Posts Tagged ‘upholstered chairs and sofas’

Hastens bedding aims to expand presence in U.S.

Friday, February 12th, 2010

Swedish producer has new program for designers
David Perry — Furniture Today
 Hastens executive Janet Stein, in the company’s new High Point Market showroom, hopes to expand Hastens’ presence in the U.S. market. 

HIGH POINT — This mattress horse is looking to gallop in the United States.

Swedish luxury bedding maker Hastens, whose logo features a horse in full stride, is aiming to put more bounce into its U.S. business. The company recently made its first U.S. showing at the October market here, introducing new high-end lines, rolling out a new program for interior designers, and unrolling a welcome mat for U.S. retailers.

“We are trying to get the word out,” said Janet Stein, country manager for the United States, who introduced the new lines in High Point.

Hastens already is well known in mattress circles. The company says, accurately, that its name “is synonymous with luxurious beds.” Hastens is famous for its blue-and-white check patterns on its ticking, unique to the company, and its all-natural story.
The producer, based in Koping, Sweden, was founded in 1852 and is Sweden’s oldest manufacturers of beds and mattresses. The company started out primarily making saddles and carriage furniture, using horsehair. Mattresses were a sideline at first, and the company stuffed them with horsehair, too. As demand for those cushy mattresses grew, the company focused on that business.

Hastens (”Hast” is Swedish for horse) now specializes in the use of layers of horsehair in its mattresses.

Horsehair, once a common filling material in mattresses, is seldom used these days. But Hastens officials say they continue to make their beds by hand using only natural filling materials, including horsehair, cotton, linen, wool and flax. The company says the beds “are free of all harmful chemicals and other materials that could in any way be detrimental to either the human body or the environment.”

Hastens adds that the natural materials in its beds maintain ventilation, allowing the mattresses to breathe and thus creating the perfect environment for a restful night of sleep.
The beds are pricey: Retails range from $4,850 to a cool $69,750. But Hastens officials say they are worth those prices.
“My aim is that Hastens should provide as much benefit for the end user as possible,” said Jan Ryde, the owner and CEO of the company. “A good night’s sleep gives a better day and in the long run a better life.”

The company made a stylish debut in High Point, using its trademark high-quality photography and attractively dressed beds to stand out. This wasn’t just another mattress showroom.
“We are reaching out to the entire country for potential business partnerships,” Stein said. “We are also reaching out to the interior design community with our new ID program. We would like to gain a greater presence in the U.S.”

Hastens currently sells through 15 U.S. stores, including ABC Carpet and Home in New York, and stores in cities including Los Angeles, Dallas, Grand Rapids, Mich., and Madison, Wis.
The company’s new ID program was created in response to what Hastens says were

requests from architects, interior designers and stylists. It entitles members to preferred pricing on Hastens beds at participating retailers.

“For decades Hastens has been favored by design professionals looking to integrate both beauty and a beautiful night’s sleep into their work,” CEO Ryde said. “With the introduction of the Interior Design Program, we hope to show our immense appreciation.”

Hastens also is introducing three new beds:
 The Hastens 2000T II is a three-part sleep set that features six layers of 100% natural cotton and wool and four layers of horsehair. It retails from $23,000 to $27,000.
 The Excelsior II features two additional layers of cotton, wool and horsehair, replacing the need for a layer of flax. It retails from $13,000 to $15,000.

 The Luxuria, retailing for about $8,000, is a new bed design that features the company’s patented spring system, padded by two layers of horsehair and four layers of 100% natural cotton and wool.

Las Vegas Market puts more emphasis on ‘green’

Wednesday, January 20th, 2010

One Good Guide will highlight sustainable products

Heath E. Combs — Furniture Today

LAS VEGAS — The Las Vegas Market will continue emphasizing sustainability with new green initiatives at the next show, which runs Feb. 1-5 at the World Market Center.

The market’s One Good World program will expand to include a supplier locator called One Good Guide, to help buyers find legitimate sustainable products at the event. These exhibitors will be listed in a special section of the market directory.

Companies interested in being listed will be vetted by the Sustainable Furnishings Council. Applications will require declarations about materials usage, transportation, wood sourcing, VOC emissions and foams used in upholstery cushioning. Exhibitors must also show and offer sustainable products at market and not merely have them as available options, the WMC said.

In addition to the listing, participants will receive window decals and showroom signage to call attention to their status, along with additional online marketing and public relations support.

WMC officials also said they plan to announce a “sustainability leadership congress” in early 2010 with representatives from government, environmental groups, manufacturers, retailers, interior designers and consumer media focused on wood sourcing.

“The green economy is not coming fast – it is already here,” said WMC President and CEO Bob Maricich. “Being ‘green’ is more than a principle and more than a trend; it is a sound business practice. Taking proactive actions to respect our environment is now a business reality and increasingly critical to our industry.”

At the February market, WMC also will offer seminars on eco-issues, including an interior design symposium with participants including HGTV’s Angelo Surmelis and brand icon Kathy Ireland.

The market also is hosting the SFC’s GREENleaders Certified Sustainability Training, a six-hour exam course for accreditation. The WMC also offered the course in February 2009.

For more information about participating in One Good Guide, exhibitors should contact the Sustainable Furnishings Council at (919) 967-1137 or e-mail susan@sustainablefurnishings.org.

International Home Furnishings Center honors Mark Andrews

Wednesday, January 20th, 2010

Receives first Robert H. Spilman Spirit of Excellence Award

Furniture Today Staff — Furniture Today

 Mark Andrews, left, of the International Home Furnishings Center, receives the IHFC’s first Robert H. Spilman Spirit of Excellence Award from IHFC President Tom Mitchell. 

HIGH POINT — Mark Andrews, Design Center manager at the International Home Furnishings Center here, has won the IHFC’s first Robert H. Spilman Spirit of Excellence Award.

The new award is named for Spilman, the late CEO of Bassett Furniture Inds. who led a buyout of the IHFC in 1985 and became its chairman.

Andrews joined the IHFC in 2003. Tom Mitchell, IHFC president, said in presenting the award that it represents the qualities that Spilman would have wanted to recognize – “a loyal performer who is customer-service oriented, and an engaged team player who leads by example.”

 Andrews was presented with a silver bowl, a replica of the award that will remain on display in the IHFC executive office lobby. It will be engraved each year with the name of the annual recipient.