You know what they say, there ain’t no place like home! And for good reason too, because when you shop at Tan Boon Liat, your crib is gonna be pretty hard to beat.

Tan Boon Liat
Tan Boon Liat

At first glance, Tan Boon Liat appears to be an unassuming, retro building situated off the beaten path. However, it’s anything but.

What lies beneath its quiet façade is a dynamic home and lifestyle hub – which houses a myriad of furniture and home décor showrooms, as well as several shops selling gourmet food and wine.

With Christmas coming up and house parties galore, your house has got to look nothing but dapper, tiptop and shipshape.

We’ve handpicked the best advice from the furniture gurus over at Tan Boon Liat. Their words of wisdom are all packed into this handy guide right here, so read your way on to the best of interior design!

1) Look for hardy pieces that can outlive generations

If you divide the price of a piece of furniture by the number of days you’ve bought it for, you’ll eventually hit a value close to 0.

And that’s what we’re aiming for — pieces that will outlive generations. Preferably, something that you can pass on to your kids and grandkids.

Ethnicraft Online (#02-01) takes the cake for quality and durable furniture.

Retailing modern, solid teak, walnut and oak wood pieces designed in Belgium, their furniture is also known for its environmental stewardship and ethical craftsmanship.

Ethnicraft Online
Ethnicraft Online

What’s more, they provide lifetime warranty and lifetime maintenance service on all products.

Tip: To ensure that your pieces live to a ripe old age, it’s best to look for pieces from reputable, well-established brands or companies. These pieces are fumigated to ensure the absence of mould and pests, and kiln-dried to minimize the risk of warping and cracking. Last but not least, make sure your purchase is covered by a product warranty or after-sales maintenance services.

2) Purchase modular pieces to mix and match, and furniture designed with extra functionality in mind

Pieces that can be taken apart and re-arranged will increase their mileage as you assemble them to create an infinite number of new looks.

For instance, the Theo Wall Unit from Journey East (#03-02) is the master of all trades.

Tip: A module-based system gives homeowners the power to customise the furniture based on their needs.

Journey East
Journey East

Where space constraint is the name of the game, this versatile piece contains modular units that can be taken apart, or combined together in a multitude of ways to fit any space. Plus, it’s made of hard-fumed oak, which translates to high quality.

Next up is the PLAYplay collection from Journey East as well.

Designed by award-winning design studio Lanzavecchia + Wai for Journey East, each piece was carefully conceptualised with the modern home in mind; in terms of design, proportion, and functionality.

Hamburger Side Table

These colourful little “hamburgers” are sure to be conversational starters.

Journey East
Journey East

Take off the top “bun” for a slightly larger coffee table surface when you have friends over during a house party. Take your pick from 3 designs: round, oval and pentagon.

Cots from Deer Industries

To get even more mileage out of your furniture, consider the cots from Deer Industries (#07-05).

Fynn Cotbed from Deer Industries
Fynn Cotbed from Deer Industries

The ‘kidaptive’ pieces can grow with your child and be transformed into toddler beds. Simply, by detaching the high frames and replacing them with lower ones.

Straight Extendable Dining Table from Ethnicraft Online

Joining the party is the Straight Extendable Dining Table from Ethnicraft Online. This table boasts a butterfly extension that ensures you’ll always have room for celebrations and unexpected guests!

Ethnicraft Online
Ethnicraft Online

Neatly hidden when not in use, no one will be any the wiser when you whip out this party trick.

3. Seek out items with high transformative value and small price tags

Tip: A little goes a long way. Here’s why – small accessories can play up the value of a piece of furniture, transforming a cut-rate table to one that looks like a big-ticket item straight out of a designer showroom.

For home accessories, head to Arete Culture (#06-01), Make Room (#11-09B), or Plain Vanilla Home (#08-06). Bang-for-your-buck accessories include:

  • Flowers: Arete Culture stocks a wide range of high-quality artificial flowers that require no maintenance, and they can even be washed.

Arete Culture

Arete Culture

In addition, Plain Vanilla Home houses a dry flower specialistFloral Kokoro.

Floral Kokoro
Floral Kokoro
Cochine Candles
Cochine Candles
  • Trays: Trays are always useful when entertaining at a house party or serving dinner guests. Featured below are Ethnicraft Online’s Notre Monde Trays, which are individually hand-crafted and double as pieces of art.
Notre Monde Tribal Quest Trays from Ethnicraft Online
Ethnicraft Online‘s Notre Monde Tribal Quest Trays

4. Collect meaningful memorabilia and make full use of Nature’s gifts to personalise your home

To go about making your home the most beautiful place on earth:

  • Travel mementoes and personal memorabilia are a fun way of incorporating your personality throughout the home!

Tip: The trick is to edit: Display only your absolute favourites.

Tip Junkie
Tip Junkie
  • Buy a colourful or patterned rug to add an instant pop of colour to your living area!
  • Pick a wall and paint a mural or a statement colour. You can also wallpaper it.
  • Bring the outdoors in: Natural touches such as branches and shells are an elegant way of adding more organic textures and shapes to your home. This lends a tranquil touch to a visually-interesting space.

Bonus Tip: How to Doll Up Your Home for the Christmas Season

  • For some holiday cheer, all you need is a little sparkle. Create a simple but stunning table centerpiece with some tree branches in vase, which you can spray paint or decorate with Christmas baubles.
  • To spice things up for the Christmas season, fill up a clear bottle or vase with festive items e.g. coloured eggs for Easter, and pussy willow for Chinese New Year.

The best part? Make Room currently has a collection of Christmas items, such as recycled wooden Christmas trees and a wide range of Christmas décor.

To keep things sophisticated, stick to the same colour family. Silvers and golds add a touch of glamour, and red is a good idea for the season.


To lend your home a burst of character, do also drop by Singapore Trading Post (#07-01) or FairPrice Antique (#01-10) for fun and eclectic accessories.

Tan Boon Liat Block Party

This weekend (26 and 27 November), Tan Boon Liat will be throwing its first ever Block Party!

14680714_1331649423546202_5091117934796405056_n20 participating showrooms such as Journey East, Arete Culture and Make Room will be opening their doors for a train of design workshops, food and wine tastings, seasonal gift ideas and special offers.

It doesn’t just end there – over $5,000 worth of prizes are up for grabs!

For more information, check out their Facebook Page.

Tan Boon Liat Building
315 Outram Road, Singapore 169074

Header image credits: Arete Culture

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