Monday, October 6

WHY IN DESIGN: horse hair-filled beds, comfort and quality. My favorites by Savoir Bed


The Savoy Hotel
The interior design industry's fascination with horses continues,
and today, let's explore the use of horse hair as filler in beds and in upholstery.

You may have noticed the subject of horses continually pops up here on the blog.  I have had a passion for these lovely animals my whole life, my daughter is a competitive equestrian and I write often about the  partnership between the equestrian lifestyle and interior design world.  Please read my story published last summer in Venu magazine about horses and design.  

Horse hair has been utilized in making upholstery, fabric and other materials in the home for centuries.   One of my most favorite horsehair fabrics (which I have donned recently on a set of stylish mahogany and black antique dining room chair) is Clarence House's Noir.  I love the splurge of this gleaming black, woven fabric, and it's a showstopper!  
Why is horse hair a great option to use in the home?
Horse Hair has been the go-to choice for centuries by many upholsterers and fabric makers.  Because of the thickness and stiff quality of horse hair's composition and texture, as well as the great length of tail hair, it lends itself well as a choice for home material.  Additionally, it is durable and acts as a naturally waterproof material.  For hundreds of years European countries have been spinning horse hair to make ropes or fishing lines, rugs, filler for upholstery and brushes. The aristocratic society in England wove horse hair to create fine linens and use in the home, on upholstery and as filler in upholstery, as well as to create fashion garments.  

English mattress maker Savoir has been filling their mattresses with horse hair since 1905.  I was impressed to learn they still make their mattresses by hand and using the finest quality curly horse tail hair today, and in the same manner as the first bed they made for the Savoy Hotel in London.  Each bed takes at least 120 hours to complete, is made by hand and by one craftsman. I lounged upon these incredibly comfortable beds during the company's celebration of the Savoy Hotel's 125th anniversary in Savoir's Soho showroom recently. Check out the Savoir video illustrating how their beds are made. 

It is not just the mattress that is hand made but the entire Savoir bed is offered bespoke, and with  myriad options for headboards, leg styling, upholstered bases and frames with intricate detailing and accessories for the bed. 
The  comfortable, luxurious Savoir bed is still in the rooms at the Savoy Hotel today. 

photographs courtesy Savoir Bed
I am smitten with this custom designed day bed on display at the Soho Savoir showroom, which shows a gorgeous tufted pillow top in their signature style as well as showing drawers, piping and is upholstered in a stunning fabric collection by Knoll Luxe with Proenza Schouler called Sandis, offered in several colorways. 

Happy Nesting
XO Tamara