Price has always been important to the basic-bedding industry. But while vendors continue to focus on meeting certain price points, they are also experimenting with the bells and whistles that add value to bed pillows, mattress pads and down comforters for next week’s New York Home Fashions Market.
A variety of introductions from Hollander Home Fashions employ new technologies to enhance the life of the products. These include the Coolest Comfort collection of pillows and pads, which uses a new technology in moisture wicking, which helps balance body temperature and allows the fabric to breathe naturally. Also from Hollander is the Purista treatment on pillows, pads and comforters, which helps keep the fabric cleaner and fresher for longer periods.
The company is also marking the 10th anniversary of its Laura Ashley license with the Anniversary collection, featuring prints in updated colors on down-alternative comforters and other basic-bedding products. The Laura Ashley grouping will also debut jacquards in the bed-pillow category, using new quilting techniques on gussets and the main bodies of the pillows.
Beth Mack, Hollander’s chief merchandising officer, identified the “price/value equation” as one of the major market trends in basic bedding.
“The more promotionally priced basic-bedding products continue to sell, and we also see value-added programs selling well,” Mack said. “These are items that have extra bells and whistles, but do not have the same gimmicks as in the past.”
For United Feather & Down, the value elements featured in their September market introductions seek to deliver health and wellness benefits by improving quality of sleep. The company is also addressing “the ever-growing population of consumers who want to make energy-saving, eco-friendly changes in their home,” according to Bob Hickman, senior vice president of sales and marketing.
“Our bedding innovations have always catered to a natural lifestyle,” Hickman said, “as down is one of the most natural, sustainable and renewable filling materials available.”
United Feather’s new line of trademarked Personal Comfort pillows is expanding with three new “sleep systems,” according to a company statement. These systems offer nine patent-pending new constructions that are designed to fit consumers’ sleep habits, and “the desire for more versatility in their bedding products,” the company said.
Licensed collections have long been a focus for Louisville Bedding, and next week’s market will be no exception. The company is enlarging its Nautica line with three collections: Harborside, a luxury program of high thread-count Egyptian cottons; Nautica Naturals, a broad assortment of down- and feather-filled products; and Nautica J-Class, with tencel cottons and hypoallergenic components.
Louisville Bedding has extended its Croscill licensed line with new subbrands—Croscill White Label and Croscill Cotton at the luxury end, and Croscill Solutions featuring waterproof, fire-resistant, stain-release and allergen-reduction components. The company’s license with Simmons, now more than 20 years old, will also add subbrands to go along with the Beautyrest line, including Simmons Luxury, Simmons Allercare, Simmons Eco-Smart and Simmons Deep Sleep. These new labels run the gamut from value products to super premium, according to a company statement.
Mandy Talbert, Louisville Bedding’s product development manager, said the company’s launches encompass a number of luxury elements such as natural fabrics and down and feather fills, along with performance elements intended to enhance consumers’ quality of sleep.
One other notable launch next week will be Perfect Fit’s expansion of its licensed pillow-and-pad program with Spring Air. New to this line are pillows and pads labeled under Spring Air’s Back Supporter brand, made in the same zoned construction used for Back Supporter-branded mattresses.
“We’re trying to give Spring Air customers the whole sleep deal” through offering Back Supporter pillows and pads merchandised with the mattresses, said Jeff Chilton, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Perfect Fit. “No question, these provide multiple merchandising opportunities for retailers of Spring Air mattresses.”