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From Home Furnishing Business

Furniture First Adds 3 Retailers

Three retailers have joined the Furniture First buying group.

The newest members include Esprit Decor Home Furnishings in Chesapeake, Va.; Jensen Furniture in Luck, Wis.; and Matlock Furniture in Durango, Colo. These additions bring the membership member rolls to 219 stockholders, with 459 storefronts in 47 states.

Sally Christian and Bob Christian opened Esprit Decor's doors in 1983 with the ambition to sell high-quality home furnishings with a personal touch. What started as a small family business has grown and today the Christians’ children, Mark, Beth and Ricky, manage and operate the store.

Family-owned and operated since 1956, Jensen Furniture serves Northwest Wisconsin and Eastern Minnesota. The store’s history is a long one that started in 1903 when Jacob J. Jensen started his blacksmithing business in Luck. Since then, the Jensen family business evolved from farm equipment to hardware, and from hardware to furniture in 1956. Jensen offers one-stop home décor solutions, selling window treatments and flooring in addition to furniture.

Matlock Furniture & Mattress was founded by Walter and Blair Matlock. Walter started the retail store after spending more than 15 years in the furniture industry, both in retail and wholesale. The pair opened the store in Blair’s hometown, where they have deep ties to the community. Offering in-home design services, Matlock stresses, helps take the risk out of the purchase process, and assures that their customers get just the right furniture for their homes.

The qualifications for membership in the national buying group result in a high-quality cooperative.  Furniture First only admits full-line independent retailers. The average age of member businesses is more than 45 years. Stores are required to have good credit and meet minimum volume requirements.

Furniture First’s showroom will be open during the Las Vegas Market. Located in A-810 of the World Market Center, the showroom will feature the products from several of the group’s approved vendors, and will include the group’s high-margin private label mattress line, Mattress 1st.

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