If I had to choose a career other than my current one, anywhere in the world, doing anything that I wanted, I would choose to work at Restoration Hardware. I know that a lot of major brands can be overhyped, and some begin as quality providers but fall into the trap of profit over production. However, Restoration Hardware seems to consistently offer the same things: personality, quality, and uniqueness. Their products are all infused with old-world charm, and the romantic designer in me would probably cry if I had the chance to spend time in one of their galleries.
They even offer interior design services. So working there, I’d get to hang out with beautiful furniture every day, and still be able to pursue my passion of creating sophisticated and stunning spaces. RH is dedicated to providing a luxury experience – from their furnishings, to their services, to the architectural wonders that are their stores.
As my taste in interiors slowly refines, I always find myself drawn back to RH. There is always something new I can discover, and endless ways to utilize and interpret their offerings. They are my go-to store in particular for their baby and child section, which offers beautifully crafted furnishings and accessories, and infinite options to customize the feel that you’re going for.
It all leads to one thing: I love Restoration Hardware. Keep reading to find out why.
Authenticity to their brand
No matter what kinds of combinations you come up with, all their pieces retain the same impression.
One of the most difficult things for a furniture provider to do is ensuring that their products flow seamlessly with each other. Each piece is obviously carefully made, with all the intricate details constantly being compared to their brand standards. This guarantees that whatever you get is going to be cohesive and harmonious with your other pieces. A surprising factor is that even contrasting items appear to remain in harmony with each other. It can be difficult to find mismatched pieces that agree with each other, but RH manages to do it seemingly without effort.
All of their packaging is gorgeously tailored to the old-world charm of RH.
If you know what the RH packaging looks like, it’s not hard to understand why I adore it. Despite numerous types, each different package stays in line with the brand. Even the multitudes of different fonts on the labels stay true to their trademark traditional style. They also use grey. And ribbons. How can you not fall in love?
Coherency in web-based and print-based promotional material.
One of the things I’ve noticed about RH is that both their print and web material looks the same. I’m not saying it looks like they’ve printed off screenshots of their website! But they put in the effort to arrange their pieces like an actual room. A lot of furniture stores do this, but it will look like it’s in a storeroom or a shop floor. RH looks like they’ve wandered into a beautifully designed home and taken photos of the layouts. This means that no matter what format you discover something on, there’s no jarring transition between different outlets.
Quality of their work
Each piece is crafted to stand the test of time.
To be honest, this bit is based off what I’ve heard from other designers and friends who have purchased items from RH. Unfortunately, I can’t have the beautiful things here in New Zealand. I just have to dream about quality sofas and glamorous beds. RH prides itself on luxury quality, and it shows in the reviews that they get. Unlike some retailers, who create products that need replacing after a fairly short amount of time, RH has strongly built furniture pieces, well-fitted materials and everything is structured to last. You could even probably hand it down in your family if you take good care of it.
But it still remains possible to recreate pieces to your own budget.
Can’t afford that dream piece you’ve been craving? Rh products are so popular, that someone out there has created a copycat version that’s probably close enough to satisfy a lot of people. As a designer, I tend to find myself veering more towards the legitimate product rather than a DIY version. I know that the workers who’ve crafted the pieces from the actual store have a lot of training, and know exactly the specifications required to get the item looking perfect. DIY versions can be great, but when you pretty much spend your time shopping for furniture, you can spot the difference. However, if you feel that a DIY version will be just as good (it certainly would be a lot cheaper) then go for it!
CEO and Chairman of RH Gary Friedman also revamped Williams-Sonoma and Pottery Barn, turning them into high-quality but still affordable retailers. (source).
Their use of in-house designers to assist customers with making the right purchase.
Complimentary in-house design services from people who know the products that they’re selling you. Is there anything better? They can guide you into curating a collection of beautiful pieces that will grow and develop with you or your family. Each store has at least one full-time designer, and they will work with your tastes and your budget, so that you never overspend or purchase anything that you don’t like.
Different platforms showcasing their products
Beautiful showcases in their galleries and retail stores.
In all seriousness, the RH galleries happen to be some of my most favorite places in the world. They’re all in beautiful old buildings that have been carefully designed and restored to their former glory. These buildings are perfect for RH galleries, as the items pay homage to the beauty of the traditional.
Simple yet elegant websites, showcases their entire collections.
The absolute worst thing about a store website is when it isn’t functional. The RH website is simple and elegant, with everything labeled clearly. They even have a site map option so that you can see all the different categories they have on offer. The website even stays true to the brand aesthetic so that you know you’re in the right place.
RH has launched a few of it’s new ‘design galleries’, eventually planning on replacing it’s current open stores with 60 to 70 new ones. They’ll include performance spaces, restaurants, courtyards and rooftop terraces. (source).
Old World vs Modern Influences.
Each piece is an antique replica, which shows both in looks and materials.
When Friedman took over RH, he and his executives travelled the world trying to find the best artisans and the most beautiful inspirations to craft their enormous catalogue of products. Pieces are crafted with antique European influences in mind, using techniques and aesthetics that have been loved for a large part of history.
But they transition seamlessly into modern and contemporary spaces.
Despite the antique feel of the catalogue, whatever you buy is still going to look nice in a newer home. Whether it’s complimentary or contrasting, for some reason antique pieces always help to highlight the differences between the old and the new. This means that you can still keep all of your modern conveniences and features, and still decorate with the old-world glamour that you want.
There’s something about historical romantic glamour that gets me every time, and RH is a perfect place for me to window-shop and inspire myself each and every time I visit.
If you want to know my best picks from the RH collection, check back in tomorrow.