The Darafeev Tradition Timeline
His father Ivan suffered from poor health so it was at a very early age that Mikhail took on the responsibility of supporting his family.
In 1950, Mikhail and his family were granted permission to come to America. They went to France and then by way of ship, arrived in New York City. It was through Ellis Island that Mikhail and his family began their journey that would land them in Southern California. It would be the Los Angeles area that would become their home.
There he met Antonina Pustobaeff and in 1952, they got married. They bought a home and settled in East Los Angeles. Mikhail and Antonina had their first son, George who was born in 1953. Their second son Paul would be born 18 months later.
He observed all aspects of production. His constant curiosity and interest that he showed soon got him operating the equipment. The speed, at which he picked up on whatever he touched, eventually elevated him to Foreman. He ran the entire woodworking shop.
Mikhail now had 3 children, George, Paul, and Kathryn.
He received his first order of 50 chairs from a manufacturer who recognized Mikhail’s unique abilities and ambitions. His entire staff consisted of himself and a few relatives.
Mikhail’s reputation of emphasis on quality, integrity and craftsmanship began to spread along with his customer base.
An influx of recent Russian immigrants from Argentina provided him with an exceptional quality work force.
He moved his company into the same large facility that Beelner & Thomas occupied. He was producing large quantities of product on a daily basis in fulfilling both commercial and government contract orders.
His Customer Resume soon included companies like Benedetti, Sheffield Chair, Milwaukee Chair, Flintridge Furniture, Birchcraft Furniture, Fairchild of California and Crown City Furniture.
With a growing family and sons that would soon begin to participate in the business, Mikhail was realizing the “American Dream”.
His sons George and Paul began to work in the factory on weekends at an early age. As they became teenagers, their mom would take them to work each day after school. They began to learn all aspects of “hands on” manufacturing, which would soon serve them well and would desperately be needed.
Darafeev now had no control over its destiny since it did not have a “proprietary product. That would soon begin to change with hard work and sacrifice. The company would begin to develop its new identity in a niche market that would establish it for decades to come.
Along the way, a single barstool was designed that was unintended for production. Its unique design and features prompted us to apply for and to be granted a design patent. This single item was to become the most sought after game room product in the world and would soon spawn an entire collection of game room related products.
Other related products were to soon follow such as poker tables, combination game tables, poker chairs, club chairs, bridge tables and bars.
Darafeev would soon discontinue most of its products and concentrate on high end game room products exclusively.
The company soon established itself as a primary supplier of luxury products to the billiard industry. Darafeev supported many of the industry sports venues along with player sponsorships.
The Facility is a “state of the art” factory that is fully automated. It was designed to produce highly customized product efficiently, while ensuring the highest standard of quality. It is equipped with the latest environmental control technology ensuring the protection of the environment while producing the finest finish possible.
George and Paul along with other family members, continue the tradition that their dad had started. With its increased capabilities Darafeev has begun diversifying its business into the commercial and contract sector.