Trolling Craigslist … Seattle, Washington

Trolling Craigslist Seattle

Oh, the hours I can waste trolling Craigslist in towns that I have no intention of buying in. If Brian knew about this he would pack up The Bear and run. He’s already baffled by my ‘need to touch everything’ when I shop anywhere, so the need to see these things in far away lands that I’ll never even touch is inconceivable to him. But for the record he also spends 5-6 hours a week looking for the perfect sandwich all over Los Angeles, so that’s weird.

Some of these are awesome, some are weird, and some are just steals. Enjoy, Seattle friends. I love how that font makes Seattle look all ‘Real World’ circa ‘Reality Bites’ era. Ah, the ’90s.

Seattle Craigslist Finds

Leather Safari Chair: This chair is dope but at the top of its price range. I wish it were $40, then it would be an actual great deal, but regardless it’s very pretty and a good price.

Two Piece Mid-Century Sofa: It’s the chunkiest, fattest, and widest sofa ever — and for this I love it. Sure, it needs some new clothes, but put it in a loft or a really modern house and you’ve got yourself a conversation piece on which to sit and have said conversation.

Vintage Mint Green Desk: How very on trend of you, little mint desk. $40 isn’t a steal, but it would just be so gosh darn cute in a kid’s room.

Wood and Glass Table: Not bad at all. Pretty wood, modern shape … overall just so simple and pretty. If you buy both just don’t put them in the same room — these guys need to be modernized and keeping them in the set will make them feel too retro.

Craigslist Seattle Finds Part 2

Set of Vintage Chairs: $100 for the lot. I’m not the biggest fan of the one on the left, but the other two are pretty cute for that cheap. Part of me even likes them those two different colors, but in newer fabric. And you know I want to do those scallops  in different colors …

Set of Brass Tables: These are either disgusting yellow 80’s cheap brass or dope solid beautiful brass. I’m totally intrigued by them and VERY curious. If you are interested, ask the owner to weigh them or describe how heavy they are. If they are cheap brass they’ll be like 3-6 pounds without the glass, but if they are good quality they’ll be MUCH heavier.

Seattle Craigslist Finds Part 3

Set of Upholstered Chairs: I know what you are thinking, These chairs are HIDEOUS, and you aren’t wrong. But there is something about them that I like. Maybe it’s their round back that is graphic and ’80s. Maybe it’s their upholstered legs. Don’t forget that you can get rid of that seam on the top and do a tight back — hell you can add four button tufts if you want.  I’d do it in a linen and put them in a modern house. If you try to put these (re-upholstered or not) in a house with carpeting and shiny maple cabinetry you are doomed to late ’80s failure, but if your space is modern and your style is risky then you could totally pull these off (if you redid them). God, that is a lot of ifs, but that’s where the masterpieces come from.

Modern Chairs:  I know these seem expensive but I love these chairs and I’ve seen them WAY more expensive (like $400 a piece). These aren’t really that bad, I promise. Put them outside or if you have a modern loft-style house, they can kinda float anywhere. I bought two for a client once and they loved them, but never wanted to sit on them — I guess they aren’t terribly comfortable. So don’t expect La-Z-Boy comfort from these wire bad boys.

Seattle Craigslist Finds Part 4

Tulip Chairs: So cute. So cheap. Get these.

Chinoiserie Pair of Chairs: A pair of these flanking a credenza in an entry? Forget about it. I love Asian-inspired ANYTHING. Especially since I’ve been pregnant because it’s all I can eat (besides delicious frozen yogurt, sliced mango, grapes, grapefruit, etc.). So maybe my love for the Asian flavor is influencing my love for these chairs. I don’t think so, though, they are awesome.

Vintage Mirrors: Not knocking my socks off, but $15 for all of these mirrors is a pretty great deal. Obviously hanging them together could be great  — and yes, I’m still into this idea if there is enough of them that they really command a whole wall. Don’t just buy these four. Go nuts and go floor to ceiling and wall to wall and then yes, that’s awesome.

There you have it, folks. I done trolled Seattle. Thanks, Abby, for helping me with this post!

So, my obsessive vintage/thrift loving friends, which pieces would you have bought and more importantly, where should I troll next? Suggest your city and I’ll put ‘em on the list.

  1. DC!

    Also, putting a sheepskin on those wire chairs helps a lot. Otherwise they leave you with what’s commonly known as “checkered bum”.

    • Courtney

      Yes, please!

  2. Sarah

    Raleigh, NC! I always find CL goodies there!

  3. Hey Emily! I love this post & love what you do! I confess I do the exact same thing… Craigslist is just so addicting and it’s fun to see what’s out there. You should put Louisville, KY on the list of trolling!

    • Susie

      Hear hear!

    • Kelly

      LOUISVILLE! I never seem to do tooooo well on Craigslist here, but the city in general is AMAZING. I thrift/antique mall/flea market a lot and I always find things that I imagine you buying for your designs. I did find my great mid-century dining room set on Craigslist for just $300 (table, six chairs, china cabinet, and buffet!). There’s a pic on my newly started (and much neglected) home DIY blog…

  4. Kate B

    Buffalo-trolling! Do it up!

