Bedroom, dining room producers offering plenty of styles

Case goods buyers shopping this market will find plenty of styles to offer in both bedroom and formal dining. While this includes the core categories of traditional and contemporary, country, coastal cottage and other lifestyle looks also play an important role, particularly among those vendors seeking to attract younger customers.

But in many cases, vendors are responding to the glut of product already on the market. That means buyers will find fewer and shorter collections with lower piece counts. This approach is meant to serve those dealers not looking to overcrowd their floors with excessive inventory. It’s also aimed at better managing the production and flow of goods during the economic slowdown.

At the same time, vendors also are offering pieces with plenty of technologically friendly and space-saving functions, such as storage beds and media chests.

“With the economic downturn, this company is not going to try to introduce as much product,” said Lee Boone, president of case goods importer Legacy Classic. “We are going to try to pick the best ideas and collections we have and focus on getting the best items placed. We are trying to be as lean and as focused as we can.”

This market, Legacy is showing three main collections, down from the four that it showed at premarket. These each have between 20 and 25 SKUs of bedroom and dining room, which Boone said may reflect a decision to have one less chair or two beds in a collection instead of three.

This also helps the factory become more efficient by running more of fewer pieces, which in turn, helps keep prices down. This market, Legacy’s wood panel beds, for example, start at about $599 to $699, while five-piece dining rooms retail at $899.

Cresent Fine Furnishings’ Berry Hill is a traditional, seven-piece bedroom with Louis Philippe and West Indies design influences. Made with plantation-grown mahogany solids in a hand-rubbed, black tea finish, the group features two $1,499 retail beds. These include a Planter’s Bed with rope-carved headposts and a low footboard and a low-profile sleigh bed with low turned feet and rope-carved plinth molding.

Berry Hill also has a media dresser and mirror, a plasma console, dressing chest and a nightstand.

Cresent kept the collection short to focus on select items.

“We keep the introductions very focused,” said Richard Tomkins, vice president of sales and marketing. “What we hear from retailers is that they are not buying 25-piece bedroom collections. They can’t floor all the collections — it doesn’t make sense.”

Tomkins added that the limited SKU count also helps Cresent better manage inventory for retailers and ship those goods on time.

Lane Home Furnishings is launching two main collections this market, both of which aim at strong growth areas — Arts & Crafts and casual contemporary. While not abandoning licensed collections such as its popular National Geographic and Country Living lines, it wanted to focus this time on the Lane brand, said Ray Allori, vice president of merchandising for the wood division.

“Our approach is that comfortable bedroom solution from Lane that approaches mainstream styling,” he said. “We felt we needed to attack the mainstream.”

With about two dozen SKUs of bedroom and dining (not including additional home entertainment and occasional pieces) the collections have about 10% fewer pieces than usual, Allori said.

Within the two collections, Lane also has focused on pieces and features dealers and consumers want, including cedar-lined drawers, beds with optional storage, media chests and charging stations on nightstands.

“We maintained the scale and the features and benefits,” Allori said.

Meanwhile, dining strays more toward casual, “family friendly” vs. formal footprints. The dining includes chinas that are scaled to look more like servers and smaller-scale tables that fit more in smaller dining settings either in the kitchen or off the formal dining room.

This market, Fine Furniture Design & Marketing is filling in the “good” part of its good, better, best lineup with two 12- to 14-piece bedroom-only groups. With beds retailing at $1,199, these focus on two distinct styles, that include an updated Louis Philippe and an Arts & Crafts-inspired bedroom.

“We have product in all three price tiers, but we are expanding the ‘good’ category in bedroom-only to take advantage of the second and third bedroom in homes today,” said Jim Adams, vice president of product design and marketing.

An additional collection, Ravello, falls in the “better” price category with beds retailing at $1,499 to $1,699. The 36-piece, relaxed European traditional-influenced collection also has dining room, occasional and upholstery.

The balance of product in all three collections is aimed at a variety of consumer tastes and budgets.

“We are positioned well for people who are trading down and trading up,” Adams said.

Pulaski has sharpened its price points by going to a cleaner-lined approach. It is introducing new transitional and contemporary-styled four-piece bedrooms in the $1,499 to $2,499 range — lower than its typically price points of $1,999 to $2,999 seen a couple of years ago.

The sets are largely geared to younger consumers who have money to spend, but who may be living in smaller starter homes or condos.

 “And the young consumer that has a lot of dollars to spend, they prefer that mold of scaled-down product.”

However, not everyone is going with shorter or smaller-scale product collections this market. Hooker Furniture is launching a new 70-piece European traditional, grand-scale collection called Beladora.

And Stanley Furniture is launching an 80-piece coastal cottage-inspired lifestyle collection called Coastal Living. The Coastal Living SKU count rises dramatically through the availability of 14 finish options.

Vaughan Furniture is introducing 500 new SKUs this market, spread out over 11 bedroom collections, seven of which also have dining room, occasional and home entertainment. Covering a broad range of styles, the dining includes some formal sets, as well as more casual sets that feature gathering-height tables and smaller buffets or sideboards.


Tags: , , , , ,

Comments are closed.