Neale Whi­taker’s take on “beau­ti­fully di­shev­elled” bed­rooms.


Sunday Herald Sun - Stellar - - Contents - by Neale Whi­taker Neale Whi­taker is ed­i­tor-in-chief of Vogue Liv­ing.

You know how much I like to throw a new word into the mix, es­pe­cially a for­eign one. It gives this col­umn a nice in­ter­na­tional spritz. To­day it’s sprez­zatura. Style- con­scious Ital­ian read­ers might recog­nise it as the ef­fort­less el­e­gance (usu­ally achieved through a great deal of ef­fort) that paces the streets of Mi­lan. “Beau­ti­ful di­shevel­ment” is one of the best trans­la­tions I’ve read, an ap­po­site way of de­scrib­ing that non­cha­lant chic Euro­peans do so well. And how does this trans­late to in­te­rior de­sign? The un­made bed. You thought it was just lazy, but no, it’s sprez­zatura for the home.

Some­thing that has di­vided my fel­low judges on The Block and me is how un­made a bed should be. “Too much in­for­ma­tion!” screamed Shaynna Blaze on one oc­ca­sion. Quite apart from the re­search that tells us un­made beds are health­ier (less of a breed­ing ground for dust mites), the messy bed is one of the most en­dur­ing style state­ments of re­cent years. Home mag­a­zines and cat­a­logues all favour the rum­pled look when it comes to the bed­room – a far cry from the hos­pi­tal­corner ap­proach of past decades. But at what point does de­sir­able be­come daggy? Vogue Liv­ing style ed­i­tor Joseph Gard­ner comes at it from a stylist’s per­spec­tive. “There’s some­thing voyeuris­tic and ef­fort­lessly cool about an un­made bed,” he says. “But get­ting the bal­ance right is key. You want it to feel like some­one just rolled out – or is about to jump in.”

Not sur­pris­ingly, the sprez­zatura trend par­al­lels a sim­i­lar ap­petite for linen bed­ding. Sharon Pat­si­o­tis is the owner and founder of Mel­bourne-based Hale Mer­can­tile Co. (hale­mer­can­tileco­l­i­nen. com), whose Euro­pean linen prod­ucts are now avail­able world­wide. Pat­si­o­tis sees linen as a sen­si­ble life­style choice. “With so many dual-in­come fam­i­lies to­day, peo­ple have lit­tle time for the fam­ily home. Em­brac­ing prod­ucts that look best creased and crum­pled makes sense. You don’t need to have ironed sheets any­more to make a state­ment.”

Talk­ing of state­ments, when Bri­tish artist Tracey Emin ex­hib­ited My Bed at Lon­don’s Tate Gallery in 1999, the world re­coiled. Ad­mit­tedly, Emin’s was styled with empty booze bot­tles, ci­garette butts and more than a few stains. Not a look that would win points on The Block. Too much in­for­ma­tion? Just a tad.

OR­GAN­ISED CHAOS Gone are the ironed sheets and hospi­tal cor­ners – to­day’s ul­tra-chic bed­rooms boast el­e­gantly un­made beds and linen that looks best when crum­pled.

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