Less than a year after Madeline and Elizabeth Schlaefer closed 1670 Furniture House on Route 48 in Southold, they’ve reopened the business.
The property remains on the market, but the mother and daughter said they decided that since it hasn’t been sold yet, they might as well be open.
“I was going to open a store in Greenport,” Elizabeth Schlaefer said. “But since this building didn’t sell, we just came back and opened this.”
When the duo announced they were closing the store last fall, they said it was so that Elizabeth could open a new shop and Madeline could retire to spend more time with her grandchildren. Madeline opened 1670 Furniture House with her late husband, Gordon, in 1986. Over the years the two expanded the store, building an addition on the back of the historic house while maintaining the aesthetics of the structure.
Elizabeth said she’s focused on the Southold store for now but does plan to open a shop in Greenport once a sale is finalized.
Many things about the business remain the same, but the concept of the store has changed, Elizabeth said. She described it as “coastal” and geared more toward second homeowners.
“It’s all new,” she said. “The upholstery is new. The dining room tables are new. We have all new prints, lighting and accessories. There’s a couple of items left over but they’re in our discount center, way below cost.”
She added that they tightened up the space, making it easier to shop in and purchase items off the floor.
“The store has this kind of new look, new vibe to it,” she said.
In addition to stocking the store with new items, the Schlaefers are starting to offer weekly specials on the company’s Facebook page.
She said news that the store was reopening has been met with a warm response from the community.
“I’m happy about it,” Elizabeth said. “It was very bittersweet to leave in the fall, because [the store] had been here for 28 years. This feels almost like coming home. It’s nice to be back. It feels natural.”