PROGRESS 2014: Hamernick’s Decorating Center

Lynn and Ted Natus, owners of Hamernick’s Decorating Center, offer products and service you won’t find at big-box stores.

Hamernick’s Decorating Center: A community-oriented, one-stop shop for all your decorating needs

1381-1392 Rice St
St. Paul

Despite a lagging economy, Hamernick’s Decorating Center on Rice Street in St. Paul’s North End has been growing on its tradition of offering top-quality products and service. Owners Ted and Lynn Natus attribute the business’ strength to a loyal customer base and a knowledgeable, hardworking staff.

Several of Hamernick’s more than 100 employees have been with the company for a decade or more. Unlike most of the big box stores, Hamernick’s employees are experts in their fields, with specialized knowledge in the products and services the store provides.

“We don’t have a lot of turnover with our staff,” Lynn says. “We are good to our employees and they are good to our customers.”

And all of the staff’s hard work is paying dividends. Since Ted and Lynn purchased the business from founder Ed Hamernick in 2000, the company has expanded six-fold. A few years back, the company opened a 22,500-square-foot Mill Direct warehouse complete with a spacious showroom fully stocked with carpet, tile and vinyl products customers can see and touch as they make their choices. The building is conveniently located directly across the street from Hamernick’s home office, which houses the company’s professional design center and residential showroom. 

After years of hard work and innovation, Ted, Lynn and their dedicated staff have turned Hamernick’s into one of the region’s premier decorating centers.

Whether you’re looking to install hardwood, vinyl, tile, stone or laminate flooring, new countertops, window treatments or a fresh coat of paint to your home, Hamernick’s is truly your one-stop shop for all of your decorating needs.

This St. Paul institution has been continuously operating from its current location for over  50 years. Ted came on board as an employee making $1.75 an hour almost 45 years ago and has been wholly dedicated to the company ever since.

Ted and Lynn have no plans of slowing down; in fact, last year may have been their busiest yet. Ted just finished his year-long reign as King Boreas LXXVII of the St. Paul Winter Carnival. It was a position he thoroughly enjoyed, although it added 2,000 hours of volunteer service to the Natus’ already busy schedule — the couple works at the store six days a week.

“People don’t realize that the royal family volunteers and travels year-round,” Lynn says. “It’s not just for 10 days during the carnival.”

The couple logged more than 8,900 miles on the road as Ted made appearances at charity events in Canada, Florida, Illinois, Georgia and other locations.

“It’s a huge honor,” Ted says proudly. “You are an ambassador of the city of St. Paul for an entire year.”

The couple said they were thrilled to represent a city that has been so good to them over the years.

“We both want to give back to the community and what a better way to give than the opportunity we were given through the Winter Carnival,” Lynn says.

While Ted and Lynn have had multiple opportunities to move out of their North End location over the years, they have no intention of going anywhere.

“Rice Street has made us what we are, the area has been so good to us. We have never given any thought of going anywhere else,” Ted says. “I’ve been blessed to have a wonderful family, a second family at Hamernick’s and a third with the Winter Carnival.”

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