Cincinnati Finds: West Elm and Pottery Barn at Tanger Outlets!

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This post is further confirmation that the Cincinnati area has the best outlet and clearance shopping for the home! There’s just one place I still haven’t made it to: Tanger Outlets at Jeffersonville. Pottery Barn Outlet has been a big draw for Tanger Outlets for years but there is a very exciting new addition: West Elm Outlet!

West Elm Outlet just opened in July, so the Tanger team invited me to come check it out for myself. It wasn’t exactly a hard sell… we are in desperate need of a new sofa as ours is transforming into a giant glob of dirty peanut butter right before our eyes. And I knew I could expect some good furniture shopping. I also loved getting to shop at some of the other stores they featured there.

This post is all about what to expect from your trip to Jeffersonville, shopping tips and tricks and more.

Tanger Outlets

8000 Factory Shops Boulevard
Jeffersonville, OH 43128

The Jeffersonville location as a whole was awesome… I was impressed and if you know me that is hard to do. Haha! They had a ton of stores that I didn’t know had real retail outlet locations like LOFT, H&M, Williams Sonoma, Levi’s, Journeys, Forever 21 and DSW. Say what!? They also had all the outlet faves like Coach, Gap, Yankee Candle (I stocked up!!), Banana Republic, American Eagle, Crocs, etc. It’s funny… I think a lot of outlet mall stores tend to be skewed to appeal to an older buyer but that did not feel like the case here! I felt like I was shopping alongside my peers which was really refreshing to see.

The last thing I’ll mention about Tanger Outlets in Jeffersonville as a whole though is how family-friendly it is. I was nervous to bring the kids because I knew I had a job to do and how effective would I really be with 3 kids in tow?? Well… little did I know… they have a playground! And putt putt! And ice cream stands! There are little activities at every bend. It seems like they were strategically placed in front of the fragile/glass-loaded stores like Yankee Candle… whether or not that’s true I don’t know but it sure was very convenient. There is nothing more nail-biting than walking 3 kids ages 3 and under into a store that exclusively sells glass. Glad I did not have to… thank you Tanger!

Pottery Barn Outlet

When you walk into this store I think you can actually hear the deal gods singing.

You’ll find items represented from all of the Pottery Barn family brands—Pottery Barn, PBTeen and Pottery Barn Kids included at this store! All three stores are very well represented within this location… I was especially impressed by how much Pottery Barn Kids merchandise they had here.

Unlike the West Elm Outlet which is mostly furniture (I’ll get to that in a minute), the Pottery Barn Outlet has a very wide range of merchandise, with a concentration in sofas, kitchen accessories, bedding, lighting and accent chairs. On the Kid and Teen front, lots of play kitchens, bedding, backpacks, beach towels and all of the ancillary items the brand sells within those stores are there too.

As far as tips and tricks at this location, here are a few that will help your shopping trip run smoothly.

  • If you’ve got little kids with you, head straight to the kids part of the store (on the left) and park them (with a guardian of course!) at the toy kitchens, giant stuffed animals, play food, rocking horses and more. They’ll have a blast looking at all of the stuff.
  • Be prepared to dig! And google! Many of the lighting pieces and mirrors are stacked together and often still in their shipping boxes. Most of them have a screenshot of what’s inside pasted to the front which I very much appreciate, but some do not. Be prepared to google the description and see what’s inside. I am a big fan of all of the Emily & Merritt stuff for PB Teen and Kids so I quickly learned to look for the phrase “E&M” on some of the boxes.
  • Give yourself time! There is nothing worse than being rushed in a store like this, for the reason I stated above. Give yourself some time to go through each section of the store.
  • If you are interested in rugs, be prepared to use your muscles as they are piled high. They also have a great display of rugs that helps you see exactly what they have.
  • As far as prices go, on a normal non-sale day it appeared that most were marked 30-40% off retail. And of course the holiday 50% off sales make these deals extra sweet (I was there during Labor Day, so I benefited from that timing!)

