Boutique Furniture Store Boasts Modern Look, Great Services
Light fixtures from Classic Home illuminate the showroom and echoes the owner’s sense of revitalization. In addition to upholstery lines such as Temple and Flexsteel (shown), the newly renovated space carries a variety of accent pieces, lighting and decor.
Photo by Tracy Doyle
Last year, Bond Home Furnishings celebrated its 80th anniversary. When owner Tim Canada was nearing retirement, he approached Kevin Malof to see if he’d be interested in buying the business. After discussing the opportunity with some business partners – though they had no experience in furniture retail sales – they were intrigued by the offer as they already owned several other businesses in Loveland’s historic district, including Bishop’s Quarter, a three-story “New Orléans” themed wine and bourbon bar.
“As the look and feel of Loveland continues to change through the renovations of Bishop’s Quarter, Tano’s and Ramsey’s, we saw Bond as another opportunity to continue the reinvention of businesses within the historic district,” says Kevin. From high-level view, they knew that Bond needed a facelift – new paint, new flooring, new canopies – and that they had to consolidate all of the furniture into a “boutique” style store to remain competitive. This would also open up new space for complimentary businesses, such as Magnolias and Window Accents, which would attract more retail traffic to Loveland. But with more visitors, more parking had to be available, so Kevin chose to demolish one of the adjacent buildings to create a parking lot for Bond and its customers.
Eager to transform Bond Home Furnishings into a boutique furniture store, they introduced new accessories and lines such as Hooker and Temple. The Temple line, for instance, takes the customer experience to the next level by enabling clients to design their furniture.
“When people are spending a good deal of money, they want to pick out the fabric, the leather, the arm and leg style,” says Carol Lahke, one of Bond’s designers. “They select furniture that reflects who they are.”
The team at Bond Home Furnishings believes that the most important part of a successful business is earning the clients’ trust.
“Customers are often afraid that sales people aren’t listening to what they want and are instead only focused on pushing the sofa of the day,” says Angie Suess, store manager and designer.
This is why Bond Home Furnishings has chosen to hire designers who understand the big picture. They know what makes a furniture purchase successful, what lines to offer to certain people, and how to match it to a customer’s personal preferences.
For example, Kevin explains, “When a husband walks in who is 6´5” and his wife is 5´6”, we need to offer selections that work for both of them. Otherwise, one of the two will eventually become unhappy with their decision.”
Another unique service Bond offers is the opportunity for designers to come to customers’ homes to be sure that their selected pieces will fit the feel and size of the home.
“We’ve all had that experience of buying a piece of furniture that looked great in the showroom but ridiculous at home,” says Angie. “Our designers are committed to preventing that from happening.”
They also offer after-hours design consultations at the store so clients can come at a time that is convenient – whether that’s a Sunday afternoon or a weekday evening.
“We’re a family-owned store so rather than attempt to be open all the time, creating flexible times for designers makes more sense,” says Kevin.
In addition to owning Bond Home Furnishings, Kevin is a full-time attorney at Frost Brown Todd LLC. “So often people perceive businesses as taking from the community, but I enjoy giving back,” says Kevin, a lifelong resident of Clermont County – which is why he devotes a considerable amount of time mentoring high school students through the Clermont County Workforce Commission, providing leadership to Clermont Senior Services as a board member or helping improve the needs of the community through the new Loveland Legacy Foundation as a board member.
To engage with the public, Bond hosts after-hours wine tastings, holiday open houses and hands-on demonstrations. For instance, since they are one of the largest Amish retailers in the area, they invite builders from the Amish community to come in and talk about the differences in Amish furniture.
“These types of events give people an opportunity to learn about furniture,” says Carol. “Most people just buy furniture when they need it, but we’re trying to reinvent Bond to be more of a resource to the community.”
Kevin and his team are also in the process of opening an art gallery at Bond to give local artists an opportunity to display their work. They plan to host monthly meet-and-greets with artists. “Bond is more than just furniture, it’s about creating a single resource for people who are looking at all aspects of designing the interior of their home,” Kevin says.
Bond Home Furnishings is located at 113 Karl Brown Way, Loveland, OH 45140. For more information, call 513.683.2233 or visit www.bondfurniture.com