10 October 2011

Restoration Hardware

 

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Is that a sofa or a centipede? 

 

Did you get the new Restoration Hardware catalogue?  Over 600 pages and weighing 3 lbs, it’s been the talk of the business world and the internet:   Is it green or not?  How can they afford to put out something like this in our bad economy?  Are they making money or losing money?

I can’t remember another catalogue generating this much buzz, much of which is negative.  Is it just jealous rumblings from other companies who aren’t doing as well?   Restoration Hardware certainly gives the impression that all is well.   Newly remodeled stores are going up around the nation.   The new shops are dark and atmospheric, more resembling a gentleman’s club than a furniture store.

People either love the new RH or hate it.  There’s not much middle ground. 

We tackle all this and more on this week’s Skirted Roundtable.  And yes, no, we three don’t agree on the topic at hand!!

 

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Whoa.  Gorgeous!

 

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This is a furniture store????

Listen to The Skirted Roundtable HERE.

 

 

 

81 comments:

  1. I can't wait to see/hear what y'all have to say about RH.
    We have the original flagship store as well as the most wonderful design center store here in SF. They are like nirvana, walking into them. But, as much as I love being there, I cannot make it work in my home. You have to wonder how RH is making money. The stores are always full, but is anybody buying anything? I'll definitely tune in to what you have to say! This subject has been on my mind for a while...!

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  2. I enjoyed the discussion and came back to comment. I liked the "old" RH much more... Every time I venture into the store I always wonder "who has houses this big?".. the furniture scale is GINORMOUS... sooo oversized. I'm not interested in all the bleached wood but they have accessories that I love, especially the garden items.

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  3. Oh I am just soooo jealous! We do not have RH here in Australia and I think their products look absolutely gorgeous. Their furniture looks very suitable for the Australian lifestyle too. Come to Melbourne, Restoration Hardware, - I promise we'll all buy loads of stuff!

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  4. i wish they were here too, come to qld!

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  5. I think they should come to Adelaide. Looks like you've got the Aussie vote!

    Kate (in Adelaide)

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  6. I have my behemoth catalog and love RH! What’s not to love there’s more eye candy behind each page making their competition jealous. I don’t know if RH is doing well or not but that’s not really my concern. What they do offer are pieces made by artists that they personally have searched out. I for one have several pieces of RH furniture and it’s extremely well made with quality materials. I know people will say something about their look “Belgium style” will become dated but it hasn’t so far in Belgium.

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  7. This is not like me at all, but I'm kind of a snob about RH (I threw the book directly into the recycle bin). I do think their stuff is pretty...but if I had the ridiculous money it costs, I wouldn't be buying RH furniture. You know? I would say that they've priced themselves out of their own market but that can't be true because I have a darling friend who just built a mega mansion and filled her house top to bottom with RH. What the heck do I know?

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  8. I love their look. So fresh and not like everyone else. I wish them well. They inspire me. I don't often buy their products because of the price point, but sometimes find their linens on sale. I agree, what's not to like?

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  9. While agree that the styling is impressive, the RH hardware store in Houston is so DARK that it is like being a cave. I really dislike shopping there because you cannot even tell true colors of things.

    Sure hope their new store is a bit on the lighter/brighter side so we can actually see the merchandise.

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  10. French Garden DesignOctober 11, 2011 at 6:43 AM

    Does anyone know how well their linen sofas wear? I see them steaming them constantly in their store to get rid of wrinkles. How will they look in 6 months to a year..or 5 years. The linen fabric seemed a little rough to the touch ! Any comments?????????

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  11. So interesting. I took my husband in a RH and found myself explaining to him how so many pieces are knock offs or reproductions of either a classic antique or the latest trend. While I love their linens and bathroom fixtures( do they still have those?) I find their furniture mass produced looking and un- original. I am speaking from seeing it all en mass, and I am sure a single table, or chair, or just a few pieces mixed with other things might look very handsome. The prices are high and hopefully reflect good quality and craftsmanship. Overall, I do not find their stores very interesting or original at all. Oh, and that huge catalog- in my recycle bin, too!

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  12. Well, you can really tell this compnay is run by a MAN who's hobby is AVIATION. I think it's a little mmmmmm self-indulgent?? They do have some great pieces, but it's too much sepia for me. As a company, I think they've put too many eggs in one basket.