West Elm Outlet

Talk about a kick to the senses walking into this place! West Elm furniture as far as the eye can see! One of the things that I love about this place is being able to finally see some of these West Elm pieces in one place. I don’t have a West Elm near to me (some of us Cincinnatians will remember when there was a West Elm at Kenwood 10+ years ago!) so it was so fun to be able to sit on the Henry sofa, feel the velvet on the Roar & Rabbit goodies and finally plop down on the Andes sectional I have been eyeballing for years.

As you can see, this place is ALL furniture! They do have some accessories, mirrors, rugs and lighting but I would say they make up just 25% of the store’s inventory.

Here are some tips and tricks for shopping West Elm Outlet.

  • If there’s a sale, go early! The furniture tends to go quickly when there is a sale. On the Saturday of Labor Day weekend there were just a few things wrapped up and ready to be shipped to their new neighbors. A friend that went Sunday said that much of it was gone!
  • Yes, they do shipping! I do not know specific rates but I know that it works by radius, similar to IKEA. A friend that lived about 30 miles away paid just $70 for shipping for two large pieces.
  • You can also choose to rent a Uhaul… there were many folks lined up outside hauling away their goods.
  • Most of what’s available is in good condition. I only saw a few things that were scratch and dent and if that is the case, is marked clearly.
  • The staff at the store when I was there were super friendly and helpful. They were helping people pull pieces together to create living rooms right there on the spot. Go West Elm!

My Purchases

As you have seen on my Instagram (and if you have not, why aren’t you following me!??! @gohausgo), I have been uber focused on the boys’ room. We got the cutest bunny sheets from PBTeen ($20/set!) and two giant 24″ shibori-style pillows from Pottery Barn. And I want to go back for that blue velvet West Elm sofa! Aggh!!

To keep an eye out for the next deal day, keep an eye on this page.

xo,

emily

The Ultimate Magnolia and Waco, TX Itinerary (+ How To Avoid The Lines!)

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My mom, sister and I have always daydreamed about going to Magnolia in Waco, TX. Then one day, we sort of looked at each other like, “Well why the heck not!?” And we booked our tickets! We left Friday and returned Monday and it was a perfect amount of time. We wanted to do all the things—shop Magnolia, hang out in The Silo District, be a tourist in Waco, antique shopping, breakfast at the new restaurant, Fixer Upper house stalking, all of it! It ended up being the perfect itinerary with zero waiting in lines. We couldn’t have asked for a better trip.

Day 1 (4 pm Arrival) – Silo District, Magnolia Market

We stayed at an Airbnb in downtown Waco (right across from the Hippodrome) and it was perfect walking distance (5 mins) to the Silos and other sites around town. As soon as we set down our bags, we set off for the Silos to check it out, knowing they’d be closed at 6 pm. The place was relatively empty and we had room to roam to stake everything out. And of course there was plenty of time to stop inside Magnolia Market! Yes, you’ll shop at the Market many, many times throughout your stay! It’s impossible to see it all in one trip… it is ginormous. Magnolia Market (where you can see everything in person from their online shop) is the white building in the photo below.

For dinner, we stopped at Hecho in Waco for the best margarita I’ve ever had and the food was delicious! There’s a great patio and we spent a lot of time there. There’s also some shops that share the same building, but they’re not great. Don’t waste you’re time if you’re in a rush!

Day 2 – Silos Baking Co., Classic Waco Tour, Harp Design Co., Shopping and Fixer Upper Homes

Day 2 was our first full day. We started at 7:00 am and headed first to Silos Baking Co. Getting there early is key—we saw the line forming around 8 am every day and this line is looooong. So get there before 8 am and you’ll be great. And even if you are waiting in a line, they’ve got all kinds of tricks up their sleeves to make the line go fast. Each person waiting in line gets a little card to fill out their order, so by the time you get up to the counter you’re ready to order.

