The Legacy Fabric and Upholstery; quintessentially British
After much scrupulous development, we are finally able to demonstrate the art of making the perfect mattress. Here we showcase the John Ryan Legacy.
Where possible, every fibre, material and gram of upholstery has been sourced here in the UK, traceable back to its origin.
- Why are UK made textiles so rare?
- Woven in Lancashire; the traditional way with Mitchel Interflex
- What looms do we use for the Legacy?
- British Wool; chosen & woven for our base fabric
- Swaledale wool as an upholstery layer from Edward Clay
- Alpaca fibres; the only mattress using British Alpaca fibre
Why may you ask?
Great Britain has a long heritage in fabric, textiles and spinning. Being the world leader during the industrial revolution in making the worlds finest fabrics. This heritage passed down traditional skills in fabric weaving and upholstery manufacturing. These skills would cover the textile specialists that worked on the looms, weavers and cotton spinners across the North West of England. Sadly, the age of mass production has led many textile and fabric manufacturers away from the UK. The allure of cheaper foreign imports, where price comes before quality, was too great for some and especially given the emergence of ‘throwaway fashion’.
However, British woven fabrics have always proven to be of the highest quality, providing unparalleled durability and comfort compared to their cheaper rivals. There has been a concerted move back towards traditional British made fabrics, as people once again realise the importance of quality and we have sought out these re-emerging manufactures out for the new Legacy mattress.
We have been looking to create the ultimate mattress and with the Legacy, we believe we now offer the finest mattress in the world. Read on to find out exactly why this mattress can be called the worlds best.
Legacy Wool; A Lancashire Fabric
We have chosen Mitchel Interflex a 4th generation family run weaving mill to manufacture our perfect base fabric using British Wool. We have spent over 18 months developing the perfect thread for this cover and working on the exact weaving method until we were completely satisfied it was the best it could be. We’re talking the next level of geek with the levels of technical detail we have gone into!
Mitchel Interflex weavers are 4th generation textile mill owners who have been passing down the skills of traditional fabric weaving to their small expert craftsmen and women. The mill has been there since 1712 and up until the 1960s, it was still water powered. Whilst the power of electricity has taken over, the same care and skills are used by the weavers.
What looms does the Legacy mattress use to weave its fabrics?
The worlds finest mattress, the John Ryan Legacy, uses Dornier Rapier looms for its fabrics. These fabrics are woven to exacting standards, no thread has been left unchecked and our top secret blend of British dip dyed wool fibres provides the ultimate in 100% natural UK woven fabrics.
Our years of experience and research have led us to create what we believe is the perfect mattress finishing fabric. Not only is it 100% British Wool which is breathable and natural, but the fabric is woven to our own specification for the warp, weft, picks and ends. All of which are top secret! It’s completely bespoke to us for this very mattress.
It has a matt finish which demonstrates the purity of the wool and the exacting mill methods used to spin this wool into an almost faultless thread. It’s has a smoothness that simply can’t be found in any other high-end mattress manufacturer. We are the only mattress retailer who is using our own woven Wool fabric that is entirely sourced and manufactured here in the UK.
When the looms are set the threads are ‘hand set’ into the machine before the looms start to operate. This means that skilled weavers hand thread each yarn into the machines to give the exact warp and weft thread counts. It’s a painstaking process compared to some of the automated looms but it means you can hand-select threads to create the perfect fabric. This is then created into small batches of Woolen fabric perfection.
It’s fitting for John Ryan as a bespoke independent mattress manufacturer to have sourced a local fabric manufacturer that can meet our exacting requirements for our British Wool covers. The tradition of weaving in Lancashire goes back hundreds of years and its testament to the quality and care taken in creating our handmade mattresses. There’s zero mass produced fibre here, only handpicked woven fabrics where we can trace back the very thread to its creator here in the UK.
By mixing a number of coloured wool threads we have designed a fabric that is effortlessly beautiful. Available in two launch colours, these blends of natural wool will compliment any bedroom. Whether it be high-end contemporary or luxuriously decadent; this fabric will offset the highest of design standards.
The wool threads themselves are individually laced onto the loom painstakingly before the wool fabric can be woven. The exact specification for our wool covers is our closely guarded secret. We can tell you we blend two different colours of wool yarn that have been spun and dyed in Britain.
Yorkshire Wool Upholstery from Edward Clay
Our wool supplier first established in 1870 and are now a 4th generation natural fibre supplier based in Yorkshire. They started as a handloom weaver and have been in the specialist area of natural fibre production ever since. They still work from the historical original mill building which our British Wool is processed in.
The wool we have sourced is 100% British Swaledale sheep wool. It is sheered from Gold certification sheep accredited by the British Wool Board. It is then scoured, heated and then teased into pads for use in our mattresses.
The benefits of British wool are:
- Incredibly breathable
- High loft meaning it has great heat exchange properties, warm in winter, cool in summer
- High wicking so moisture can be taken away from the sleep surface and distributed away from the sleeper
- Natural fire retardant
Wool upholstery used in the Legacy Mattress
The Swaledale sheeps wool we are using for the John Ryan Legacy is at a weight of 1200 GSM. This Wool is sheered in Yorkshire and then scoured and cleaned before being needled. This wool has been certified Gold by the British Wool Board.
History of Edward Clay Natural Fibre Merchants:
The Swaledale Wool we have sourced for the Legacy upholstery comes from a traditional fibre merchant in West Yorkshire. Edward Clay has over 130 Year of experiencing cleaning and needling such fibres at their original premises. We have been working with them to source the highest grade of British Wool meaning all of our Wool upholstery in the Legacy is Certified Gold standard by the British Wool Board.
British Alpaca Fibre in the Legacy Mattress
Alpaca is one of the most expensive natural fibres in the world. It’s not only super soft but its incredibly resilient and high wicking. The softness comes from the size of the cuticles on each strand which are noticeably smaller than that of other Natural Fibres creating a much finer soft fibre. You can read more on the benefits of Alpaca in a Luxury mattress here.
The Alpaca fibre we use has been sourced from independent Alpaca owners from here in the UK. These micro farms usually house anywhere between 2 to 20 Alpacas and they are sheered just once a year. Meaning that the supply of true British Alpaca is incredibly limited.
The delicate white fibre is then carefully processed and cleaned before it is then needled onto cotton in the North West of England ready to be used as upholstery in the Legacy mattress. Again, this is undertaken by a small independent Alpaca fibre processer here in the North West of England.
We are the worlds only mattress retailer to use British Alpaca in our Legacy mattress for the ultimate sleep experience.
We have finally been able to follow our dream of designing and manufacturing probably the worlds finest mattress. The fibres, fabrics and upholstery have been painstakingly sourced from around the UK to provide you with the ultimate mattress. Whether it be the layers of 100% natural British fibres or the flawless fabric woven in true heritage style; this mattress could not be improved upon or beaten by our rivals even if they tried.
John Ryan the most trusted bed retailer
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