How to Shop Like an Interior Design Pro in New York

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Here’s how to shop like an interior design pro in New York. Head to the two buildings in Midtown Manhattan that showcase the best in everything for the home

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New York offers some of the world’s finest interior-design shopping, with top brands and custom purveyors spread throughout the city. But Manhattan is also where you’ll find entire buildings devoted to the home, featuring everything from the newest fabrics to the latest in high-tech kitchenware. Here, we focus on two addresses that are go-to destinations for the city’s top designers, the world-famous Decoration & Design Building (979 Third Avenue), offering over 130 showrooms, and the nearby Architects & Designers Building (150 East 58th Street), with more than 30 showrooms, a number of which represent the latest in kitchen and bath design. Shoppers who aren’t credentialed interior designers can buy at these centers too. At the D&D Building they’ll be directed to the Design Professionals office, where they can register with the buying service. A shopper will then be able to purchase items at the price a designer gets (wholesale), plus a 20 percent fee. (The D&D also offers a designer referral program.) The A&D Building isn’t solely to the trade, with many brands selling through their retail partners.  And there’s more! If you stroll the side streets near these two design centers, you’ll also find great antiques, lighting, and decorative accessories retail shops. The neighborhood dining is good too, with Le Cirque across from the D&D Building and power-crowd favorite Le Bilboquet a short walk away.

THE D&D BUILDING, 979 THIRD AVENUE 

ARMANI CASA

Not every fashion vision translates seamlessly into a distinct interior aesthetic, but Armani’s lustrous modernism works on the runway as well as for the home. The designer, who helped put Milan fashion on the map, has always won kudos for his use of fine fabrics; with the interior line, you can expect that and more—a range of refined stone and wood finishes for a collection of furniture suited to every room in the house

ASSOULINE

The publisher of fine art and luxury lifestyle tomes has a store on the first floor of the building, where you can browse the latest design book and gift offerings. The brand also produces Assouline Interiors, which includes a curated furnishings collection (custom furniture along with lighting and rugs) designed by Prosper and Martine Assouline, who founded the company.

BACCARAT

No less a personality than Louis XV gave the  go-ahead to establish this company in 1764, and Baccarat’s exquisite crystal has been a favorite for royals and the world’s movers and shakers ever since. Shop Baccarat for extraordinary lighting (the chandeliers are worthy of Versailles), luxe tabletop items, and the popular new collection of rings and earrings designed by Marie-Helene de Taillac.

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Photo: Baccarat

BRUNSCHWIG AND FILS

This firm, founded in 1900, has been renowned for its textiles for over a century. It has been the go-to for top decorators like Sister Parish and Albert Hadley, who used Brunschwig in the homes of their tony clients and for the White House. Today the firm offers much more than gorgeous fabrics. There are wallpaper, trimmings, furniture, and carpets all executed with beautiful, elaborate design

FARROW & BALL

Farrow & Ball is known for its luxe, European manor house and villa colors and wallpaper textures and their evocatively named shades (like Cat’s Paw and Green Smoke). The company is also regarded for its ability to match paint tones from other centuries, making it a preferred firm for historical renovation. For 2017 Farrow & Ball debuted four directional colors or hues: Radicchio, Studio Green, Hay, and All White.

FORTUNY

Famous for its rarified fabrics and pleating techniques since the early years of the twentieth century, Fortuny has crafted its textiles in Venice since 1907. Look for sumptuous velvets worthy of a Doge, rich wools, and a vivid range of patterns and textures—from classic damasks to tribal prints—produced in cotton fabrics. There are furniture, mosaics, and lighting too.

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Photo: Fortuny

GRACIE

A family-run business since 1898, Gracie is a Park Avenue favorite for its exquisite hand-painted, textured, and antique wallpapers. The company also offers a wide range of antiques.

KNOLL

Highly regarded for its sleek, modernist furniture and collaborations with some of the world’s design greats such as Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Gae Aulenti, and Richard Meier, Knoll produces pieces that end up in museums like the Cooper Hewitt. The Knoll Luxe fabric collection showcases designs by well-known designers like Rodarte, Proenza Schouler, and Maria Cornejo. Suite 1525 (furniture); suite 1701 (textiles).

