Westfield Resident Continues Family Tradition at Shovlin Mattress Factory

f41e70690ee73003d230_shovlin.JPG
Ron and Kara Shovlin, Westfield residents and owners of Shovlin Mattress Factory in Fanwood. Credits: Jackie Lieberman
f41e70690ee73003d230_shovlin.JPG

FANWOOD, NJ — Ron Shovlin owns Shovlin Mattress Factory with his wife, Kara. The shop relocated from Garwood to Fanwood several years ago. Located at 35 South Ave., the building doubles as a 2,000 sq. ft. showroom and a manufacturing center in the back. The company employs seven people and ships products across the globe. 

“Shovlin Mattress is a fine example, in our own backyard, of a family business that produces a good, quality American-made product,” said Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr.

Shovlin, a 6-foot, 7-inch former star athlete for Westfield High School, lists many of his former Scotch Plains-Fanwood rivals as friends and customers. This week, he gave an exclusive tour through his factory to TAP into and showed the process of making a mattress and different mattress shapes and talked about how important it is to choose quality over price.

Sign Up for E-News

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R6s4u31jBCI&feature=youtu.be

Q: How did you get into the mattress business?

A: This is a family business. My mother started working for the Mattress Factory in Garwood during the late 70s. I was helping out since the age of 13, and started working full-time after graduating from Elon College. In 1989, after my father—a Westfield policeman—retired, we bought the business. Eventually, we relocated to our 2,000-foot showroom in Fanwood, where we also produce our products.

Q: What is special about your business?

A: We have our very own factory and make the mattresses right here in Fanwood.  We sell only our mattresses, not other brands. Apart from one-sided mattress, we make two-sided ones that can be flipped over and have more support and longevity. This sets us apart from national brands that don't produce flippable mattresses because of the costs … and because they want the customer to buy a mattress more often. Also, all of our production materials are bought in America. We are proud of this.

Q: What is important to you when it comes to customer service?

A: We like to use the term “beducation.” We want our customers to take their time and have a personal conversation to give them the mattress that suits their needs the best. Chiropractors send people to us sometimes because their patients’ mattresses are not right for them. A soft mattress has enough support to bring the body in its natural position at night and people think they have to buy very firm mattresses, which is not true. The right mattress is whatever is comfortable for your body.

Honesty is very important to us. There is no pressure—we don't want our customers to make mistakes. We invite them to bring a pillow in and lie down and to comparison shop. Once you shop here at Shovlin, you will always want to come back. You will have a mattress for so many years—and you spend so much time in bed—that you should be looking for long-term quality, not for the lowest price.

Q: What are some tips for buying a mattress?

  • Prepare to shop lying down – Wear comfortable clothes and shoes you can remove easily. You will need to do some lying down. If you will share the mattress, bring your partner with you to get a realistic feel for size and comfort.
  • Redefine Firm – A mattress need not be as hard as the floor in order to be good. Too firm may be painful. Today’s mattress combines comfort and support. Don’t rely on product labels, feel the firmness and be the judge.
  • Check inside – Inside an inner spring mattress there should be more than 300 coils for a full size model (375 in a queen and 450 in a king). Keep in mind, the high coil count doesn’t automatically make it better.
  • Upsize – If you sleep with a partner don’t get anything smaller than a queen.
  • Don’t mix and match – Avoid putting a new mattress on an old box spring. A set is made to work together, using them together will prolong the life of the bed.
  • Invest in top quality – You will be spending three of the next 10 years in bed, so buy the best your budget will allow. When you consider the cost over a 10+ year life span, you’ll find that even the very best beds cost less each night than a cup of coffee.

Q: What else but mattresses do you offer?

A: We have pillows, slippers etc. and we call it the Nod Shoppe. My wife is more responsible for that.

Q: Where will you ship?

A: Not only do we ship nationally, but we have shipped to Europe and also to Africa, where a prince wanted a round mattress. For a furniture store in Russia, we shipped more than 100 mattresses in a container. People who move or who have beach houses out of the country call us or contact us online if they have heard from us. We normally recommend feeling the mattresses before ordering them. What might feel firm or soft to us might not feel firm or soft to you. It is very individual.

Q: Do you make customized shapes?

A: Yes, basically you name it we made it. We have made heart-shaped mattresses, boat-shaped mattresses and round mattresses. The largest was a 10-foot by 10-foot mattress for a couple who had three dogs who liked to sleep with them. We make them for private use or for furniture stores and hotels.

Q: What kinds of struggles are there in the mattress business?

A: Regulations add production costs. After the government introduced higher standards for fire-resistant mattresses, production costs increased by 15 to 20 percent. Some other local businesses couldn't afford that and had to close down. During the financial crisis we felt the effects, as well, but we fared better than most.

Q: How are you involved in the community?

A: We have participated in the Pajama Program in which people donated pajamas for children in need. The cause made sense because of what we do. We also helped people who were affected by Hurricane Sandy by offering discounts on our products and using our trucks to help with deliveries. We try to help people who have lost their homes in fires and other tragedies.  The cost of a mattress is small compared to seeing the look on a child’s face when they learn that they will have a bed to sleep in.

Shovlin Mattress Factory is located at 35 South Ave., Fanwood. Call 908-322-4178. Email mattressfac@aol.com. Visit www.shovlinmattress.com.

