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The History of Johnsons Home & Garden

Johnsons Home & Garden Center is a family owned and operated business, and has been that way for over 40 years in Maple Valley, WA. KJ Rental, Johnsons Woodworking, and Quintessence are also part of the Johnsons family business.

The story began in 1968 during a Christmas Eve gathering that bore the idea of starting a hardware store in Maple Valley. Just six months after that discussion, Wilderness Hardware Inc. opened for business in the Wilderness Village Shopping Center with a Coast to Coast Hardware affiliation. Stanley and Christine Johnson, in partnership with Karl and Ardis Johnson, started the store. The store opened with 2800 sq. ft. of space and expanded twice before a new store was built.

Johnsons Do-It Center Ground Breaking Feb 1979
Johnsons Do-It Center Ground Breaking Feb 1979

In 1979, a new building with more space (12,000 sq. ft.) was built at the 4 Corners site, and Wilderness Hardware became Four Corners Hardware. The naysayers said leaving a shopping center and opening a freestanding store, would result in bankruptcy in 6 months. Instead, the sales doubles in the first year of business. Shortly thereafter, J. Johnson bought Ardis’ shares to become co-owner with Stanley and Christine Johnson. An 8,500 square foot addition was added in 1989.

In 1991, the 20 year affiliation with Coast to Coast Hardware ended, and the new Do-it-center hardware name adopted to tie with our new co-op, Do-it-Best. Do-it-Best, a 2.4 billion dollar company, allows us to have the buying power needed to compete with larger box store. Do-it-Best is comprised of over 4,100 independently owned hardware and home improvement retailers in the United States and 45 countries worldwide. We have access to over 65,000 items located in our warehouse in Woodburn, Oregon, many of which are in our inventory of over 85,000 items chosen specifically for the greater Maple Valley area.

In 1994, Stanley and Christine sold their remaining shares to J.

In 1997, J. and Karen Johnson were married at the Do-it-Best Market in Indianapolis, IN. This is the same year KJ Rental opened under the command of Karen. At the wedding, Brad Johnson (son of Stanley and Christine) reconnected with his hardware roots and purchased partial ownership later that year.

In 1998 the Woodworker Shop opened stocking a wide variety of tools, supplies and advice for the craftsperson. Carvers gather here every Saturday to carve and share their knowledge.

In 2005 we opened Quintessence a unique gift store catering to many gift styles. In 2006 Karen added the yarn corner selling handpicked yarn, needles, and plans.

Ground Break of the Do-It Center Addition June 1989

In 2013 we moved into a new 35,000 sq. ft. building that combined the Hardware Store, the Woodworker Shop, KJ Rental, and Quintessence.

Our staff has worked to meet the needs of Maple Valley and surrounding communities for 45 years. We have never closed during a storm. We often open later during these periods, usually waiting for an extra truck delivery supplies to meet the extra demand from these storms. So the next time your power is out, come in to meet your neighbors. Hot coffee will be waiting.

J & Brad Jonhnson Co-Owners
New Johnsons Home & Garden building at dusk