Today, more than ever before, we live in an age of consumerism, where the items that we own often form part of our identity. While mass-produced items often make up a significant part of our home furnishings, partly thanks to being affordable, generally robust and convenient, there are some areas where splashing out on handmade furniture can make a huge difference.
One of these areas is a mattress. Over the course of an average life (around 75 years), we spend over a third of that time asleep, so doesn’t it make sense to invest in a quality mattress, with a few extra features that help to create the perfect night’s sleep?
First and foremost, as a retailer, taking the decision to sell a handmade mattress can offer consumers a sense of luxury which mass produced just can’t compete with. From hand side-stitching to hand-tufting, each of these features adds to the overall comfort to help provide a great night’s sleep. Consumers also feel like they are purchasing a product of the highest quality – which they are – but don’t have to break the bank to do so.
All mattresses sold in the UK have to follow strict rules and regulations, whether they are made here or abroad. However, choosing to go with a UK company often means that materials are sourced locally. Duvalay sources a vast majority of its products from in or around Yorkshire, which allows us to keep a better eye on quality as well as keeping our carbon footprint down.
Hand-side stitching is an incredibly labour intensive technique but can make a huge difference to the finished product. Hand-side stitching is where the border of the mattress is stitched to the spring set. This keeps the mattress from collapsing when someone sits or lays on it to sleep and will stop them from feeling like they are rolling out of bed. You’ll tend to only find this on premium mattresses as it is incredibly time consuming but can make a real difference.
With mattresses that use a range of luxurious materials, including silk, cashmere and wool, it tends to lead to them settling over time and flattening out slightly, losing some of the ‘bounce’ along the way. This is completely normal and part of the bedding-in process all mattresses go through. However, we use a technique that can only be done by hand called hand tufting, which helps to keep the filling under a certain amount of compression to hold it correctly in place for extra longevity. You’ll be able to tell if a mattress has them by the little buttons on top of the mattress. These are part of the hand tufting process and run the whole way through the mattress.
Artisan bed making skills take years to learn, and is a skill that we’re committed to passing down to future generations. By employing highly skilled individuals, we are able to have an in-house apprenticeship scheme, employing a younger, local workforce. Mass produced mattresses certainly have their benefits, but from a quality, ethical and environmental point of view, not forgetting a luxurious night’s sleep, you cannot beat investing in a handmade mattress.
Article by Liz Colleran, Director of Duvalay Ltd