‘Re-Store’ your house 

And your bank account at the Habitat for Humanity outlet center.


If you’ve ever gotten the urge to wreak a little “Trading Spaces” havoc on your living room, then blanched at the price of make-over supplies, read on.

The Habitat for Humanity Re-Store, at Pike and Pershing in North Little Rock, is paradise for budget-minded DIYers — especially those not particularly choosy about the details. It’s an enormous space filled with all kinds of donated building supplies, from paint and wallpaper to appliances and windows to doorknobs and tools and outlet covers and cleaning products. There’s also a decent selection of used furniture and home decor. And it’s all priced no higher than half of retail — often a lot less, depending on age and condition.

The store opened Feb. 15, and since then has done almost $91,000 in sales, director Jim Allen said. It’s the fifth Habitat store in Arkansas — others are in Benton, Hot Springs, Rogers and Fort Smith — and all proceeds go to support Habitat’s home-building efforts.

It’s been a couple of months since I stopped in, but Allen said the inventory had grown tremendously: 300 to 400 doors, more than 100 windows, six pallets of shelf boards, two entire kitchen cabinet sets, hundreds of gallons of paint, 1,600 rolls of wallpaper.

Donations come from retail home-improvement stores, individuals and, often, from “deconstruction” projects — homes that are being demolished in favor of newer, bigger residences, but have a lot of usable parts like cabinets and doors and windows. They’re pretty strict about what donations they accept — everything has to be working and usable, no scraps, no stains, etc.

Store hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday; from November to March, though, closing time is 4 p.m. Questions? Call Allen at 771-9494.

While you’re north of the river, take a detour through historic Argenta and stop by Galaxy Office Furniture and Interiors. It’s the one with all the hammock chairs on the sidewalk (currently on sale, by the way — $125 for the hammock/stand package). They do sell office furniture, but at least half the store is given over to the “Interiors” portion of the business, and it’s the kind of store where you’re never sure exactly what you’ll find. When I stopped by earlier this week, they were pushing these brightly colored wall-mounted magazine racks, the kind you’d see in more subdued hues in the Pottery Barn catalog, for $30. There’s a great selection of ’50s and ’60s furniture, including dinette sets ($395 for a table and four chairs) and those wonderful slimline couches that are such a welcome change from the gigantic overstuffed “traditional” monstrosities that take up most of the showroom space in a lot of furniture retailers. (Not that I have a preference.) And there are also plenty of very contemporary, funky items like barstools and lamps. My favorite find this time was an antique couch with wooden arms carved into fierce-looking winged lions. Might not be the best choice if you’ve got small children in the house, but impressive and unusual all the same.

I’m a little short on tidbits this week — tonight, Thursday, is the monthly late-night shopping event in the Heights, Hillcrest and Riverdale, and that’s about it — but if I started listing individual stores’ sales, I’d run out of room in a heartbeat. It’s that time of year, and pretty much every place I’ve driven by in the last two weeks has a banner or sign trumpeting the deals to be found inside. So grab the plastic and head out for that final summer fling.

Well-a, well-a, well-a oomph.



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