hm richards sofa 4

hm richards sofa 4
photograph hm richards sofa 4
image hm richards sofa 4

“Today is a fantastic day for Lee County and North Mississippi as H.M. Richards expands its presence in our state and announces hundreds of new jobs for the area’s workers,” Governor Bryant said. “The company could have chosen to expand elsewhere, and the fact the H.M. Richards team chose its Guntown location speaks volumes about the strength of Mississippi’s business climate and furniture industry and about the productive workforce throughout the region and entire state. I wish the company many more years of success in Lee County.”

These pieces dwarf the furniture of an earlier era, or even the more modest designs elsewhere in furniture stores today. At Raymour & Flanigan, the East Coast furniture chain, a chair from the Briarwood collection by HM Richards is equal in width to Le Corbusier’s LC2 love seat, designed in the late ’20s and sold by Design Within Reach. (The “chair and a half” version is nearly as big as the LC2 couch.) With its stout profile and rolled arms, the Briarwood chair is a throne for the King of Sunday Afternoon.

H.M. Richards currently has 977 employees in Guntown and operates in a 900,000-square-foot facility. For its expansion, the company will purchase the land adjacent to its current facility and construct a new building to house the expanded operations.

“Look at the home inventory,” said Bill Quirk, the president of HM Richards, the company that makes the Briarwood chair and its supersize chair-and-a-half sibling. “People still need to furnish the big homes that were built. It’s not like all of a sudden furniture will change.”

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She recalled one client who insisted on buying the Dr. Pitt sectional sofa by Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams. “It’s U-shaped, but they sell ottomans that are the same seat height as the couch, so you can push it in and make a raft,” Ms. Elliott said. The sectional was to go into a dining area that the client was converting to a family room.

But the client insisted, and the sofa took up so much space that nothing else fit in the room. “There wasn’t room for a floor lamp,” Ms. Elliott said. “We mounted lights on the walls.”

In some cases — particularly in New York, where doorways and elevators are narrow — big pieces bump up against simple laws of physics. Max Bar-Nahum, the director of sales and marketing at Dr. Sofa, a Bronx-based company that specializes in the disassembly and reassembly of furniture, said he gets several calls a day from people who buy a couch or chair and discover it’s too big to deliver. The steel-frame couches made by B&B Italia and other modern designers bring him a lot of business. “You have no idea how big these sofas are,” Mr. Bar-Nahum said.

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