HOLLY HUNT

The Chicago-based designer, known for her luxurious, yet understated modernism, has two nearby showrooms (in both the D&D and A&D buildings). In the D&D you’ll find Hunt’s textiles, as well as collections of designers like Phillip Jeffries, who has created quite a following with his natural (especially grasscloth) wall coverings, and Dennis and Leen, a team whose pieces take inspiration from 17th-century France.

LORO PIANA

A label that specializes in luxe fabrics for its menswear and women’s wear, Loro Piana Interiors provides equally sumptuous textiles for home environments, including fine cashmere, merino wool, linen, and silk blends that work everywhere from city settings to yacht interiors.

PIERRE FREY

Parisian in its roots and flavor, this maison de luxe designs and manufactures exquisite textiles and wallpapers under the Pierre Frey label and other company brands like Boussac, Braquenie, Fadini Borghi, and La Manach. Frey’s signature style includes artistic prints inspired by such periods as Imperial China, 18th-century France, and contemporary Africa.

RALPH LAUREN HOME

The man who redefined American and Anglo style has built his interior line to include furniture, accessories, fabrics, wall and floor coverings and lighting. For spring, Lauren will debut two new interiors collections, Mulholland Drive, where classic Hollywood glamour gets an update, with furniture referencing Regency, Georgian, and Charles of London styles and Grand Plage, a line that pays homage to the spirit of the world’s great resorts like St. Tropez and St. Barts, with white lacquer pieces and fabrics inspired by Lauren’s spring 2016 women’s collection.

THE A&D BUILDING, 150 EAST 58TH STREET

New showrooms opening this spring include Scavolini, the noted Italian kitchen firm, and Omare, a Brazilian brand specializing in high-end kitchen and bath design and luxurious custom closets.

ARTISTIC TILE

A designer favorite for its extraordinary range of tile designs and custom capabilities, Artistic Tile recently partnered with jewelry and home decor guru Michael Aram, known for his work with sumptuous materials and metallic finishes.

B&B ITALIA

A pioneering contemporary furniture company that has collaborated with the world’s top designers, including Zaha Hadid, Gaetano Pesce, and Ettore Sottsass, B&B Italia has a duplex showroom, with a ground-floor, street-facing space that’s open to both trade and consumers.

FISHER AND PAYKEL

The New Zealand–based appliance company holds hundreds of patents for innovative appliances like their DishDrawer dishwashers.

HOLLY HUNT

This airy showroom on the ground floor of the A&D Building has Hunt’s latest collections, whose style has been defined by a directional modernism. For spring, check out the new outdoor teak-free furniture line called Moray. “Our goal was to create a more sophisticated design language for outdoor products and one which uses materials in a new and fresh way,” says Hunt. Pieces are crafted in bronze or silver metal;the textile palette includes deep icy blues, plum, and vibrant yellows.

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Photo: Holly Hunt

MIELE

Founded in the late 19th century in Germany, the company motto is “immer besser ”—always better; and judging from its multibillion-dollar annual sales volume, customers around the world agree that you can count on Miele for that. Check out everything from the latest Induction Cooktop products to the cat and dog canister vacuum, designed as the company says to “show pet hair who’s boss.”

POLIFORM

From sleek sofas and beds to closets that are mini architectural marvels, Poliform, an Italian furniture firm, makes pieces that turn up in the shiniest new condos from South Beach to Tribeca and other chic, modernist settings around the world.

SIEMATIC

Internationally regarded for its innovative design, SieMatic developed a handle-free kitchen and even furnished a Pope (Benedict XVI) with a kitchen for the Apostolic Palace.

SUB-ZERO & WOLF

Leaders in home refrigeration science, the company helped revolutionize kitchen design with clever built-ins and technological savvy. It recently introduced a line of beautifully crafted kitchen appliances to work in smaller, urban spaces.

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