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  13. Just listened to the Skirted Round Table ... loved your conversation! I do like what RH has done, I think it is fun to see and touch and feel ... but I don't see it being "real" ... Maybe it is me, but there are only a select number of homes that can actually house furniture and fixtures of this size! It it all HUGE furniture!! Because of the pricing, I would wait till Target gets it and then maybe buy a few pieces, then wouldn't feel guilty when I tossed it in a year because the trend was DONE! I wish them well and hope they are able to stay above the trend as they bring in new lines!

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  14. Another comment on price point....Seems like a lot of attacks against RH are price criticism. The Design World is full of luxury items but no one seems to attack Baker, Henredon or even Jason Home and Garden who has a similar look. Designer fabric at $100-$300/yard is common. You can buy linen for $30/yard or $150/yard, but people still do both. I think it is unfair to criticize RH over price. I also think that perhaps people are just tiring of a look that has been so effectively mass produced. I try to be economical in my design work, but I am inspired by RH and Jason H&G by duplicating it with found, one of a kind pieces. RH is doing the same thing that PB, CB and others have done by offering production pieces to the masses. I wish them well.

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  15. Wow! Shocked to see all the negative comments. Their prices are a little high, but if you go and price the same thing from another vendor you will pay at least twice as much as what you will pay at RH. I am currently finishing remodeling a new house. I would say 60% to 70% of my new furniture is from here. If you pay attention to the sale, and you get the flat $95 shipping fee it can be a great deal. Also, they are the BEST when it comes to customer service. They are prompt and so nice if you have anything wrong with your items. You get what you pay for. Sometimes you have to spend a little more to have good quality pieces. I have a pretty big house, but not all of the pieces are "oversized". They give you options. If you compare them to other quality furniture lines, they are either comparable or cheaper. Do your research people!!!!

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  16. the store, the marketing....
    is brilliant

    xx

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  17. I can take RH or leave it. They have some pieces I love and others I ask why. They have 1 leather chair that I plan on buying for my son's first apt. While I enjoy going there and looking around, I rarely buy anything. I think their bedding selections are nice and would buy that. I'm looking forward to the giant new store (3 stories tall?) in Houston, but only as entertainment because I'm sure once again, I won't be buying much in there - like another poster said, not all homes can support that look. Beth

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  18. I didn't read other comments, but here's mine.
    UGLY. When they started all the hard industrial look
    what were they thinking? UGLY.

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  19. When Restoration Hardware added this new European furniture line about 3 years ago, I was really impressed. I thought the designs were great, good quality and reasonably priced. About 2 months ago I walked into our local store, and was so disappointed. I found everything in such a large scale that most people couldn't even consider the pieces. I walked in and out within a few minutes very disappointed that a store I had really admired had transformed into something I no longer was comfortable with. I was very disappointed. As for the catalog, while I like some of their items, a catalog this thick is too overwhelming which resulted on putting it on a shelf and still remains unopened.

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  20. Joni,
    Overall I'd say I like the new look, but it doesn't work in my house due to its size. I agree with the reader who said it's like they put all their eggs in one design style, which I would think isn't wise in the long run, but who knows. I do admire the "gentleman's clue" feel to many of the accessories.
    Can't wait to listen to the discussion, should be interesting.
    Karen

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  21. Interesting topic and conversation- I know it might sound cliche but you are not going to like EVERYTHING in a particular line, but there is no denying that there are a great many things in that huge catalog/source book that are creative and beautiful additions to a home. Velvet and Linen did a series a while ago about how the same piece looks different (and appropriate) in many different surroundings using a bricklayer table as an example....the same is true of many of the things that RH offers, whether it is to get a little of the Belgian look, the acquired "objet" or antique reproduction ( I love the zinc quatrefoil mirror and the Garment Factory desk) or that interesting piece of "industrial" design...and many of the "looks" or items are copied in a variety of price points elsewhere...so you really can use it as a "source" or an "idea" book.
    I think you have to applaud a company for having a vision and going for it wholeheartedly AND I applaud them for the emphasis on the artisan- there is a place for them even in this corporate, mass-produced world and RH is giving them a platform....isn't that what good design is about- making beautiful things and making it available to many?

