Furnishing AmericaWhere do you shop for furniture? If...

Home Front

September 27, 1998|By Karol V. Menzie | Karol V. Menzie,Sun Staff

Furnishing America

Where do you shop for furniture? If you're like most consumers, you buy bedding and other household items in stores devoted exclusively to furniture and decorations. The second most common place to shop for furniture is in department stores, with office-supply stores a close third. Those are some of the conclusions in a report by Furniture/Today, a weekly trade publication, on the industry that took in revenues of $13.6 billion in 1997, the latest year for which figures are available (up from $12.1 billion in 1996).

Furniture/Today issued a list of the top 25 retailers, in terms of revenue. The top 10, most of which are represented in this area, were: Heilig-Meyers, Richmond, Va. (includes Mattress Discounters); Levitz, Boca Raton, Fla.; Office Depot, Del Ray Beach, Fla.; J.C. Penney, Plano, Texas; Federated Department Stores, Cincinnati, Ohio (includes Bloomingdale's); Sears, Hoffmann Estates, Ill.; Ethan Allen, Danbury, Conn.; Wal-Mart, Bentonville, Ark.; Rooms To Go, Steffner, Fla.; and Montgomery Ward, Chicago, Ill. Among other companies with a local presence, Value City, of Columbus, Ohio, was 13th, the May Co., which includes Hecht's, ranked 17th, Swedish giant IKEA was 18th, and Pier 1 Imports, of Fort Worth, Texas, was 21st.

A card for any occasion

It's true that greeting cards exist these days for every imaginable occasion, from simple birthday greetings to condolences on being downsized. But sometimes, there's nothing quite right for you. Baltimore artist Janet Mishner (right) can remedy that: She creates handmade cards with pictures, HTC foils and handmade papers that can be customized with your own photographs - of a favorite pet, an anniversary couple or a beloved landscape. The cards come in sets of eight and cost $20, plus a one-time initial fee of $5 for computer scanning. Refill orders are $2.50 per card. Orders take two or three weeks to process. For more information, send a stamped, self-addressed envelope to A Handmade Collection, Janet Mishner, Nacirema Lane, Stevenson, Md. 21153. Or call 410-486-1655.

Finishing touches

That old piece of furniture languishing in the attic might just be worth $3,000 and a package of tools from Dremel - if you win the grand prize in the Dremel Furniture Refinishing Contest. Dremel, which makes electric hand tools such as a rotary tool and a contour sander (below), will also award a first-place prize of $500 and a tool package, a second-place prize of $250 and a tool package, and prizes of tool packages for 10 random winners. Entries, including before and after photos and a description of the refinishing process, will be accepted until Jan. 31. There's no limit on shape or size of the object, but projects must involve a freestanding piece of furniture. For details, visit the Dremel Web site at www.dremel.com, or call 800-437-3635.

EVENTS:

* The bounty of the fall season will be the theme of a session on interior and exterior home decorations by the staff of the Metzler Garden Center at 10 a.m. Saturday. The session is free. The center is at 10342 Owen Brown Road in Columbia. For more information, call 410-997-8133.

* The Lutherville Garden Club will present its fall garden tour from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday. The three gardens on the tour are in Cockeysville, Baldwin and Phoenix and feature a water site with waterfalls, the latest in plants and shrubs, and sculpture set in a landscape of ornamental grasses and perennials. The tour costs $10. For more information, call Ellen Herwig at 410-667-0637.

* Children can learn to make a Native American dreamcatcher - a wire and woven piece that legend says captures and keeps away bad dreams - at a program with Monica Wiedel from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Friday at the Irvine Natural Science Center at St. Timothy's School in Stevenson. The fee is $2 for center members, $4 for nonmembers. The recommended age is 5 years and up. Register by Wednesday by calling 410-484-2413

Home Front welcomes interesting tidbits of home and garden news. Please send suggestions to Karol V. Menzie, Home Front, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278, or fax to 410-783-2519.

Pub Date: 9/27/98

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