Urban Retreat: Chic Furnishings at Warehouse Prices

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Not wanting to settle for something we found only remotely appealing, but not being able to justify the big bucks on a custom couch, we went sofa-less for months before finding falling in love with this wonderful store. From start (picking out the sofa AND the fabric AND the custom details we wanted) to finish (delivery, admiration, comfort/durability), it was — hands down — one of the best best furniture shopping experiences we've had...

And that's just what owner, Cynthia Schneider, ensured when she "decided to combine [her] love of shopping with [her] love of furniture by bringing a unique concept of lo-markup, quality furniture to the Washington DC Metro area." While most pieces they carry are yours to customize, here's a sampling of the styles they carry in their warehouse showroom.

The showroom gives you a taste of what's available for customization in their plethora of design binders. For most pieces, you choose the fabric, the stain, the hardware, and (in some cases) the dimensions for no extra cost. AND the cost usually runs about 45% lower than what you'd expect from stores like Restoration Hardware and Pottery Barn carrying similar styles. (Although, ours was under $900 compared to the $3,000+ we would have spent on the sofa we originally wanted which was nearly identical in model and quality).

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They keep costs low by operating in a warehouse setting which means no store front, fancy interior, delivery service, or returns.

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We found that their best deals seem to be on their sofas, but they also carry a variety of affordable home accessories and decor pieces.

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In general, they cater to young professionals and people with second homes who are looking to furnish their houses with stylish, customizable, quality furniture.

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Added bonuses include the friendly in-store design professional who will help you select your dream piece, the kid's play area for those with young children, and the WONDERFUL delivery company they recommend if you aren't up for u-hauling the furniture yourself.

We thought the slogan scrawled across one wall just about summed it up: "at these prices...there is no excuse NOT to have a cool house!"

(Images: Leah Moss)