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  22. I got into a little discussion about them on facebook and the majority claimed they steal the little stores and companies ideas and then go mass produce these ideas and sell at over-inflated prices....but again, that's how business is done in the States...they have some looks I like but I would never shop there..when there are so many other/better designs out there, why settle for Rh's overly massed produced product?..
    good discussion though...
    best,
    maureen

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  23. RH has essentially the same business plan as Pottery Barn. Pickers find an antique, designers adapt it, they reproduce it. Then the marketing pushers hype it on paper, in the stores, and on the internet. It's a commodity product, period. The only real difference between WS Home, PB, RH, Ballard, et.al. is the target market. RH happens to be priced at the "aspirational masstige" market, like Coach bags. And like Coach bags, the benefit to the consumer is brand recognition and the status points that confers.

    So it's not custom, it's not luxury, it's just expensive upper middle class merch. The big grey catalog strategy is simply an attempt to get attention in an extremely overcrowded marketplace. Obviously, that strategy has worked. Whether it generates the necessary revenue stream to make the strategy successful remains to be seen.

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  24. My friend heard they were going to do this - file for an IPO ($150 million) and it looks like they have. http://www.furnituretoday.com/article/542897-Restoration_Hardware_files_plan_for_150_million_IPO.php

    The catalog I got smelled terrible and it went into the recycle bin outside asap. Off to listen to the Skirted Round Table now!

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  25. Hi Joni, I look forward to listening to your discussion! Around here (about 5 mins from the store photoed in your post) Resto is hugely popular. The company is headquartered right near this store so it's sort of the guinea pig for all of the big reveals.
    I think they were brilliant to go big and step away from the sage green walls and massive mohagany colored furniture that they used to be known for. That said, as a designer I can't think of a job where a client hasn't compared something custom or a piece from the design center to getting it at RH...
    It's frustrating!
    Look forward to listening to what you think!
    best,
    Serena

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  26. I worked at RH believe me they are making serious bank.

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  27. I can not wait to hear this discussion on SRT about RH!! I went shopping last year with a friend right after they remodeled. I loved some of the individual pieces but when it is all put together and there is no color variation, life or light I felt like I could not breathe in the store. In fact I felt so strongly about it, I did a post on it here:
    http://goodlifeofdesign.blogspot.com/2010/09/i-miss-silver-sage.html

    I know I am not with the majority on this but it felt depressing in the store and their mission statement talks about wanting to be different and I felt they had jumped on the trend train a bit late. Maybe they don't read blogs!! because this look has been beaten to death in blog land. I think they would have been better served to break the look up a bit IMHO. Looking forward to your discussion, Kathysue

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  28. Yep, I weighed it! And tweeted my amazement. Running right over to hear the table discussion! xo

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  29. Hey Joni,
    Love your blog however I was listening to the skirted round table and where I realize it's only your opinion, I work for Crate and Barrel and we have some beautiful furniture!! I invite you to come in and take another look. Also, RH has closed many stores in the Northeast and I heard the plan was to keep stores open in metropolitan areas only. I don't think they are doing well at all. It's just too specific a look to appeal to many.

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  30. love my new RH catalog. I was amazed when I opened my mail box and pulled it out. I’m keeping it for a reference. And I love that RH sort of reinvents itself style-wise every so often. A lot of the furniture is way too large for my house, but many of the accessories can be used in any home - and I really like the iron canopy bed.

    I usually love all of my catalogs - you never know when one will really inspire you. And I am sad that catalogs are disappearing like magazine have, for example, Pierre Deux recently.
    Jan

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  31. You know what, I'm sold. That living room with the framed drawings, the caged chandeliers, it is so glitzy, so rich looking, if it was mine I would feel like I was on a movie set.

