FASHIONABLE FURNITURE FOR LESS

by ALAENA HOSTETTER / photography by HOLGER OBENAUS

It’s hard to imagine that the massive 50,000-square-foot home furnishings store in Dallas’ Design District known as Furniture To Go was very recently a two-person operation run from proprietors Corey Burnett and Melissa Marron’s apartment.

It all started about five years ago, when the couple relocated to Dallas from Houston for Burnett’s job and found themselves in need of furniture. After filling up their apartment with home furnishings, the idea for their fledgling business took off.

“I have a habit of selling things all the time,” says Burnett. “So, I sold our furniture that Melissa bought, and then she bought more, then I sold that, and the cycle kept going.”

The couple started buying in bulk and expanded their online sales from Craigslist to more web platforms as the business took off. Burnett and Marron were moving so much inventory from their Dallas apartment that management kicked them out, citing they were unlawfully operating a business on the premises.

Getting the boot pushed the couple in the right direction—into their first Design District storefront—a mere 1,000 square feet that the couple also called home.

Furniture To Go’s footprint has tripled and quadrupled several times since moving into that first warehouse four years ago. Its current space amounts to more than an acre under one roof and comes with a dedicated mattress showroom in addition to home furnishings for every room of the house.

All that space means Furniture To Go can carry a huge assortment of styles, including contemporary, modern, baroque, Western and rustic. The couple gravitates toward head-turning conversation pieces, including cowhides dyed metallic and leopard and zebra prints. They have giant 6-by-8-foot mirrors, life-size portraits, animal sculptures and a collection of “throne chairs,” made popular no doubt by the HBO hit series Game of Thrones.

The standout pieces have caught the eye of designers and home stagers, in addition to residents from all over Dallas.

“People come to us from everywhere – the Medical District, Uptown, Bishop Arts, Deep Ellum, Downtown – you name it,” Burnett says.

What brings people out in droves is not only the huge assortment of inventory— Burnett estimates there are 100 different sofas and sectionals, 60 different dining sets and 40 different bedroom sets in stock—but also the price point of Furniture To Go’s merchandise.

“We’re one of the more affordable stores in the Design District,” Burnett explains. “We sell really affordable furniture for everyday people.”

For example, a sofa and loveseat combo fetches a $600 price tag. Furniture To Go also offers financing through five different finance companies, which means “everyone is approved,” according to Burnett. “You just need a bank account to qualify, and customers have up to a year to pay off the furniture.”

Burnett says aside from the massive inventory and low price point, it’s Furniture To Go’s service that keeps customers coming back.

The store offers delivery and assembly services, and it has design associates on hand who can pick out an entire home’s worth of furnishings, should customers need some extra help.

“We have a lot of people come in who just bought a house or a condo for Airbnb and they have no idea what to put in it,” says Burnett. The Furniture To Go team will ask the customer how many bedrooms and baths, and they’ll put together a whole-house look on budget.

“It’s a very different type of furniture that goes into a house in Irving versus what goes into a high-rise,” Burnett explains. “It’s great we have so many styles – so whether you have a Downtown high-rise or a house in the suburbs, we’ll have something to fit every look.” *

Alaena Hostetter is a content strategist, editor and journalist who writes about art, design, culture, music, entertainment and food. She can be reached via her website alaenahostetter.com.