The Story of Homer Fratta:
..... for as much as we would like to believe.
Homer Fratta was born the youngest son within a large family
of carpenters, craftsmen and furniture makers amongst the lush fields and
valleys of Northern Italy in the Late 1800’s. Growing up around the family workshop,
Homer gained great knowledge of carpentry, upholstering techniques and other
manners of household decorating popular for that period. His Father would often
take young Homer to the homes that would later be supplied with the Fratta families furniture and décor. It was during these adventures that Homer gained a
strong and evident appreciation of color, scale and other necessary requirements
for the creation of good home décor; and it was Homers father that first taught
him, that “it is our job to instill a sense of pride within the home”, often
commenting that “the job is not finished until the customer feels proud to be
In 1893, Homer emigrated to America, in search of his dream
to be part of the new world, where he would pursue opportunities not available
within the established villages and towns where he was raised. In an early 1900’s
America, carpenters, craftsmen and designers were often sought out and well
rewarded for their talents at a time when many other immigrants where left to occupations
of hard labor.
By the end of 1919, Homer was operating out of a large two
story shop with 35 employees in a neighborhood that only five years previously was considered the edge of town. Now central
within a growing American city, he found himself surrounded by many of the residences
that he had supplied with his fabricated
household products, including fine furnishings and housewares imported from
England, Europe and Asia.
One popular story of how the Fratta shop rose to fame followed
a grand dinner party arranged by a local socialite. The year was 1914.
Homer had spent the past year and a half designing the home to
include the latest in building materials and décor, while also supplying the
enormous kitchen with elegant cabinets, decorative surfaces and the most modern
appliances. Homer had managed every detail himself, making sure that the final
outcome was nothing short of exceptional.
That evening, the proud hostess showed guests through her
new surroundings, often mentioning how fortunate she was to have found Fratta;
a comment in itself, that was often echoed within the community and surrounding
As time went on, the
word “Fratta” became more of a concept than simply the name of one man or his
business. People for miles around came to use “Fratta” to express something
special that they had discovered or experienced. Comments of “I found my
Fratta”, or “This is Fratta” would be used to describe everything from a
wonderful sunset over a scenic vista, to a huge table full of friends and
family enjoying dinner outside on a warm summer’s day.
Homer Fratta Lived a long and satisfying life, doing what he
loved most, in a country that embraced him and his many talents; a country that
he was so proud to call home. Surrounded by his wife Elena, six children and numerous
grandchildren, Homer passed peacefully in 1949; Elena passed on just 4 years later.
In her eulogy it was commented how fortunate she was to have found Fratta so
early in life, and how she too will now join her love; for one last time, Proud
to be home.