Stanton was one of the last of the traditional carpet mills to make the leap into hard surfaces, entering the category in 2020. Rather than dip its proverbial toe in the exploding luxury vinyl pool, it went full cannon ball, making a splash almost immediately.
Stanton Decorative Waterproof Flooring (DWF) was introduced in January of 2020 with 24 SKUs. Despite the interruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent supply-chain slowdown, Stanton added 36 more products in 2021, along with longer and wider 9 x 60 planks; a unique and decorative 4-inch-wide product; and Vanguard, its glue-down commercial offering. And that’s just the beginning, according to John Rocconi, senior director hard surfaces, Stanton. “We will continue to invest in this strategic category as it becomes a larger part of our total offering.”
Rocconi told FCNews that Stanton did its due diligence prior to getting into hard surfaces. It devoted considerable time to learning each region in the U.S., trying to understand what visual was selling locally. It then tweaked its patterns and colors until getting it just right. “We have something for every market,” Rocconi said. “We get very positive feedback on our merchandising, which has a clean and sophisticated look and large sample boards with great product reveal.”
Through its long-term success in carpet, Stanton has earned a legion of retail support on the soft surface side for its many great designs and range of colors and patterns. It is now making a statement with its LVP program as well.
Leo Iasenza, owner of Carpet Designs in Delray Beach, Fla., said Stanton’s color choices in hard surface is what separates it from the pack. “To me, that’s really their claim to fame—the color choices. They really offer colors no one else has. They have a beautiful line, very complete. Stanton is one of the few companies that offer light colors—whites and light grays—and also charcoals and blacks. We sell a ton of their Blanco line.”
Iasenza also gave Stanton high marks for holding the line on pricing as best it can, while noting that all hard surface companies have had to raise prices, with Stanton no exception. Still, he said, “They tend to keep their prices in check so they are not way out of whack like a lot of my customers. They offer a reasonably priced product with a good wear layer that is easy to install, with colors no one else has.”
In anticipation of supply chain concerns, Sterling Carpet & Flooring, Anaheim, Calif., brought on Stanton’s LVP inventory early in the program’s launch. The move has worked well for co-owner Dan Mandel, who has had success with their line. “Their service and product quality have been outstanding, which is par for the course for Stanton.”
Like others, Mandel cited Stanton’s unique colors, which, he said, stand out from its competitors. He cited Midnight Black and Ivory White as two winners. “While these colors aren’t for everyone, customers looking to make a bold statement with their floors have gravitated to this line based on those colors alone.”
Joel Schreier, president of Chicago-based Home Carpet One, has enjoyed many years of success with Stanton in carpet and said he likes what he sees in hard surface so far. “They have distinguished themselves with the cleanest designs in the marketplace, with an updated color line,” he said. “Unlike many other vendors, their inventory position is very strong, which is more important than ever these days.”
Stanton said it has big plans for 2022 with its largest Stanton DWF launch to date. The first part of that introduction will be a large format, 16 x 32 SPC tile in 12 clean, light colors. “We’ll have another large addition of wood visuals that complement our current offering and round out the collection,” Rocconi explained. “And we have one or two surprises in the works as well.”