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Company History

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Overview

Household Essentials began under a different name in 1986, but it has always been a housewares company. And housewares remains our expertise. From our initial forays into ironing boards and outdoor dryers, to the extension of those lines via hampers, clothing care, and organization, Household Essentials has grown to meet the needs of an ever-expanding industry.

What makes Household Essentials unique, however, is our relationship with our customers. We are both manufacturer and retailer with a live, local customer service department right here in St. Louis county. If you call during business hours, you will talk with a real person. And if high call volume requires you to leave a message, we WILL call you back. You can also reach us through the "Contact Us" button on the website and Facebook.

Our products are offered in stores you know both online and in box stores, like Target, Lowe's, The Home Depot, Walmart, Macy's, Kohl's, and Amazon. We also have growing business with smaller, local retailers, too. And we offer our products directly via householdessential.com. Our prices are higher than our retail partners. We are not out to undersell anyone. Rather, we want to give the consumer choices. And, if nothing else, provide them with the information about products they need to make the best choice they can--whether they buy from us or from another fine retailer.
 

The Corporate Story

Household Essentials began its journey in 1986 as a small housewares company called American Homeware. Eight years later, through several name changes and acquisitions, including companies that specialized in ironing boards and cover and pads and innovative storage concepts, American Homeware became Design Trend. Two years later, Design Trend was purchased by Whitney Pak-Corr, who changed the company’s name to Whitney Design. The company continued to grow and diversify. It expanded further into laundry and storage/organization via outdoor dryers and behind-the-door storage. 

In 2010, James Glenn and Mark Brown formed Household Essentials, LLC, which purchased Whitney Design.

Though the company has had different owners and different names, it has been under the same continuous senior management team for over 25 years—the same team that leads it now. We have over 200 years of collective experience. This consistency and experience brings us a great deal of strength, passion, and vision. 

Household Essentials enjoys excellent relationships with major retailers and we enjoy a good mix of customers in our top ten. We supply mass merchants (discount stores), specialty stores (Bed, Bath, & Beyond, and The Container Store), and hardware / home centers (Ace, True Value, Lowe’s and Menards). We also enjoy a significant breadth of e-commerce customers, including Amazon and Wayfair. 

Household Essentials continues to grow in both distribution and dollar volume. We are leaders in home laundry and storage, and we continue to grow and expand our product lines and specialties. And since Household Essentials’s exclusive-distribution partnership with Leifheit in North America, we proudly offer high-quality, German-engineered goods for kitchen, cleaning, laundry, and personal health.

Here at Household Essentials, we will always pursue the innovation, quality, and service that have made us who we are. And we invite you to get to know us, making our Household a part of yours.

Timeline

1986: American Homeware, a small import company in Dallas, is established. Its primary products are closet organization and laundry accessories. These products are mostly imported from the Far East and sold to specialty retailers across the USA.

1991: American Homeware purchases Pressing Supply, the second largest producer of ironing board covers & pads in the USA.

1993: American Homeware purchases Ever-Ready Appliance Corporation. Ever-Ready, established in the 1940s, is a family-operated steel plant located in St. Louis, Missouri that produces ironing boards. 

April 1994: American Homeware moves its operation to St. Louis. The company announces that all three companies—American Homeware, Pressing Supply, and Every-Ready—will be combined and operated under a new corporate identity: DESIGN TREND.

1996: Design Trend is purchased by Whitney-Corr Pak, a market leader in decorative corrugate products. When Whitney and Design Trend merge, the company is renamed WHITNEY DESIGN. Unfortunately, the decorative corrugate box market experiences significant decline due to the overwhelming growth of plastic storage. It is decided to close the corrugate operation in late 1997.

February 2006: Whitney Design purchases Butt’s Manufacturing. Butts is the market share leader in outdoor laundry products, e.g., pole / umbrella style dryers and clothesline reels.

December 2007: Whitney Design purchases Hinge-It. Hinge-It's product line is made up of patented and uniquely designed products that use door hinges to provide creative storage options in under-used spaces. 

January 2010: Whitney Design’s assets are purchased by Household Essentials, LLC.

June 2011: Household Essentials purchases Cedar Fresh, the market leader in high quality aromatic cedar products that protect homes against moths, mildew, and mustiness. 

June 2014: Household Essentials partners with Leifheit AG to become the exclusive distributor of Leifheit products, including Soehnle Scales, to the North American market. Leifheit leads the European market with its innovative, high-quality, German-engineered products for kitchen, laundry, and cleaning.

November 2014: Household Essentials begins selling direct to consumer. 

2015: Household Essentials partners with KROSNO Glassworks, the fine Polish glassmaker who already supplies some of the top names in the US glass market but who wants to export and grow their own brand name. They are featured in the 2016 Home and Houseware Show.

Late 2015: Household Essentials adds Everloc to its growing list of European partners!  Everloc Suction Systems is a market leader in suction based organization for bath, kitchen, and laundry in Europe and Australia, making it a great fit for the US market and its love of convenience.

March 2016: Household Essentials launched NEW line of home décor items, and line expansions in modern furniture for home and laundry, wicker, and Leifheit.
 

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