From Clapham to the Cotswolds


Personal recommendations matter, especially when they come from someone you really trust. Josie and Charlie had plenty of decisions to make when they started to renovate the Grade II listed, 14th century rectory that would become their home but choosing which mattress to buy was one of the easy ones. This was thanks to Charlie’s dad, who had a unique perspective to share on the subject of daily spending. Charlie laughed and said, “He’s always had this classic saying, which has been drummed into me from quite an early age, which was, that the best two investments you’ll ever make, are your shoes and your mattress — because you spend half your life in both!”

Generally speaking, listening to our parents isn’t something we do until we’re older, when maturity kicks in and helps us make sense of the wisdom they shared. The suggestion of spending sensibly on a bed was something the couple both agreed on, after having the opportunity to road test a Vispring at Charlie’s parents house. Reflecting back, Charlie mentioned how thankful he was for the advice, “Dad had always impressed on me how important it was to make sure you were sleeping on a good mattress. But I’m ashamed to admit that at first, I ignored him.

When Josie and I bought our first bed, we spent quite a lot of money on the bed frame, and not so much on the mattress. Even from the start, it was never right. It was too firm. But it’s funny, because I bet if we did a survey, you’d find that most people would do the same — spend on the wrong thing. This attitude comes from a lack of understanding I think, about how important sleep is to our mental and physical wellbeing. I think also, there’s so little information out there that clearly sets out just how different a mattress can be — and what the scale of those subtle differences are, whether that’s the spring tension, the fillings, or even whether one side of the bed can be firmer or softer than the other.”

Josie added, “When we first moved into the new house, we were sleeping on an airbed, which was so incredibly uncomfortable. Then when the Vispring mattress was delivered and we slept on it in our master bedroom for the first time… it was like a scene from an advert or a film when we woke up! Neither of us could quite believe what a good night’s sleep we’d had. We’d been counting down the days until it arrived. That experience cemented the theory that it was money well spent — it couldn’t be further from the cheaper options you see advertised everywhere, that arrive 24 hours after you’ve ordered, rolled up in a box.

The convenience and quick turnaround of these mattresses is the main reason for their popularity, especially for our generation. I suppose most younger people start off with the more affordable version of something; whether that’s a coffee machine, a car, or a toaster. But once you realise how much of an impact they have on your day, you can begin to appreciate the finer things in life and understand that it’s better to invest in better quality products that will really make a difference.”

Decamping from the vibrant buzz of Clapham in south London, to the picturesque and peaceful Cotswolds was a big step for the couple. The renovation project has been documented from the start on their dedicated @oldhouseourhome Instagram page, which shows the trials and tribulations of overhauling a period property. The endless scroll of inspiration has transformed the interiors industry, allowing individuals to share their own homes and refurbishment experiences.

Beds are an area that Josie had been particularly interested in and she explained, “With beds, you rarely get the chance to actually sleep on one to try it out before you commit to buy. But interestingly, I saw something on Instagram the other day with a couple who were staying in a hotel and said they’d had such a restful night’s sleep. They decided to strip the bedding off to see what brand the mattress was and made the point that, with cars you get to test drive. With a bed, you awkwardly lie on one for 2 minutes in a showroom full of people and pretend to be asleep.” Charlie agreed and sighed, “I honestly fear that now that our new bed and mattress are so lovely, we’re going to have the opposite feeling when we go to nice hotels, because we can’t pack our Vispring up and take it with us.” A sentiment echoed by Josie, who smiled and said, “We’d go to those lovely hotels to treat ourselves to the ultimate pampering experience, whereas now, we have that feeling every day at home.”


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