You've unloaded the car, your possessions are now scattered around a sparsely decorated apartment, and you've said adios to the moving team called mom and dad as the door slams and sends echoes throughout the space. That echoing sound may mean independence in your head, but it'll get old fast, just like getting up for your 8 a.m. psych class. Fill the space on the cheap by checking out these shops around town.
2221 Noisette Blvd.
Building 1655, Unit 20A
Celadon is pretty fancy, which in furniture talk means pretty expensive for a college student. Sure, they've got great looking stuff, but we're on a budget here. But there's a silver lining known as the Celadon Outlet. The goods are either overstocked merchandise or have been slightly damaged in shipping, but you can find some stellar pieces. The outlet is only open on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 10 a.m.-1 p.m., so plan your trip accordingly.
Charleston Consignment Co.
464 N. Nassau St.
Charleston Consignment Co. resells used and antique furniture that ranges from desks and dressers to plate sets and glass bowls. The inventory changes often and can cost more than your Goodwill finds, but sometimes it's nice to invest in a piece that will last. Might we suggest keeping those investment pieces away from common areas, since sometimes a game of flip cup is too hard to turn down even though it's on your treasured consignment table.
Charleston Habitat for Humanity ReStore
731 Meeting St.
Want to browse at a place that would make Robin Hood proud in the furniture shopping kingdom? The Habitat for Humanity ReStore store, which takes in donations and sells the goods to help fund the Habitat operations around town. From gently used appliances to furniture and windows, not to mention cabinetry and doors, this store will get your new pad ready for the school year. Grab the basics and stock up on a couple of extra doors while you're at it. We're sure they'll come in handy.
- Scott Suchy
1008 Wappoo Road
The less-than-appealing name of Cobwebs shouldn't deter you from stopping by the store. The used furniture and antiques shop has a rotating inventory, so don't be discouraged if they don't have what you're looking for on a particular day. Check back often and you could score some finds like a $50 couch, a $20 coffee table, or a $40 desk. The website also has a dated video, so if the five-piece living room set seems too good to be true, that's because it is.
Reap the benefits of Charleston's affluent population and snag the tossaways of your wealthy neighbors. You may have to dig through the grimy kitchen appliances of the Goodwill shelves, but the loveseats, recliners, and couches waiting for their new home will more than make up for the other questionable finds. And if you're feelin' fancy, check out the artwork. The kitschy, cross-stitched wall hangings are a hipster's dream, or you could always discard the overdone beach scene and keep the frame for a cheap upgrade that turns your new apartment into a certified home.
1724 Ashley River Road
There are two Trader Joe's in town, and you should get to know both of them. Grab your cheap wine at the Mt. P grocery store chain, but furnish your new palace at the independent used furniture store in West Ashley. It may look a little odd and dated from the outside, but you can find some treasures. The prices are more than Goodwill or the ReStore shops, but the merchandise, although still used, seems less like Great Aunt Gertrude's couch.