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Comfort Solutions fires big shot in fight for more color
When Dave Roberts saw the "sea of sameness" on mattress floors, he decided to do something about it. Good for him.
As readers of this column know, I’ve long been an advocate of brighter and stronger colors in mattress ticking. Packaging is extremely important in consumer products, and ticking is our packaging.
Alas, I’ve been waging a largely solitary crusade. But now I’ve got support from someone who actually makes mattresses. Roberts, president of Comfort Solutions, has weighed in, powerfully, in favor of more color.
I could hardly believe my eyes when I visited the Comfort Solutions showroom in Las Vegas. Color had flowered everywhere in the new Laura Ashley Home line. Lavender and green and lavender and peach beckoned me to the beds, which were arranged in the round showcase that’s the visual center of the Grid2-designed showroom.
Elsewhere in the space, the Natural Response Platinum collection of latex beds, featuring a platinum and black color palette, sparkled invitingly. And around a corner I saw — gasp! — beds covered in black, silver and red ticking. "Solid colors of red, silver and black are a touch on the wild side," Roberts said, "but mattresses can be a little sexy."
This was bold, out-of-the-rectangular-box thinking.
Roberts believes his foray into color is meeting its goals. "We created a lot of excitement," he told me. "Our purpose was to bring attention to the product category. We achieved that."
Some colors were better received than others. The lavender and green ticking in the Laura Ashley Home line stood out, as did the platinum and black combo in the Natural Response Platinum line. Roberts said the Platinum line, in which the beds were accented with black handles and black corner guards, was the company’s biggest hit of the market.
He acknowledged that the beds with solid red, silver and black ticking won’t be retail standouts, but said they caused a stir in the showroom.
Overall, Roberts says the market is ready for more color. "There’s an opportunity out there for it," he said. "There’s a significant desire on the part of some consumers to see something more than a sea of white."
Well said. I’ve heard all the arguments about why white ticking is so wonderful — classy look, pristine cleanliness, etc. But I also know that a vast sea of sameness on retail floors is boring. It’s refreshing to see companies like Comfort Solutions and Sleeptronic (which has introduced animal prints and camouflage ticking) try some new approaches.
Remember: White can’t always be right.