If you’re a décor enthusiast, you may feel like you’ve exhausted all of the obvious retail options and still can’t find pieces that speak to you. I’ve certainly been there, and it can be especially frustrating when you’re simply searching for a few finishing touches to make a room shine.
What I’ve found is that sometimes the most unexpected places can be full of inspiring finds. You just have to view each shopping trip through a designer’s lens, and you may be surprised at what you come across.
Below are some of the out-of-the-box locales in which I’ve spotted décor gems.
The Grocery Store
Do not underestimate the grocery store flower and plant section—it can be full of beautiful, affordable finds. During a recent trip, I picked up gorgeous green branches that were the perfect addition to a DIY bouquet and cost just $5.99.
I placed them in a ribbed vase that I spotted for just $12.99 at, you guessed it, the grocery store as well. The vase looks much more high end than its price tag would suggest and is pretty sizable, too.
Had I skipped over this section of the store entirely, I would’ve missed out on some pretty amazing deals that added some much-needed life to my space. Flower section, I’ll be keeping my eyes on you from now on.
The Used Bookstore
You may picture a used bookstore and immediately think of discarded novels with battered spines, but don’t be so quick to pass judgment. These retailers often sell beautiful coffee table books and vintage editions of classic titles, too.
It’s always worth exploring the shelves for books to display on your built-ins or to stack on a nightstand—if you find something you like, you’ll be saving big bucks in the process. After all, brand new coffee table books don’t come cheap.
Some enjoy styling shelves so that book spines face inward, in which case, you really don’t want to spend too much money on pristine copies—the used bookstore saves the day once again.
The Speciality Food and Wine Store
After visiting your nearest major supermarket to scout out the flower selection, make your way over to the speciality grocer to scope out their selection of wines, mixers, and juices. At these types of stores, you’ll find an incredible assortment of beautifully packaged beverages that will look excellent on a bar cart.
Even World Market, while not billed as a grocery store, boasts a vast selection of well-curated bottles and treats of all kinds. While this type of “décor” will obviously be consumed at some point, you’ll find wines that you’ll actually be pleased to showcase out in the open because of how well they complement your design scheme.
The Neighborhood Yard Sale
While many design enthusiasts focus solely on estate sales or online auction sites, you truly never know what you’ll come across at a good old-fashioned rummage sale. If you enjoy the thrill of the hunt—or love DIY projects and are always searching for pieces to refurbish—pull over as soon as you spot that “yard sale” sign.
You’ll most certainly encounter instances of people not knowing the true value of an item and pricing it extremely low, which is much less likely to happen at professionally run sales or even at certain thrift stores.
Of course, not every yard sale will be full of gems, but the more you visit, the better sense you’ll develop of which neighborhoods tend to boast the best selection of goodies.