Once we got our goodies, we had about an hour before our tour started (more on that in a minute) so we took some time to eat breakfast and take some photos in front of the famous sign! And of course see the giant line outside Magnolia Market, waiting for the doors to open at 9 am. Here’s the trick with that—there is no real need to wait in the pre-opening line for Magnolia Market. There is plenty (PLENTY!) of room inside for most crowds, so don’t feel like you have to wait in line each morning. You’ll be able to walk right in around 9:30. And yes, we did a little more shopping!

Next up, the tour! This is the tip that we really took to heart—do the Classic Waco Tour as your first big “thing.” It helps you get the lay of the land and you can judge what you’d like to go back and see later on in the trip. It was AWESOME. So fun, so informative and they treated us like family. During the 2.5 hours, we saw everything from downtown Waco, Baylor, Cameron Park, Fixer Upper houses, Harp Design Co. and more. Probably the best part was the frequent stops to shop and sip. Nothing like having a bus pull up outside Common Grounds coffee shop (and Heritage Creamery next door!) and having the host get you whatever you want! One small warning—it is a very Christian company (as is every business in Waco it seemed!) so the tour is started with prayer. Just FYI in case that’s not your thing. 

With the tour over, we grabbed a quick lunch at Torchy’s Tacos (get the Mexican Street Corn…. omg!) and we went back and checked out awesome shopping spots we spotted along the way along Austin Avenue like Salvage Sisters, Junque Queen, La Grange, and Christi’s Interiors… modern farmhouse decor galore! From there we drove over to 8th Street for even more shopping (The Findery is amazing! And has two locations!) and stopped back at Heritage Creamery  for awesome ice cream. Most stores close early (between 4-6pm) so don’t wait too long into the afternoon!

The adrenaline was still pumping at this point and we were way too amped to call it a night, so we hopped in the car and did our own self-guided tour of Fixer Upper homes, using this website. I won’t list the addresses of the houses here for privacy sake, but that website will give you everything you need.

On the way back to our Airbnb we grabbed In n Out… this location is the furthest east location in the US so we didn’t want to miss the opportunity!

Day 3 (Sunday!) – Waco Suspension Bridge, Branding the Brazos Park, Spice Village, Dr. Pepper Museum, More Fixer Upper House Hunting

The Silo District, including Magnolia Market, is 100% shut down on Sunday (they don’t call Waco the buckle of the Bible Belt for nothin’!) so we used Sunday to take in all the Waco sites. We started at the Waco Suspension Bridge (we’ve all seen it a million times in Fixer Upper shots!) which is a foot traffic-only bridge… this was especially fun for me because it was designed using cables from the Roebling Company, the architect of both the Roebling bridge here in Cincinnati and the lesser known Brooklyn Bridge. 🙂 Branding the Brazos Park is right in front of the Bridge and I will tell you—25 life-size sculptures of cattle is somewhat alarming. Especially because it seems as if they are charging right towards you. We had enough history at that point (ha!) and headed right to Spice Village, which is this incredible 3-level shopping and flea market extravaganza. We saved this especially for Sunday because we knew it was one of the rare things open on Sunday. Tons of cute stuff–mostly new, trendy items with a couple of booths devoted especially to more antique finds. Lots of clothes, Waco gear, home decor, you name it… they had it! This is where I picked up our Waco ornament and some Waco shirts for the kids.

We had lunch at Olive Branch, rested our feet a bit and then walked down to the Dr. Pepper Museum, where we took a tour of the facility, watched a cute little presentation and had a couple of Dr. Pepper ice cream floats. Yum. I will say, the Dr. Pepper Museum is somewhat run down and not exactly exciting. If you’re in to history, especially advertising history (me!) it’s worth it, but if not, skip it!

We had a bit of time to spare before dinner, so we headed back to the Airbnb to grab our car and do some more Fixer Upper hunting using the same website. We even drove out to the Barndominium, which is now outfitted with Fort Knox-level security so forget about getting remotely close! We also tracked down Chip and Joanna’s house… we drove by (they removed the “Magnolia” arch above their driveway for privacy’s sake) but again, it’s on a super busy main country highway with lots of security. I won’t post their address because, duh.

