Universal launching Paula Deen Kids
Jane Kitchen -- Kids Today, 7/10/2012 12:41:10 PM
Universal Furniture will launch a Paula Deen Kids line at this fall's High Point Market, with groups for both boys and girls under Universal's Smartstuff youth line.
Universal has held a licensing agreement with the celebrity chef and personality since 2009, and currently manufactures adult bedroom, dining room, living room, home office, entertainment, accent and upholstery collections under the Paula Deen Home brand.
Universal said the Paula Deen Kids collections were inspired by the children in Deen's life - her grandkids, nieces and nephews - and her own gracious, Southern style. The two collections, called Guys and Gals, were created "for young gentlemen and young ladies with an upscale sense of style."
"Guys and Gals share Paula's special style of comfortable casual furniture, touched with Southern sophistication," said Jeff Scheffer, CEO of Universal Furniture International. "But like Smartstuff, Paula Deen Kids was built from the ground up just for kids. It is not adult furniture retrofitted for her little friends."
As in all Smartstuff collections, Guys and Gals include details like charging stations in nightstands, removable drawer partitions, hidden storage compartments, built-in lighting, nightstands with coasters, a folding board in every dresser, world maps in all hutches and a star chart in all bunk beds.
Beds are available in twin and full with bunk beds available as twin over twin, twin over full, and full over full. Select beds available in queen size. Twin beds in the collection will retail for $1,099; fulls for $1,499. Dressers range from $1,099 to $1,499.
The Paula Deen Kids collection will also feature Smartstuff construction, including soft edges, bases and pilasters, English dovetail joints, full finish 9/16th inch oak plywood drawers, ball bearing, full-extension, soft-closing, under-mount glides, bolt-together construction on bedrails and wide steps and deeper mattress openings on bunks.
Gals is described as a collection for the young lady (and her upscale mother) who is growing out of the little girl stage into her own sense of style.
"While casual, Gals is a more sophisticated approach to kids furniture," said Scheffer. "It easily graduates, goes on to college and into a first apartment. It takes a cue from Paula's gracious home, but from there it takes on the perspective and lifestyle of a growing young woman who knows where she's going. I know. I have three daughters."
Gals features a painted linen finish with a gesso-like under layer, which gives it the appearance of having been lovingly painted and repainted for generations. Details include arching shapes, beading and turned posts with bracket feet or exaggerated bun feet.
Gals also offers nine storage pieces, including unique items such as a dressing chest, Young Lady's 2nd Closet and accessory chest. Four beds are included in the collection: the Gal's Reading Bed, which features a hidden, built-in LED snake light in one of the headboard posts; a panel bed; daybed and sleigh bed.
Guys is created for "the manly young gentleman with an upscale sense of Southern sophistication," and was inspired by Deen's grandson, Jack, who is by her own description, "all boy."
"Guys can take all that Paula's grandson, Jack, can dish out, but at the same time it addresses the manly young gentlemen with an assured sense of style," said Scheffer. "It's strong and masculine, with roots in a more rustic, traditional styling that is casual and comfortable."
Rustic and roughhewn in a distressed deep Molasses finish, its naturally mineral-streaked poplar wood is indigenous to the wetlands of Deen's beloved Savannah. Uneven planks reminiscent of hand-planed, hand-made wood antiques contribute to its lived-in look. Other design elements include simple turned feet, dentil molding, antiqued bronzed hardware and numbered medallions on drawers.
Unique pieces in Guys include Jack's Chest, inspired by a gentleman's chest and Jack's Treasure Mirror, which is flanked by corkboards tilting over felt-lined trays for holding treasures. Beds include a panel bed, Guy's Reading Bed, and bunk bed.
"Kids today are more knowledgeable and more sophisticated," said Scheffer. "They know what they want. Paula Deen Kids addresses the young lady and young man who want furniture with style. It is designed to grow with them. Elementary school, middle school, high school and even college - it fits all ages."
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