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Wednesday, June 21, 2006

go forth, spend money

Yes. I love to shop. Prompted by some strange nesting impulse, I have been doing a lot of shopping lately -- although not all that much buying, fortunately for our future HVAC system. So, in the spirit of shopping, I thought I'd share with you a list of some of my favorite places, both for ogling and for actual spending.

Wesley Allen: I'm going to buy my new bed from here. They make custom wrought iron beds -- you choose the look, then you choose from like ten configurations and thirty different finishes. Plus they can upholster them. Their prices are reasonable, too -- they aren't thrift store beds or anything, but they aren't any more expensive than any other wrought iron bed you might find in a retail store, and they're a lot nicer.

The Container Store: Here's a secret: I love boxes. Seriously. Boxes, bottles, little containers, secret compartments... I go into little organizational spasms of glee every time I get a sale email from the Container Store. Admittedly, I rarely buy anything from there, both because they are far away (the nearest store is in Rockville, forty five minutes south) and because they are ridiculously expensive and you really can get most of their stuff at Target. But the thought of an entire store devoted to containers makes me secretly very happy.

Home Depot: This is obvious. Hello, building supplies. In addition to straight up drywall and power tools and other homebuilding necessities, though, I often shop at Home Depot for other things. We own a whole lot of their sturdy bookshelves, for instance. And my latest craft project, tabletop fountains, owe a great deal to a recent Home Depot shopping trip. And do you know the fun things you can do with paint chips? For reals.

Crate and Barrel: If you take me to an upscale mall, I have this tendency to plaster myself to the windows of the Crate and Barrel store, drooling pathetically. Sometimes I lick things, too. Apparently, that's frowned upon. In any case, I have only ever bought one thing from a Crate and Barrel in my entire life -- a set of measuring spoons for my mother -- but that's going to change. Oh, boy, is it ever.

Williams-Sonoma: I lick things here, too. Someday, I'll be the sort of woman who buys kitchen gear at Williams-Sonoma and regularly invites several guests to her beach cottage for a weekend of luxury and relaxation and keeps baskets of upscale toiletries in the guest rooms. Someday.

Home Goods: This store is my best friend. Really. Sorry, previous best friend, you've been cut out. Home Goods is this great store which is owned by the same corporate parent as T.J. Maxx and Marshalls (where I got a nice dress once, but I digress), and it specializes in home accents. You know when you watch those shows on HGTV and they finish up by putting in all those little frou-frou bits and pieces like trays and candles and bowls and rocks and designer soaps and fancy statuettes? That's what Home Goods sells. For cheap. They get overstocks from major retail design centers, and it's always a mishmash of the most random stuff, and sometimes you have to pick through shelves full of mysteriously broken cat clocks and garden hangings, but there is always stuff there worth buying. They have particularly good deals on glassware; we stocked our sideboard with Home Goods glasses. Fabulous. They don't have a great deal of furniture -- the most you'll find is an occasional table or two -- but they have decorative accents beyond your wildest imaginings.


Summer said...

Both Williams-Sonoma and Crate & Barrel have great outlet stores. I go in there and wonder "why would I ever pay retail?" (which of course I do, sometimes) You can get a lot of the same stuff at the outlets, great at the end of the summer especially! I know both stores are in Leesburg (yeah, far, I know, but I used to live in VA so that's where I discovered them...) and I think there's a C&B in perryville?

Jamaila said...

Outlet stores are definitely the penultimate creation of the human race. Best EVER. Unfortunately, they're all so far away that I can never go there unless I'm on vacation, which pretty much never happens. Alas! Fortunately for my wallet, I can't really buy anything from either store yet anyway, since there's no kitchen to put it in. ;)

Nick said...

Every time I see The Container Store (it's just down the road from here), I kick myself for not coming up with the idea first. Then I have to stop myself from going in because I like boxes and stuff a lot, too.

quietnightwing said...

Does a metal bowl in the guest bathroom filled with pilfered soaps, shampoos and lotions from nice hotels count?

Jamaila said...

No, no, it has to be fabulously expensive toiletries. And it must be in a basket. A basket is a total requirement.

Beach cottage ladies don't need to STEAL their toiletries. ;)

Angel's Accessories Jewelry Blog said...

Hey, there's a Crate & Barrel outlet at the King St. station. We should go. I've been, it was fairly neat.

Also: down by Avenue, which I stopped by tonight (yay clothes! although none of the pants I needed) there's a TJ Maxx and Home Goods right next to each other. There's something wrong with that.

Jamaila said...

I smell a shopping day! We can go find you a pot for your fountain. :D

amanda said...

There is even a Restoration Hardware outlet in Leesburg. It's like shopping heaven on earth. Just don't go on a Saturday. My sis-in-law and I went on a Sat. (she's from Ohio) and there were stores we just walked away from b/c we couldn't handle the line.

Jamaila said...

Clearly, I should be going to Leesburg! Maybe I will work in a weekend vacation sometime soon. I'll take shopping over a resort anytime!