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The Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan

Find Design Inspiration in Louisville


3. What to Do

Canoe sells textiles imported from Turkey (left); SCOUT's specialties are whimsical home pieces (right).  

Start shopping for big-ticket items that make a statement at Architectural Salvage, 24,000 square feet of mantels, doors, and backbars showcased in shabby-chic splendor across four interconnected houses and courtyards. Here, an original 1890 carved cherrywood mantle might run you $2,800, or you can snag a 1910 brass bank gate for under $500. For equally impressive finds, head a couple blocks east to Frederick Chaffin’s second-floor showroom to see original designs handmade mostly from local storm-fallen trees. At $10,000, the stunning black-cherry credenza is not cheap, but you get heirloom-quality handiwork that’s increasingly hard to find.

Use what’s left in your budget to pick up well-priced pieces at the Antique Market at Distillery Commons, a former whiskey production facility that’s now home to nearly 10,000 pieces of carefully selected furniture, paintings, and home goods from bygone eras. Discoveries here might include a funky old zinc-top worktable ($1,100) or oil landscape paintings (from $165). For more of a scavenger hunt, get lost in 90,000 square feet of items—some random, some rare—at Goss Avenue Antiques & Interiors. The sprawling 19th-century cotton mill offers a never-ending supply of deals and discounts, like an old but still-working Eskimo fan ($39) and a beautifully weathered wooden bench ($14).

Hit the new wave of design shops along East Market Street for contemporary accents to compliment your older finds. At Canoe, owner Lynn Seiller sells rugs and textiles she handpicks during biannual trips to Turkey; selections include new-production brown and white wool kilim from East Anatolia ($2,800) and a vintage hand-woven suzani tapestry from Uzbekistan (price upon request). Around the corner, browse stocky, rough-hewn chests of drawers from Revolver’s well-edited selection. Down the block, SCOUT brings a campy attitude to serious design with items like Cardboard Safari’s wall-mounted cardboard taxidermy animal heads ($18–$200). Down the block, you’ll find fanciful letter-pressed posters at Hound Dog Press, which offer a quick fix for any bare walls you may need to dress up.

Published on Oct 31, 2013 as a web exclusive.

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