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Customized Furniture Built to Specific Needs

February 27, 1992|SUSAN GEMBROWSKI

Whether you're home alone, entertaining guests or spending a quiet evening with your family, you want where you live to be a comfortable and inviting place that reflects your individuality.

A little innovation--adding a carefully crafted table, a new fabric to your chairs or a front-yard seating area--can give your space a fresh outlook.

North County has scores of craftsmen and designers creating custom and customized furnishings for the home. It has nurseries to help turn your landscape into an intimate garden. It has shops that supply you with the materials you need to do things yourself. It has creative people with ideas you're free to borrow, or if you like, hire to put their talents to work just for you.

On the following pages, a report on some of what's happening on the home front in North County. North County is home to a number of small businesses that have developed lines of furniture that they customize to fit a particular home or design scheme. The firms don't start from scratch each time they build, but take a basic design and size and finish it to the customer's specifications.

Here is what a few of the firms offer:

The right fit

Vista-based Grandwood Inc. creates custom cabinetry and other furniture for the office and home.

Ken Dallmeyer, owner of Grandwood, said the company has its own molding styles, from contemporary through transitional to traditional.

A basic piece might be finished in a variety of ways, such as a traditional-style executive desk in birch finished in a cherry stain with a leather top.

Grandwood does a variety of custom work for interior designers. "Our niche in the furniture market is adapting wall units to customers' requirements, making them wider, deeper, narrower," Dallmeyer said.

One custom-made unit was designed to serve three functions: as an entertainment center, a writing desk and a vanity table.

Grandwood designs can be purchased through H. Johnson Furniture & Interiors in Escondido and Oceanside and V.J. Lloyd's Fine Furniture & Interior Design with an outlet in Solana Beach, as well as Designer Gallery on Morena Boulevard in San Diego. Delivery usually takes six to eight weeks from time of order.

Grandwood Inc., Ken Dallmeyer, 1305 Armorlite Drive, San Marcos, 744-8663, hours: by appointment. Finishing touches

Diane DeWindt's business, Unique Laminates & Wood Products Inc., builds tables, buffets and cabinets, and then finishes them off with a flourish.

The firm's line of custom finishes includes the Tessitura , which DeWindt calls the "cracked earth look," the Pietra , a paper-like finish, and Sasso , a layered faux finish.

Choice of styles includes furniture built with exotic woods and veneers as well as plastic, metal and glass laminates.

"We create looks with different mediums that we're now doing on the furniture we build," DeWindt said, adding that her company does a lot of work with interior designers and contractors, as well as individuals. "You can get a nice mahogany veneer with Pietra on it in a 6-foot buffet for about $1,800."

"Sometimes people just want an armoire or a piece of furniture and we turn it into a built-in," DeWindt said. Wall units range in price from $150 to $500 per linear foot.

The company, in business since 1982, operates an 800-square-foot showroom in a 6,000-square-foot space in San Marcos. Delivery takes from four to eight weeks for most items.

Unique Laminates & Wood Products Inc., 445 Ryan Drive, Suite 102, San Marcos, 471-0370, hours: by appointment. Southwest flavor

Kathy and Alan Leander operate a small showroom and manufacturing facility in Vista that features furniture made from lodgepole (large poles made into rustic pieces) and the Santa Fe style pine furniture.

Southwest Contempo also designs and manufacture contemporary pieces from faux stone. The custom finish is often what determines the look of a particular piece, Kathy Leander said.

"My husband just finished a wooden sofa table and coffee table in a neoclassical design," said Leander, who works with interior designers, retail stores and individual clients. "He finished it to make it look like iron."

Southwest Contempo, 1120 Sycamore Ave., Suite E, Vista, 598-6161, hours: by appointment.

Computer niche

Thomas Sachetti has developed a line of adjustable computer furniture for use in the home or office. The desk has a pullout keyboard shelf that can be adjusted to the correct distance from the monitor.

Sachetti's shelf has an adjustable spring-load design to help make a person's forearms parallel to the keyboard. The design hides computer equipment wires in a pocket attached to the back side of the desks. An all-wood drafting table can be adjusted up to a 45-degree angle, with the touch of one hand.

Sachetti's business, Godfrey-Thomas Industries, employs 10 to 12 people in its 6,000-square-foot facility in Vista. The company recently opened a showroom.

Godfrey-Thomas Industries, 2236 S. Santa Fe Drive, Vista, 599-9945, hours: Mon.-Sat., 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Work spaces

San Marcos-based Persnickety specializes in contemporary desks, wall units and tables for work spaces.

Materials used include hardwoods, such a walnut and oak, and laminate, such as formica.

"We create a comfortable environment for the individual," said DyAnna Van Every, who often works with interior designers in customizing a design. Persnickety develops and builds furniture for commercial clients as well as home offices.

A companion business, Avanart, manufactures office furniture from a granite-looking polymer called Avonite .

Persnickety Manufacturing Inc., Avanart Inc., DyAnna Van Every, 985-987 Linda Vista Drive, San Marcos, 744-6565, 744-7344, hours: Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-5 p.m., appointments suggested.

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