    I don't spend all day thinking about decorating so I'm not sophisticated enough to put Restoration Hardware below the line so to speak. I like the unfinished furniture, I like the soft colors, I like the over-scale size to look at. I can't afford it, but it is like eating dinner at an expensive restaurant, you don't pay $300 for the food you pay for the "experience" it's entertainment. Restoration Hardware is selling "experience". I love it. Ann

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  32. Joni, I received my catalog last week and I have to say I was rather disappointed. Everything was beige, brown or gray and it seemed rather dreary to me...kind of like living surrounded by fog. I have always love RH and I have a few pieces purchased there myself. I think some of the furniture and accessories are wonderful but when you fill the entire room with this look it is boring. I enjoyed your discussion at The Round Table.
    ~ Sherry

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  33. Enjoyed your discussion of RH.
    I find their design direction way too bossy and narrow. The total lack of color, the single huge scale, the limited metal palette (silver and bronzes only), and inauthentic patina put me off. Their "quirky" selections are drained of interest to me by being mass produced (artisans not-withstanding) and mass promoted. There is an initial sense of stylishness but it is terribly impersonal.

    To me RH is the opposite of a collected look. I recognize that you're not going to want to buy the whole package of any design house, but these pieces don't look like they'll play well with others. That rant aside, I have recently bought bathroom hardware, drawer pulls, and a couple linen panels from them. Fun to discuss.

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  34. You know, Restoration Hardware has certainly been on everyone's lips lately and that can't be bad for them. It seems to me the name Hardware will have to come off. On my way to listen to the Round Table..thanks joni! xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

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  35. I love the fact that they made a major statement with their makeover, but I can't relate to it. The furniture is too big for me (legs dangle) and for my house. If I had a huge loft with 20 ft ceilings or a chateau, I could relate. I love some of the accessories, but I wonder if the market for their furniture is too limited. I also question some of the upholstered pieces like chairs in burlap--how well will that hold up? Plus, they are very expensive for reproductions of late 19th and 20th century industrial pieces that could be had for a fraction of the price at low end retailers or the real thing for the same price. I like looking, but I won't buy (except for the outlet in Camarillo, CA--go there, good deals).

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  36. Dislike. Expensive, fake, and trendy. Why would anyone buy a new "vintage" suitcase for decorative purposes?

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  37. I agree with Kathysue. I went into one of their stores about a year ago and it was dark and lifeless. Individually, maybe some of the pieces are beautiful, but as a whole, not. and the whole nursery thing - what baby is gonna like that setting?

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  38. From the beginning of the RH refocus, I have been disappointed in the overall look of the new, trendy furniture and accessories. A few pieces carefully selected would have been fine, but they invested the entire business model on the Axel Vervoordt look which while similar, does not come near the massive scale as the new RH. If you study Vervoordt, you will notice that most of his designs go in very large scaled rooms that are quite sparsely furnished. Americans tend to fill up space unlike much of the current European design. I don't think this form of rough luxe will be around in a couple of years but those who purchased it will be stuck with the consequences of being trend buyers rather than investment buyers.

    I enjoyed the discussion and do agree with one point made that there are many design elements which are regional and have become that way because of architectural influences where the furniture simply looks right and appropriate for the home. I cannot imagine any of the RH designs in a New England saltbox nor in a Charleston row house or Georgian design. Perhaps a rustic mountain home in Colorado would be the perfect foil for a few select pieces.

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  39. This is interesting and timely, for me -- I was very anti-New Restoration Hardware initially. I found the vendor they source their Aviation Wreckage Debris furniture from at Maison et Objet, but who even cares when it's so, um, not ugly per se; certainly interesting and sculptural, maybe for one piece, but to do your whole HOME this way? Then on Friday our local WCAA chapter hosted celebrity interior designer Michael Payne (from HGTV's Designing for the Sexes series) last Friday and he was gushing about how he LOVES the new Restoration Hardware look and sees it doing very well, especially for men. He cited the accessory pieces that look like antique cogs and gears from the early industrial era, and the riveted aluminum pieces specifically as things he loved and thought would do well. I know the store in Charlotte has been redone; I need to get over there and check it out.

    Here's the thing: Before, Restoration Hardware was just a more expensive version of Pottery Barn. They didn't really have their own look, and their merchandise didn't change much from season to season so once people bought, they didn't have a reason to come back and continue to buy. Yes, the new look is trendy; no, it won't last forever. However, maybe their new business model is to be cutting-edge trendy for built in obsolescence, and the entire look of the store will change as trends change? That's what the Limited has done (very successfully) with the Victoria's Secret brand, by the way. We used to buy new bras and panties when the ones we had started falling apart, underwires popping out and elastic shot. Now even our underwear is dictated by current fashion trends, with new colors and patterns coming out every few months. Now you know that if you love that shade of hot pink in your favorite bra, you'd better buy it now because they won't be getting more in.

