After more than three decades in the competitive world of outdoor furniture, officials at Erwin and Sons Direct Imports, Woodstock, Georgia, have come up with significant innovations, all while helping their dealer partners succeed in business. Patio & Hearth Products Report (P&HPR) sat down with Erik Dych, vice president, Erwin and Sons, to get a sense of the company’s history, as well as what dealers can look forward to in the future.
P&HPR: How does your company’s considerable experience benefit consumers and/or dealers?
Erik Dych: Erwin and Sons has been in business for more than three decades. We began our business in the 1980s with indoor rattan furnishings, but in the late 1990s, we pioneered the manufacture of HDPE resin into all-weather furniture. So that’s some two decades of experience in the outdoor industry.
We have the track record and expertise it takes to offer consumers high quality, design innovation, a wide selection of finish and style, custom Leisureluxe™ cushions in over 400 performance fabrics, and a solid warranty, all at competitive pricing.
P&HPR: What furniture and/or relevant accessories have been particularly successful in 2017?
Erik: Contemporary sectional deep seating collections have been quite successful, judging by dealer reports. New finishes, weaves, and frame styles continue to be well-received and in high demand. We have begun incorporating mixed media within a number of collections, which is what the high-end consumer is seeking.
P&HPR: How are you balancing your product line offerings between traditional and contemporary offerings?
Erik: In the past few years, we have begun offering more contemporary designs and new materials to meet the fashion needs and wants of consumers. I’d say we are now at about a 50-50 split between contemporary and traditional. And out of our traditional offerings, about a third of them are considered more transitional in design.
P&HPR: What products are you most excited about for 2017?
Erik: We are venturing into more cutting edge modern design such as padded woven wicker, new weathered wood-like tabletops, and a new line of contemporary table bases.
P&HPR: What sets you apart from the competition in terms of product development?
Erik: It is the diversity and long term experience of the Erwin team and our vendor relationships working together to achieve the best products and service that value everyone’s best interests.
P&HPR: How do you support specialty retailers?
Erik: We serve such a wide diversity of our retailers that, for all intents and purposes, we consider every one of them a “specialty” retailer. We cater to single- and multiple- specialty stores, pool, patio and hearth shops, online dealers, garden and hardware centers. Each of them have unique consumer demographics. Geography, weather, locale, cultural style, and pricing each play an important role in their merchandising decisions.