How much are those Italian chairs in the window? - Juniper Home

How much are those Italian chairs in the window?

I was turning my zipcar in a couple weeks ago and drove past Goodwill, where I saw these Italian beauties gleaming in the window. I almost didn’t pull over because I thought for sure they’d be crazy expensive.
I pulled over and illegally double parked for just long enough to peek in the window at the price tag. $19.99 each! I basically threw two twenties at the register and loaded the chairs right into my zipcar. It was one of the fastest furniture transactions I’ve ever made here!
I love how the arm panels are sort of detached. I’m totally digging the shape and they’re actually really comfortable to sit in. The fabric was a nasty old suede, so I already dropped them off with my upholsterer (I tried to take them apart myself but I could tell the end cap panels weren’t going to look right and I needed the help of a professional!). I found this really beautiful deep spearmint wool fabric that I think will be perfect for the chairs. Sort of unexpected texture. And the color (not captured here correctly) was just insane. I’ve never seen a shade like it. I’m so excited for these chairs to get back this week!
Here are some other fabrics I picked up at the same store (I’m having trouble finding the store’s name – it was somewhere in the fabric district a block or two north of B&J’s). That orange dot number has the loveliest shine and weight to it! It’s the nicest polkadot I’ve ever come across. I think it will be cute for a pillow or two somewhere in my house.
One of the fun things about shopping in the garment district is fabric will have fashion house names on the tags. The floral below is a Milly print and I think the orange dot was Kate Spade. Maybe Tory Burch. Recently I found the coolest Oscar de la Renta ikat and amazing DVF silk at Mood. Does anyone know if the fashion designers have fabric mills make the material special for their collection or do they source already manufactured fabric for their lines? I always mean to ask the Mood people that.
PS I posted some of my favorite fabric resources in the city HERE (don’t forget to check out the comments section for readers’ favorite local fabric stores as well. Feel free to add yours!)
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45 thoughts on “How much are those Italian chairs in the window?

  1. Fashion designers purchase fabrics from open line collections as well as develop custom weaves, embroideries, prints, etc. The fabrics found at these jobbers are more often than not directly purchased from designers sample rooms right within NYC's garment center. This means the fabrics could be purchased from open line, may be dropped prints or are often remnants from a collection that has already gone into production.

  2. Well, those awesome chairs are certainly NOT the kind of steal that you find in our Goodwills in good ole North Carolina, you lucky duck! Can't wait to see them reupholstered!

  3. I'm absolutely dying over that Milly floral print. I'd love to know if you have any other info on it so I can try to find it online. Thanks!

  4. nice find! excited to see pictures of the finished chairs. i agree with what jules said——we don't usually have gems like that at the goodwills in minnesota, either. :)

  5. $40 bucks! Get out. What a great find. I love all of that fabric. I wish we had more fabric locally. I do sometimes score at our local home fabrics. In fact I have scored three windsor smith fabrics for less than 8 bucks a yard.

  6. I'm loving this! A thrifter's dream. I write a blog for Goodwill about diy and fashion and I would love a find like this!

  7. Question for you. You thrift lots of good items, but I'm so worried about what is inside anything with fabric or batting and how clean it is. Could you post about how to make sure used items are clean and bug free? Do you always reupholster? Maybe I'm just paranoid.

  8. Love the chairs!! Amazing that they were only $20 each. On an unrelated not, I'm curious…how do you keep your nails looking so good. I do a lot of DIY work with my hands and mine are alway chipped. Inquiring minds wanna know!

  9. Wonderful shape, especially once photoed w/o the dodgy pillows! Eagle eyed you are, driving in Mahattan traffic and you 'notice" those beauties, amazing, can't wait to see them reupholstered.

  10. Brooke – It really depends on the condition of the piece. If the upholstery is really old and it's a more absorbant fabric, I get pretty grossed out by it. But leathers and harder-wearing fabrics can be cleaned well and the insides are rarely reached by dirt and spills from the previous owners, so I don't mind keeping some of those. You can take a piece of upholstery in to a professional cleaner and the process they use with either chemicals and/or steam kills a lot of the nasty germs.

    Jessica! You would not believe the number of emails I get about my nails. It cracks me up. I don't wear a ton of jewelry during the day – just a watch and my wedding ring usually, so I sort of feel like fancy nails are a fun accessory. There are SO many cheap and good nail spas here in the city that I usually get a manicure a couple times a month. It's a really great way for moms here to get together and chat after work or when husbands get home and without the kids. Sort of our guilty pleasure. I will say that every now and again I get the the shallac and it is SO worth the extra price. Lasts for weeks and absolutely will NOT chip. Paint (even oil based) doesn't stick to it!. Be sure to ask them to really push back your cuticles first though so you'll see less of the nail bed as you nails grow out.

    npd: I use three or four different upholsterers in and around the city, depending on the job (how complicated the piece is and how fast I need it back). Bettertex in Soho is convenient for me and pretty fairly priced, but they take several weeks for a turn around. There are three others I use in the Bronx and Queens that work a little faster but I trust their work a little less, so usually ask them to do simpler jobs. Email me if you want their info.


  11. My friend who works in fashion told me that they design some of their own fabric and get it printed in the same factory that sews up their garments, but they also source ready made fabrics from places like Liberty.

  12. I am so jealous of all the fabulous fabric right at your finger tips! I have to order samples on line just to get good choices and you know that's never getting a steal of a price! Ugh.

  13. I'm seriously in couch and chair covering mode right now. I agree with Jules too though I would never find something this awesome in a good will here in Hawaii! Gosh darnit girl you have such good finds in New Yord. Don't even get me started on the fabric stores I can see you get to peruse though!

    Your life is lovely!

  14. PS- Goodwill normally holds a special auction for their stuff in the window. You usually have to come back on the weekends. You were really fortunate.

  15. PS- Goodwill normally holds a special auction for their stuff in the window. You usually have to come back on the weekends. You were really fortunate.

  16. I've bought fabric from Belraf Fabrics.

    I thought it was a good option if you're a retail customer (no access to D&D building) who wants to purchase fabric from a brand like Kravet or Lee Jofa. Prices are pretty reasonable, good customer service. I searched online before ordering fabric from Belraf and only found one place online that was $10 less than what I ended up paying, but the site looked a little dodgy.

  17. I got these at the 23rd st store. I didn't realize they usually do auctions for the window displays? I did luck out! Though, last time I stopped in that store I was majorly annoyed bc they had some paintings on the back wall that I wanted to buy and when I asked about them the sales person pointed to a sign on the wall that said they weren't for sale (auction maybe) until APRIL. It was Jan or Feb! Super annoying at the time, but this chair find redeemed Goodwill's… good will. HA!

  18. Love the chairs, and I REALLY love the piece of art behind them in the window. I wonder if that's still there or being held for auction! It'd be great over my sofa.

    Can't wait to see the chairs with the new fabric, hope there's a follow-up soon!

  19. It all depends on the designer. I have a men and women's custom clothing company and I offer Zegna suiting fabrics along with an array of other designer fabrics. Zegna started as a wool manufacturer then eventually branched out to do ready to wear, but most of their business is through their mill. With Oscar, Milly and Kate Spade- they come up with designs to source out to fabric chains….but would be wonderful to buy fabric straight off the runway!

    Love Mood.. I also like BJs!

    Came across your blog randomly. Love it.

  20. My decorator totally swooned over your Italian chairs. She just happened to be here installing draperies.

    Was it the luck of the Irish or the Italians?

  21. Did they have any more of that gorgeous spearmint wool? I've been looking for something like that for AGES!

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