    One more point: Restoration Hardware may be "expensive" by ordinary middle-class standards, but their prices don't even approach what's commonplace in the world of high-end interior design; it's definitely priced for upper-middle-class consumers who want a designer look for less. For instance, one of my clients recently paid $30,000 for a small, custom made Matsuoka TV cabinet with a motorized lift to go at the foot of her bed. This piece was hand made at the factory in Japan using rare, exquisite hardwoods in an elaborate but very contemporary pattern, finished with a high gloss. It is magnificent, more sculpture than mere furniture, but clearly priced far from the realm of what ordinary consumers can afford. When you look through magazines like Architectural Digest, those homes with original Picassos on the walls are usually furnished with ultra high-end pieces whose price tags would make your head spin -- it's all about levels.

    I'm going to be watching Restoration Hardware; I'm interested in whether this turns out to be a disastrous mistake, or the stroke of genius.

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  40. Hi Joni,
    For my comment, see The Skirted Roundtable comments.
    xx
    Greet

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  41. I have a bird cage just like the one in your first picture,I am going to have my handy man cut the bottom out and I have a nice little iron and crystal chandelier I can stick in it, so the price just went up. Thanks for sharing. What a beautiful catalog. Richard from My Old Historic House.

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  42. I think others have already said this, but I can't understand how they can do enough business with furniture so HUGE. I think it is all quite lovely, and the prices are not THAT outrageous, but who can fit it? I have 12 foot ceilings in my house, and the light fixtures mostly would be too big for my house. How many people have higher ceilings? I live in a historic neighborhood where many of the houses are legitimately mansions, but only a few of them would look right with this size furniture. If they would just offer the same furniture in more realistic sizes, I'd be much more inclined to buy something there.

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  43. I received the catalog because I have bought accessories at Resto but I felt guilty about recycling it so I put it in a drawer. A friend of mine remarked on Facebook that she had never bought anything from them or she had spent less than $100 there ever and she received the catalog which went into the recycle bin. Several of our friends remarked the same. Wonder what it cost to produce each catalog?

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  44. Wendy said:

    "I find their design direction way too bossy and narrow. The total lack of color, the single huge scale, the limited metal palette (silver and bronzes only), and inauthentic patina put me off. Their "quirky" selections are drained of interest to me by being mass produced (artisans not-withstanding) and mass promoted. There is an initial sense of stylishness but it is terribly impersonal.

    To me RH is the opposite of a collected look. I recognize that you're not going to want to buy the whole package of any design house, but these pieces don't look like they'll play well with others."

    Well said. I agree. You either like this style or you don't. I found that their previous collections were more versatile.

    Same goes for the Baby and Children RH. We recently moved and got that catalogue, meant for the previous owners. I couldn't believe they would apply that style to children's rooms. Kids would get depressed in those rooms. No life, no colour, grownup artifacts. They appeal to the parents only. Sorry, but little kids want their princesses and super heroes.

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  45. I previously posted that I was in the san diego RH store less than 2 weeks ago and it was eerie--no one was in there and it was depressing...everything
    was dark grey and dreary/spooky. like Kathysue mentioned--I felt like I could not breathe in that store.

    I DO LIKE THE RH 20TH C. CHRYSANTHEMUM BRASSERIE TABLE - and it is $395- not THAT expensive but not inexpensive either.

    I like some of their industrial tables & bricklayer's tables.I love the printmaker's sideboard - would buy that except the large size is too large for the space
    i need it for and the small one is a tad too small.
    I got my HUGE catalog in the mail about 3 weeks ago and I wondered why as I never bought anything there in the past.

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  46. I like some of their smaller pieces (lamps, side tables, etc.) but for the most part I find their stuff to be clunky and graceless and their overall "look" to be too self-important these days, if that makes any sense. I'd rather have one real antique in a room than a whole room of fake ones.

