Don’t Forget Your Earrings...

I am as guilty as anyone, (maybe more so) of forgetting to put on the finishing touches, to go the extra mile to convey the concept behind a piece of furniture – in essence forgetting to put on my earrings.  But consider how much a new outfit is affected when you add the appropriate accessories – shoes, earrings or scarf.  It’s downright amazing.  Taking that thought a step further – consider how much that basic black dress can be transformed by those same accessories.  Start out with flats for walking or pumps for the office with a scarf around your neck; then slip into a strappy pair of slings for evening, take off that scarf and don a glittery necklace and earrings. (If you have never planned like this, then you have not traveled by airline recently – sorry for that!) Of course you could just depend on your natural beauty and a fresh coat of lipstick to carry you through the night; it might just work, but most of us need some extra help. 

I can’t leave out the men here – consider how much your tie choice or one of those gorgeous color shirts changes a basic black suit or navy sport coat.  Omigosh – let’s talk men’s shoes – have men’s shoes (and socks, just ask your 13-year old) not taken on a fashion statement in recent years?  Your shoe choice, even your watch choice is a direct reflection of your sense of style and self!  Your fashion accessories show your sense of flair, at the least, but truly embody YOUR personality.

McKinley Leather has been in business for 24 years and I have just come to the realization that it’s not enough to build a high quality, functional and beautiful piece of furniture.  We pay painstaking attention to detail as we plan various styles and sizes within our line of furniture – we offer some smaller-scale styles, then jump to the other side of the fence to go larger-scale.  We even give our customers the opportunity to change our sizes in the event they have something else in mind.  We plan traditional, transitional, contemporary and rustic styles and offer an array of leather colors, price points and textures – all while keeping comfort, quality and value in mind.

With all the planning that goes into product development and High Point market introductions, the message gets lost once it goes to retail.  Many times I don’t think the customer even understands what they have bought, much less all the options that they have to adapt and customize for the end user.  I realize that our message is being lost.

What message?  Our commitment to domestic production?  Our commitment to quality?  Our commitment to fashion?  No – our commitment is about YOU, to providing what our customers want and need.

Industry-wide, we have to do a better job of communicating our individual messages to our customers.  There have been numerous debates on brick-and- mortar (I hate that label, it just sounds so “cold and impersonal” – let’s change that to Boutique Retailers vs. virtual stores.  Today’s customer has so little time to shop, but truly needs inspiration from Home Furnishing Professionals.  Retailers and interior designers have a unique opportunity to share their vision with customers walking in their door.  Affluent customers are looking for help projecting their personal sense of style and self.  Don’t make them adapt to a cookie-cutter style, go out on a limb for them and show them something different in your Boutique. 

I’m hoping that my recent epiphany (I’m a slow learner) will enable us to help our dealers bring our products to life.  In our High Point showroom, we have separated our vignettes into 4 lifestyle categories that I recently saw identified in Gifts & Decorative Accessories  July 2013 publication: New Traditional, Modern, Vintage/Eclectic Global & Rustic Chic.  Various furniture styles cross into almost any of these categories – it just depends on our “earring” selections – possibly the leather color selection, the leg selection, the nail head trim or accessories surrounding the furniture.

Here’s a Sneak Peek:

New Traditional style combines classic styling with new trendy accessories or embellishments.  Classic looks are married to current styles; perhaps by a fresh coloration on easily recognizable period furniture.

Modern style is reflected in clean lines and minimalist looks with few embellishments.  Simple, stylish looks make an impact, possibly through color.  Keep it simple.

Vintage/Eclectic/Global is the look for a well-traveled individual, furnished with treasures from different time periods and places from around the world.  It offers a home with a story to tell, while personality and quirkiness abound.

Rustic Chic can be described as refined, almost modern; yet earthy and organic.  It is intended for the customer who wants cozy comfort without giving up style.

Identifying and portraying the look you want to project is as simple as choosing your earrings or tie. You start by selecting a quality piece of furniture (McKinley Leather of course!), one that will last for generations, one that will hold your family, one that will support your active lifestyle.   Then you add those personal touches – most of them can be changed as your taste and style change.  Then,


Surround yourself with what you love:
    whether it’s family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever…

Your home is your refuge.


Not sure which earrings or tie to select?  We hope that our High Point Showroom will help you Discover Your Own Look. 

Or... Give us a call, we’ll help you decide!