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Pettigrew Luxury Furnishings’ wide selection of custom lighting complements personal, made-to-order creations

by ELLEN URIBE / photography by HOLGER OBENAUS

With an indubitable reputation for creating one-of-a-kind custom lighting fixtures, Dallas-based Pettigrew Luxury Furnishings has a reputation as a preferred partner of designers, builders and homeowners alike.

As a source of pride, Pettigrew is one of the few design showrooms in the state of Texas with an in-house, UL-certified lighting studio, which enables the company’s artisans to create visually stunning designs to the customer’s specifications. In addition to the eye-popping original creations, the company’s capabilities include full-home specification, logistics, electrical preparation, delivery and installation. Pettigrew’s artisans also have the ability to resurrect and restore dramatic vintage pieces, such as intricately designed chandeliers.

“Pettigrew is well known for its lighting,” says John Lowery, who is the company’s showroom manager. “We have a full-service lighting department where we offer design services to create custom lighting, installation, cleaning services, transportation, restoration, crating and storage.”

With a vast array of lighting options and the possibility of creating custom, one-of-a-kind fixtures, customer satisfaction is virtually a given at Pettigrew. “As long as the client has the lead time and budget, anything is possible,” says Lowery.

Pettigrew is a full-service design showroom. One of the perks it offers to clients is the ability to purchase all inventory from its showroom floor, including furniture, lighting and original art. “This leads to client satisfaction and instant gratification, and many times it enables designers to meet project deadlines,” he says, adding, “We want to help the designer in all aspects of the process.”

Now in its 65th year, Pettigrew is an integral part of the North Texas design community and is ideally located in the historic Dallas Design District. Pettigrew also boasts a wide selection of imported European traditional, transitional and contemporary luxury furnishings, with original art by local artists. The company relocated its showroom in April of 2023, which allowed for expansion of its lighting workshop. The new location offers clients 15,000 square feet of furniture and lighting possibilities. Pettigrew’s savvy staff is comprised of seasoned and expert personnel with an extensive knowledge base and commitment to unparalleled service.

The company, which was founded by Jack Pettigrew, was acquired by David and Donna Wildman in 2010, owners of Wildman Art Framing, which provides custom framing to the design community. The Wildmans have been integral players in the Dallas design community for 30 years and wanted to continue the legacy that Pettigrew built. Wildman Art Framing and Pettigrew have the same client base, and the acquisition seemed like a natural extension.

The close-knit Pettigrew team is led by Dena Didas, the company’s chief financial officer and chief operating officer. Didas joined the company in 2011 and makes a point of avoiding stagnancy with a concerted effort to continually evolve the company and its 14 design professionals. “We represent more furniture, lighting and accessory lines, shifting our look to transitional and modern style,” she says. “Each vignette is curated with an eclectic mix of product and style that relates to modern living.”

It is clear that Didas and her team love what they do. They’re an upbeat group and very accommodating. They can answer any questions that might arise in the discovery process and beyond, and when it comes to satisfying a customer, the answer is always yes. Didas says Pettigrew is a well-oiled machine where they all pitch in when the need arises. This level of customer service accounts for the fact that the majority of Pettigrew’s business is repeat business.

Two key employees that work closely with Didas to deliver on Pettigrew’s promise are Lowery, who joined the company two years ago and brought 25 years of experience, and Jim Palmer, the company’s creative lighting director, who has been with Pettigrew since 1986 and makes his mark with his extraordinary talents, including hand-painting, chandelier creation and artistic design, as well as sourcing materials and overseeing installations. The vast majority of Lowery’s career has been spent in showrooms in the Dallas Design District, where he won many awards for visual presentation. When talking to Lowery, it’s obvious he enjoys what he does. “I love coming to work. Every single day is a new experience,” he says.

Palmer shares Lowery’s enthusiasm for his work. “My love is to assemble and string the crystals for a chandelier,” he says. “I use a hand-tied wiring system to join the components. I also use a variety of media to tint, paint, gild, paper and embellish clear traditional crystals or frame parts for a bold statement.” Palmer is likewise responsible for other key components. “My job is to sit down with all parties involved in the lighting design project, making notes of their wish list,” he adds. “Then the design begins.” His design experience comes from more than 10 years working as a society florist. He listens to what the client wants and delivers, exceeding their expectations. In 45 years of design, Palmer has never disappointed a client. Clients, vendors and employees are all in awe of his creations.

Over the past few years, Didas has turned her attention to Pettigrew’s website and product selection. “We are bringing in more and more European furniture, lighting and art glass uncommon to the Dallas Market,” she says. “Over the past few years, we have focused on revamping our website to be more interactive and include all of our represented lines, along with some of our custom chandeliers. We are currently working on expanding into e-commerce.”

As stated in Pettigrew’s collateral materials, the company keeps its promises: “Select breathtaking items from the showroom floor. Or, come to us with your unique ideas, and we will create a custom piece to your specifications, hand-tooled by our talented furniture makers and lighting experts in our on-premise Dallas workrooms. The only limitation, as our client, is your imagination. Anything is possible at Pettigrew.”

Ellen Uribe is an award-winning journalist and a communications expert. She is a sought-after speaker, participating as a moderator and panelist at numerous industry events, conferences and broadcast outlets. She has contributed to Vanity Fair, Palm Beach Life, The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Women’s Wear Daily and Time Magazine.

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DALLAS, TX 75207