How to Shop on Etsy Like an Interior Designer
Marika Meyer Interiors
Etsy is a magical wonderland for finding one-of-a-kind entertaining essentials, vintage artwork, midcentury furniture, and just about anything else you can think of. The digital marketplace is full of unique vendors from around the globe, making it a little too easy to get lost for hours scrolling through authentic Turkish rugs, French antique linens, and bespoke wooden furniture. However, with a little help from some of the key players in the design industry, Etsy can be your one-stop shop for both specific items and frivolous purchases that are waiting to find the right place in your home. Shopping on Etsy also helps us support small businesses, important causes, and a global marketplace.
We previously shared our staff’s favorite tips, tricks, and storefronts for shopping Etsy like a VERANDA editor. This time, we spoke with 18 interior designers and textile manufacturers about their best tips for shopping Etsy like a design pro, along with some favorite storefronts that help them create uniquely beautiful projects all over the world.
Advertisement – Continue Reading Below
Christina Nielsen: Christina Nielsen Design
“I love shopping on Etsy for Indian dhurries and English Staffordshire china,” says Nielsen. “Specifically, I am always looking for the purple Manganese colorway, which is my favorite, and aubergine is always a neutral in my mind. It’s all about the hunt.”
Nielsen also loves Turkish Rugs Heaven which offers Indian, Moroccan, Turkish, and Swedish farmhouse handwoven carpets. She also notes that Nancy of SacredTables has “really beautiful and rare curations.”
3×10 Turkish Runners Vintage Oushak Runner Rug Brown Runner | Etsy
Shelly Rosenberg: Shelly Rosenberg Interiors and Acorn & Oak
“The vast collection of unique vendors on Etsy makes it easy to procure interesting accessories from across the globe at the push of a button,” says Rosenberg. “I love the hand-woven baskets from the Nkirotes Collection in Nairobi, Kenya. The owner was very helpful, and shipping was a breeze. I love supporting a sustainable, global economy while adding authentic craftsmanship to my designs.”
10 Rwanda and Tonga wall hanging set
Caroline Gidiere: Caroline Gidiere Design
“The Purana Bazaar is where I shop for vintage saris for custom lampshades,” Gidiere says. “Nothing makes a prettier lampshade than a sari, in my opinion, and the colors and patterns are really unmatched. [It] provides a virtual trip to an Indian bazaar, without the cost of a plane ticket.”
Gidiere notes the inventory changes often, so you have to check back. She advises snagging an item as soon as you can if you fall in love with it. She herself has amassed quite a collection of unique and beautiful pieces waiting for the perfect room, piece, or project.
“The other place I keep going back to is Retro Daisy Girl,” Gidiere says. “She always has a great collection of midcentury bamboo and rattan at great prices, when I need a little side table or mirror or console at a steal. Again, the inventory changes frequently, so you have to check back from time to time.”
Set of 2 Handmade Frida Kahlo Cushion Covers
Leyden Lewis: Leyden Lewis Design Studio
“Etsy is a great democratic resource made up of diverse merchandise that ranges from high-end to affordable furnishings, rugs, and home decor,” says the New York–based designer.
Lewis’s favorite finds reflect his colorful, modern approach to design. He adores MoroccanWoolRug’s incredible selection of Berber carpets and this Sileneus sideboard by Ralis Kotlevs, both of which are made by hand.
“Having bold statement pieces can also tell an intimate story about one’s self or of their space,” Lewis says. “Adding handmade furniture to your environment combines art and culture, creating a sense of intimacy with its makers.”
Authentic Moroccan Rug, 8×10
Andrew Howard: Andrew Howard Interior Design
The Jacksonville, Florida-based designer says he loves utilizing Etsy to add the finishing touches to a project.
“There are so many things available—if you know where to dig,” he says. “We love finding one-of-a-kind pieces of art, furniture, or accessories that really make our jobs shine.”
Two of his favorite Etsy storefronts include Panache 1000 Interiors and Florida Modern for vintage housewares, furniture, and wall decor.
Tommi Parzinger style Chests by Hart Associates Parchment Covered Hinged Box with Metal Stand Mid Century Modern Furniture
Nathalie Farman-Farma: Décores Barbares
“Etsy is a good browsing resource for anybody interested in folklore,” the textile maven says. “I recommend Ethnic Dress for Eastern European costumes and RussOriginal for Russian artifacts. I also purchased some vintage Christmas tree ornaments from Old USSRvintage.”
Antique 19th century hand-embroidered linen pillow case
Ariel Okin: Ariel Okin Interiors
The designer and writer says the secret to best utilizing Etsy is to search with as much specificity as possible.
“If you’re looking for ready-made Brunschwig & Fils pillows, search for the exact pattern you want,” Okin says. “The more descriptive you can get in your search, the better your results will be.”
Okin says her team loves shopping on Etsy for a variety of reasons: supporting small businesses, finding one-of-a-kind fabrics and vintage pieces, and working with people from all over the globe.
“A few storefronts we love and work with frequently are Pop O Color, Fresh Vintage Market (they have an incredible variety of old vintage maps and lithographs), Tiger Cat Tiles, and Cruel Mountain for custom lampshades.”
