Marge Carson is closing its doors after 75 years in business.
CITY OF INDUSTRY, Calif. – In an announcement to employees, representatives and customers, Jim LaBarge, CEO of Marge Carson, said the company will cease operations at the end of this month. LaBarge said he is closing the company to focus on personal health concerns.
In addition, the company noted that several entities have expressed interest in purchasing Marge Carson in recent weeks. However, economic uncertainty combined with LaBarge’s health challenges make it difficult to finalize a possible acquisition of the company by another brand, according to the company.
The company closes its production facilities in Mexico. Marge Carson will not be able to meet its backlog and will send cancellations for those outstanding orders. Business operations in the Philippines and Indonesia will also be closed.
“Many have reached out and shared wonderful memories of the times we spent together over the years,” said Jim LaBarge, adding, “After 49 years in the furniture industry, I am leaving much sooner than I would have liked, but it is become necessary to focus on my health. I cherish all my time in the furniture industry.”
Founded by Marjorie Carson, an interior designer, in 1947, the company evolved into the production of luxury custom upholstery and luggage items defined by glossy finishes and fabrics in soft neutrals, luxurious seating, attention to couture detail and a elevated, comfortable elegance, representing the “Californian casual” style.
“When so many pieces of furniture look alike, Marge Carson really stands out on a retail or showroom floor with a look all its own,” LaBarge said.
An early adopter of the move to manufacturing in Mexico, the company established a custom upholstery manufacturing facility in Tijuana in 1987.
After incorporation, Marjorie Carson was succeeded by her son and daughter-in-law, Bob and Carol Carson. Mask Corp. owned the company from 1987 to 1994. Jim LaBarge bought the company from Masco in 1995 and over the past 25 years has grown the company significantly from a primarily designer-focused West Coast upholstery specialist to a full-line, collection-focused company with international distribution and a broader footprint with showrooms in Los Angeles and Dallas, a renovated High Point showroom and headquarters in Pomona, California.
Under LaBarge’s leadership during the pandemic, the company changed its business model in response to global supply chain bottlenecks. In late 2020, the company discontinued Asian sourcing and consolidated its manufacturing in Mexico and warehouse in California to create a fully North American business model. This enabled the company to achieve delivery times of 8 to 10 weeks for upholstered furniture, beds and cases, while delivery times of 24 to 30 weeks were the norm.