Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIII, No. 8
 
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Coldwell Banker Princeton Office

Prudential Fox and Roach, Realtors

Gloria Nilson GMAC Real Estate

Henderson Sotheby's International Realty

N.T. Callaway Princeton Office

Stockton Real Estate, LLC

Weichert, Realtors



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Iris Interiors


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Weather Forecast


It’s New to Us by Jean Stratton


HOME DECOR: “People are staying home more, and they want to make their environment as nice as possible. We can help them do that.” Stan and Susan Gulati, owners of Luxe Home Company in Princeton Forrestal Village, look forward to introducing more customers to their furniture and accessory selection and interior design service. “We are very happy with our success, but we realize we are still an untapped resource for some people, and we want them to know about us.”

Fine Furniture and Accessories for the Home Are at Luxe Home Company in Forrestal Village

Walking through Luxe Home Company’s charming, spacious showroom is a pleasure. The expanse of windows allows the space to be filled with light, enhancing the impressive array of furniture and accessories.

Enclaves of sample rooms of all kinds create an atmosphere of enjoyment and creative ideas as customers browse among the intriguing displays.

“Our biggest compliment is when someone comes in and says, ‘I love it here! Can you do this for me at home?’” says owner Stan Gulati. “People really like the space and all our displays and sample rooms. We offer fine, high quality furniture in a very inviting, low key atmosphere.

“Everything is possible,” he adds. “We’re a classic traditional store, and we like to blend a variety of styles. We seek to inspire by what we display, but then most of our furniture including all of our upholstery is custom. We have over 3000 fabrics to choose from to create any style. We can choose a sofa style and then offer a variety of choices including different skirt or leg choices, different sofa arms and cushion styles. Our trimming options are endless. Although we offer so much variety we try to make it simple. Our specialty is to be able to edit it down to the customers’ taste and give them what they will absolutely love.”

Mr. Gulati and his wife, co-owner Susan Gulati, opened Luxe Home Company in December 2006, after owning its predecessor, ETC Company in Palmer Square for nine years. Their retail experience dates back even further. As students at Rutgers in 1989, they were enterprising entrepreneurs. Their first store was on campus, and then in 1991, they opened an ETC in New Brunswick.

“As small business owners, we are constantly re-inventing, refreshing, and trying to inspire people,” points out Mr. Gulati. “Having been in the business 20 years, we have learned so much. We love it, and we continue to learn every day.”

Interior Design

They decided to move to Forrestal Village because of the need for additional space, and it has been an excellent decision, he reports. “We needed a lot more space to show off what we could do, and this has been just great. We have more than 10,000 square feet of ‘inspirations’ for people. We loved furniture, and we wanted to be able to do an entire room or house for someone. Interior design has become 75 percent of our business now. And it has been super successful here.

“We focus on the entire design experience. We’ll go to a client’s house, measure, then come up with a floor plan. We’ll give a presentation with a furniture selection, fabrics, colors, etc. We also try to use what people already have, if they wish.”

Life-style is major today, and people (although still traditional in this area) are less formal than in the past, notes Mr. Gulati. “Life-style is very important in the design. How do clients use the room? Do kids do homework, watch TV in it? Are there pets? Our designs are very customized.

“The great rooms in the newer homes of today have become the center of the home. People want them to be inviting and comfortable. Virtually all our clients are going to a less formal look, even in the formal rooms. This reflects the informality of the society as a whole today.”

He reports there has been a great response from former ETC customers and a big referral business. “It has been terrific. We’ll do a room for a client and then later do another room for them; they’ll tell their friends, and we’ll have more projects. In addition, we have done beach houses for clients as well as New York City apartments.”

Clients are varied in age and life-style, he adds. “Some are young families just building their house, and others are empty-nesters, downsizing and reinventing themselves.”

Fine Lines

Many times, customers will come to the store for a new sofa or coffee table, he says, and that may later lead to a design project.

“We have very fine furniture lines, such as Hickory Chair, Drexel Heritage, French Heritage, and for outdoor patio furniture, Brown Jordan. Outdoor furniture is all custom, too, in many choices and styles. Brown Jordan is very high quality and offers tremendous customization.

“We are very particular with the brands we carry. We have only quality that clients can count on. Susan and I live locally, and we’ll see our clients around town. We want them to know they can rely on our products.

“We think of our furniture as traditional with an updated ‘twist,’” he continues. “Our collections are inspired by many different periods and styles such as 18th Century English or French, the countryside’s of Provence and Tuscany, or a classic American farmhouse. We like to mix and yet keep interiors simple and pleasing to the eye. We do a lot of bedroom suites, with a mix of bed styles, dressers, seating areas and all the finishing touches such as area rugs, bedding, window treatments and all the accessories. We love great rooms with comfortable seating in a tailored style and updated entertainment options geared to large flat screen television sets. Home offices and media rooms today are about balancing function with style and comfort.”

Wide Variety

In addition to the furniture, accessories include a wide variety of lamps and chandeliers, decorative pieces, vases, florals and trees, mirrors, clocks, framed artwork, area rugs, and window treatments.

“Also available are framed reproductions of French deeds of farmhouses from the 1600s to the mid-1700s. These are very special,” says Mr. Gulati.

He is not only very proud of Luxe Home’s selection, but also about the effort to keep prices at true value. “We offer fine quality at true value, and we are very good at working within people’s budget. We strive to do this every day. If you buy good quality furniture, it offers more longevity than anything. It has true value. If you get something that is not good quality, and it doesn’t last, it ends up in the dumpster, and has a negative impact on the planet.

“We want people to turn to us first for fine furniture,” he adds. “Customers can count on the quality of our staff, the quality of our merchandise, and our design team. At the end of the day, furniture is very personal. Clients want to come in and see it, touch it, sit on it. We want you to buy something you love and keep it a long time.”

Luxe Home Company is open Monday through Thursday, Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday until 8, Sunday noon to 5. (609) 987-2600. Website: www.luxehomecompany.com.

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