Ferreting out interesting finds at a quiet show
By Barbara Nelles and Betsi Robinson
The fall weather at High Point Market Oct. 18-23 was gloriously sunny and warm, perfect for leisurely strolling. “Leisurely” also is a good way to describe the tenor of the fourth major mattress market of 2014. This was a minor show in terms of bedding-showroom foot traffic, total number of mattress-industry exhibitors, as well as the scope of new-products introductions.
|* Unless otherwise noted, all prices are suggested retail for queen-size sets.|
Major mattress brands Sealy, Serta, Simmons and Tempur-Pedic showcased offerings introduced earlier in the year and didn’t hold media briefings. Most hinted at big happenings in the works for the winter Las Vegas Market in January.
With the pressure off, the editors of BedTimes took their time ferreting out and learning about the handful of new products on offer from an array of regional and smaller industry players.
Family-owned Galaxy Bedding made its High Point debut, bringing three new mattress collections with it. The 23-year-old company has a 70,000-square-foot manufacturing facility at Toronto headquarters, where it also fabricates foams, springs and encased coils.
Every layer in the sporty, specialty Energize collection is a CertiPUR-US foam from Carpenter, said company principal Monica Salwan.
The new Ecouture group has natural Dunlop latex, and the innerspring Reflex collection offers wrapped coils topped with combinations of engineered foams and poured gel. Retail pricing opens at $799 and tops out at $4,500.
Keyholes in bed bolsters offered a glimpse into each mattress’s core. Galaxy targets independent retailers, whose target customer is a seeker of affordable luxury.
Mattress maker Paramount Sleep unwrapped Doc in a Box, a compressed and boxed memory-foam mattress with a mighty high, 11-inch profile, ships compactly and retails for just $799—but has the look of a premium product.
The “doc” was on duty at the Norfolk, Virginia-based manufacturer’s showroom; Dr. James Maas was on hand, signing copies of his latest sleep tome Sleep to Win! Secrets to Unlocking Your Athletic Excellence in Every Sport. The collection named for him is built from CertiPUR-US foams and carries the third-party Made in USA Certified label.
Handmade, luxury mattress manufacturer Shifman Mattress Co., with headquarters in Newark, New Jersey, debuted a whole new look in the next-generation Masters collection. The redesign was inspired by a concept bed Shifman displayed at the spring show and the feedback received from dealers.
The nine-bed collection represents 40% of the company’s business and is priced from $3,800 to $9,000. A contrasting taupe border fabric has the look of silk upholstery; it glitters with golden highlights that pick up the subtle yarn colors in an extremely soft and dimensional white jacquard panel. Brass corner guards were replaced with 18-carat-gold plate.
“The contrasting border fabric is a complete departure for Shifman,” said President Bill Hammer (pictured here on the redesigned bed). “This is a very rich look. We had a tremendous advantage in including our retail partners in the development process of the new Masters collection.”
St. Louis-based Boyd Specialty Sleep enlarged its sleep accessories offerings with a good-better-best, Thomasville-branded collection of mattress protectors, pricing is from $69 to $99. The five-sided “better” protector has a unique-looking honeycomb knit fabric.
Boyd updated the Broyhill Cube bed (pictured) with a choice of memory foam or gel memory foam comfort layers that zip right into the bed’s quilt panel, and added new “Cubist” panel fabrics in blue and white.
Family-owned, independent mattress manufacturer Gold Bond, based in Hartford, Connecticut, added more two-sided beds to its value-packed Chelsea collection. Three new models—in firm, plush and pillow-top—round out the collection’s price points and feature edge-to-edge steel support, encased coils and updated fabrics. Two entry models, the Lenox and the Lenox Pillow-Top, retail for $499 and $549, respectively. As a step-up to the existing Chelsea Limited model, and retailing for $799, the Northfield includes extra layers of polyester fiber, FR cotton fiber and high-density foams.
“Retailers can now offer more models and a wider variety of price points without sacrificing quality,” Gold Bond President Bob Naboicheck said.
Sleep accessories supplier Malouf, which has headquarters in Logan, Utah, launched a collection of 100% cotton, Portuguese flannel sheets in earth tones. Retailing for $279.99, the brushed cotton weave has a velvety hand, said Malouf Interior Designer Shauna Spencer.
Also new at Malouf was a 2.5-inch tall latex topper of U.S.-made Dunlop latex. The cover is a bamboo viscose knit with non-skid under-panel. Queen sizes retail for $299.
Sleep Tite mattress bags retail for $14.99 and allow consumers to tightly seal old mattresses and box springs in heavy-duty plastic bags, prior to retailer pickup.
The Shawnigan, Quebec-based specialty mattress maker Zedbed displayed six new models under its brand collections—Pure, ZX and Latex—as well as a head-up only adjustable base retailing for $999. The mattress introductions reflected some new opening price points, ranging from $1,899 to $2,899, and made use of the company’s signature foams.
The opening Latex bed has 3 inches of latex over a foam core and retails for $1,899. A new 10-inch tall all-latex mattress retails for $2,899. The new Pure collection memory foam beds make a bold statement with graphic black-and-white knit covers (pictured).
Adjustable bed manufacturer Reverie opened its first, permanent High Point showroom, a 2,000-square-foot space large enough to accommodate its growing product line of adjustable bed bases, mattresses, and made-for-mobile accessories. The showroom features multiple, merchandising room vignettes, which can easily be replicated on a retailer’s showroom floor, as well as new point-of-sale posters (pictured).
“As our footprint continues to grow within the sleep products industry we are seeing more and more interest from current and potential customers in the southeastern part of the country, many of whom do mot make it to the Las Vegas show,” said Martin Rawls-Meehan, Reverie president and chief executive officer. “This showroom will allow us to present our full product line-up of complete sleep systems.”
Buffalo, New York-based Restonic licensee, Alliance Sleep Products, had some fun in its High Point showroom with a new Restonic Comfort Care (innerspring) bed adorned with artful camouflage borders, contrasting tape-edge and knit panel with a “chicken feet” quilt motif.
Mattress licensing group Therapedic, with headquarters in Princeton, New Jersey, drew attention to the redesigned “super hybrid” Agility Air collection—which features layers of specialty comfort layers and mini-microcoils over a foam core—with new branded, headboards that complement the collection and allow retailers to easily and affordably update their displays.
At its second High Point Market, manufacturer Rush Mattress, a division of High Point, N.C.-based RTA furniture distributor Vrush Industries, launched Simply Natural, a line of natural latex beds with an organic cotton cover that retails from $3,999 to $6,999, as well as the five-bed GrandLuxury wrapped-coil group (pictured). Retailing from $1,399 to $2,999, the beds feature damask ticking with silk yarns, coil-on-coil construction and high-end specialty foams. GrandLuxury is “a home run, with its wonderful feel and expensive styling in a moderate price range,” said Rush Mattress President Harry Goodman.