Crate and Barrel: Furniture and Housewares

Crate and Barrel: Furniture and Housewares

Maxwell Ryan
Sep 4, 2007

We'll always have Paris.... A young couple on their honeymoon return to Chicago from Europe. The year? 1962. With their arms full of beautifully designed and inexpensive housewares that have never been seen in Chicago before, they decide to open a shop based on love and hard work...

With very little money, they rent an old elevator factory building in a sketchy part of town and just display their wares on the packing crates it all came in (see picture at right).

Fast forward 40 years.

The shop that Gordon and Carole Segal started is going strong (and so are they), and is still setting what we consider the standard for excellent furniture, prices and service. Many may question our taste as an interior guru in praising Crate & Barrel, but facts are facts:
1. the furniture collection is of a much higher quality than the competition (primarily PB),
2. the furniture department is actually a separate department that just sells the furniture,
3. the prices cannot be beat unless you drop to lower quality,
4. the range of designs is incredibly broad, and
5. the service and follow up on each sale is remarkably efficient, thoughtful and just plain easy.

Problems? Well, yes the scale of the furniture still runs a little large for New York apartments, and, while attractive, C&B design is rarely hip. Still they are the first place we check when looking for a piece, and every now and then something fresh comes into the rotation that you should just snatch up.

611 B'way:
M-Sat 10-9 pm
Sun 12-7 pm

650 Madison:
M-F 10-8 pm
Sat 10-7 pm
Sun 12-6 pm

(ReEdited from 2004-04-27 - MGR)

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