Friday, May 5, 2017

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My Restoration Hardware Warehouse Sale Bargain!


Frank and I had been in Texas only a few hours when I spotted it: the RH Warehouse Sale sign. At first, I was super-bummed, because the Restoration Hardware website said the sale had ended the day before. I couldn't believe my bad luck. But then! The mall website informed me that, due to popular demand, the sale had been extended. Rejoice!

It's held only on Friday-Sunday, so I waited patiently all week to storm the warehouse.

The movers misplaced our stroller, which means I've been battling a free-roaming toddler all week. But I desperately wanted to go to the sale, so I decided to say a prayer and hope for the best. Asa and I arrived a few minutes before 10 a.m., when the sale started, and there was already a line out the door. 

Once they allowed us to stampede inside, I quickly learned how the system works: stand by items you want, wave maniacally, and wait on a sales clerk to fill out a purchase form, which you take to the register with you when you're done (the item gets tagged as claimed). 

Super-gorgeous velvet tuxedo sofa, priced at $2,903 (65% off retail).
Priced at 65% off, this Chesterfield chaise was $1,258.

Within minutes of the sale starting, I saw a crowd of people waving like they were trying to board the last Titanic lifeboat, so of course, I joined them. Turned out to be a smart move: They were crowded around the coveted X-back cane dining chairs and stools. I need stools for my new house's kitchen, so I plopped Asa in one and guarded two more until the clerk made his way to me. Luckily, I went in knowing I liked these chairs, because I didn't have time to think. The chairs retail for $195 each, and they were marked down to just $39. No brainer!

An army of X-back chairs. Oddly, the table-height chairs were pricier, at $46 each, than the stools.
I wasn't able to fit much more in my car, and our house isn't going to be finished until July, which means I had to limit myself to the stools. Somehow, I don't think my husband would be thrilled if I made him haul an oversized sectional into our already packed third-story apartment! The sale is going on until July, so I will definitely be back. (There are other locations, typically in California, Texas, and D.C., throughout the year.)

Armchairs were among the last items to be claimed.
Headed to a sale in your own city? Here's my advice:

Arrive early
I naively sat in my car before the sale, not wanting to wrangle my toddler for more time than necessary. So when we walked in five minutes before it started, there was already a massive line. If you're serious about being among the first, arrive early and go ahead and take your place in front of the entrance. While you wait, ask for one of the purchase forms and fill out your personal info ahead of timethat way, when you find an item, the clerk won't have to do this and slow you down from checking out the rest of the sale. 

Come on Friday
The sale lasts (and is restocked) all weekend, but a clerk told me the best items are usually on the floor on Fridays. I plan to check back later in the weekend, though. 

Target your search
The items that seemed to be claimed the fastest were dining chairs and tables. (Just after I walked in, I saw one of RH's amazing trundle tables for only about $550, but it had already been claimed). Save sofas, dining room cabinets, and beds for last; when I walked around toward the end of my time in the warehouse, there were still several of these left unclaimed. 

Know the bargains
The sale advertises that items are priced at 65-90% off. It seemed that most items were between 65-70% off, but according to one of the store clerks I spoke to, dining chairs and cushions for outdoor furniture are most likely to be deeply discounted. Thus my $39 dining stools.

Come with a truck
You only have until 7 p.m. on the day of your purchase to pick up your items. I was able to cram my stools into my SUV, but I would have either had to hire the on-site delivery service or come back with a truck if I'd found more. I'd suggest planning ahead and coming with a large vehicle or U-haul if you anticipate making a big purchase.