    It would seem given the economy that the move away from McMansions would hurt their business, but who knows? My only reaction to receiving their monster catalogue was,
    "Poor tree!" So no, I am no longer a fan.

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  47. Centipede you ask? Worse. You would be the laughing stock of the neighborhood if you had that boat in your living room. You can get rid of centipedes, but I doubt if you could give this monster away except to a homeless shelter where at least a dozen people could sleep on it or to some newbie in the NFL or NBA channeling "Moving on Up to the East Side". How does one describe ugly?

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  48. Bloated, bland, unoriginal, cookie cutter, and mostly overpriced, though their dining chairs beat most retail prices.
    Having said that, genius marketing and the power to manufacture volume, seems to be making big bucks for them, though I don't know anyone with serious ID money, or on a budget shopping there. Most of people fill in like any other catalog source, with a few unimportant disposable pieces.
    xo xo

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  49. I love and hate it. I live in a barren desert of design, so it is nice to have thoughtful design delivered to us unwashed masses. I can actually get a Louis something chair which I would otherwise not be able to get here. They have wonderful staples - I love their draperies, hardware, some of their lamps.

    My problem is that I find the look very heavy handed and MASCULINE, which is something that few have noted. I think much of their furniture needs to be streamlined, made to suit smaller homes. Even if their sofas are shorter, they are still ridiculously deep - not suitable for a smaller older home at all. Great for the McMansion crowd I guess.

    So I like that it is good design (much, if not everything) for the people, but don't like that much of it is so heavy and unsuitable for regular homes. I always think "is it, or is it not aimed at me?" (double income no kids, money to waste on decor). No. Most of the time I think it is best for rich bachelors who can just go in and drop $100k. In fact, I saw a house tour this summer and one of the townhouses was decorated head to toe in RH, not ONE single thing was from another store. This seemed like the precise exact Gary Friedman demographic to me. The hip rich bachelor who just wants to be on trend.

    Having said that, there is a lot for the rest of us. I like their collection of dining chairs, bathroom furniture and lighting, various other bits and pieces. But the giant weird couches and the aviator stuff and the giant armoires....all way too masculine for me.

    Definitely needs some estrogen.

    xo Terri

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  50. after all is said and done the old adage "beauty is in the eye of the beholder" rings true with RH. I live in the South and I hail from Atlanta
    I absolutely love the look. My clients who reside in McMansions are super thrilled to find the proper scale of furniture for their home. I have one client who has 6 leather RH sofa the big deep ones. They live on the golf course in fact on the grandstand part and they entertain constantly. Everyman who steps in their home is enthralled. I do not see straight me get this excited about furniture very often. I do not think it will be as trendy as some believe like the commenter said above it has been popular in Belgium for a long time.

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  51. oops that was supposed to be straight men.

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  52. I used to love Restoration Hardware. Now, not so much. Before they Belgified everything, I bought something at Restoration Hardware just about every time I visited - bathroom fixtures, drapery rods, pendant lighting, cabinet hardware, towels. While I love the moody, gentleman's club atmosphere, most of their furniture is just too massive for an average-sized home.

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  53. My prediction:
    1. A rather lackluster IPO
    or
    2. BK

    My last RH purchase was some shelf brackets which were actually very pretty...the bummer was that I had to purchase 8 in order to get 4 that were made correctly.

    Many of the products are made in India. Inexpensive labor means higher gross margins for retailers but inconsistent quality. Also any item imported into the United States must state the country of origin. You can ask before you purchase or when you receive your item it will be stamped on the box.

    I personally have a problem calling the RH stores retail stores because very little is actually in stock....I guess that is why they call them galleries....we just get to walk around and look!

    The pricing seems OK but I don't really feel the design is very innovative. But.....I personally love the Baby and Child Catalog and think is wonderful!

    Another great discussion Joni!

