Northern Virginia’s Donna Howell and Tom Kline discovered the “Perfect Furnishings” for their beach home and made new friends in the process, after visiting the Bethany Beach furniture store
Donna Howell had just gone to settlement on her new vacation home in Rehoboth Beach, and now she needed furniture. When she visited Perfect Furnishings in Bethany Beach, it was an ideal fit.
“When I walked in their shop,” Howell said, “I looked around and loved their style — the colors, the furniture, the accessories. Everything seemed to blend so well and have that fun, light, beachy-but-not-traditional look, and I wanted something a little fresh and different.”
Founded by Tisha Buchanan, Perfect Furnishings has been doing business in Bethany Beach for 20 years. You may recognize it by the oversized Adirondack chairs sitting outside its storefront on Route 1. Tisha’s daughter, Cortney Thompson, joined the company 10 years ago, partnering with her mom on design work and inventory of upscale furniture.
For Howell’s family getaway in Rehoboth Beach, a Kingfisher model in the Schell Brothers development of Sawgrass North, the whole-house project balanced textural and vintage touches, like a rustic hutch or a tree-branch chandelier, against pops of color and smoother surfaces.
“Donna was very open and wanted something fun that she, family and friends could enjoy like home yet still have the comfort of being at the beach. At the same time, she didn’t want it too beachy, but rather more upscale, more of
a coastal-cottage look,” Thompson said.
It wasn’t always going to be a whole-house project. At first, Howell only needed help with the home’s loft. However, she was so pleased with their work that she gave the designers the green light to literally keep up the good work. “We went from doing one room to Cortney doing my entire house,” Howell said. “Part of why I said ‘keep going’ was because I did not have the ability to tap into all the neat pieces of furniture and pull it together. I realized that, after buying some pieces here and there, doing it with Cortney didn’t cost me anything more. It was a value-added service.”
Perfect Furnishings worked with their client, room by room, including furniture choices, paint colors, bed linens and more. They picked out accessories like 16-foot-tall window treatments, flooring choices, even kitchen features. “We’ll help pick out anything,” Thompson said. “Everything is made-to-order.”
Howell said she was extremely pleased in particular with Thompson’s eye for color, the way she adapted a base hue
that worked optimally in different lighting schemes throughout the home. Even the house painters stopped to take their own photos of the palette, Howell added, because they were so impressed.
“It’s exactly what I was looking for: a coherent, clean look,” Howell said. “I’m thrilled. When my friends and family come to stay, they’re extremely impressed. It’s comfortable, relaxing and upbeat. It just turned out immaculate.”
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