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The Art of the Unmade Bed

Today’s luxurious lairs have a relaxed, lived-in quality

Mother’s make-your-bed edict might linger, but as soon as the bedroom became a place for our laptops, iPads, children and dogs, our beds lost a bit of their polish. Don’t worry, Mom: That’s a good thing. Obsessively pressed sheets and tortured hospital corners are a thing of the past. These days, high-end bedding is luxurious yet livable, rather than eerily untouched. What good’s an extravagant bed if you can’t enjoy a hearty glass of Brunello in it—or, for that matter, a little less sleep—on Friday night?

With its made-to-muss line of sheets, shams, duvets and more, L.A.-based bedding purveyor Matteo is a standard-bearer for the laid-back sack. Its “Nap” collection features neutral tones that are timelessly appealing, and the garment-dyed finish gives the feel of a favorite T-shirt. This is bedding that looks good wrinkled; in fact, it’s hard to imagine it any other way. Company president Matthew Lenoci built Matteo’s reputation around the concept of low maintenance. “When you’re getting to the point where you have to press, dry clean and generally have a battalion of professionals working on your bedding to keep it looking good, there’s a problem,” he says. “We wanted to make a product that’s anything but fussy.” 

The irony, of course, being that people are making a big fuss. Matteo is routinely sold out at New York City’s ABC Carpet & Home and earlier this year hosted a sellout sale on Gilt Home. Restoration Hardware, meanwhile, recently launched a bespoke Matteo bedding collection. And though the brand has gone beyond its initial neutrals-only palette of ink and greige, the unpretentious vibe and muted tones remain in effect.

Textured linen bedding from the Bespoke Garment-Dyed Collection
with Matthew Lenoci available at Restoration Hardware 
Photo: Courtesy of Restoration Hardware

How can you get this look at home? It’s easy. First, don’t be afraid to pair complementary and contrasting colors; one of the hallmarks of the unfussy bed is a refusal to adhere to archaic principles of matchy-matchiness. Then, pile on a variety of pillows. Next, embrace the power of a throw—or two or three—and really “throw” it (rather than pull it taut like a bedspread). And lastly, don’t be afraid to get a little dirty. The interpretation of which is entirely up to you. 

The ultimate makeover for your bed, from headboard to toe

Make a statement with a one-of-a-kind bedframe and headboard, like the Dream For The Sky bed (pictured), a new collaboration between Knoll Luxe and Savoir Beds, the English custom bedmakers who’ve given the likes of Madonna and Oprah some serious beauty rest. ($42,500; savoirbeds.com)

Photo: Courtesy of Savoir Beds

Get graphic with luxe blankets, like textile artist Meg Callahan’s modern take on the handmade quilt (Harrah, pictured, $3,000) or Kevin O’Brien’s Shibori cashmere throw, which uses an ancient Japanese dying technique for a sophisticated twist on tie-dye in rich nut tones. You’ll be a grateful bedhead. ($993) 

Photo: Courtesy of Mattermade

Dress it up—and mess it up—all you like, but don’t skimp on the main component. Try The Masterpiece mattress from Vi-Spring. Shetland Isle wool, European or South American horsetail, cashmere and alpaca ensure supreme comfort. It’s luxury to the core. (from $12,495)

Photo: Courtesy of Vi-Spring