I have a confession to make: home decor stores scare me a bit. I walk into places like Pottery Barn and Crate and Barrel, and I get a little overwhelmed. What do I need? How do I use this in my home? How can people afford all of this? I usually just ignore the larger pieces of furniture and home goods and go straight to the kitchenware.

When I received an invite to attend a tour of the new Spring collection at the Seattle West Elm, I agreed, but was a little hesitant. I’ve heard all of my design/fashion/art blogger friends talking about how amazing this place is. I was afraid that it meant West Elm would be super trendy, unapproachable, and overpriced. I was wrong.

West Elm is extremely approachable, even to decorating novices like myself. Most of the employees have an interior decorating background, and they are willing to sit with you and help you design your living space. They’ll even come to your house, take measurements, and give you suggestions, all free of charge! Although their products aren’t super geeky by themselves, they can all complement your existing decor, and take your rooms from “Geek Collectible Showcase” to “Grown-Up, Well-Put-Together Room with a Geek Focus.” Their brightly colored kitchenware would be the perfect addition to a large pop-art or comic print. The papier-mache animal sculptures can add a modern and funky twist to your version of a “hunting lodge.” The great thing about the animal sculptures (and a lot of their pieces), are that they’re a collaboration with smaller artists. West Elm works with small artists and companies (like Etsy) to find great up-and-comers to feature in their stores. This ensures that you’re getting unique pieces and supporting artists with your purchase!

Whether you’re looking for home furnishings to show off your action figure collection, a bit of inspiration to redo your bedroom, or you just moved and need to start from scratch, West Elm is here to help. Check them out!

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