    Thanks again for keeping the dialog going....

    xoxo kelley

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  54. Thank you Skirted Roundtable, for the diverse conversation regarding Restoration Hardware. I must say each of you said something I am in total agreement with. Being a very classical designer this is not my typical cliental but I know many,many people love their look and they have been very successful with the new "look"
    As for a personal use discount! I have done this for 30 years. Reason is my house is one of my best living breathing calling cards. It is and has been a very common procedure Now you guys have learned something from one of us. We usually learn from you. And I mean this in the best way!
    I do wish Joni had not made the Trade Discount at the shops seem so easy. I have to say I do use it on occasion and by broadcasting the quick and easy way to do it takes the professional out of the game. I had to provide much, much more than a tax I.D. form
    Having said all of this Thanks Skirted Roundtable for a great discussion.
    Pam

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  55. After much shopping in RH in both NY and in Oregon, we grew tired of their "style" ... now that I have been living in Buenos Aires a while, I miss Restoration Hardware ! :)

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  56. Oh my gosh, I just discovered your fabulous blog! I was doing some searching on the web and somehow found you and I'm addicted ... I found myself clicking "older posts" over and over again and reading back! I'm a new fan .. LOVE the decorating! xoxoxo

    Sandy at Ooh La Frou Frou
    http://oohlafroufrou.blogspot.com
    This Week: "Charmed I'm Sure"

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  57. I'm so glad you brought this up; I cannot stand the new dark stores. I can't see any details - perhaps that's what they want? - and of course, the price and scale are no longer even possible when on sale. I used to browse to find the occasional great piece that I might splurge on, but no more. I don't go there anymore even to look. And that huge catalog that was one page after another of gray and brown? Recycle.

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  58. Restoration Hardware for people who can't find a flea market and don't mind fake furniture.

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  59. All the selections you feature here are simply fabulous. But what caught my attention is are the cage chandeliers. I am intrigue by its design.

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  60. Well,OK.I have to say,what a wonderful blog it is.thank you for your sharing so good articles in the website.I like it very much.

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  61. So inspired and lovely!! I do prints, canvas, greeting cards and posters about fashion, you´r invited to see my work :)

    By the way love your blog and follow you!! :)

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  62. It's so interesting to see what people think of RH. It's very personal, but you know... some people LOVES to HATE! I don't get that...

    I think a house would look fantastic if you use some of their furniture/accessories, but like any other place, you can't buy everything just from there, or your house will end up looking like a catalogue, not a real home. It would be TOO MUCH. So, if your argument is based on that thought, of course, it wouldn't be the ideal. You have to envision pieces of it, not the whole thing.

    Going to listen to what you think....


    I hope everything is great with you, my friend.

    xo

    Luciane at HomeBunch.com

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  63. Since I'm sure everyone here will check back to see if I clarified...let me clarify. :-)

    I LOVE the look of RH. Beautiful stuff overall, albeit not the centipede sofa. But as an obsessor of thrift, antique and consignment stores, the prices for the fake copies at RH are dumb. If I was willing to spend RH money (and sometimes I am), it isn't going to be on fake stuff.

    Okay now I'm going to listen! XOXO

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  64. OK, tick off the points here -

    1. Masculine
    2. Large scale for large homes
    3. Catalog content not female oriented
    4. Items not stocked, need to be ordered.

    Are we targeting ladies who impulse buy with modest incomes?

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  65. I agree with Lauren- consignment stores and estate sales are places where some great things can be found.
    I like selecting pieces that compliment each other as I think it makes for a better effect than having everything look like it came from the same catalog. To furnish my home, I shopped at department stores, consignment shops, thrift shops, Asian stores,
    Crate & Barrel, West Elm, Z Gallerie, World Market, Pottery Barn, estate sales - everywhere-! As anony @ 9:54 says, the RH "look" is too masculine & too large.

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  66. I for one do NOT care for the new RH. It doesn't cater to a broad spectrum of design styles - instead of attempting to enhance a broader style base, I feel it has taken a singular style approach and only gave leeway within that style (does this make any sense?) To me, even with the lighter, weathered look to the furniture, the overall feel is just plain DARK. While the drama of that might look good on a Hollywood set, for the average home, it won't fly. And for goodness sakes, the scale is off the charts except for those with McMansions! (perhaps that is the target audience??)

    Another reason I'm not overly fond of the new RH is the over-the-top, suffocating masculinity of it all. I find very little femininity in it whatsoever. I feel they've taken a great risk with this new direction. I will continue to buy their towels as I believe they are some of the best quality money can buy. But moving away from their practical 'hardware' side and moving onto this is corporate suicide in my illustrious opine.

