Futon Life's memory lane Spring 89 to Winter 90
Publishers Forum
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Joe Tatulli - Year 1

Strolling down the memory lane Spring 89 to Winter 90

Volume 1 Number 1, Spring 1989
Futon Expo 5 - New Orleans, LA
Premier Issue: "Where are we headed next?"

We covered some very basic, common sense topics in the first issue. In fact, we still continue to cover some very basic common sense issues even now. I guess the difference is we didn't know how valuable the basics were back then. Retail Perspective was born with the intent to help futon retailers sell more futons and develop a professional strategy for growth. Business to Business began as a series of articles on business and financial issues. In the first issue we covered a topic we will cover again soon, "How to Write a Business Plan". Bob Gamer of Temple Slug in Kansas City, wrote a commentary for us touching on an issue we've addressed over and over again, that being price vs. value, or when do you give so little for so little that your company becomes so little that you vanish. Company "invisibility" is a syndrome we have all seen in this and every other industry (thanks for the story, Tony). Other highlights: Nippon - Euro Futon Frame the first metal futon frame; Kaon-First Wall-Hugger; Horndove, Lofa & Shamiana make it happen.

Volume 1 Number 2, Summer 1989
William Brouwer Woodworks

Taking care of business is a daily tale and we shared some experience with our readers on how to keep records and use them to project growth for the future. We also focused on the futon industry's "Grandfather" (a phrase coined by Robin Reid at the Denver show, Brouwer's first and last Futon Expo) William Brouwer, who moved his factory from downtown Boston to Franklin, Mass. in 1989. The move was fatal for Brouwer who went out of business one year later. Dave Jaeger, then Brouwer's Production Manager, is still making custom furniture in the Brouwer tradition at his own firm, S&J; Woodworks in Canton, MA.

Volume 1 Number 3, Autumn 1989
The Mother of All Patents

Not everyone was happy with our content, and in this issue I really upset the apple cart. Bob Fireman sent me a copy of his patent on the infamous "futon kicker" mechanism and I thought it would be cool to focus on it on the cover. Oh well, better luck next time. Bob was angry with me for years and continues to let me know it when I step over the line into "editorial misconduct." The feature story was on the bankruptcy of New Moon who went out of business owing its creditors a million or so dollars. From The Source also announced their partnership with New West, a California futon frame maker. Ron Massey ran the first ad for his new "L' Amicale", still a work of art.

Volume 1 Number 4, Winter 1989-90
Futons, Trucks & Money

We looked at the flammability issue again. We also looked at marketing as well as the issue of shipping with an article called Futons, Trucks & Money. This topic was hot then and has surfaced again recently with the Federal Rate Classification Board trying to change the rate classes for futon furniture, with the result being higher freight costs for suppliers, retailers and consumers. We also had our first insert trying to sell our now famous T-Shirts and "Flex Your Futon" bumper stickers.

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