Britain is home to some of the finest heritage brands. From Burberry and Smythson, to Ercol and Conran, our hand-crafted fashion and furniture gives us global clout.
Bed manufacturer Hypnos is one of the many brands also known for artisanal flair. The family owned company has been weaving its mattresses for more than 100 years.
Its Princes Risborough factory employs third-generation master craftsmen, while their beds, sealed with a Royal Warrant, are showcased in top hotels around the world.
Around 18 months ago I was approached by Hypnos to design a bed collection.
I saw this as a brilliant opportunity to combine traditional furniture making skills with modern fabric techniques and styles, which would appeal to the design conscious.
Fast-forward to June 2017 and we have a boutique range of three beds; The Sand, The Med and The Swan. The full collection, named Amira Hashish x Hypnos: The Art of Sleep, is now on sale at six Furniture Village stores across the UK.
SEVEN THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT THE COLLECTION:
The headboard fabric is bespoke
It was incredibly important to work with fresh talent from the British fabric industry to create three bespoke prints so we approached Insley & Nash, whose previous work has been fashion focused, and digital fabric producer Flock, which represents young textile maker Angela Jane Johnston.
While the Insley & Nash patterns are screen printed by hand in their London workshop, the fabric from Angela Jane Johnston at Flock uses digital printing methods to give the headboards contrasting finishes.
Each design reflects a personality
What we wear says a lot and the same method of thinking should be applied to the way we dress our homes. I wanted to approach the design as if this was a fashion item that you would buy because it suited your taste and made you feel special. I drew on personal inspiration to create standout looks, each matching a different personality.
The Sand encapsulates bold, contemporary luxury with Ikat and tribal influences. The headboard showcases the Insley and Nash skill of hand screen-printing with a metallic ink.
The Med reflects a nautical theme with impressionistic patterns for creating an abstract effect. The four-colour print swirls in soothing colours and should add a sense of calm to a space.
Stripped of colour and inspired by Scandinavian design, The Swan is for fans of monochrome, minimalism and edgy Stockholm style.
A good night’s sleep is key
Sleep is an essential part of our wellbeing so choosing the right mattress is of real importance. Each bed is hand crafted to offer maximum support and comfort, with mattresses that create a good environment for sleep through natural fibres and pocket spring technology.
Marketing director Chris Ward explains: "Each mattress has intelligent pocket spring technology, which minimises pressure points on the body, helping to increase blood circulation and alleviate tension, which in turn allows muscles to relax. The springs mould to the sleeper's body, leading to a natural alignment of the spine and a truly restful night's sleep."
Sustainability plays a big role
Hypnos was the first British bed and mattress manufacturer to become Carbon Neutral and comply with the PAS 206 and every part of the process had to meet sustainability standards. Each of the beds is recyclable at the end of their lives, ensuring that they never go to landfill sites.
Luxury lies in the little details
True luxury can be found in little details so pay close attention to the headboard shape and the statement divan feet. The touch of the fabric was also closely monitored. It had to feel soft and sumptuous.
The collection marks a double debut
This is the first time Hypnos has embarked on a collaboration and it also marks my furniture design debut so this project means a great deal to both of us. Months of research and energy has been dedicated to creating a collection which fuses our approach to design, marrying age old methods with new concepts.
The retailer had to be right
The project is a celebration of British craftsmanship so it made perfect sense to launch it with a British retailer. Furniture Village has spread its wings since the opening in 1989 of its first store in Abingdon, Oxfordshire. Today it is the UK’s largest privately-owned business of its type, employing 950 staff across 50 stores and an ever growing website www.furniturevillage.co.uk.
When we approached Furniture Village with the collection they were as enthused by what it represented as we had hoped. In each of the six stores in which the beds are retailing (Kingston, Tunbridge Wells, Croydon, Enfield, Friern Barnet and Brighton) there are staff representatives who have embarked on a special training scheme to learn how the collection came to fruition and understand the design specification for each of the beds.
For more details, visit FurnitureVillage.co.uk.