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Casual Designs

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Writer: Susan Dewey

Pools & Spas


Courtesy of Casual Designs

After working in the landscaping business for several years, Rick Concordia decided to take his career to the next level and moved into the outdoor furnishings industry. He and his wife Barbara packed up their young family and moved from upstate New York to Cape Cod.

“My wife Barbara and I purchased Casual Designs in 1999. I knew nothing about the industry,” Concordia says. However, thanks to the astute business practices of the former owners, Bob and Gay Newman, who had already begun selling the upscale line of Lloyd Flanders outdoor furniture, Concordia had no problem developing a strong following of customers at the Harwich store pretty quickly.

“This line of furniture is a synthetic wicker, making it weather resistant,” Concordia says. “Casual Designs was one of the first on the Cape to sell Lloyd Flanders.”


Courtesy of Casual Designs

Looking back on those early years, Concordia recalls some of the big trends of the early part of 2000. “Sunrooms were on the rise and people were buying wicker furniture to furnish those rooms,” he says.

Sunrooms soon gave way to the phenomenon of establishing and building elaborate outdoor living spaces that come complete with various spaces such as kitchens and entertainment areas. These exterior “rooms” house couches, love seats, and other pieces you might expect to find indoors. “Because we are located on the Cape, it is especially important that people have these beautiful outdoor spaces for entertaining and relaxing,” Concordia says. “They really are a worthwhile investment.”

Concordia and his wife have expanded the business they purchased from the Newmans. Casual Designs is now open year-round and a new store on Route 28 in Mashpee opened in 2003.

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Susan Dewey

Susan Dewey, former associate publisher and editor at Cape Cod Life Publications, lives in Centerville where she grows vegetables and flowers for Cape farmers' markets, designs perennial gardens for her son’s company, Dewey Gardens, and enjoys living on beautiful Cape Cod year round.