For dinner we headed to The Backyard and it was the perfect spot to relax outside, eat great food and listen to live music after a long day. The crowd was so fun (big Baylor student crowd!). This was in April, so the Texas heat hadn’t hit yet and it was absolutely glorious.

Day 4 (Monday!) – Magnolia Table, Magnolia Market, Harp Design Co. 

Our last day! We made a big bet that if we waited until Monday (vs. a weekend day) to do Magnolia Table we would have much more luck and WE. WERE. RIGHT. If you’re headed to Magnolia Table on a weekend morning we were told to expect a 3-hour wait. One hour to get your name in to the host and another two hours to wait for an actual table to sit down and eat. Uhm, no thanks. So we waited until Monday, headed there around 7:30 and we got seated in about 20 minutes (yes, on a Monday at 7:30 am there was still a 20-minute wait. Ha. Granted this was two weeks after it opened but still!) It was the perfect amount of time because we were able to stop explore the outside patio, grab a coffee and do a little shopping in the Take Away area. Yes, it’s as stunning in person as it looks on TV. And the food was absolutely incredible, with huge portions. A must-have order are Jo’s biscuits that she makes so often in the episodes. After Magnolia Table, we headed back to the Silo District (I was expecting Magnolia Table to be next to the Silos/in the Silo District, but it was in an entirely different part of Waco, in the main downtown area) and ran into Magnolia Market to do some quick shopping. On the way to the airport we stopped at Harp Design Co again (last time there was a 5-minute stop as a part of a tour) and I grabbed a few things for the boys’ upcoming big boy room makeover. Then it was back to Austin to head home!

Other Fun Observations & Tips For Your Stay

  • Shipping – Want to purchase larger items at Magnolia Market? No problem. Shipping fees are on the house (which is relatively new! wahoo!) but you will need to pay FedEx, which has a booth right there in the store, for packaging your item. It cost about $12 to pack a medium-sized box. There’s also a post office nearby, but you’ll have to come ready with your own packaging materials.
  • Flights – We flew into Austin then made the almost 2-hour drive to Waco. Avoid high-traffic times as Austin is a city like every other and the roads become very congested. We flew Allegiant, which has a very big presence at the Austin airport and made getting there and back a breeze.
  • Waco – Waco as a whole is still very much a mess of a town. They still haven’t quite regained their strength after the giant tornado in the 1950’s and it shows. Building are dilapidated. Our tour guide mentioned that Chip & Jo could flip a house every day for 10 years and still not be done flipping Waco around. Many of the Fixer Upper homes were in crumbling neighborhoods, while others were not.
  • Location of Magnolia Table – Magnolia Table is nowhere near The Silo District. Magnolia Table is very much in the commercial part of Waco, next to shipping strips and chain restaurants. I had no idea! It’s about a 10-minute car ride to Table from The Silo District.
  • Privacy of Fixer Upper Homes – Because of the popularity of the show, the homes are getting a ton of attention. These homes are in private neighborhoods, on quiet streets. I urge you to please be very respectful of owners’ privacy. We did drive by, but we never stopped. Any photos were taken from inside the car. Clint Harp and his family no longer live in the Harp House due to all of the attention. And of course it doesn’t help that the home is right next to the also-popular Harp Design Co.
  • Sundays – I mention this above, but Waco nearly shuts down on Sunday! Plan accordingly.
  • Chip & Joanna’s Home – Chip & Jo’s personal home is not located in Waco and was about a 20-minute drive from The Silo District. I had no idea they were not close by! It is hard to find as they’ve removed the Magnolia entry arch, but it’s right off a busy highway. And yes, very much in the middle of nowhere like they say on the show!