Mary McDonald Light Blue Trellis Decorative Pillow Cover
Marie Flanigan: Marie Flanigan Interiors
“Etsy can be a treasure trove of handmade, antique, and one-of-a-kind items, but you have to be willing to hunt,” the Dallas-based designer says. “Discovering the perfect item or a talented independent craftsperson can be a little like finding a needle in a haystack.”
Flanigan says her team often sources antique French milking stools from Etsy, along with monogrammed items for children’s bedrooms, which she loves to source from Peppermint Bee.
Applique Name Pillow Cover
Lisa Fine: Lisa Fine Textiles
Lisa Fine, of the eponymous textiles brand, loves Etsy shop Textile Trunk for antique and vintage European textiles. The Shelburne, Vermont-based shop also makes its way to the Brimfield Antique Market in Massachusetts each summer if you want to see the items in person.
Antique French Fabric Project Bundle
Lauren Lowe: Lauren Elaine Interiors
“We look to Etsy when we need special custom items at a lower price point, such as pleated lampshades and appliqué monogrammed bedding,” Lowe says.
The Atlanta-based designer says utilizing Etsy is a great way to add those unique designer touches to kids’ bedrooms and guest rooms without having to spend an exorbitant amount of money.
“We love to hunt for finishing touches like myrtle topiaries, coral, vintage books, and antique botanical prints, especially recently, while we are not able to shop estate sales and antique shows during the pandemic,” Lowe says.
Cruel Mountain is a favorite for lamp shades and pillow covers, while Southern Linen is a favorite for custom monogram linens and entertaining essentials.
Monogram Standard Pillow Cases with Custom Embroidered Border
Sheila Bridges: Sheila Bridges Design
“I love shopping on Etsy,” Bridges says. “It’s my go-to when I want to find reasonably priced things by small, creative makers. I know I am not going to end with something cookie cutter that everyone else has.”
Bridges says she loves finding lighting from DLdesignworks, as well as some whimsical artwork and decor, like these adorable concrete French Bulldogs from BoulderandBranch.
Black Adjustable Industrial Chandelier
Marika Meyer: Merika Meyer Interiors
Marika Meyer says Cruel Mountain and LivenUPDesign are two favorite Etsy stores that she has worked with for custom pieces. Oftentimes, if there is something you love at an Etsy storefront, you can get a custom order that can help fit your exact needs.
“We love working with Lisa and her daughters at Cruel Mountain Designs,” Meyer says. “Their lampshades are exquisitely crafted, and they offer the ability to customize the size and shape to fit any lamp or light fixture. They stock some beautiful ready-made options, but are also able to create shades using your own fabric.”
Meyer says her team has worked with LivenUPDesign on an endless list of projects, from upholstered pieces to grass cloth–covered console tables.
“They can really do it all and are always up for a challenge,” Meyer says. “Most recently, they created a custom daybed for us in a fabulous fabric for a very stylish little girl. Meanwhile, their classic X bench is a never-fail go-to for us with a whole host of uses, a perfect addition to an entryway or easy, flexible seating in a family room.”
Coffee Table/Ottoman with Inset Cushion Top
Ashley Goforth: Ashley Goforth Design
“I’m constantly on the hunt for pieces that will bring my clients’ designs to life, and Etsy makes the process a breeze,” Goforth says. “I can type in what I’m looking for, down to specific characteristics and dimensions, and have selections from all over the world at my fingertips. I’ve sourced vintage, custom, and one-of-a-kind items, from Oushak rugs to handcrafted grass cloth coffee tables, all while supporting small businesses offering quality pieces at every price point.”
Some of the Houston-based designer’s favorite vendors include Italian Murano Design for lighting, LivenUPDesign for grass cloth furnishings, Illuminate Vintage for locally made brass and modern lighting, and Clover Interiors for one-of-a-kind artwork.
Italian Sputnik Chandelier
Marcus Mohon: Marcus Mohon Interiors
“Our experience with Etsy began after meeting a rug merchant in the Marrakech Medina,” Mohon says. “We carried a few of their pieces home on the plane before discovering he offers his collection through an Etsy storefront. He has fun and unusually colored rugs at reasonable prices that aren’t typically Moroccan-looking.”
Mohon says he also loves using Etsy for one-of-a-kind commissions, like an order of handmade paper flowers from Mazziflowers that were applied all over a loft bed for a girl who loves Frida Kahlo. He says Etsy can really help bring your vision to life if you know exactly what you want.
Peony Crepe Paper Flowers
Sandra Lucas: Lucas Eilers Design Associates
“Etsy is a fantastic resource for art, particularly when you’re looking for something custom,” Lucas says. “I’ve commissioned pieces from several artists on Etsy, most recently a painting for a home in Park City, Utah, that needed to be a very specific size so that it could slide to cover a wall-mounted TV.”
The author of Expressive Interiors: Designing an Inviting Home says Etsy is a great way to find artists who produce personalized home sketches, which she loves to give to clients after a project is completed.
“I love supporting independent creatives and find that the vendors are highly responsive with pieces that always exceed my expectations,” Lucas says.
Two favorite art vendors are Edgewood Art and Mary Frances Smith.
Advertisement – Continue Reading Below