Five things to know for ordering custom furniture
The increasing popularity we are seeing in bespoke beds and custom bedroom furniture seems to indicate that, as consumers, we are less inclined to make do with unsuitable products these days, and want to stamp our own mark with more unique design in our homes.
In the last century, mass production transformed the market, but more recently, there has been a shift away from the ‘one-size-fits-all’ model. Today’s customers are well informed, have travelled widely, experienced stylish and sophisticated hotel interiors, and look to enhance the experience in their own homes. Whether that comes from an increase in self-expression, or the impact of social media ‘influencers’ and sites such as Pinterest and Houzz, the customised product is part of a shift to involving the customer more fully in the design process.
We hear from customers across the country who have been inspired by an image in a magazine or online. Often they have been unable to find the item in question, or, found it is available in a limited range of sizes or fabrics only. Their request for customisation can be anything from a slight alteration in size ant to use their own material, to an inventive solution to make maximum use of an odd-shaped space.
If you’re thinking of ordering custom-made furniture for your home and are not quite sure where to start, here are the 5 key factors to consider:-
1. When redecorating an entire house or large space, involving an Interior Designer is a good option to ensure that customised pieces work well together. The added advantage is that Interior Designers usually have a little black book of specialist companies or access to ‘trade only’ suppliers. They will strive to create a unique space that really speaks to its occupant.
2. However, if you are buying a single piece, without the advice of an Interior Designer, then it is important to ensure that the supplier is providing you with expert advice and quality service. It’s worth phoning ahead to make an appointment with the designer or check they will be in the showroom, if you are planning to visit. You can also check which measurements to take, find fabric samples for matching (from curtains or carpets), and take photos of the space.
3. Experienced designers, such as ourselves, will often guide you with subtle changes that will enhance the look and provide a better experience. They will also advise you when something really won’t work e.g. when the proportion is wrong or which fabric is unsuitable for the purpose. Expect to be provided with drawings, where applicable, and a quote that reflects the extra work involved.
4. Generally, a custom-made piece will take longer to manufacture so allow extra time if you are working to a deadline. For example, our custom-made beds will generally take 3-4 weeks from the confirmation of the order, but the initial design process may take time whilst the customer considers the different options. Our fabric suppliers generally have a quick turnaround time, but, on occasion a specified fabric may be out of stock or have a longer lead time, so bear that in mind too.
5. It is also important to check that if you are buying a custom piece of furniture any necessary accessories are available. For example, we supply many custom- made beds and mattresses, but a problem would arise for customers if they could not then find custom sized bed linens and duvets to fit. It’s important to us that we can assist our customers in finding related products e.g. custom made bed linen.
‘Having worked for a business which produced bespoke bedlinen in New Zealand, I saw first-hand how much clients enjoyed having an input into the design and colour of their linens. Sometimes people think having something custom made can be complicated, but it really doesn’t have to be. We ensure we get a good understanding of our clients’ needs by phone or email and then we put together ideas and send out samples. That way people get exactly what they’re looking for, rather than having to compromise with something that’s off the shelf’.
Gilly at Gilly Nicolson Bed Linen
Further reading The Art of Commissioning Custom made furniture
Click for more info on designing your own bed
Contact us for more info on 0141 632 1384.