  5. Marlo

    Houston needs your trolling!

  6. Jessica R

    Do Miami! I find CL here super entertaining.

    • Pamela

      Second vote for Miami! Agreed that it is VERY entertaining….

  7. Abby

    Troll Atlanta!

  8. Christina

    DC!!! I love these posts

  9. Laura

    Boston! Tons of good vintage stuff!

    • Lauren C

      Yes–Boston, please!!

  10. Lily

    Please do Toronto!!

  11. MONTREAL! Oh sweet mercy, please do Montreal! (am I seducing you with all the potential french flavor?)

  12. Kelly

    If you want the ultimate trolling you should check out the “craigs list” here in Paris! It is called Le bon Coin (.fr) and I am always finding fun things. If only I had your knowledge and mad skillz! C’est La vie no?

  13. Laurel

    DC please!

  14. Janet

    Second vote for Toronto please!!!

  15. Rhonda

    San Diego please please please!!!

  16. Kate

    Please do Dallas!!!

  17. natalie

    hello! thank you so much for strolling Seattle! I do it on the daily!!! I wish I would had scooped those wire basket chairs up in time…. BUT I am going to pick up that school desk later today!! I will tag you on Instagram!

  18. Josie

    Please do Houston!

  19. Jade

    I’m so glad I’m not the only one that looks at Craigslist in other towns…. and yes the picture really looks like it’s straight off the Real World Seattle I can almost see them throwing the fish at the Public Market.

  20. Nina

    San Francisco! If those tulip chairs were here (also, if I lived in a larger place and didn’t have a boyfriend who hates clutter), I would be SO ON IT.

  21. Brittney

    Definitely troll Fresno, CA! Haha I’m only kidding…you won’t find anything here. Or would you? ;)

    • Bee

      Lots of midcentury goodies in Fresno….but you need to filter out the particle board stuff. Actually, Fresno is the best for thrift stores.

      • Brittney

        Say whaaaat? Share your sources! I would love to hear about some good thrift stores! :)

  22. Cheryl

    So Jealous!

  23. Dang, Natalie, you move fast! Are you snagging the leather safari chair, the brass tables, or the Asian-inspired chairpair? (I just decided that was one word.) Those three are my faves. (And I’d scoop up those mirrors too because spray paint.)

    Glad someone is acting on these finds, because I’m stuck on bedrest and I can’t go snapping up any vintage finds now that Em finally trolled Seattle like I begged her to. May you other EH lovers benefit!

  24. Karla

    I love looking at other cities on Craigslist but I usually keep it to ones with in a few hours of me so that if I do stumble across something really awesome it’d be a do-able trip. If I know I’m traveling I’ll always browse my destinations local ads. I think you should do Nashville! :)

  25. I say, pick a city that is waaaay off the beaten path. In that, a city that one wouldn’t expect any treasures.

  26. Jenna

    Minneapolis! Minneapolis! Minneapolis! Pleeeeeeeeeeeease.

    Love that safari chair. But I wouldn’t be able to pull the trigger for $75.

    • Jess

      Yes! Minneapolis!

      • Marlys

        Hi Emily! I love your blog! Please, please, please do Minneapolis, MN!

  27. Maddie Lane

    Knoxville, Tennessee!!! (please)

  28. Jessica

    New Orleans!!

  29. Jo

    New York!

  30. While you’re at it buying the chinoiserie chairs…ask about that awesome campaign dresser next to it :) You should do Salt Lake City!

  31. What a fabulous idea! And great finds! I’m in Portland, OR–I’d love to see you highlight here!

  32. I would haggle down the Leather Safari Chair and buy the mirrors! Awesome finds Emily! Please search in the DALLAS/Fort Worth Area!!!

  33. Jean

    Sacramento please!

    • Kat

      I second Sacramento!

      • S.

        I cud drive there and Fresno!
        I think there’s a show here HGTV!!!

  34. I am always trolling Seattle for 2 things: A teak credenza, and one of those ‘boat-shaped’ tapered-leg teak extension tables that pulls out to 102″… (And they really have to be authentic Swedish or Norwegian or Danish mid-century) because I want to replicate the dining room set that my Swedish grandparents had…) I keep hoping I’ll just stumble across some ad of some people who have no idea that such a table would sell for $2500, and that I’ll actually find it for like $300. Actually I did. The other day. But it had already sold, naturally. Doh! Foiled again!

    • beks

      Off the Cuff Cooking-
      I just sold one of those tables on the Bellingham CL last week :( I do have a modern one if youre interested as a place holder, search the B’ham CL for ‘danish’. I’m the hoarder with the blue couch!

  35. Kate

    Okay, I’m going to BEG you to Craigslist search for me two turquoise chairs EXACTLY like the ones on your Instagram last night… but in Maryland/DC/Virginia. PLEASE. Those chairs are EXACTLY what I’ve been looking for over the last year.

  36. S.

    Ohhhh, love these posts!

  37. S.

    Please Bay Area—
    But u cud make it more challenging by doing ” east bay” !!!

