Catalog Outlet Store opens in Margaretville
By Brian Sweeney
The success of the Margaretville Sleep Center has spurred a move and expansion into a Catalog Outlet Store.
The “new” business is located in a portion of the Bussy Building at the corner of Main and Walnut streets. In addition to beds and mattresses, the enterprise features items such as complete living room sets, TV consoles, coffee tables, end tables, lighting, recliners and many related items.
Manager Jeff Warren started his retail career at the Margaretville Sleep Center in the Binnekill Square complex. That store had only about 300 square feet of space, thus limiting the stock of primarily mattresses, futons and a small amount of furniture that could be displayed.
In spite of the modest space and the historic flood that struck just three months after the enterprise opened, the store did well.
“The hope from the day we opened the sleep center, was that if we received a positive response, that we would hopefully find a larger space on Main Street, Margaretville,” Jeff explained.
That’s exactly what happened.
The back area in the Bussy Building had remained vacant after a fish store/restaurant moved out and the sleep center had been utilizing the building for storage. So, it was a natural progression for the store to move across the street and expand into the 1,600-square-foot space.
Jeff said that agreement for leasing the Bussy Building was reached in April and an extensive renovation got underway in June. Large display windows were installed, a new paint job was applied and the interior was redesigned to accommodate a retail shop.
The new showroom offers a perfect location, with good visibility and lots of foot traffic in the village. Jeff noted that the project wouldn’t have been possible without great cooperation of the building’s owners, Eric Wedemeyer and Sue Doig
“Our beautiful showroom and the expansion into a full Catalog Outlet store would not have been possible without Eric and Sue making this investment,” he explained.
Jeff pointed out that Catalog Outlet is a chain of stores with locations in Unadilla, Oneonta and North Norwich. Because of the limited size of the original business in Margaretville, the business did not carry that moniker.
“We didn’t want to call it a Catalog Outlet, because it was so much smaller than the other stores,” he noted.
Now that the business has a full-fledged showroom (plus an ample storage area), it has become the fourth business in the franchise.
Catalog Outlet founder Jerry Palmer and Jeff have been friends since they grew up together in Sidney. Jerry established the stores more than 23 ago and routinely asked Jeff when he was going to come and manage one of the branches.
Ready for the country
After two decades in the insurance business in New York City, Jeff was finally ready to take up Jerry on his offer.
Jeff and his wife, Liz, purchased a home in Windham about 10 years ago and then sold that place when they found a house in Margaretville that they preferred. The Warrens were attracted to the Catskills for the hiking opportunities. Ultimately, they decided to make this their full-time residence.
Liz, who has worked many years outfitting hotels, opened the Bed and Bath Shoppe in the Binnekill Square in May 2010. Coincidentally, when her husband’s store moved across the street, she was able to expand her store into the adjoining space, enlarging her display options.
Jeff naturally views his wife’s store as a companion shopping experience. With several other shops in Margaretville catering to home décor needs, he sees the village as growing retail destination.
“We hope that Margaretville can be one-stop shopping for the home,” he stated.
Jeff said his showroom offers a nice selection of the types of offerings that Catalog Outlet provides.
Plenty of choices
“With the number of vendors that Catalog Outlet represents, we show a few items from each, so the customer can appreciate the quality. For additional selection, they can review the catalogs of those particular vendors,” he pointed out.
He indicated that the majority of items sold at the store are American-made, by well-know manufacturers and that many customers appreciate this fact.
He noted that oftentimes the items desired by customers are available in the company’s warehouse or at one of the other stores “for prompt and courteous delivery.” If a special order is required, it generally takes two-to-three weeks from the order date before the customer receives their delivery, Jeff said.
He added that if an item requires assembly, that service is included for items picked up at the store and for delivered pieces.
When it comes to delivery, there are no boundaries.
“There is no limit on areas where we will deliver,” Jeff stated.
Jeff pointed out that, between his new store and his wife’s enterprise, three new part-time jobs have been created in the village. He’s anticipating that more jobs will be added.
“Our intention is to expand the hours and the employee base as soon as possible,” said Jeff.
Catalog Outlet has been operating at the Bussy Building since the beginning of August and Jeff is very pleased with the response from the public.
“It’s been fantastic,” he said enthusiastically.
The Catalog Outlet is open Monday-Saturday from 11 a.m.-5 p.m., and on Sundays from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. For additional information, please call 586-6295.