Furniture company stands the test of time - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Furniture company stands the test of time

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NEWPORT, Vt. -

It's hard to believe that this is how some of the best hand crafted furniture in the country begins. At Newport Furniture Parts in the Kingdom, the old school values of woodworking mix with the new school way of making things more efficient.

"It's a lot cheaper to try it here and have it not work as opposed to go through months and months of prototyping to find out you should have had a different angle," said the company's David Legacy.

"They won't find our name on any of the furniture pieces," added the company's Paul Garepy.

Newport Furniture Parts produces wooden components for the furniture industry -- from chair backs to arms. They also assemble furniture that outside companies sell under their labels, like furniture giant Room and Board.

The company started in Canada, moving to Vermont -- first for just a presence in the U.S. And then in the 1960's making Newport its only home.

"It was very hard in the late 90s and early 2000's -- it was a roller coaster ride. You'd have a spike in the summer, then drop in the winter," Garepy said.

That's when the business invested in equipment, technology and their employees, betting that Made in the USA would stand the test of time.

"In the early 2000's it was a mass exodus of manufactures going over seas to import products and what we're seeing now is just the opposite," Garepy said.

Sales are now around 8-million dollars a year -- the same amount as in the 80's and 90's. Sixty percent of their sales are from out of state.

Now with the 50th anniversary in business just around the corner next year, Newport Furniture Parts continues to evolve.

"We definitely push our boundaries every day -- we push them. We can visualize what's going to work and what's not going to work," Legacy said.

There might be more computerized machines than ever in the 1000-square foot business, but there are still 65 employees getting their hands dirty. And the company is hiring. "Vermont is known for quality products and craftsmanship," Garepy said. "We have proven we're from Vermont by the quality of our products."

A company drilling in made in Vermont values.

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