Furniture City History
"Furniture manufacturing in Grand Rapids dates back to 1836..."
Take a look at the furniture in your home. Chances are, if your family has lived in this area for some time, you may have one of these relics. The "Guild Certified" tags, as pictured here, can be found located underneath certain furniture items. If you find yourself in possession of one of these fine pieces of furniture, you'll know it has a great and rich history.
Below is an excerpt from "The Public Museum of Grand Rapids" (Copyright 1998 IBSN: 0-9666524-0-1) telling about these 'Guilded' pieces.
"Every piece of furniture sold by a Guild dealer was registered by number and marked with a special tag identifying it as 'Guild Certified'. When the piece was purchased, the consumer received a certificate proving its authenticity and listing it's pedigree. The Guild offered it's dealers a number of services. Manufactures of home decorating projects such as wallpaper, paint, carpeting, lighting, and household accessories were licensed to produce official Guild lines to be sold in association with Guild furniture."
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"Advertising art and copy were distributed to dealers for their local newspaper ads. Retailers were allowed to distribute complimentary copies of The Stylist: A Magazine for the Homemaker to their customers. Published by the Guild from 1932 until 1967, The Stylist offered tips on home decorating in both modern and traditional styles. Furniture made by Guild factories was prominently marketed through the magazine's articles. Makers were referred to only as 'Grand Rapids Furniture Makers Guild member companies'. Guild companies also attempted to boost sales by providing furnishings for Hollywood, since many people saw an escape at the movies during these difficult times. Stars of the silver screen where elegantly photographed in room settings filled with grand rapids furniture, and movie set designers often furnished their sets with pieces purchased at the Grand Rapids Furniture Market."