.com: Everything from 19th-century stained-glass doors to gorgeous cast-iron stairways salvaged from Manhattan town houses is restored to its original condition. This is also “the best source for old, deeply beautiful mantelpieces,” says New York City interior designer Fawn Galli.
- compactappliance.com: Take your pick of washer-dryer combo units, ultraslim refrigerators, 18-inch-wide dishwashers, and small convection ovens with two burners on top. This resource has space-saving appliances you never knew existed.
- furniture-for-small-spaces.com: The name says it all. This site sells innovative products, like folding patio tables for tiny yards and ceiling-mounted clothes-drying racks for space-challenged laundry rooms. Also peruse the wall-mounted items: can openers, laptop stations, even fish tanks.
- designyourwall.com: Here you’ll find a ridiculously extensive collection of wall coverings―from affordable materials, like cork, to pricier silk and velvet.
- grahamandbrown.com: “This site has the most beautiful papers,” says Ford. New York City interior designer Kristen McGinnis particularly loves the “artist-designed papers and the must-see eco-collection.”
- hyggeandwestshop.com: Founded by lifelong friends and former attorneys Aimee Lagos and Christiana Coop, this site sells unique, graphic wallpaper from various artists. “We try to have all our products fit what we call a ‘hygge aesthetic,’ ” says Lagos, “which is the Danish approach to living well, being content, and enjoying small moments. We ask the artists to interpret their own sense of hygge in the pieces they create for us.”
- walnutwallpaper.com: The wide selection of retro patterns is so impressive, you can find just about anything. “The last time I was looking for olive green faux-alligator-skin wallpaper, they actually had it!” says Brown.