Bussey's Upholstery has been in CH since 1954
Bussey’s Upholstery Foam ‘N’ Fabric Inc., located at 2311 Lee Road, has been a Cleveland Heights institution since 1954, when it moved into one side of its current location. In 1975, Bussey’s expanded, taking over the space next door, which had been occupied by the New York Kosher Butcher. It has filled both storefronts ever since.
The store is owned by Mark Bussey, 63, and his wife, Marlene. His father, Irving M. Bussey, founded the store back in 1930. It was originally located at 12305 St. Clair Ave., near East 123rd Street, in Cleveland. Bussey’s sells fabric that can be used for upholstery, slipcovers and draperies, and it sells foam for virtually every size of mattress. Bussey’s also sells various tools and other supplies for upholstery work. Bussey’s will also do upholstery work for its customers, including refilling cushions. Almost all of the products it sells are made in the U.S.A.
Mark Bussey was born in East Cleveland, but spent most of his early life in Cleveland Heights. After graduating from Heights High in 1971, he started working at his father’s store. “My father liked doing upholstery work, and I decided to join him because he was getting older,” said Bussey.
His father continued to work at the store until 1977 when, at age 81, he decided to retire. Mark then took over the store with his mother, Emilie Bussey. His father died in 1982, and his mother died in 1993.
After Bussey married Marlene in December 1984, his new wife started working at Bussey’s. She still works at the store, where she handles most of the phone calls, as well as some of the sales. The Busseys have two children, Irene, 25, and Emilie, 15. They have lived in South Euclid since 1985.
The store’s only other employee is James Amie, who has been at Bussey’s since 1998 and is now the store’s manager.
Bussey said that he really loves the store’s location. “We get a lot of people walking by who decide to stop in and see what we sell,” he said. “I also enjoy being only a block away from the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Library. Whenever I need a break, I go over there.”
He also said he enjoys patronizing the area’s restaurants. “If I have time to get lunch,” he said, “I’ll go to one of the restaurants around here. But we don’t always have the time, unfortunately.”
Bussey's Upholstery Foam 'N' Fabric
2311 Lee Road
Mon., Wed., Thurs., Sat., noon to 6 p.m.
Tues., noon to 8 p.m.
Fri., noon to 5 p.m.
James Henke, a Cleveland Heights resident, was a writer and editor at Rolling Stone magazine for 15 years. He is also the author of several books, including biographies of Jim Morrison, John Lennon and Bob Marley.