Buying furniture is a privilege that can feel a bit like a chore, but it should always be fun. At least that’s the viewpoint of Karen Waltz, owner and operator of Cattywampus Design in Wauwatosa.
Located at 6123 W. North Ave., Cattywampus offers handcrafted, upcycled and vintage furniture, in addition to home and garden décor, handbags and more.
New items produced by more than 60 local artists are available weekly.
"I love furniture,” said Waltz, who opened the shop after being a special education teacher for 18 years. “Furniture speaks to me, especially the old pieces, because there is something so therapeutic and rewarding about bringing them back to life.”
The store embraces all things Wisconsin, as well as all things Wauwatosa, a place Waltz said she’s really grown to appreciate since she first opened her doors.
“I didn’t know a lot about Tosa when we first opened, but it has turned out to be the best, most welcoming and fitting home,” said Waltz, who lives in Pewaukee. “We have customers that range from older people who are downsizing right down to young 20-somethings who are just starting out.”
The store offers a customized, personal touch that might be lacking in a trip to Target or Steinhafels.
“It means something to me to be part of bringing older pieces to life again as well,” Waltz said, citing a recent sale to a regular customer who has lived all over the globe as a highlight of her Cattywampus career thus far.
“They have lived in various countries all over the world, but when the time came to put down roots, they chose to come here and wanted us to design a custom dining room table for them,” Waltz explained. “The opportunity to be a part of something so special, of their first home, is so unique and special to me.”
And the passion for teaching others is not lost on the store, which holds a variety of classes as well.
“It’s just such an amazing opportunity to work with great people who appreciate what you do and are excited about it,” Waltz said. “They’re having fun and it’s a chance to sit down and paint something together and enjoy each other…that’s one of many things that makes this such a great community to be part of.”
AT A GLANCE
WHAT: Cattywampus Design
WHERE: 6123 W. North Ave.
WHEN: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, closed Sunday and Monday
CONTACT: (414) 323-7266, [email protected]