Home furnishings retailer West Elm announced today that it will open a new retail store at 180 University Avenue in Palo Alto on October 18th, 2012. Located on the corner of University and Emerson, the new store will open with the brand’s early Holiday assortment including richly colored textiles inspired by the hues of nature and new furniture and tabletop for holiday entertaining. The new Palo Alto store will also feature a collection of decorative accessories and art made by Etsy artists from the South Bay. It will be only the second West Elm store selling goods made by Etsy artists in the U.S. To celebrate the store opening, West Elm is hosting a sweepstakes* offering a chance to win a $2,000 shopping spree and access to the store’s pre-opening event on October 17th. The event will be hosted in partnership with Architecture for Humanity, a Bay Area-based non-profit that leverages a network of more than 50,000 professionals willing to lend time and expertise to help those who would not otherwise be able to afford their design, construction and development services. A portion of the sales during the event will benefit the organization. Additionally, the first 300 shoppers on opening day will receive a free West Elm Palo Alto tote bag. “We are excited to open a store in Palo Alto that will bring not only our assortment, but also the arts and crafts of some of the talented artists and designers of the South Bay, to University Avenue,” said Jim Brett, president of West Elm. “We are passionate about supporting our local community, and we look forward to developing ongoing relationships with local Etsy artists.” The new West Elm Palo Alto store will house the brand’s signature mix of globally inspired furniture, home décor, kitchen accessories, gifts and seasonally updated collections and collaborations. Collaborations featured at the Palo Alto store at opening include dinnerware from artist Laura Zindel and stationary designer Kamal, pillows and accessories from renowned textile designer Sarah Campbell and cutlery from the Schmidt Brothers. The store will also feature the brand’s new collection of Mix + Match Dining Tables which allow customers to design a dining table in various styles from antiqued industrial to modern farmhouse by selecting from four different bases and five different tops. As in other West Elm locations, associates at the Palo Alto store will be focused on helping customers express their personal style at home. The brand offers free one-on-one Home Stylist services – either in a customer’s home, or in the store’s Design Lab. The Home Stylist can partner on making and mocking up measurements, creating a floor plan, picking paint colors and palettes and mixing new finds with old favorites. West Elm Palo Alto is open Monday-Saturday from 10am-8pm and Sunday 11am-6pm.