    P. S. Frankly, it appears to be Bombay Company on steroids - but I actually LIKED some of Bombay Company offerings...

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  67. Eh, I'm not overly impressed with the look of RH at all - I wouldn't do it in my home and frankly the furniture does look so huge and bulky and there is NO color. I can't live without color Joni - !! ;-))

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  68. I am middle class with little discretionary spend. I have bought several furniture pieces from RH which actually work very well with my style and the pricing was a whole lot better than other retail stores offered, much better looking and extremely well made. While some may find the look trendy, I think some pieces will truly stand the test of time - especially when done tastefully. I love having choices and I will always look to what RH has going on. I also appreciate one large catalog full of everything they offer vs a small catalog every month with the same content over and over again. I am constantly recycling older catalogs to make room for the new ones, even though the content hasn't changed.
    I appreciate all of the different opinions here - which is why RH is successful. I, for one hope they are successful. This is by far my favorite store, and I love many!
    Thanks for the opportunity to share my thoughts. Love your blog!
    Carin from Pennsylvania

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  69. I think others have already said this, but I can't understand how they can do enough business with furniture. I think it is all quite good, and the prices are not that outrageous. I have 12 foot ceilings in my house, and the light fixtures mostly would be too big for my house. I live in a historic neighborhood where many of the houses are legitimately mansions, but only a few of them would look right with this size furniture. If they would just offer the same furniture in more realistic sizes, I'd be much more inclined to buy something there.

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  70. That catalogue certainly has been a subject of amazement among my friends... we all got one. What an advertising blitz! I liked the first 100 pages but after that was simply burned out on gray/taupe/cream... and thought the references to "old English wood" and "French design" got to be a BIT cliche.... I mean, c'mon, aren't we OVER printed burlap pillows?

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  71. Absolutely LOVE the new RH! I can't always find the vintage item, so thats when you buy retail. I think their prices are fair, seems middle ground for the retail furniture trade.
    Don't know why people are pissing and moaning about how much it costs..where do you usually shop for furniture, Walmart?
    As for the scale...the trick is to use only a few statement pieces, actually uber large pieces, a few of them, add size and importance to a room. If you stuff a small space with lots, or little, of small furniture the room actually shrinks!
    What RH is selling, no one else truly has. They are selling a story, TEXTURE, TEXTURE, and layers of nuetral.
    How much or little of texture and layers is up to you.
    Too bad most of you people don't understand this. Just buy a piece or two and design your room around it. Have fun with it, make a statement.
    I purchased my over sized Lancaster sofa from them 6 years ago, Timeless, goes with every thing, best most comfortable down filled sofa ever.Total keeper, and it will never go out of style.
    Would love to get a floor to ceiling Belgian mirror next. And then new Louis XVI style dining chairs.

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  72. I'm a little late getting to your blog since we just moved but I gotta tell you that when my 7 year old autistic grandson received a Restoration Hardware catalog at my house I was just stunned: both by the size of the catalog and the recipient.

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  73. The store here is across the street from my office, and it always seems empty and too dark. That said, I think their marketing is wonderful; they are in front of the pack. While the pieces may be oversized, the look still works for many age groups. I'm off to SRT!

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  74. i like it, makes you want to do a makeover at home :)

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  75. I was waiting for someone to bring this up, so glad it was you! Although I do like some of the newer pieces, I desperately miss the old RH. I always felt happy when I went in there, now I don't even go into the mausoleum like stores...too depressing.
    Most of our hardware was purchased from RH about two years ago, just as they were making the switch...I'm glad they still carry those lines although you can't see, touch, or 'borrow' them in the stores any longer, which is a shame as that was so helpful.
    I wish they would've kept the old version along with creating the new.
    xo J~

    (Have you seen the new PB Bed & Bath catalog? I loved it...reminded me a bit of their old style which I loved)

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  76. There are some RH pieces that I love. And I enjoy browsing in the store. But I hate how dark the new store are. Don't we all want light in our homes? One of the sales people actually told me that they spend the whole day dragging things to the front of the store so people can actually see them.

    What I really don't like is the picture of the overly-tanned CEO in his carefully-worn jeans and leather jacket in the front of the catalog. It's just so cliche it makes me laugh.

    ReplyDelete

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