Scott Price always had a hunch he might end up living in beautiful Lake Forest. While living in Glenview, he and his wife, Meghan, would enjoy visiting Lake Forest for lunch after church on Sundays and would often find themselves stopping into an open house or two.
“Even though it was a bit of a drive,” says Scott, “we just found it so relaxing and peaceful. After an extensive search of the northern suburbs, I guess it really wasn’t a huge surprise that we ended up in Lake Forest.”
Scott is the fourth-generation owner of Toms-Price Home, the luxury furniture, rug, and design retailer his great-grandfather started in 1908—making it the oldest furniture company in the Midwest.
“I didn’t immediately join the family business,” says Scott, who spent his first few years out of college working in investment banking. “But my dad and I would always talk about expanding the business and that conversation eventually led to me joining him at Toms-Price.”
And, as the saying goes, the rest is history. Today, with five Chicagoland furniture showrooms and design projects all over the country, Scott uses his business acumen to continue the company’s growth.
“I grew up in the business and have a deep understanding of this industry,” he explains. “At the end of the day, the interior design business is a business. We have 40 in house interior designers and several hundred independent designers who source through us. I work hand-in-hand with those designers, our factories and our clients to make sure projects stay on track, on time and on budget.”
Toms-Price differentiates itself from other furniture stores with a strong focus on interior design as well as representing more than 100 luxury furniture lines, including Stickley, Baker, Hickory Chair, and Hancock & Moore. With long-term (and many generational) client relationships, Toms-Price prides itself on repeat customers who work on multiple homes (sometimes at the same time!) with their designer.
One might wonder if there could be a case of the shoe-maker’s children having no shoes when it comes to an interior design business owner decorating his home for the holidays.
“We love to decorate for every holiday, but especially Christmas,” Scott says. “We do take advantage of the fact that we know some pretty talented people who help us too. For my daughter’s first Christmas, our landscaping partner selected a beautiful 14-foot tree for our two-story foyer.”
The Prices kick off their Christmas season by attending Christ Church’s annual celebration called “Lessons and Carols”—a unique festival of music and scripture.
“It’s the story of creation through the birth of Christ told through music and scripture readings,” explains Scott. “It’s taking place this year on December 1. I love kicking off the season this way as it puts me in the right mindset by reminding me of the true meaning of Christmas.”
Scott, Meghan, and their 15-month old daughter Kate feel fortunate to have both sets of families nearby.
“We are so lucky that we get to be with all of our family over Christmas,” Scott says. “Our parents were actually friends before Meghan and I started dating. It’s wonderful that they enjoy sharing the holidays with each other and that they all get along so well.”
The culmination of their family’s Christmas is a competitive take on a good old-fashioned Yankee swap.
“My mother-in-law shops throughout the year in anticipation of this gift exchange,” he says. “There is a complex set of rules to explain how the ‘stealing’ works as we’re a very competitive bunch. Everyone participating brings five gifts or so to exchange. Meghan and I always try to have a theme for our gifts to keep things interesting—like food, travel, or games.”
“Meghan is such a thoughtful gift giver. She is very intentional and has everything thought out well in advance, even how the gifts will be wrapped. It’s a little more stressful for me since I tend to leave things to the last minute. I once bought her gift at Toms-Price on Christmas Eve – but, it was a beautiful Stickley jewelry box so at least it went over well.”
One tradition Scott would like to incorporate from his childhood into his immediate family of Meghan and Kate is the idea of a family gift. “This was always something we’d all look forward to when we were kids because it was often an experience we could share—like a trip,” he says.
With all the talk of gifts, Scott is quick to bring the discussion back to the spirit of giving during the holidays.
“We enjoy doing some type of outreach as a family,” he says. The Prices are involved with nonprofits like RISE International and Safe Families for Children, where Scott is a board member. “We are very blessed and look forward to making the holidays a special time for others, too.”