Brown & Beam is a different kind of furniture store. Lora Brown’s shop incorporates new furnishings, some vintage pieces, flea market finds and an eclectic mix of original and upcycled accessories. Among them you might find a denim rug made out of old jeans, or bentwood dining chairs with faux fur seat cushions. They all exist in design harmony in a 6,600-square-foot warehouse in Middleton’s business park off University Avenue.
Brown, who’s lived in a half-dozen houses since starting her family, says she’s “developed a habit of fixing things up.”
The business has been open since November. The large space looks somewhat sparse right now, but Brown has several dining sets available as well as sofa/chair/coffee table setups. She’ll continue to bring in items for dining and living room areas and will add bedroom pieces in the near future.
“I can’t that say I’m one style or another, so I want to try and offer lots of different styles for other people,” says Brown. “You can mix and match just about anything, if you want to.”
Her motto? “Make the space the way you want to make it. As long as you’re happy, you like seeing these pieces, it doesn’t really matter if other people think they go together or they don’t.”
Mix and match just about anything, from a Mid-Century sideboard to metal nesting boxes.
Brown doesn’t sacrifice when it comes to quality. She wants customers to be satisfied with pieces that will last long term. She makes sure drawers work and chair legs are sturdy and that her vendors back their products.
While Brown & Beam’s primary customer base so far has been designers and B2B, Brown intends to widen that base. She consults and offers interior design services (“Sometimes people don’t even like doing the design or picking things out”) and will do whatever it takes to help people find just the piece they’re looking for.
Brown thinks it’s too easy to “get lost” looking for items online; sometimes it’s much better to see something in real life. Though she’d love for customers to walk away with pieces that are in the store, she’ll also order items and has a selection to shop from on her own website, brownandbeam.com. She also offers a price-match guarantee, hoping to sway customers from buying off Amazon or Wayfair and to keep their shopping local.
Brown & Beam, 2118 Eagle Drive, Middleton, 608-217-0027, brownandbeam.com, 10 am-6 pm Wed.-Sat., noon-5 pm Sun., Mon.-Tues. by appointment