Posts Tagged ‘lincolnton curtains and drapes’

How to make 2010 a real ’10’

Monday, January 11th, 2010

Ray Allegrezza, Editor in Chief — Furniture Today

Happy New Year! If you’re like me, you are probably delighted that 2009 is behind us. As we head into 2010, I believe that we’ve found the bottom and are on our way to a slow, steady recovery.

Statistically, there appears to be evidence to support my observation. On the day before Christmas, the Commerce Department reported that orders for durable goods were up almost 3% in November.

That was followed by a report from the Labor Department indicating that the number of people filing new claims for unemployment benefits dropped during the week ending Dec. 19 to the lowest level since September of 2008. Based on that positive news, economists, including Goldman Sachs and Macroeconomic Advisers, each called for U.S. fourth-quarter 2009 growth of 4% or better.

Even so, we all know that much is riding on the consumer and as best as I can tell, she’s still skittish. But I can tell you that based on the results of a survey we recently conducted with HGTV, while the recession has caused her to rethink how and where she shops, she still wants a lovely home.

So, with that in mind, here are 10 tips to tune up your business in 2010.

Reach out to the consumer. She must believe that you have the solution to her decorating task. Whether it is an e-newsletter, postcards, or an invitation to an in-store event, make her feel that you can help her.

Invest in your employees. Turn your order-takers into selling consultants.

Exceed your customer’s needs. If you implement tips 1 and 2, this will be easy.

Invest in customer incentives. She’s got other places to shop. Make it worth her while to shop you.

Present a readily understandable value proposition. She wants beautiful furniture, but she’s also looking for value.

Be product experts, not product pushers.

Update your Web site. She’s shopping online, so you need to be where she is with a site she can’t resist.

Take a page from Burger King. Let her have it her way. In other words, accommodate her.

Know what your best customers like, then shop for them. Call her and tell her you ordered some accessory pieces that she’ll love.

Invest as much time evaluating your competition as you do your customer.

Here’s hoping you make 2010 a real “10”!

Antique upholstery trends

Monday, January 11th, 2010

Upholstery Journal |by Dionne Cordell

     Antique Trends are more varied today than they were in the past. George Evans of Bond & Bowery notices specific trends in pieces ordered from his online antique marketplace. Evans says the more history we have to influence trends, the more variation there will be in styles.


Antique pieces, such as Biedermeier, Georgian and Regency styles. Classic Chippendale, Louis XVI pieces, Swedish painted pieces, Jansen pieces and fine Art Deco pieces are also hot.

Mission-style oak rockers with straw-filled leather seating.

1880 Eastlake styles and 1890s, 1920s chairs.

Well-proportioned legs on sofas and loveseats rather than skirts.

Animal prints in small quantities. A leopard-print footstool or ottoman works well as an accent piece.

Silk and wool fabrics, and down and feather cushions with sumptuous trims work best with traditional frames.

Rich chenille tapestry along with classic damasks.

Jewel and earth tones. Terra cotta reds, sage greens and flaxen golds are popular.

Tone-on-tone damask fabrics.

Sumptuous trims and cording in Bullion fringe.

Neat trim and a well-done cover never fails.

Nickel nailhead trim.


Arm covers. These should only be used when taking to the paint or fabric store for color matching.

Living room sets. The classic sofa, loveseat and chair set is out of style.Use two sofas or a sofa and a pair of chairs for a versatile and stylish alternative.

Loose slipcovers.

More on upholstery and price points

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

After the appearance of the Upholstery Fabric & Style Survey in the October 5 issue, Furniture/Today’s research team fielded a call from a supplier who wanted to know the overall breakdown of upholstery unit market share by price point. Since we had not previously calculated those statistics, we quickly derived them and sent them along to the supplier as requested. In all fairness we thought you might like to know those statistics, too.

Upholstery and price points
Market share based on UNITS, 2008

Stationary sofas
Low                 $799 and below        34%
Medium          $800 to $1,499          29%
High                $1,500 and above     37%

Reclining chairs
Low                 $799 and below        39%
Medium          $800 to $1,499          36%
High                $1,500 and above     25%

Motion sofas
Low                 $899 and below        38%
Medium          $900 to $1,599          49%
High                $1,600 and above     13%

The Upholstery Fabric & Style Survey of retailers continues a series of style surveys, currently alternating with a case goods style survey conducted in 2008 (and one planned for 2010) and the previous upholstery style survey published in 2006. Data was collected from March through May and represents more than 400 storefronts, primarily full-line furniture stores.