The Kitchen Designer

Thanks for stopping by! I'm Susan Serra, certified kitchen designer, and my mission is to take kitchen design style, function and analysis to a higher level. Here's why the kitchen has the most honored place in the home - all five senses reside in the kitchen.  Best...Susan  Contact: susan@susanserraassociates.com

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Goodbye Home Expo

I couldn't believe my eyes when I glanced at the big orange Home Depot logo on my newsletter sent from upscale Interior Design magazine. Right there in black and white it stated that Home Depot is closing all of their Home Expo stores, along with other cuts within the corporation. It went on to say that even in the boom times, Home Expo stores underperformed. 

First let me express my sadness at the loss of 5,000 jobs. It comes at the worst time imaginable, with fewer job prospects out there. I'm sure it will be a difficult time for many. 

You know what? I was going to put down some thoughts (not necessarily all positive) about Home Expo, but, given the sentence I just wrote, above, I'll just keep it as news and will spare you and myself more than that. Not a good idea to do otherwise.  I'm sorry for those losses. They just keep coming, don't they?

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Reader Comments (11)

Yesterday was a really tough day, with all the job losses. Where are all those folks supposed to get jobs now? It is very scary.

I am very grateful to have a job, but I took a pay cut recently. It was a lot better than the alternative.

I will say that, I feel less bad (not for the employees, but for the company) when businesses with poor business models go out of business. This horrible economic crisis will end some day, and a lot of bad or poorly run businesses will be gone, and there probably is a need to clean house on some level.

What is a scary is the domino effect of all of this. Retail businesses are suffering because people are not shopping. Lots of people in retail lose their jobs, so of course even fewer people are shopping. And even for those of us who still have jobs, we are afraid, so we don't shop either.

There is some hope. Some business are still thriving. I am really cutting back a lot, but I live in a small town, and there are certain relatively new businesses that I adore, and really want to have in my town, so I make it my business to spend what little spending money I have there, and not at the mall. We have a wonderful kitchen store that opened in the past year -- it sells all kinds of kitchen gadgets, pots and pans, cooking and food-related books, etc. Really interesting and unique stuff. The owner's speciality is knives. He has an amazing collection, and is very knowledgeable.

I made it a point to buy as many Christmas presents there as I possibly could.

The owner of the store said he had a fantastic Christmas, did much better than he thought he would, given the economy, because I think other people in town also went out of their way to buy there.

Same with another wonderful business in town. She sells beautiful housewares, lots of handmade, one of a kind items. She also said that she had a great Christmas. In fact, she had ordered conservatively because of the bad economic news, and practically ran out of stock a few weeks before Christmas, and had to scramble to fill her store.

How has your business been affected, Susan? The gardenweb kitchen site is as active as ever, much to my surprise.

January 27, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJeannie

Its rough out there!!!! I'm an out of work designer/draftsan/proj. manager. NOBODY is hiring. In order to thrive you must stand out in the crowd and be able to offer something your fellow designers can't. Price, Design, Service and ????
I think most people in this biz that loose their jobs in this downturn will go independent. Especially in the high end market. Making it even tougher for the high end businesses that have a big showroom and staff to pay for.
High end businesses in this area are now going after the mid-range (price) projects to survive. “High end design on a budget” Also going after mid-range multi-housing projects to stay busy and bring in cash.

January 27, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermike

Well, all I can say about the bad times is that they will not last--they never do. Of course, in the meantime a lot of people are being very badly hurt. I just find myself hoping that we will one day put together an economy that is based on the largest amount of good for the largest amount of people, instead of always having a handful profit at the expense of the rest of us. I'm sure others may not have thought too highly of Home Expo, but I always liked it and am sorry to see it go.

January 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJoseph

Unfortunately, here's another piece of sad news- Domino Magazine is closing as well. The last issue will be in March 2009.

Here's the link to the New York Times article: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/29/business/media/29mag.html?ref=business

Twitter- @homesavvi

January 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterStace

Guess the economy is to thank for all these happenings. May we hope no more losses are recorded.

January 29, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterPedestal Dining Table

Thankfully, the MS banking industry isn't tied into the national banks so loans aren't a problem here for construction. Of course, everyone lost a ton in the stock market, though. And the big chain stores are closing because of their whole company situation. And the car manufacturing plants that were supposed to "save" us are about at idle. Not good. Firms here have laid off some new hires though. I hate it.

January 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterPamela

I had not heard this news...but it is true, Expo never did that quite well

February 2, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCherry@NewburghRestoration

Sorry to see so many people loose their jobs in these awful times, but now some of the private small retailers in the our area that Expo almost did under will have a chance.

February 21, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSue

I am a 27 year old kitchen designer in Montana with a baby on the way and a job that pays solely on commission.

In MT there are no benefits to help offset insurance, retirement, heathcare costs, etc... and making a living is difficult. I know that I am lucky to have "job security" in that when there is no business, I don't get paid- they can't cut costs on nothing :)

I am also scrambling to figure out maternity leave, child care, the decision on whether I should re-join the workforce after baby is born, etc... MT has not been hit as hard as the majority of the country, but it is painful!

I feel for those without jobs, but there are also many of us in commissioned fields who go to work for at least 8 hours a day, get no benefits and don't receive a paycheck. I wonder about the logic of the situation and just hope things turn around.

I also know that the country has seen many economic ups & downs throughout history and it will "bounce back," but for someone born in the 80s, this is the first down I have personally experienced. After graduating 6 years ago and working at a break-neck pace, this "slow down" feels like an outright halt!

Here's to hanging in there with the rest of the country and hoping for the best!

Good luck to you all & I feel for those who have lost their jobs.

February 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

I guess I mean to say that the number of unemployed does not include those in commissioned fields who are employed & unpaid. I wonder what that number would come out to if you took it all into account.

February 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

Our current kitchen and bath cad (20/20) designer has had to leave to be the primary care giver for his ill wife. We are currently interviewing for this position with our company. Please apply thru the above email.


December 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDeForest Winslow

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