Tips for Shopping Our Upholstery Sale

We love Upholstery Sale time at the shop! We’re stocked with fresh frames and new looks and get to welcome customers, new and old, into the shop where we have the pleasure of assisting as they shop and design new pieces for their homes.  

But, shopping for upholstery, and furniture in general, can be a daunting task. It’s easy to be overwhelmed with options; one step into our Design Studio is enough to cause heart palpitations (the good kind and the bad) with the sheer number of hanging fabric swatches that surround you! The process doesn’t have to be scary, though. We pride ourselves on offering friendly service and a wealth of product knowledge to help you create lovely and livable spaces.  

If you’re new to the upholstery buying game or new to shopping our sales, or perhaps you’re considering purchasing custom furniture for the first time, I’ve put together some Q+A just for you. This list comes from the questions we get in the shop (and over the phone, email, and social media) and I hope they make you feel right at home when you walk through our doors. 

I see you promoting appointments with Designers. Do I have to make an appointment? 

No, you are not required to make an appointment to shop our sale! You’re welcome to stop by any time to browse our in-stock selection – our team will be there and happy to answer questions if you have them.  

If the thought of browsing a two-level showroom packed with furniture, accessories and decor makes you more anxious than excited, or you know you have quite a lot of work to do but aren’t sure how to navigate it, or you simply don’t know where to start, I encourage you to connect with one of our designers. You can get to know them right here on our website and book an appointment in advance, or meet them as you walk around the shop.  

I will say, during sales the designers tend to get booked up, especially as the end of the sale approaches. I encourage you to schedule soon if it’s something you decide to do!  

What does an appointment with a designer actually look like? 

Sale appointments look different based on your needs. Something that won’t change is our team’s desire to understand your needs, preferences, and personal style. Appointments typically begin with an initial conversation about what you’re looking for, the spaces new pieces will be going into, aesthetic likes and dislikes, and general details about how you live in your home and the people you might share it with.

From there, we start building a space or a piece based on what was reviewed in the initial conversations by walking around the shop and having you sit in pieces or, if you’re not able to visit in person, presenting images of pieces and elements that might fit your needs. Then we begin selecting textiles ensuring that the fiber content and care requirements will suit your lifestyle and the spaces the pieces will occupy, and coordinate with existing colors and textiles in the room. And, most importantly, that the overall combination of colors, texture, finishes and fabrics make your heart sing!  

What do I do if I have no idea where to start? 

We know projects can be daunting and we love to guide our customers through the process. If you need to breathe more life into a space or are starting from scratch, look through magazines, Pinterest, books and other sources of inspirations and clip or copy images that speak to you. Make note of what speaks to you in each image, if you can put your finger on it, and share these with your designer when you begin chatting.  

living room, dining room, kitchen flatlay

How do I prepare for a design appointment? 

There a few things you can do in advance to prepare for a smooth design or sale shopping appointment. Taking measurements of your space and any elements that will remain in your space is a great place to start. A simple sketch will do! Be sure to note where doors, walkways, and windows are located, and note the elements in adjoining spaces that need to be considered. If you have a paint swatch and swatches or cuttings of any other textiles that will need to be considered, gather those up and bring them with you to your appointment as well. It’s not unusual to see a sofa cushion accompanying a customer as she shops to find the perfect coordinating chair fabric!  

What if I can’t make it into the shop due to my location – can I still shop the sale and if so, how does that work? 

Absolutely! We have customers all over the United States. With the use of technology and mail services, we can provide most design services remotely. White glove delivery and shipping services allow us to get your pieces to your home safely. If you want to shop the sale with one of our designers from afar, email us at and we will get you connected! 

Do you carry pieces I can take home the same day? 

Yes, the floor is full of furniture that you can take with you right away if you have a vehicle large enough to haul it! In fact, Carlie and I helped a sweet couple on their way home to Michigan load two darling swivels into the back of their truck on Saturday. Lots of furniture wrap and ratchet straps later, they were on their way (and yes, the chairs and the people all arrived home safely at about 2am the next morning – what champs)!  

What if I like the shape of a frame, but not the fabric or finish?  

Custom upholstery is our specialty, and we LOVE building pieces just for you. From classic and clean to bold and bougie, we’ve created everything from clean-lined neutral sofas to funky frames in fuchsia velvet. Every piece is unique, just like our customers and their spaces, and tailoring piece to your preferences is a highlight of our jobs and the design process in general.  

I love this piece, but want it in a different fabric – does the price stay the same when I change it?  

Prices can change based on the fabrics and finishes you select. Fabrics are graded into each line and the price goes up or down based on the fabric you select. A lower-grade fabric does not mean a lesser quality fabric, it simply means that particular fabric cost less to produce. Finishes often come in standard and premium options, with an upcharge for a premium option. If you spot a piece on the floor that is out of budget, don’t rule it out until we price it out for you in a different grade of fabric!  

Nell Hill's design team

There are so many more questions we can ask and answer when it comes to custom upholstery and shopping sales, but we’ll leave it at that for today. If you have a question we didn’t cover here, give us a ring or send us an email – we are here to help and love to educate and inform wherever we can! Until next time – Happy Shopping! 😉