Founded in St. Tropez, Stranos Linen has a reputation for creating luxury bespoke linens. Now based in London’s Chelsea, the brand has expanded to include a cashmere range and children’s products as well as linens for boutique hotels and super-yachts. Here, we speak to the brand’s designer and CEO Christophe Mela about trends, inspiration and designing a product that lasts.
1. How has Stranos Linen evolved since its inception?
Stranos Linen is constantly evolving. Due to current environmental pressure, people no longer want disposable items and are willing to invest in quality linens and bespoke items that will eventually become heirlooms that are passed down through the generations. In the past five years, we have launched our new Classic Collection and have also designed many items for children, including pochettes and hooded towels not just for bath-time, but also for the beach.
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We have provided exceptional quality bedlinen and cushions to boutique hotels and going forwards, we would like to capitalise on the hospitality sector. We have also entered into the luxury travel market with our new cashmere travel set that includes a bespoke pochette, eye mask and blanket that can be monogrammed with up to four initials.
We have worked with the owners of many super-yachts and have designed table linen (tablecloths, napkins etc.) in the yacht’s distinctive monogram. We have also designed the yacht’s interiors with bespoke, monogrammed bedlinen and matching cushions for the bedrooms, lounge and dining areas. Recently, we have been asked to produce bespoke items for the outdoor relaxation areas of the super-yachts as well as personalised table linen for dining al fresco – these demands are increasing year by year.
We have also increased the size of our workshop in Chelsea and partnered with Kitchens & More (K&M) to showcase our collections in their store.
2. Are you influenced by trends when designing?
I am French! I am influenced by trends, but by elegant and timeless movements, not fads.
The timeless elegance of French fashion designers inspires me: Christian Dior, Coco Chanel, and Yves Saint Laurent. For example, Yves Saint Laurent’s classic Le Smoking tuxedo suit for women was the first of its kind to earn attention in the fashion world. It was launched in 1966 and is still fashionable today. Its relevance will not date as the design is timeless. I create pieces and collections that will last and that can be passed down through the generations. Pieces that are unforgettable, but will remain elegant and chic, and will stand the test of time.
The colours of nature also inspire me. The blue of the sea can motivate me to construct a design in hues that reflect this. A vibrant green leaf will encourage me to design a spring collection for the table that will pop with colour against the simplicity of pure white, delicate china.
3. What inspires you to create a new pattern?
I look closely at objects that people often pass over. For me, the perfect afternoon is walking around London’s museums. The V&A, the Tate Modern and the Saatchi Gallery are my favourite places. I can study a painting or sculpture and see a detail within that piques my interest. When I get back to my studio, I sit down, recollect the detail and put pen to paper to create something special.
4. Do you have a favourite product or collection?
I love every piece I create and design! So, no, I do not have a favourite. It would be impossible to choose just one!
5. As a customer, how would you recognise high quality linen?
By the finish, the quality of the fabric and the detail of the embroideries
6. Aside from bedlinen, you also create towels, bathrobes and a few cashmere pieces, do you plan to expand into other products in the future?
Yes, for Winter 2020 we are planning to extend our cashmere range to include throws and blankets for the home and for children too. We are also developing a range of cashmere cushions that will complement the blankets and throws – all of which can be monogrammed and personalised to suit the décor and design of the individual’s home.
Our new Spring and Summer 2020 collection will be available from January 2020 and this year we will be taking orders for outdoor cushions and table-wear. The collection will also include a range of beach towels for babies, children and adults.
The Stranos Linen Showroom is at K&M 515 King’s Road, Chelsea, London, SW10 0TX. For more information visit: stranos-linen.com