For years, I’ve tagged along with my mom while she perused a handful of wonderful furniture resale shops in Oklahoma City where she lives. I could not seem to find the same kind of stores in my own hometown, St. Louis. I don’t know if I wasn’t looking hard enough or a bunch of them popped up at the same time, yet now they seem to be abundant! Furniture resale shops are a treasure! And buying gently used furniture is not only easier on your wallet, it’s a great way to keep furniture out of the landfill, not to mention finding one-of-a-kind pieces that can make your home pop!
I kept passing The Refind Room – one of the furniture resale stores here. I finally stopped in recently and what a treasure! Shawn and Suzanne visited with me and told me more about their sustainability actions and how that worked with the store. The picture of this seating ensemble includes pieces from 14 homes and still looks like it was all meant to go together. One of the aspects I love about going to a store like this is all of the ideas you can get, especially from the people at the store. (Shawn and Suzanne will host small events in the store too!)
There are many options for buying used furniture – garage sales, estate sales, online and more. I like the idea of a store where I can see the furniture in a setting making it a bit easier for me to envision how it could look in my own home. I also like having the “vetting” that a store may provide with their criteria for accepting furniture for sale or consignment.
I also perused the internet for some tips on buying used furniture. Just search “why buy used furniture” to find a few sites with some good advice. A few recommendations stand out.
- When buying upholstered furniture, consider odors, pets, etc. especially if you don’t plan to re-upholster it. Also be sure to check the frame for good quality construction
- Envision the piece as it could be with some of your own personal touches or a little paint or varnish
- If you are planning to paint or stain, look for a good low or no VOC paint or stain option
- Be careful when buying children’s furniture second-hand as recalls occur more frequently with children’s furniture
- Have fun and let your creativity flow!
Second-hand furniture can add a new dimension to your home and hunting for the right piece can be an adventure on its own. Enjoy and remember you are helping yourself, the community and the world!