Fort Worth’s Westside gets a new luxury home furnishings boutique
By Rachael Lindley
Photography by Olaf Grewald
Paula Perrone has always been an excellent multitasker. The Fort Worth native has used her skills as an attorney and CEO of her family-owned pharmacy. But most recently, Perrone founded a luxury home furnishings boutique, Cacti & Crescent, on Camp Bowie Boulevard. “The name Cacti & Crescent is an ode to my two favorite places: Fort Worth and New Orleans,” she says. The small corner-shaped building at 4737 Camp Bowie Blvd. sells a blend of traditional transitional furniture, with antiques and modernity effortlessly mixed in.
The store features luxe bed linens by Dea Luxury Linens, while colorful vintage rugs greet customers upon entry. The art of local artists Sarah Gentry and Talley Scott graces the showroom walls. Custom iron chandeliers hang from the ceiling available in various designs and finishes. New Orleans designer Kathy Slater has handcrafted pieces that can be found throughout the store.
The store also sells stationary, finely made leather goods by Horn & Hide and even El Guapo bitters. Perrone’s love of homewares began in New Orleans while she was studying at Newcomb College- the women’s college at what is now Tulane University. “When I moved to New Orleans, I discovered Magazine Street,” Perrone said. “It was my street of dreams. Besides Camp Bowie, of course.”
While an undergraduate studying Spanish literature, Perrone began furnishing her apartment with antiques she’d found all over New Orleans.
“Furnishings have always been a love of mine,” she said. “In New Orleans, I became enchanted by the antiquities and the architecture. There is nothing quite like it.” The first antique she bought for herself: an iron bed.
“I was so in love with it and so proud.”
Cacti & Crescent aspires to offer that same feeling to Fort Worthians looking for high-end pieces. After graduating from law school with a concentration in general civil practice, Perrone developed an interest in healthcare law and pursued that for several years. But her love of antiques never wavered and was always at the back of her mind.
Cacti & Crescent isn’t Perrone’s first foray into a furniture and home. décor store. When splitting time between New Orleans and Virginia, she opened another home goods store, Chesapeake & Crescent. The retailer was open from 2003 to 2011. In 2011, she made her way back to Cowtown to help with her family’s business, Perrone Pharmacy, off Benbrook Boulevard. Fast forward to earlier this year when Perrone was in New Orleans for a sorority reunion. One friend who is a designer was venting her frustrations about her products getting lost in the shuffle at the Dallas Design District showrooms. This got Perrone thinking that she could possibly offer a solution.
Perrone Pharmacy leased the building at 4737 Camp Bowie Blvd. for a second location in 2021. After a couple of years of trying to appropriately staff it, Perrone realized it might be time to try a different use in the building. She had toyed with opening another furniture and home décor store but wasn’t sure where to begin.
Through more conversations with friends, Perrone learned almost everyone had a vendor connection or knew someone who was a maker. She quickly got to work making contacts.
“Everything began to fall into place very quickly after that,” Perrone said. The store came to fruition within about six months, from start to finish.
Perrone was introduced to an artisan who makes intricate ceramic vases and candlesticks with 3D flowers and blossoms. The artisan. was a computer programmer for 35 years and one day came up with the idea for the candlesticks.
Another of the store’s vendors, Shelly McCarron, creates acrylic trays and coasters with pressed flowers. “It’s just all snowballed and I am completely thrilled because we have a nice blend of artists and artisans from Fort Worth and New Orleans,” Perrone said.
Cacti & Crescent sells customizable rugs, fabrics, linens and furniture. Several vendors she carries are previous contacts from her store in Virginia.
“We love to help people put a room together,” Perrone said.
Cacti & Crescent has pieces coming just in time for the holidays, including Sicilian ceramics and antique mirrors. She finds her antiques from a variety of sources but only takes the items in the best condition, Perrone says.
Cacti & Crescent plans on hosting quarterly events to align with the influx of new merchandise.
“My passion is finding talented people that have honed their craft,” Perrone says. “I mean the artistry and engineering that goes into making something beautiful is something to behold. I so admire that. I’ve never had the patience nor the talent to do it myself. I guess that’s why I curate it.”