Bloomingdale's Bows Bedding by Barbara Barry

Carole Sloan, March 6, 2006

New York — Bloomingdale's is launching the Barbara Barry Dream collection of bedding, the second step in the California interior designer's home furnishings portfolio.

The formal launch occurs in tandem with the store's circular, which drops next week.

Amidst a two week preview “we are very pleased with the response,” said Joe Laneve, senior vp, home for the retailer.

The bedding collection follows by a year the launch of the furniture and home accessories collection — also introduced by Bloomingdale's — plus fabrics and trimmings from Kravet. Laneve remarked, “It creates great synergy between the furniture and textiles businesses for Bloomingdale's.”

The four-bed collection “completes my vision for the home,” Barry observed. “It's a natural extension and reflects all the small things that add up to a subtle impact on the senses.” The line reflects the Barry credo of understated elegance, she said: “It's not heavily traditional or heavily contemporary, but more things that go together with ease: not over-decorated.”

Barry summed up, “I'm trying to be anti-fashion, designing things that are easy to live with.”

At Bloomingdale's 16 stores are scheduled to offer the program. Laneve said, “The great part of Barbara's work is that it is very classic, timeless, simple but very elegant. She spends a tremendous amount of time on minute details and quality, like the size of a stitch or a hem.”

Laneve compared her approach to that of the designer Giorgio Armani, whom he described as “nobody more simple in design — but look at the details: seaming, buttons.” He added, “I love the different movement of patterns, simple designs with subtle treatments.”

For Barry, “The bedroom is one of the most important rooms in the home. It's the place for renewal, calm and restoration.” And sheets are a critical part of the design ambiance. “There's nothing that is as close to the body as sheets. They have to be easy to live with and have subtle details — things that read up close.”

The Bloomingdale's debut features Dream Silk, a silk charmeuse scallop design in coverlet, shams and decorative pillows.

“We will add to it significantly to the degree stores will support it,” explained Michael Bernstein, ceo of DWI Holdings, the licensee for the bed and bath collections. For fall, he said, “We will have bath for sure.”

While the collection is yet another entry in the designer bedding arena, Barry pointed out that she is the only home furnishings designer among the group. For Bernstein the collection is designed “for a fairly broad audience, with products that are attainable, at the higher end of the department store price point, expensive but affordable.”

Bloomingdale's has the exclusive for the four beds for the season; Bernstein plans to offer it to better department stores and high end specialty stores, as well as the Barbara Barry designer showrooms that offer her furniture and other home furnishings. It also will be made available to the furniture stores that carry her furniture, which is produced by Henredon.

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