Store hours:

  • Open Monday – Friday (10 – 6)
  • Thursday (10 – 8)
  • Saturday (10 – 5)
  • Sunday (12 – 5)

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Westfield

NJ Flags to Fly at Half-Staff for Jerry Green May 7

April 24, 2018

TRENTON, NJ — Governor Phil Murphy issued an executive order on Monday for New Jersey flags to be flown at half-staff at all state buildings and facilities on the day of the upcoming General Assembly session, scheduled for May 7, in memory of Assemblyman Jerry Green, former chair of the Union County Democratic Committee, who died last week.

On Thursday, Governor Murphy had said, ...

Synopsis of Westfield Board of Education Meeting on April 24, 2018

April 26, 2018

Board President Gretchan Ohlig recognized Westfield High School senior Greta Frontero as 2018 New Jersey High School Journalist of the Year and winner of the 2018 Bernard Kilgore Memorial Scholarship, a $5,000 scholarship award from the New Jersey Press Foundation. Ms. Ohlig praised Ms. Frontero for her investigative reporting for Hi’s Eye, the school newspaper, and presented a ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_26bff2b330d314777eae_library

Thu, April 26, 10:00 AM

Westfield Memorial Library, Westfield

Westfield Memorial Library Spring Book Sale

Arts & Entertainment

Carousel_image_26bff2b330d314777eae_library

Fri, April 27, 10:00 AM

Westfield Memorial Library, Westfield

Westfield Memorial Library Spring Book Sale

Arts & Entertainment

Westfield Police Blotter: Two Reported Shopliftings & More

April 25, 2018

April 19, 2018 9:36 a.m.

Officer McCarthy arrested Paul S. Lee, age 36, of Ridgewood, NJ, at Westfield Police Department headquarters on the strength of an outstanding Westfield warrant in the amount of $89. Subject was processed and released after posting bail.

 

April 19, 2018 12:01 p.m.

A resident of Central Avenue reported being the victim of identity theft. Unknown actor(s) ...

Wine Tasting to Support the Center for Hope Hospice and Palliative Care

April 26, 2018

Annual Wine Tasting Supports the Center for Hope Hospice and Palliative Care The Center for Hope Hospice and Palliative Care Auxiliary is preparing for it’s Annual Wine Tasting with both a Silent and Live Auction to be held on May 20, 2018. The event will take place from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. at 16 Prospect Wine Bar and Bistro located at 16 Prospect Street in Westfield. The tickets will be ...

Come Enjoy a Spring Concert with Westfield Public Schools

All concerts begin at 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted. 

3/27/18      RIS Chamber Music Night
4/24/18      WHS Chamber Music Night @ United Methodist Church
5/3/18        Franklin Advanced Band
5/5/18        WHS May-Hem
5/8/18        Wilson Band (date changed from 5/1/18)
5/9/18      ...

Plan for a Better Year

You survived another year’s tax filing — was the outcome what you expected? After looking at the results of this last year, and in light of the recent tax changes for this year, if you're concerned about getting the best possible results, why not reach out to me so we can take a look at planning possibilities together?

 

Call 908-935 -0181 and we'll get ...

Ways to Increase Your Home's Equity

Sometimes you forget and don’t realize your home provides so much to your life. It brings along with it your dreams of the future, shelter to you and your family, a way to provide a better lifestyle, a better commute, a neighborhood, schools, community involvement and recreational facilities. But it also provides a way to save for the future. It does this by allowing you to build your ...

'The Sting' shimmers and shakes at Paper Mill

‘The Sting ‘slithers and shakes at Paper Mill Playhouse

By LIZ KEILL

MILLBURN, NJ – In a premiere production of “The Sting,” Harry Connick Jr. commands the Paper Mill Playhouse stage in Millburn.

Based on the sensational Paul Newman/Robert Redford film in 1973, the 1930s plot centers on a con game and gambling, sometimes on a train between New York and ...

Why We Keep Kosher

Why We Keep Kosher

This week's parshah, Shemini, introduces the Torah's dietary laws. Animals must chew their cud and have split hooves to be kosher, fish need fins and scales, and a list of forbidden fowl is enumerated.

To those of us in Jewish education, it is a continuing source of disappointment that so many Jews still believe the kosher laws to be outdated.

Hellenic Therapy Center

April 13, 2018

Dropping Off Our Kids At College – Learning How To Adjust

Hellenic Therapy Center

 

Whether your kid is a freshman entering college for the first time or returning back to college, there are so many emotions we experience as parents.  There are differences in a parent’s reaction to the departure of a first child, an only child or even the last child.  Feelings ...

Obituaries

Oct 21, 1944 - Apr 14, 2018
Kathleen A. Hertell passed away peacefully with family at her bedside on April 14, 2018. Loving ...
Read more

New DMV Office To Open in South Plainfield May 14

April 26, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ — The new Department of Motor Vehicles Office in South Plainfield is scheduled to open May 14 at 5000 Hadley Road.

Mayor Anesh received the official notification from B. Sue Fulton, the newly sworn director of the state DMV announcing the opening.

"I would like to thank everyone who helped make this become a reality,"Anesh said. "This is a ...