By Scott Carlson
After a 36-year run, the husband and wife owners of Bargain Upholstery in South St. Anthony Park plan to close shop this summer and retire.
Jerry Meusburger and Dianne Revoir said it’s been a good run for Bargain Upholstery, 797 Raymond Ave. He has focused on the re-upholstery work, she has handled the books and advertising,
“You start a [upholstery] project and get to see a finished product three or four days later,” Meusburger said. “I will miss the people [customers] the most.”
Revoir has enjoyed the variety of her work.
“The best thing about the business is the neighborhood,” she said. “A lot of other businesses have been here a long time. It’s been fun to be with them but also see the changes.”
Meusburger never imagined he would have a career as a furniture upholster. In the 1970s, he left Iowa to take a job in human resources, and then attend Luther Seminary in St. Anthony Park. But when he answered a help-wanted ad for an upholstering job, Meusburger found a new calling.
“I got more excited about tearing up furniture than going to church,” he said, laughing. In 1983, after learning the craft at one Twin Cities shop, Meusburger decided to open his own upholstering business. The couple has faced their share of challenges. At one time, Bargain Upholstery found itself competing against bigger companies that primarily focused on lower pricing, Meusburger said.
“It hasn’t been easy, but fortunately we were able to withstand the bad times,” Meusburger said.
In recent years, the business has benefitted from the recycling boom, Revoir said. Waste-conscious consumers turned to Bargain Upholstery, hoping Meusburger would transform a beat-up sofa or chair into a beautiful piece of furniture, extending its life and keeping it from landing in a landfill.
Worries about generating new business are now a thing of the past. The couple stopped taking new orders in April and expects to be working on a backlog of existing orders through at least July.
When it comes time for Meusburger and Revoir to retire this summer, they will be ready to celebrate another milestone: their 40th wedding anniversary.