In 1980, My wife, (Mary), and I moved from Phoenix to Mesa, (a close suburb), and bought our first home. I was managing a vacuum cleaner store, and my wife was a cashier at a grocery store. My only day off was Sunday, and she was off 2 different days of the week, so we never had much time together. We had no children, but Mary was breeding Afghan Hound dogs.
I was watching TV one peaceful Sunday afternoon, and all of a sudden the TV sparked, smoked, sputtered, and lit on fire. I jumped off the sofa, opened the front door, unplugged the TV, picked it up and threw it in the front yard.
Even with my wife and I both working, we didn't have enough money to buy a new TV. The new house had eaten up all of our extra money, and there were a lot of new expenses in owning a new home.
I was talking to a friend of mine about my financial problems. He mentioned that his father used to own a vacuum business, and said, "Why don't we go to the Flea Market in Phoenix on weekends and sell vacuum cleaners, bags, belts, and parts". I told him that it sounded like a good idea, but my only day off was on Sunday. We agreed that he would work Saturday, and we would both work on Sunday.
The only other problem was that I had no money for inventory, so he said that he would put up the money to get us started. We both agreed that we would put all the profit into buying more inventory, and vacuum cleaners that we would both rebuild and sell.
We followed through with our plans, and our new business was a success. We were selling huge amounts of bags, belts, and parts, as well as buying old vacuums, fixing them up, and reselling them. All of the profit we made went back into the business, and we started doing more and more business. It was all very exciting, but the only problem was that I was now working 7 days a week, and I still had no color TV.
After about 2 months, I talked to my friend, and mentioned that I would like to get a little money from the business to buy a new color TV. I was kind of surprised when he said, "No Way". I tried to talk him into it, but he was totally against it. He said that he would rather just buy me out of the business that we started, and have the business all to himself. I agreed, and was paid about $800.00, for my share of the business.
I went out and bought my new color TV, and then thought to myself, what will I do with the other $400.00 or so that I had left. Well, right or wrong, I called the vacuum parts distributor that I knew about, and ordered $400.00 worth of bags and supplies, and the following Sunday, I went to the Flea Market, and started my own business. My friend ran into me, and kind of smiled and said, "Oh well, I guess we didn't talk about you doing your own thing out here". I said, "e;All I wanted was some money to get a new color TV, and you were the one who wanted to split up our relationship". We both laughed and remained good friends and competitors that helped each other. Well this Company History is starting to become a novel, so I'll try to speed things up a little. I continued to buy more and more supplies, and soon had a huge display of parts, bags, belts, and new and used vacuum cleaners. I was so busy that most of the time I had no way of going to get lunch, or a coke, or anything. After a couple of months of suffering alone, I realized that I needed help. Mary agreed to quit her job, and start helping me. During the next several years we continued to grow, and soon we had a 30 foot trailer and 4 employees to help us at the Flea Market, and at our home, where we were repairing and rebuilding vacuums during the week. We got to know all of our neighbors at the Flea Market, including the ones who sold futons behind us. After a few more years we became friends and decided to rent a store together. It was our first actual store, and we split the store space and rent. I all seemed to be going well for both of us, but one morning, after a couple of months, we went in to open our store, and all of our friends things were gone. All of their futons, desks, computer, everything was gone. They had vanished in the night. All that was left was a note explaining that they weren't making it, and that they felt bad, but they had to abandon ship and move to Seattle. We were surprised and shocked, and were left with all of the expenses of the store, but luckily our business was able to handle the bills. The first day that they were gone, we had 2 or 3 people that came into our store and asked, "Where are all of your futons". We could have told them that the futons were gone, and all we had now were vacuums. Instead we asked them what size they wanted and what color, and we knew enough about futons, and where to get them, that we were able to make a couple of sales without anything in the store. This was the beginning of our futon business. For the next several years we sold futons, and vacuums. It was a strange combination, but it worked, and we had many customers who bought a vacuum cleaner and a futon. Eventually the futon part of our business was so busy that we had less and less time for the vacuum part of the business. Our business has continued to grow at a controlled rate year after year.
That's how we got into the futon business .
We are family owned and operated. Instead of Afghan Hounds, we now have 3 children, Sarah Born in 1992, Joseph 1996, and Daniel 1998. We sell futon frames and mattresses made by some of the top manufacturers in the country.
We Custom manufacture many frames and other woodworking items.
The reason we manufacture ourselves is to give you better quality products, for less.
All of our employees are helpful, honest, and willing to go the extra distance to help you with your needs. And it all started because of a TV set that caught on fire.
Here is a brief update to our Company History.
Our family, as well as our business continues to grow. Our children are growing up quickly, (as are we), and our 4th child, Michael was born in 2000. We also now live on an Acre in a suburb of Mesa, and my wife stays home most of the time taking care of the kids, as well as our Dog, Cats, Miniature Horses, Ducks, Goats, Parrott, Tarantulas, Fish, Lizards, Hamsters, and Crabs. We now have a Big Screen TV, so I hope it doesn't catch on fire because I won't be able to pick it up and throw it out the door.
I'd like to thank all of our customers, friends, employees, and especially my wife Mary, for sticking with me through the good times, and the bad.