So, one day (the first week of July, 1980, to be exact), my dad brings my mom a cartoon by Dean Vietor clipped from the New Yorker, and says, “This is Bob!”
A guy kneeling at his bed prays, ‘I don’t ask for much, but what I get should be of very good quality.’
I was lucky enough to be surrounded by quality from an early age. My dad was Baker Furniture’s West Coast manufacturer’s rep, and as such, our house always had really good furniture coming in (and going out of- he was always the salesman!) our house. His office was at the Baker showroom in Los Angeles, and he would go in periodically on weekends. Some of my best memories are of his taking me with him and being able to roam from room to room- literally getting lost in the maze of the perfectly designed spaces. It was like being in the movies. I’d plunk myself down in a room setup and imagine the lives of the people who would live in such a room and how I was a part of that world. I was hooked. Before leaving, he go through the showroom and I’d watch as he zhooshed the accessories on the table surfaces and then flip off the lights. The funny thing was that he’d also always do this at home, too. He was constantly in motion, and as he would walk by a table, he’d scoot a tea caddy, turn an ashtray, or re-angle a framed photograph. His sample case would always be filled with rings of fabric samples, and I’d sit in our living room and flip through them and put them together in different combinations. It was an aesthetic education from an early age, and all the while I learned the importance of quality.
And, true to the cartoon, I believe that one doesn’t need a lot, but what one has should be the best quality affordable because quality lasts.
Quality grows with you and moves with you from house to house.
Quality can be refinished or recovered.
Quality is passed on to the next generation.
Quality is key.