The stuff of dreams

Home front: Silk pillowcases, tiger stripes and legendary beds from Portadown

Like all small businesses, Roisin Cross Silks is operating as best it can through Covid-19, taking orders online for its dress fabrics from India, China, Thailand and Italy. Owner Judith O'Sullivan, who took over the business from Cross some years ago and is now based in Deansgrange, Co Dublin, has branched out with a range of silk pillowcases and scarves that come all boxed up and ready to gift. Now reduced by 5O per cent, the boxed pillowcases would make a fine gift for a friend who might be spending a little more time in bed than usual. Silk pillowcases are smooth to the touch, less abrasive than poly/cotton and are said to be kind to hair and skin.

Though her showroom is closed, O'Sullivan – who has also returned part-time to her former job as an intensive care nurse – is busy posting silks all over the country. The pillowcases come in three colours – plain white, cream and pinkish – and cost €65 a pair, down from €130. Printed versions sprigged with flowers are €75 a pair, down from €150, while jacquard print versions in satin silk are also half price at €150 and can be dispatched quickly. See or email

Mattresses for dreaming on

Canadian rapper Drake likes his home comforts. A tour of his luxury apartment last week revealed he slept on a $400,000 (€368,000) mattress from Swedish company Hästens. The distinctive blue and white chequered mattresses are the stuff of dreams – it takes hundreds of hours to make its most luxurious models, according to the company's website which, naturally, raves about the benefits of a good night's sleep. You don't have to spend $400,000 to lie atop one however, there are versions available from about stg£9,000 (€10,350) from JJ Pierson, a furniture manufacturer based in Portadown, Northern Ireland that acts as agent for Hästens beds in Ireland.

Director John Pierson says the company had been delivering Hästens mattresses at the rate of one a week, "sometimes more" before coronavirus hit. Most were priced at £9,000-£20,000. Customers are from all over Ireland, he says. "There are European people living in Dublin who have ordered them, and then you have people who don't spend money on cars or holidays but who will spend it on a good bed."


The company is in lockdown at present, but deliveries will resume just as soon as they can open business again. For inquiries, email or call 00 44 77836 343 28.

Carpets to strut on

The Netflix show Tiger King has turned everyone on to the vertical stripes of the big cat. The pelts of this regal animal once decorated colonial big game galleries, but faux has been the way to go for decades. Siberian is a stair runner by Stark Carpet that is not for the faint hearted. You could expect to see it gracing the stairwell of Joe Exotic's home or an arms dealer in a Bond movie. Pictured in the gold colourway, the print is loud and proud and takes the maximalism trend as far as it can go. The 80 wool/20 nylon mix costs from about €350 per linear metre to order from TC Matthews, and can be made with or without the border.;