Details and personal touches are what makes any house into a home. And much like the accessories you wear express your unique style, hardware on your home’s doors and cabinets serves as the personal expression to complete your home. No local company has more experience in this area than Johnson Hardware. Founded in 1855, it’s also Nebraska’s longest continuously running company and has become a trusted source for both commercial and residential properties.
Looking through leather-bound ledger books that date back to the 1860s, you’ll see hand-written records of hardware purchases from famous locals such as Augustus Kountze, founder of Kountze Memorial Lutheran Church in downtown Omaha, which was near the original Johnson Hardware store. Now with two Omaha locations—12th & Pacific Streets and 137th & Industrial Road—and stores in Lincoln, Grand Island, and Minnesota, Johnson Hardware has wholesale, commercial, and residential divisions.
With its long history of selling materials to help build Omaha from the ground up, the addition of residential products seemed a natural fit. In 2012 Johnson Hardware purchased Grabow Hardware and expanded its showroom located in the House and Home Center on 137th & Industrial Road. And they’re going to be expanding the showroom once again to give customers even more of the ever increasing options in architectural hardware products for the home.
When you visit the showroom, you’ll see that Johnson Hardware offers more than just cabinet knobs and pulls. They also have doors, such as the popular sliding barn doors, hinges, doorstops, front door locks, and even bath accessories—everything needed to make your home function and beautiful at the same time. “We understand hardware fit and finishes better than anyone,” said manager Brad Slocum. With two designers on staff, they can help navigate the process, which can be overwhelming with all the choices available. They also provide installation services to ensure the final product is exactly what customers expect.
Whether it’s working with an interior designer on new construction or helping a homeowner update existing hardware, Brad said they understand all needs and can meet any budget, from basic to completely custom. “One of our best traits is our ability to take an unusual feature in a home and find something that will not only look good, but fit and work well,” he said. “People often spend hours in the showroom during the selection process, often coming back multiple times, so we want to make sure we’re helping them from the time they walk in the door until the products are installed.”
Like any element of home design and décor, certain trends come and go. Brad said for the last five years bronze and satin nickel finishes on hardware have been popular, but now more contemporary styles such as polished nickels and chromes are showing up in products. And just when you thought brass was out, satin brass finishes are in. “A few years ago, rustic finishes were popular, then it went to rustic modern,” Brad said. “And cabinet hardware has become larger and pulls have become longer. Now you can pick a cabinet knob or pull that comes in numerous sizes to fit in multiple areas of a home.”
But it’s not just selection that sets Johnson Hardware apart. It’s also customer service, from start to finish. “There’s a big difference between us and the larger retailers,” Brad said. “In fact, the big retailers often refer customers to us when they don’t have the selection customers want.” Providing a quality product at a reasonable price and installing it to fit so that the customer is satisfied is what Johnson Hardware has, and continues to be known for in Omaha.