In terms of marketing, it’s a pretty evocative move.

DL Home & Garden took an old, industrial building and turned drab to dramatic, all in a perhaps unlikely spot on Central Avenue, right near Rochester’s train station.

The impression is unmistakable. If this home-furnishings-and-lots-more store can transform that kind of property into what it has become, imagine what the business can do for customers’ abodes.

The building itself used to be the home of Cable-Wiedemer, a longtime food-service equipment house.

“It’s a solid building, but it was all ‘bricked up,’” said Brian Coutu, who owns DL with business partner Robert Breissinger. “That was a response to the riots of the ‘60s around here. It was aesthetically unappealing … (but now) people are blown away by the aesthetic appeal of the store.”

DL Home & Garden sells what Coutu calls “better-end quality goods,” and not just furniture. The store also carries gifts and accessories such as handbags and glassware, jewelry and greeting cards, cookbooks and soaps and candles. A recent expansion added two outdoor terraces for outdoor furniture, shovels, pots and the like.

The “DL” in the name stands for Designers Library. The second and third floors of the building are home to the Designers Library showroom that Breissinger owns. It’s a “to the trade” showroom, open only to professionals like architects and designers. But don’t worry, there’s plenty to see in the retail area.

Designers Library moved in earlier, in 2010. Breissinger has owned that business for 25 years and moved to Central Avenue from the Cascade District. DL Home & Garden followed in 2014.

More: Long-awaited Amtrak station opens in Rochester

The duo selected the site in hopes of re-energizing the area.

“There are too many vacant holes in the landscape of Rochester,” Coutu said. “They don’t build buildings like this anymore. It’s good building stock but it had been sadly neglected for years. We thought that we could do it better. Plus, Rochester hasn’t had a furniture store in years. This was kind of a forgotten segment of the city until they redid the train station.”

The new and much-ballyhooed train station opened a year ago. Since then, Coutu said, lots of people traveling through or visiting there have also come by DL Home & Garden. Coutu proudly points out that the business has half a dozen or so parking spaces in back and more if you count on-street parking.

Coutu had been a sales representative in the home-furnishings industry for more than 20 years before opening the store. He has a degree in fine art history and moved upstate from his native Long Island because “I was sick of sitting in traffic for hours.” Breissinger is an interior designer who has worked in spaces from residential to commercial to yachts.

DL has expanded since it started and the business ships merchandise throughout the U.S. All told, there’s some 12,000 square feet of retail space including the patio area, which was added in March.

The drab has become dramatic. Customers can hope to do the same with their own spaces at DL Home & Garden.

Alan Morrell is a Rochester-based freelance writer.

DL Home & Garden

Founded: 2014

Location: 283 Central Ave., Rochester

Executives: Brian Coutu and Robert Breissinger, co-owners

Employees: 6

Website: dlhomegarden.com

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