Furnishing the Great Outdoors


Web Biz Dodds

By Emily J. Weitz

For over a hundred years, Dodds and Eder has been in the business of serving Long Islanders what they need. But what Long Islanders need has changed so much in this time that Dodds and Eder has had to develop its offerings to keep up. And keep up they have.

Where they used to provide feed and hay for the horses and livestock on the Gold Coast of Long Island, now they provide plantings and furnishings to create ambience in back yards across the East End. As the Gold Coast estates were sold throughout the 1970s, the store started transitioning its focus to landscape design.

“We stayed with the better brands,” says Dottie Simons, the manager at Dodds and Eder. “We’ve been doing this for over thirty years now.”

What they’ve been doing that’s different from what most other furniture and garden centers do is taking care of every aspect of this development. From the initial meeting, where a designer will listen to the client’s vision, straight through to the finished product, there’s no service that Dodds and Eder doesn’t provide.

They have an in-house landscape architect who, with the client’s vision in mind, will look at the property and see how changes can best be executed. They have all the gardening and landscaping resources, from the labor to the plants to the understanding of gardening. They provide the maintenance to keep new landscape healthy. They have all the furnishings, much of it in stock in the store.

If they don’t have the best product for a client’s ideal, Simons assured that “We know what else is out there. We make sure the client is getting what they’re looking for, and if we don’t have what they want, we’ll order from other places.”

Dodds and Eder even has the art, both indoor and outdoor, to decorate new spaces. The walls of the store are lined with artwork from the Chase Edwards Gallery.

“We hope to host events, and we’re open until 8 or 9 every night so people can come through and look at the artwork,” said Simons.

Dodds and Eder decided to open in Sag Harbor because the demand was already there. They’ve been happily situated in Oyster Bay since the 1970s, and their store remains there as well.

But “We’ve been doing a lot of business out here from Nassau County,” says Simons. “We found that a lot of the brands we carry are in high demand out here because they’re simply not represented by anyone else.”

Some of these brands include Three Birds Casual, a popular teak company; Ancara, which makes synthetic resin; outdoor beds by Veneman; and outdoor bean bags by Fat Boy.

But Dodds and Eder didn’t select Sag Harbor only for the established clientele. It was the village itself that the business found so appealing.

“We’ve been in business for so long in Oyster Bay,” says Simons. “It’s a small town community where you feel like everyone is working together. We’re very involved in the Chamber of Commerce there.” And Simons has already been to her first Chamber of Commerce meeting here in Sag Harbor. “It was even more involved than in Oyster Bay,” says Simons. “We had a really nice reception.”

With their village location behind the back parking lot in the old Megna Glass space, Dodds and Eder has a lot of property. In the next year they are planning on harnessing the power of that property with sculpture gardens, outdoor fire pits, and outdoor shower displays.

For now, shoppers can go in and check out the gallery art on the walls, relax in a hammock, and take in the ambience. In this way, Dodds and Eder hopes they’ll be able to envision their own perfect setting.

“We’re working to create the whole atmosphere,” says Simons. “Beginning at conception, designing, building and furnishing. This way clients don’t have to deal with ten people to get something done.”

Instead, she hopes, clients will only need Dodds and Eder.

Dodds and Eder is located at 11 Bridge Street in Sag Harbor. They’re open seven days a week. Check out www.doddsandeder.com or call 725-1175 for more information.