“It’s who we are and what we believe that sets us apart from other people,” says business owner Bryan Ogle. His customer service philosophy, layered in artistic expression, beats at the heart of The Curated Home, a fledgling flooring and design company in Bellingham. Though they are new, they are mighty — and gaining traction. Ogle sat down to share his story and highlight The Curated Home’s specialized services.
“I was the general manager of another flooring store that I ran for three years, and then left in January,” Ogle says. Together with a group of people he’d hired throughout his tenure in the industry, Ogle created The Curated Home with a more unique approach to the business: his scope for exceptional design and service.
“Our customer service is the definition of curated — which is carefully chosen and thoughtfully organized, presented professionally — it’s our motto,” says Ogle.
When you walk into their showroom, you are graced with an artful assemblage of products they believe in, chosen with their clientele in mind. “Our products are all of better quality and they’re all modern in taste and design,” Ogle says. “We have a wall that’s done in different textures of paint, stripes of satin and flat, the carpet is laid out in a herringbone pattern. All done to inspire creative design. The idea is if you just want some quick carpet, great, but if you want someone to help you design your home that might include art or different techniques, we display that so you can see examples which also include window treatments.”
Ogle displays the work of his husband, well-known PNW photographer Rakan Alduaij, on the walls of the showroom to demonstrate the complementary nature of their products with art. Many of The Curated Home’s clientele are established homeowners with collections and décor they’ve invested in, making the marriage of art and home design an important element of choice.
Starting with a client’s needs, designers suggest choices that make the most sense in each client’s space. “I have a wonderful designer, Denise Reimink who has over 20 years of experience in design, which includes kitchens and bathrooms,” says Ogle. “A lot of people have an understanding of what they want but there are many varying degrees in quality of which people may not be aware.” Lifestyles factor into your home with variables like kids, pets, and more. The Curated Home helps guide you through selections that fit both necessity and desire.
When starting an improvement project, big box stores can be tempting, but there are plenty of drawbacks to consider. More often than not, customers are lost in a sea of choices. “Tile, for example, can be overwhelming,” Ogle says. “By narrowing this down into items that are appropriate for our area, that helps with choice. For example, major brands sell carpet nationwide and, as a retailer, [one] might buy a couple of racks from them that are full of carpet no one on the west coast is ever going to buy. We don’t have any of that; we weeded all of that out.”
Despite their status as new kid on the block, The Curated Home makes a big impact through their quality and breadth of expertise. On their website, you’ll find a comprehensive range of services, from carpet binding and home design to kitchen and bathroom remodeling. “We offer professional installation, and all of our subcontractors are vetted and well-qualified – they know what they’re doing,” says Ogle. “Most of our business has been, so far, a bathroom or kitchen remodel.”
If you live in one of the many aging but beautiful homes in the area and would rather focus on maintenance or restoration, there are plenty of services to choose from.
“From my point of view, restoration might be refinishing or sanding a floor, which we definitely do,” Ogle says. “If you’ve got beautiful fir floors you want resurfaced, we’re happy to provide that service. You don’t necessarily have to buy something new from us because there are a lot of old homes in this area with a lot of character.”
With a focus on niche design and selective products, The Curated Home generally caters to higher-end clientele, but a specific section of the market has been a great source of business as well.
“There are a lot of small property managers who have properties they need to quickly turnover, and I have the ability to do that for them,” says Ogle. “One of the things that’s starting to take off that I didn’t expect is window treatments. We carry a line called MHZ, which is a German brand. They’re designed for European windows but are becoming a trend in building here — they’re very customizable, modern, and beautiful.”
Despite their success, The Curated Home has faced singular challenges mostly due to big box competition and lack of foot traffic. Even so, there is a silver lining to these obstacles. “The largest challenge I’ve had to overcome is getting people to find us, as we are a destination store,” Ogle says. “But if you’ve managed to get to me, you’re serious about one of the services we provide, and we treat you as such.”
Amidst their first year of trials and triumphs, the future for The Curated Home is bright and one to watch. “There’s nothing exciting about flooring, but in these times where we currently find ourselves it’s a very expensive investment in your home,” says Ogle. “I want to create a place where people are comfortable to shop and where they feel they’re being provided a value for the services and materials we provide. As how we live at home changes, having a comfortable space is important.”
The Curated Home
3161 Mercer Avenue, Suite 103
Hours: Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.