I often get asked for local recommendations , so today I’m spilling the beans on some of my favorite vendors, showrooms, and builders I love in the Grand Rapids design community!
Aside from going away for college, studying abroad in Beijing, and a summer internship in Houston, I’ve lived in west Michigan my entire life. If you know me even just a little bit, you probably already know that I am not a lover of snow and cold weather, so what the heck keeps me in the mid-west!? Well – when it comes to working in the design industry, Grand Rapids is the perfect location…
#1: Favorite Thing about being an interior designer in Grand Rapids, Michigan
Grand Rapids is centrally located. Living in Grand Rapids, I love having convenient access to an incredible assortment of sources and showrooms. Whether it be through the number of great material showrooms in west Michigan and antique stores (for one-of-a-kind finds!), or heading over to Chicago in just a hop, skip, and a jump to find exquisite furniture and finishes, Grand Rapids is perfectly located not too far from the lakeshore, Traverse City, Chicago, and Detroit. It allows me to utilize a wide range of companies and sources, so my clients’ homes always turn out unique to their style.
Pssst - if you keep reading, I’ll be sharing some of those west Michigan sources and showrooms below!
Speaking of my clients...
Being centrally located in Grand Rapids, MI also means I can easily serve clients north, south, east, and west without having to take up too much of their design budget on travel fees and airline tickets. I love being able to design lake houses along the coast of Lake Michigan, penthouses in Detroit and Chicago, farm houses in the rural inland countryside, and everything in between all within a few hours of my hometown
#2: Favorite West Michigan Builders
Living in Grand Rapids, I get to work with a talented assortment of builders. I love working with Scott Christopher Homes in Grand Rapids. With their impeccable attention to detail and skillet, they build homes all over the country, so I’m grateful to have them so close by.
Another favorite is Paradise Builders located near Ludington, MI. They have great customer service and attention to detail. A bit smaller operation, but sometimes that one-on-one experience is just what a project needs!
#3: Favorite Grand Rapids Tile Shop
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – I love Virginia Tile. Their sales staff is so knowledgable, and l love collaborating with their team to come up with unique and beautiful tile patterns. It’s amazing what you can create with basic tile options, but if you’re not feeling super creative, they also have an incredible assortment of unique mosaics and pre-designed patterns.
#4: Favorite Grand Rapids Flooring Showroom:
The staff at Century Flooring is so friendly and helpful. I appreciate how quickly they always get back to me, and they’re so welcoming - no matter the size of project I’m working on. They have a wide range of carpets, wood flooring, and tile (among many other things) to fit any budget, and they’ll even coordinate installation for you!
#5: Favorite Grand Rapids Stone Countertop Fabricator:
The team at Great Lakes Granite Works is impeccable! I can always count on them when I’m looking for something really unique (did someone say exotic marble?) to help me source a location, and their shop’s attention to detail when cutting the stone is perfection! Countertops are a big investment, so it’s important to use a fabricator who knows their stuff, and I’ve always been happy with Great Lakes Granite!
#6: Favorite Grand Rapids Concrete Countertop Fabricator:
If it’s concrete you’re looking for, look no further than Hard Topix! You may find concrete countertops elsewhere, but I assure you they aren’t as high quality and durable as the unique mixture and finishing at Hard Topix. Plus, they can create concrete sinks, vanities, firepits, fireplace surrounds, tabletops, and more! They’ll help you create whatever color you want ( yes – I said colored concrete countertops), and the owner Drew is very knowledgeable on his craft and product. You can also get longer spans of countertop without seams compared to stone.
#7: Favorite Grand Rapids Fabric/Wallpaper Showroom
On the top floor of Gorman’s Showroom, there is a designer resource library with thousands upon thousands of fabrics available to designers. They have everything from Schumacher to S. Harris to JF Fabrics, and beyond! They also have a wide assortment of wallpapers, and the women who work up there are super helpful! I love to start there for inspiration, and build a room off what I find!
#8: Favorite Grand Rapids Accessories Store
Guys – I’m just gonna say it. When it comes to accessories, you just can’t beat the prices and ever changing selection at Homegoods. Yes, there is a time and place for high-end, unique accessories carefully sourced from showrooms and private vendors, but a lot of the time – I love me a good Homegoods run! Secret’s out!
#9: Favorite Grand Rapids Seamstress
I’ve worked with Betsy at for nearly 10 years. She has impeccable skill and attention to detail for making pillows, window treatments, upholstered bench seats, and anything else I want to create! She perfectly executes all of my ideas, and she’s also wonderful to collaborate with to come up with new ideas. Her workroom is quaint and charming, and you won’t meet a friendlier gal in Grand Rapids!
#10: Favorite Grand Rapids Antique Store:
Yes, Homegoods is great for buying accessories, but every room should have a mix of old and new, and I love incorporating antiques into the spaces I design. Grand Rapids has a lot of great antique stores, but Lost and Found continues to be my favorite. Not only do they have a great assortment of antique furniture, but their two story showroom has a plethora of one-of-a-kind, special finds that make the rooms I design special.