A bedroom should be "beautiful, tempting, for use at your most intimate, private times," says Priscilla Presley, whose new line of bed linens exudes the softness and serenity she's come to cherish over the course of an extraordinary and very public life.
"I'm a little old-fashioned in some ways; I like having tea and sitting down to read a book," says Presley, who admits, however, that her sense of style still reflects her early life. "Depending on my mood, it can go from classic to a simple flair with a touch of rock and roll," she says.
As Presley juggles multiple projects, from producing a remake of The Party with Dream Works to developing a theatrical musical based on her romance with Elvis, she finds her collaboration with Australian fashion designer Bruno Schiavi particularly rewarding.
"I have always loved beddings and linens; I love beautiful fabrics," Presley explains. "I was introduced to fine linens at a very young age. When I was married, we had custom sheets and linens made."
Schiavi, president of Jupi Corporation, has proven to be the true collaborator she long sought. "I've been wanting to do this for many years, but I held back," Presley says. "I've never licensed my name just for the sake of licensing; I'm a hands-on person." She describes Schiavi as "the perfect partner for me," adding: "I trust him; I know he trusts me. We have the same appreciation for aesthetics. We love beautiful things."
The Priscilla Presley Collection, which debuted in 2006 at Harrods and House of Fraser in the U.K., Home Outfitters and The Bay in Canada, and Australia's Myer stores, features designs that are "very serene, yet always comfortable," she says. Made of the finest cotton, with thread counts ranging from 400 to 800, the bedding is "soft and luxurious."
"Each item," according to Schiavi, is specially packaged for gift-giving "in a beautiful, reusable black bag with a gold zipper."
Presley's favorite of the initial designs—Inspiration—is available in "clean and crisp" porcelain with blue embroidery or "regal and risqué" burgundy with gray and black stitching. "The detailing came from a vintage fabric of mine," she says. Schiavi asked her at the outset to provide him with a selection of her favorite fabrics. "When I buy something, I don't buy on a whim; I buy something to keep," says Presley, who had stashed away a pair of trousers that inspired Schiavi's "incredible design."
From the earthy, yet cozy Organic ensemble made with certified organic cotton to the simple Bamboo style with its jacquard palm leaf pattern and antibacterial blend of cotton and bamboo fibers, each design's colors and subtle details were selected to appeal to couples. "A lot of bedding is very floral, very feminine; we're trying to make the settings a little more for men and women," Presley says.
As the two partner to expand the line—both through additional retail outlets including Cuddledown in the United States and through the introduction of complementary products including bathrobes, towels, candles, lighting, and bedroom furnishings—they will provide everything couples need to create a private hideaway.
As the oldest of six children, Presley knows the importance of having "a place where you can go to dream, to get your thoughts together. The bedroom is really important," she says. "It's your sanctuary."
While she suggests that "newlyweds should splurge on the Priscilla Presley Collection, of course" she also associates "splurging" with non-material things. "This world is going so fast," she laments. "If you don't take the time and put your priorities where they belong, you'll wish that you had.”
"Spend time to really nurture the relationship, really get to know each other," she says. "People expect a lot out of marriage," and newly married couples "need to focus on building a foundation," Presley counsels. Whether you are designing a home or your life together, "The bedroom is always a place to start."
> Written byKim Knox Beckius