This was very fun to write, and very fun to relive as I wrote. I hope you go and if you do, enjoy your time there!

xo,

emily

 

 

 

 

Cincinnati Finds: All The Best Liquidation and Wholesale Furniture Shopping In The Area

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If you’ve been reading for any amount of time, you know I love a good deal. I love getting great stuff for insane prices. I cannot remember the last time I paid full price for anything home decor related, ever. (Ok, well maybe with the exception of the boys’ nursery glider, but I was nesting pretty hard sooo…) My goal is pretty much always 50% off or more, which means even the normal 15-30% sales from the go-to’s like West Elm, RH, C&B don’t cut it in my book. Not even close. I’m talking paying $50 for a $500 light fixture. There’s really just one way to accomplish this—visiting furniture liquidation hot spots here in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area. This requires some serious sleuthing on my end, because these set-ups don’t exactly advertise on a large scale. I’ve got several under my belt now, so I wanted to share them with you today.

One thing that’s important to note—these are not big, professional operations. These are entrepreneurs who want to get into the liquidation resale game. Expect messy boxes, small stores, inconsistent hours, constantly changing inventory, etc.—and that’s a good thing! The less overhead they pay, the more they’re able to pass that savings on to you. I did not include some of the bigger, more traditional discount operations like Bargains & Buyouts and BidFTA, but click on the links to go to my posts about those places.

Your Choice Wholesale (NKY)

3970 Alexandria Pike

Cold Spring, KY 41076

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What to Expect: Expect mostly furniture from online stores like Wayfair, Hayneedle, Overstock, Allmodern, etc. I’ve been pleasantly surprised with this little outfit because a large majority of their inventory skews pretty trendy. Think industrial tables, molded plastic furniture, wicker, velvet modern sofas, sputnik-style lights, etc. Mostly furniture, but great lighting and building materials (vanities, countertops, sink basins, etc.)

Surprising Tidbit: Their price model is pretty unique. Prices decrease as products stick around in the store. Friday and Saturdays everything is $100, Sunday $75 and Monday $50. Smaller priced items are priced accordingly (meaning, not everything starts at $100). Store is only open Friday-Monday.

Open Box Guys, LLC (NKY)

1335 Donaldson Highway Suite 10a
41018 Erlanger, Kentucky

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What to Expect: You can actually purchase entire pallets here fresh off the truck. Not sure of the prices, but my guess is you’ll get a few great things to get your money’s worth and lots of things to re-sell or donate. Skews less towards furniture and home decor. Lots of building materials.

Cincinnati Open Box Outlet

6252 Glenway Ave

Cincinnati, OH 45211

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What To Expect: They just moved to a larger space and it’s clean and inviting. Inventory is a good mix of decor styles, with a fair amount of unique items.

Surprising Tidbit: You can browse through a lot of their inventory on their Facebook page, which takes a little bit of the guesswork out of your shopping trip.

Overstock Guys

7616 Production Drive

Cincinnati OH 45237

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What To Expect: Good mix of home decor, furniture and… everything else! Lots of appliances and building supplies.

Home Emporium

11360 Princeton Pike
Cincinnati, OH 45246

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What To Expect: This place has been around forever. Skews towards building supplies, especially flooring. On the other hand,  I’ve found great cabinet hardware and a giant cowhide rug lol (for whatever reason, they seem to always have real cowhide rugs) in a single trip. Have a great outdoor furniture selection in the summer. Known for their rock bottom flower planter prices.

Cincinnati Pallet Liquidators

1250 Century Circle N

Cincinnati OH 45246

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What To Expect: This one is another wild card, because it’s strictly whole pallet liquidation (meaning, you have to buy the entire pallet, not just one item), but I’m going to throw it in here anyways. I have not been to this one before, but the reviews are great and the Facebook group is nearly 3K members strong. (Hot tip—join the group to get the inside track on the hot deals.)


If I missed any, let me know! I’d love to include them here. Also, I would be remiss without reminding eager shoppers to not forget the likes of the Frontgate (Grandin Road, Ballard Designs) Outlet, Hayneedle Outlet and Restoration Hardware Outlet just north of the city.

Happy shopping!

Emily

 

 

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