After 10 years in The Woodlands community, Southern Home Furnishings continues to grow its business to meet the needs of its customers.
Owner Donald Harkey planted the seeds that would become Southern Home Furnishings in 2000, when he and his late wife, Kathy Harkey, established Woodlands Clocks and Gifts in The Woodlands. The business evolved into Southern Home Furnishings in 2004, offering living room furnishings and occasionally featuring dining and bedroom furniture as well.
Co-manager Katie Fritch said Southern Home Furnishings has been successful because of a vested interest in matching customers with the best piece for their home, something that encourages customers to return.
"We try not to pressure people into buying something just for the sake of making a sale," Fritch said. "We want it to look good in their home and reflect well on our store."
Since opening, Southern Home Furnishings has spawned a couple of other businesses in The Woodlands—Woodlands Unique, and Boutique at Woodlands Unique.
"Southern Home is the offspring of Woodlands Clocks and Gifts," co-manager Connie Nojeim said. "So now Woodlands Unique is a spinoff of Southern Home because we work with a lot of designers, and this store is more design focused. We just keep evolving with the needs of our customers."
Boutique at Woodlands Unique is an online shop similar to Woodlands Clocks and Gifts that features gifts and accessories, such as candles, lotions and clocks available for order.
Co-manager Kimberly Payne said the family of businesses has also been successful because of the tight-knit relationship Harkey fosters among the store employees.
"We all work really well together," Payne said. "I think that talks volumes of Don—he treats everyone like they are a part of his family. All of us feel like each of our co-workers is a family member, and I think that is why our business has grown."
Some of the proceeds from Southern Home Furnishings and Woodlands Unique go to the Kathie S. Harkey Breast Cancer Foundation, which was established in her honor and directly benefits MD Anderson in The Woodlands.
Southern Home Furnishings
25403 I-45 N., The Woodlands
26211 I-45 N., The Woodlands
832-246-8848, www.woodlandsunique.com, www.boutique.woodlandsunique.com