THE BLOG
06/02/2010 03:00 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Confessions of a Home Goods Addict

As a designer, I have my shopping haunts. I have my private little places where I know where to score The Good Stuff, online and on the street. I guard my spots like an old family recipe, sharing them with only my nearest and dearest. Sometimes, not even them. But, there is one place I share with everyone. I always think I'm letting people in on something only People In The Know would be aware of. Like I'm your cool decorating friend and I'm helping you out. Unfailingly, no matter who I tell about Home Goods, I get the same reaction: "Oh my goodness, I love Home Goods!"

Then, they give me a detailed rundown of stuff they found there over the past three months. I guess I'm not as cool as I thought I was. Bummer. So, here's what I do know...

My name is Courtney and I'm a Home Goods Addict.

It's true. For some women, it's shoes. For others, it's chocolate or wine or handbags. Oh yes, I love all of these too. But, for me the ultimate weakness is Home Goods.

Luckily, or not so luckily for my wallet, there is one right near my home. There are several in the area and I know which ones are better, which ones have more organized departments, more crowded and such. I would say on average, I visit this chain at least twice a week. Sometimes more. And of course, I am a decorator. But that doesn't matter. The place is filled with savvy, stylish shoppers and frumpy grandmas alike. And a little fyi, it's filled with high end designers, too. They're all there, strolling (more like hunting) through the aisles. Why not? On any given day you can find shelves filled with Barbara Barry linens alongside gourmet French jams for a fraction of what you'd pay at a high end retailer. I'm like a kid in a candy store!

For those of you who are unfamiliar with Home Goods, I will sum it up for you in one sentence: Really good stuff for your home at really, really good prices. Toss in the old thrill-of-the-hunt shopping thing in most of us and it's a perfect recipe for utter retail bliss. Just when you thought it couldn't get better, the merchandise changes almost daily. I have literally seen women almost fighting in the aisles over merchandise! It's better than going to a ball game, I swear! Instead of nose diving for A-Rod's home run baseballs they're dodging over their Gucci totes for Lalique vases! High end scrappiness at its best.

For the record, I am not a paid spokesperson for Home Goods and I consulted with no representative of their company for this article. But, I decided to write about it because I think it's such a valuable source to anyone like me, who loves pretty things in their home and hates paying full price. You can have Louis IV furniture next to some pillows, rugs and accessories from Home Goods and nobody will ever know. It's that good. But, there is a science to getting the most out of a trip to Home Goods. Because sometimes, we end up buying a whole bunch of stuff we don't need because we can't walk away from such value.

Court of Versailles bedding for $100! and Lacoste towels for $12.99!

You get a lot of that. A very similar scenario is what I call Costco-itis. You buy stuff because it's so cheap, you can't refuse. Then, you just end up with a lot of cute things or 144 rolls of toilet paper you don't really need and your house becomes a high end (or not so much) version of Hoarders. Also, there is a lot of merchandise that is just a little too seasonal kitschy for me, like ceramic sailboats in summer and bunny salt shakers in April. Not my thing. Who's complaining when it's next to the Le Creuset ovenware? Not moi!

So here's what I suggest. Pick one room in your house. Let's say, the bedroom. You want to redecorate your bedroom. Nothing major, maybe just a fresh look for summer. Fair enough? Now, take $500, that's your limit. Take $300, if you wish. Either way, you're walking out of there with big, jumbo bags of goodies.

Go alone. It's the best way. others will interrupt your admiration of the Crain's notecards for $3.00 and drag you to the towel section. Trust me. Plus, they can snag something you spot!
Have a plan in hand. A simple list. For example, start with something like this and stick to it:

New comforter, sheets
Decorative pillows
2 end tables (not matchy matchy!)
Two table lamps
Three pieces of wall decor
A vase
Three table frames

I used this as an example because I just did it this morning, in fact. This weekend, I am doing an on air makeover on a master bedroom. A few days out, and I wasn't 100% thrilled with what I had assembled. I hightailed it over to Home Goods and an hour later I scored gorgeous bedding, seriously chic pillows with beautiful appliques, a couple of lamps, unique vintage looking frames, some vases on clearance I'm going to spray paint silver and I even picked up a Barbie coloring book for my daughter for $5.00. I spent under $250 and figure the value was about $1000. Next week, I will write more about my makeover and post photos and video for you to see the results.

So, if you're getting the itch to redecorate but don't want to dump a lot of cash, hit up a good Home Goods and thank me later. And while you're there, pick up some organic olive oil and artisanal chocolate for your dinner party this week! It'll be under $20, I promise!

If you get hooked, don't say i didn't warn you.


For more information on designer and TV personality, Courtney Cachet you can check her out online at www.courtneycachet.com