Bespoke is my favorite British word. Not only do I love the word, but I also love the concept. No doubt, having something made by hand to your exact specification is appealing. However, beyond appeal, it also makes for a unique and special product. I truly believe that the main reason handmade and bespoke products are gaining in popularity is due to people being tired of expensive mass brands that are insubstantial. The quality (and ethos) of handmade products is one of the primary reasons I that partnered with Savoir Beds, and one of the main reasons that I am now smitten with George Smith furniture.
George Smith was well known for his cabinet making and upholstery skills during the first quarter of the 19th Century. Even today, every item in the George Smith line is made using only the finest natural raw materials, with many of the furniture styles still based on original designs. Each piece is built by skilled craftsmen continuing the traditions of classic craftsmanship developed by earlier generations.
During my trip to Decorex, Andrew Joseph PR, the George Smith US team (Patricia Spado, Elliott Johnson, Greg Upson, and Elizabeth Grenzebach), and myself, along with Arianne Nardo from Interiors magazine, Kari Costas from Traditional Home, Julia Noran Johnston and Adam Courrier from The Editor at Large, and Cara Long from LUXE Interiors +Design, all boarded a train for Newcastle and spent the day touring the impressive George Smith factory.
It was wonderful to see furniture being built to last for generations. Prime, seasoned beech or birchwood is used for their custom made frames and heavy steel coiled springs are tied by hand into wide bands of interwoven jute webbing to provide balanced weight distribution for maximum comfort. Then, for extra luxury, boar bristle is used as the primary stuffing, enveloping and cushioning the coil springs, with a cotton feather mixture layered over the whole of each frame to provide a thick padding.
And finally, a muslin pad is hand-sewn in place to provide a smooth and seamless base of upholstery. The comfort is unbelievable!
As fans of this is a quintessentially British furniture brand will know, some of the world’s most beautiful interiors boasts George Smith furniture—Soho House clubs, Firmdale Hotels, and Cecconi’s are but a few. After this trip, I now have my eye on their mohair velvet Brewster chair and fabulous Elizabeth Sofa…some things just might be worth waiting for.