  38. Stephanie T

    WHat a great idea for a post, and well-trolled, Emily! I just moved to Montreal a couple months ago… I’d love to see what you’d find on our craigslist here!

  39. Sandy

    Nashville, y’all.

  40. Shelby

    I am a chronic lurker of your blog. There. Admitting it is the first step, right?
    Now that that is out of the way… I LOVE seeing your awesome Craigslist finds! Please do one for Portland.. MAINE. We’ve got your grandmas style fa dayyyzz here. Lots of dead people treasures.

  41. Nicole M.

    Oh, please troll CHICAGO!! I feel it is SO hard to find pieces at a good price in the city…please, prove me wrong! And, I totally would have bought that leather safari chair and the pair of modern white wire chairs!!

    • Jessica

      Ditto this word for word! Maybe that’s why we can’t find any good deals here anymore- too many of us wanting those safari chairs and wire chairs! ;)

  42. those scalloped chairs!

    i vote for kansas city, because it’s where i live (i’d be silly to vote for anywhere else) and it would be a good challenge (lots of bad but the good is usually crazy cheap).

    i’m loving this series, emily!

  43. Ellen

    Austin, please!

  44. Sarah

    I’m most interested in where Brian has found the best sandwiches in LA – I work in Hollywood and I keep looking, but it’s kind of hit an miss. A few sandwich place directions (from a connoisseur) would be awesome!

  45. Fran

    Atlanta please! Also, can you give us tips about how you search CL – key search words, etc.?

  46. Robyn

    I see things all the time on Houstin’s craiglist and think,”Emily would so LOVE that!”
    so I am suggesting Houston, of course. Love all of your posts!

  47. Jane

    Come VISIT seattle Emily!!!

  48. Ugh I’m so jealous of people who live in great thrift cities. Emily, I don’t know if you’ve ever trolled Craigslist Orange County but everything is overpriced, and if you ever see anything good for a decent price it’s gone in 2 milliseconds. Any tips?

  49. Muoi

    Sacramento, please! And I love the tulip chairs and mirrors.

  50. Rachel

    I second SLC! Except, interestingly, people post much more on When I moved here 8 years ago, Craigslist didn’t have a presence here and I was like, WHAAA?

  51. Sara


    • Yes, please on Detroit!

  52. Tara Denison

    Love Craigslist! I’m in San Francisco/East Bay! Any tips on the search? Key words you put in?

  53. Kimberlee

    Fargo! I’d settle for Minneapolis/St. Paul though!

  54. Tara

    Indianapolis, please! Would love to see what you can find!! Also, would love to know what categories you search (furniture? general? household? specific items??) Thanks!

  55. Helen

    Here’s a real challenge – Alaska! We are so deprived up here (and our ‘style’ has to have a outdoorsy-mountainy-cabiny feel). Would love to see what your creative brain can find and come up with! :)

  56. Susan

    Pittsburgh please!

  57. Hannah Rose


  58. Chloe

    Hi Emily,
    I really could need you when looking for furniture here in Australia. It seems you find the most amazing stuff at the cheapest prices. Even the stuff you say is expensive is still cheap here, conversion and everything.
    Clo X

  59. Randi Froug

    I thought I was the only person who did this! Thanks, Emily, for making me feel a lot less nutty!

  60. Phoebe


    Everything’s either super expensive or picked over. Need your magic.

  61. Jess

    Albuquerque. Please?!?

  62. Marlys

    Hi Emily! I love your blog! Please, please, please do Minneapolis, MN!

  63. jo

    i would tell you to troll the craigslist for southeast idaho but i do it frequently and it’s awful. but you are super good at finding awesome stuff, so, challenge accepted?

  64. danielle

    Denver!!! you know you want to!

  65. Sarah

    What about Berlin? Maybe not hte whole Craigslist is in English, but there are still a lot of pictures. Prices in € though….

  66. Ann Frederick

    What? Your trolling Craigslist skills are awesome! What key words are you putting in? ;) Really like the idea of all the mirrors and I love the desk for the kids room. Saw a few like that at the Rose Bowl Sunday though I forgot to ask how much. I also saw some chairs like those outdoor white ones there, and they were actually very comfortable and $600 for the set!

  67. sarab

    glad to know im not the only one who virtual shops craigs list randomly ;) montreal!

  68. carak

    ! vote St. Louis!!!

  69. Lindsay

    Dallas!! or DFW….Show Texas some love!!

  70. New York because it seems like there would be great stuff, but it’s all so done and everyone thinks they’re stuff is mid-century/modern/Eames and it’s just exhausting. Thank you very much.

  71. Erika


  72. Nikki

    Another vote for Houston! But go ahead and just email me your finds so I can pounce on them! ;)

  73. Alison

    How do you go about finding these things? I rarely find anything this cool on CL and would love some tips.

  74. Michelle

    Just got the 411 on a GREAT reupholstery person here in PDX who is also very affordable, so I too am all over craigslist these days. Looking for the right bones, then EmHen it into the modern world. Right now I am in love with houndstooth, maybe a couch in that?

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  76. Katie

    Thanks for posting about Seattle! Also, I’d like to make a request for Detroit- she really needs your help right now.

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