Wall beds make stylish come­back

Max­i­miz­ing space in small homes part of the allure

Calgary Herald - Calgary Herald New Condos - - New Condos - AN­DREA COX

What­ever con­cep­tual lens one chooses to peer through, it’s clear the 1960s clas­sic wall bed — think Austin Pow­ers — has just been cat­a­pulted into the 21 cen­tury.

Take for ex­am­ple the re­cently launched de­signs of TechCraft Style, which pre­miered at the fall Toronto Home Show to wild ac­co­lades.

“We won best in show,” says Ramesh Sa­has­ranam, vice-pres­i­dent sales and mar­ket­ing for TechCraft Canada.

From a de­sign per­spec­tive, try­ing to fit in ev­ery­thing us­ing a two-di­men­sional grid map no longer cuts it. Spa­ces are smaller, peo­ple are grav­i­tat­ing to the in­ner-city and mov­ing up into glass-sheathed tow­ers. That’s why find­ing so­lu­tions to max­i­mize de­sign and cre­ate greater func­tion­al­ity in smaller spa­ces is at the fore­front of de­sign thought. Think of it as a mas­ter­ful ex­er­cise in spa­tial po­etry.

“We re­ally need to start think­ing in three di­men­sions,” says de­signer Lau­ren Dar­ragh. She sug­gests us­ing wall space, in a sim­i­lar fash­ion to the way Euro­peans de­sign for things like shelv­ing, stor­age and yes, sleep­ing.

“Wall beds are def­i­nitely a so­lu­tion for smaller spa­ces — kids’ rooms, sleeper/ dens, bach­e­lor apart­ments, even in the liv­ing room,” says Dar­ragh.

It’s a trend TechCraft has duly noted. TechCraft’s wall beds are cus­tom de­signs de­vel­oped in con­junc­tion with ma­jor re­tailer Costco.

“They came to us with an op­por­tu­nity to cre­ate a re­ally nice wall bed that could be put to­gether eas­ily,” says Sa­has­ranam.

The de­signs are var­ied. With rich ve­neers and thought­ful de­tail­ing, all the beds are ex­tremely stylish and have the ca­pac­ity to trans­form any space into a beau­ti­ful, multi-func­tional room. From the clever Coven­try desk wall bed that’s a desk by day and with a sim­ple pull, trans­forms into a bed by night, to mod­ern land­scape (or side­ways ori­ented) beds that are per­fect for rooms with low ceil­ings, wall beds can make any space ap­pear larger.

“The land­scape bed is great for sleeper dens which are of­ten only nineby-nine feet. Even when you pull it out, you still have room to walk around in the room,” says Shas­ranam.

Cana­dian de­signer Amanda For­rest, who took part in a de­sign chal­lenge in­cor­po­rat­ing wall beds, says she was pleas­antly sur­prised at the new face of the de­sign.

“It looks very chic, like it is part of the de­sign rather than an af­ter­thought,” she says of the Coven­try Desk model, which she in­cor­po­rated into her own home. “It blends in just like any beau­ti­ful desk. You would never guess it’s a guest bed.”

In­stal­la­tion is sim­ple and takes about 90 min­utes. Shas­ranam says two peo­ple can do it.

“It just re­quires six but­ter­fly toggles that at­tach to the dry­wall. It’s very easy,” he says.

The beds are avail­able on­line at costco.ca or at techcraft­style.ca. Prices range from $1,200 to just un­der $2,000, in­clud­ing de­liv­ery.

Pho­tos: TechCraft

The Al­le­gra Dou­ble Land­scape wall bed is a clever way to be func­tional in tight ar­eas and pro­vide sleep­ing quarters for guests.

The Al­le­gra wall bed is hid­den from view inside its at­trac­tive cab­i­net.

The Coven­try wall bed is also a desk.

The Coven­try eas­ily pulls out to a bed.

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