Manchester-based contract fabrics supplier, Bespoke by Evans, has pioneered a new biophilic collection aimed to support care home residents suffering with dementia.
Approved by Stirling University’s Dementia Services Development Centre (DSDC), Bespoke by Evans’ new flame retardant fabrics is the first collection by the business to meet independent testing standards and has been awarded dementia-friendly ratings of ‘2a’ and ‘2b’ for use as dementia-inclusive designs for curtains, upholstery, cushions and accessories.
Bespoke by Evans’ pioneering fabric designs have been created specifically to help improve the quality of life for residents living with dementia. Aptly named, ‘The Stirling Collection’, the fabric designs are supported by over 25 years academic and best-practice research by the DSDC. The five accredited designs use a range of techniques to help psychological understanding of care home living, orientation and navigation including; colour contrasts to break up and connect spaces together, avoidance of ‘busy’ repetitive layouts, perception of colour and contrast by the ageing eye and familiarity bringing generation-appropriate modernflorals inspired by the 19th century Arts & Craft movement.
Lucy Hutchinson, Senior Interior Designs at the DSDC stated; “The new Collection by Bespoke by Evans comprises five complimentary designs which have been specifically produced with dementia design principles in mind. The Dementia Services Development Centre (DSDC) at the University of Stirling have carried out a product accreditation assessment on the Collection and found that all five designs / colourways are suitable for use within areas used by people with dementia. Strong pattern and significant tonal contrast within a pattern may be visually overstimulating and as a result cause distress for some people with dementia. Whilst none of the designs are totally plain, the patterns featured are relatively subtle due to the colours of the elements making-up the patterns being quite close tonally. This has resulted in the creation of a collection which provides pattern in a homely and familiar way whilst successfully avoiding strong colour contrast within each pattern.”
According to recent data*, there are currently around 900,000 people with dementia in the UK. This number is expected to rise sharply to 1.6m by 2040 as people continue to live longer. Currently, around 1 in every 14 over-65’s may have a form of dementia. Everyday behaviours such as thinking, remembering, and reasoning are disrupted and within care environments, navigation, wellbeing and comfort remain a key priority and soft furnishings throughout a care home should support people living with dementia.
“We’re delighted to become the first and only supplier of approved fabric designs which have been independently reviewed and approved by one of the UK’s leading authorities of dementia care & research – it ensures maximum confidence in our new collection” commented Beth Lewin, Head Designer. “Interior designers, architects, building standards agencies, care commissioning bodies and practitioners can now enjoy added peace of mind knowing that our fabric designs not only comply with necessary legislative requirements for flame retardancy but the designs are proven to support wellbeing and encourage a safer environment for residents within care.”
“As specialists in textile design, it’s of paramount importance to us that our new design collection is accredited by the DSDC and we hope this will enable many care providers to offer a dementia-friendly environment to help improve what is an increasingly challenging debilitating cognitive syndrome faced by many.” Beth went on to warn; “Not every fabric design is the same, nor is every resident’s need and that’s why we encourage a collaborative approach to care home interior design. Our aim is to develop products that really make a difference. Unfortunately, not every fabric design sold by suppliers will be fit-for-purpose and we recommend those working in care home interior design to seek accredited products or bespoke solutions to ensure care home environments meet the end-user requirements including wayfinding and the avoidance of distress.”
The new Stirling Collection is available in 5 designs and can be printed in the UK in up to 12 flame retardant fabrics that meet British Standards. Bespoke by Evans are providing free-of-charge fabric samples and a complimentary digital brochure. Interested care home providers and interior designers simply contact firstname.lastname@example.org