Design With Consignment

If your casa needs a little couture the Thrifty Snicker has the design down-low in this review.  Design With Consignment at Steck and MoPac in north, central Austin is a veritable paradise of gorgeous upscale furniture and accessories, affordable prices and a friendly, knowledgeable design staff.

Now this is no “furniture on the run” outfit where you ostensibly can furnish an entire house for the cost of a venti latte.  DWC features carefully selected pieces in a wide range of styles and eras from estates or on consignment from fashionable A-town homes – many of which the Diva of Discount has, of course, visited as an A-list guest.  The soiree stories she could tell!  But since the Thriftress’ lips are as tight as her pocketbook readers will have to look elsewhere to fulfill their prurient needs.

Design With Consignment has been on the Austin scene for nearly a decade but recently moved from Lamar to roomier digs on Steck Avenue.  The store is larger than it looks from the outside and regardless of frequency of visits you’ll be inspired by entirely different pieces, design features and groupings each and every time.  With a penchant toward contemporary, your erstwhile blogger fell in love with a Della Robbia ultra suede sofa priced at $2,900 with a retail value of $8,226.  Equally tempting was the Bernhardt entertainment center modestly priced at $395 and a pair of terrific gray flannel Nest Modern occasional chairs at $775 each.  On another recent visit she spotted an Itzchak Tarkay painting and a hand-painted vintage headboard for just $375.  The Thriftstress is actually in the market for a sisal rug and found a lovely one for $650 but at 13×15 was bigger than the room she wants to put it in. 

Let’s talk about pricing here.  Consignments are taken on a 90-day basis and initial pricing is generally at half or less of retail.  If the retail price is known it’s put right on the tag to give shoppers that bargain rush.  The initial date is also on the tag so some quick calculations will tell you if the price has dropped as it will every 30 or 15 days.  Just ask David, Rusty or one of the other on-site designers for the piece’s price today.  Take for example the handcrafted 5-light chandelier with a pair of matching sconces on October 14 – retail is $7,200 and DWC is $1,450.  On November 13 it drops to $1,232.50 and on December 14, to $1,015.00.  Two weeks after that you’re looking at $797.50 and after January 3, a heart-stopping $580!  Of course the Thrifty Snicker razor applies here…waiting is a gamble that often doesn’t pay off.  If you see it and want it, you better buy it.  In fact, at DWC you may never even get a chance to buy it as was the case on a recent visit when the Thriftstress spotted an amazing wicker chair with the tag “waiting to be priced.”  She skedaddled over to the counter only to learn that it had already been bought!  Oh, the anguish!  If she didn’t already have a great dining room set, the elegant Ethan Allen table with six chairs and two extensions that started at $1,900 and is now $760 would be on its way to her castle.

For the consignee their percentage is also based on a sliding scale starting at 55% of the sale within 30 days, a 50/50 split at 31 to 66 days and a 40% share at 67 days and beyond.  For more information check out the store’s website at  The easy-to-navigate site has all the scoop about consigning with them as well a list of current pieces by category.  Christmas décor will be coming soon and Her Thriftiness will be keeping an eye on the website for those updates.  She’s hoping for store events featuring real wine after having her heart broken by a glass of faux chardonnay sitting on a side table that she thought was the real thing.

DWC’s address is 3301 Steck Avenue, Suite 100, 78757 but note to self: it doesn’t face Steck.   After a few false turns into various medical centers the Thriftstress discovered that off of Steck turn in to the street like you’re going to Lowe’s…there’s a Blimpie’s on the corner…and it’s in the strip center on your right.  Whew!  She needed a glass of chardonnay after that.  Phone is 512.301.9800 and the store’s open seven days a week – 12:00 – 5:00 on Sunday and 10:00 to 6:00 the rest of the week.

As much as it pains the Discount Diva to admit it, she doesn’t know everything thrift.  What are your favorite places and best bargains?

Until the next find!

The Thrifty Snicker


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