December 5, 2018

Furniture to Mattresses to Outerwear and More All on Hand at the Flemington Department Store

ONE-STOP SHOPPING: “We have adapted to the times. We see what the customers want and see that we do it right. Service is more important than the price. Everyone who comes into the store is treated equally. There is respect for everyone.” Marty Resnick, co-owner of the Flemington Department Store, is shown on the second floor, overlooking the vast array of merchandise at the signature store.

By Jean Stratton

As the holidays approach, time is both important — and limited. One-stop shopping is appealing and helpful to busy shoppers as they try to navigate through those long Christmas lists.

A visit to the ww Department Store can ease a lot of that shopping anxiety. Customers will find an enormous selection — from furniture and flooring to mattresses to outerwear, as well as workwear, shoes, boots, gloves, hats, scarves, backpacks — and much, much more.

Located at 151 Route 31 in Flemington, the store has been family-owned for 60 years and has a fascinating history.

Jacob and Sara Resnick, parents of the current owners Marty and Ted Resnick, arrived in the U.S. in 1946. Survivors of the World War II onslaught (Sara endured a lengthy period in a concentration camp), they first went to Brooklyn, N.Y., and then joined other Jewish refugees who had left Europe and formed a partnership in a chicken and egg farm. They settled in the Flemington area.

Continuing Need

“My father also had a full-time job in Manhattan with a furrier, and he began bringing work clothes, such as overalls, shirts, etc., back to the farmers,” explains Marty Resnick. “Because of the continuing need for these work clothes, he established the Quakertown Dry Goods Store in Flemington.”

In 1963, they moved to the current location, and changed the name of the store to the Flemington Department Store. It was still a clothing store, with a focus on work clothes.

The emphasis began to change in 1966, when a store in Trenton offered the Resnicks furniture on consignment.

The rest, as they say, is history.

The furniture selection was so successful that the Resicks added new categories including living room, dining room, bedroom, home office, entertainment centers, and more. “We have now grown to become the largest furniture store in central New Jersey,” reports Resnick.

As time went on, more and more categories of merchandise were brought in, including flooring and carpet; name-brand clothing for men, women, and children; footwear; and accessories such as hats, scarves, gloves, belts, and backpacks.

The store had also grown in size to 140,000 square feet, or about a two-acre expanse. Indeed, the sheer size of the store and showroom is amazing, filled with aisle after aisle of merchandise of every kind.

Special Events

Looking for flooring or floor coverings? It’s all there! Hardwood, laminates, vinyl, tile, and more. “The pre-finished hardwood floors are very popular now,” says Resnick. “We do the installations, and we also do the binding and cutting for rugs and carpets.

“In the early ’70s, we got involved in complete floor coverings — from wall-to-wall to Oriental rugs to area rugs. In addition, we started looking into floor coverings for special events. We have provided this for the Tony and Grammy Awards; for the Pope at Yankee Stadium, and more recently in Philadelphia; and also at the White House, Rockefeller Center, and for political debates.

“We have built a great reputation for this. We also have done events at Macy’s, Tiffany’s — whenever they have galas. Events all along the East Coast, from New York to Boston.”

If furniture is on your Christmas list, just step into the store’s upstairs Furniture Gallery. Everything is there — tables, chairs, recliners sofas, love seats, chests and cabinets, dressers, benches, beds, youth bedroom sets, bookcases, desks, wall systems, and outdoor furniture too.

“Flexsteel upholstered furniture is very popular now, as are the electric lift chairs. They are really in demand,” reports Resnick. “In addition, we do a very big business with Sealy mattresses. We sell a ton of them.”

Clothing is also a major priority at the store. More than 100 clothing brands are available, including The Northface, Columbia, Carhartt, and Patagonia. Indeed, name brand vendors for just about anything wearable are featured. Men, women, and children can find everything they need from workwear to high fashion to accessories and footwear.

Big Sellers

“The North Face coats are very big sellers right now, and also Carhartt outerwear,” says Resnick.

There is an enormous selection of fleece jackets, jeans, coats, and parkas of every kind, and also a vast array of accessories — scarves, hats, socks, and so on.

The workwear and uniform choices at the store are unmatched. “We have a lot of uniforms for police, firefighters, rescue squad workers, and nurses’ scrubs,” he points out.

In addition, overalls and a variety of other workwear clothing are available in a wide assortment, with Carhartt one of the biggest brands offered.

The footwear choices are also extraordinary. “We have 400 different styles of shoes and boots,” says Resnick.

Everything from rugged workbooks to fashion shoes and sandals is on display. The selection includes such brand names as Redwing, Timberland, Woverine, Vasque, and Merrell, as well as Uggs, Sperry Topsider, Dansko, Crocs, Reef, and many more.

Quality is uppermost at Flemington Department Store, emphasizes Resnick. “If it is not the quality that my family would wear or use, it’s not in the store. The focus is quality and value. All items are competitively priced. We have very good pricing on all our products, and generally, we are better priced than the online prices. Also, if something ever goes wrong, we stand behind the product.

“And we support business in New Jersey. Many other stores contact us about particular products, and we help them out.”

Long Evolution

Resnick believes strongly in giving back to the community. “We support new programs and various organizations. We are engaged in anti-drug programs and encouraging kids to be involved in positive programs like the Boy Scouts and other organizations. We are also helping to develop a Holocaust learning center.”

The store has had a long evolution, he adds, and he is proud of its fine reputation, its loyal employees, and enduring clientele.

“We have 140 employees, and many of them of different generations in the same family. We really have very little staff turnover. There is a great attitude here. It’s a lot of people helping each other. Employees helping customers, and even customers helping each other. It’s about respect for each other.”

Customers come to the store from all over the area, including Princeton and beyond, even from the Jersey Shore. “People need work clothing and uniforms, and they really come from all over to get it. We have many customers from different generations in the same family, and lots and lots of repeat customers. We are very thankful for their loyalty.

“We are set apart by our size, the variety of items, and our customer service. We are big enough that we can compete with the big boys and small enough that we can care about our customers. The customers always come first.”

The store is open Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. (908) 782-7662. Website: www.flemington