Many locals have probably passed by Englishman’s Fine Furniture on Atlanta Rd and wondered about the uniquely-designed building. What is in it? What kind of furniture does it sell? Are the pieces really from England? To help answer these questions (and more) Vinings Lifestyle sat down with Anita Vreeland, president of marketing and design at Englishman’s Fine Furniture, to learn more about this interesting store.
VL: What can customers expect to find at Englighman’s Fine Furniture?
EFF: At Englishman’s, customers find all kinds of wonderful pieces of furniture and accessories, antique and reproduction, in many types of styles and finishes. Though our main look is traditional English furniture, we carry many other looks from vintage to transitional. Most of our product is hand-crafted in England. However, the main thing people will find at Englishman’s is top quality furniture at great prices.
VL: Why should Vinings Lifestyle readers visit your store as opposed to the big box retailers?
EFF: At Englishman’s you have more ways to customize your furniture, opposed to at a big box retailer. At Englishman’s, if we don’t have exactly what you need in stock, we can have it built for you. We have many choices of woods and finishes, sizes and styles, to make your furniture more individual to you. You’re not likely to leave our store with the same set as your neighbor. Our quality and craftsmanship is much higher than the box retailers. You only need to stop and look to see the difference!
VL: Are there any exciting new collections we should know about?
EFF: We are excited about the new furniture coming in for our Charles Ashton collection. Michael Howarth, owner of Englishman’s, has been working closely with the factory to achieve the right look and color. We are looking forward to unveiling it in July.
VL: How did your family get into the furniture business?
EFF: Michael Howarth, owner of Englishman’s and my father, has a very long history in the furniture business. He started selling antiques in London when he was 19 years old. Michael started working as what is known in England as a spotter and runner to antique dealers. This is how he got his education in the furniture business – streetwise product knowledge. Michael then began Howarth Antiques and started selling products within England and then importing to the United States. He would scour the countryside of England and Europe to find products. My parents, sister (Joanne) and I moved from England in 1981 when my father came over to run an antiques auction gallery. Englishman’s is a family business started by my parents, Michael and Christine Howarth back in 1991, and 25 years later we are still going. It is still a family run business. My parents are still around the store most days, and my brother-in-law, Kevin, and I are now more involved in the everyday running of the business. We are assisted by my cousin, Adel, and three other longtime employees; Donna, Darren and Ann, that feel more like family than work colleagues. We have been very blessed over the years with great staff and customers. We wouldn’t be here without them.
VL: How do you keep the “English” in Englishman’s Fine Furnishings?
EFF: We are originally from London, England. Even though we love the United States and living in the Smyrna/Vinings area, we are still proud of our English heritage. We enjoy some of the typical English customs like drinking tea and we have many friends and family still in England whom we are close to and they keep us in touch with our British side.