Ian and his wife Alison launched La Chambre Paris in September 2019. They found buying high quality bed linen in France expensive (brands can be sold for up to 10x cost). They were also frustrated by the traditional model of buying in a big store plus returns only being available if it is in the original packaging was not consumer friendly. They firmly believe that brands should stand behind the quality of their products and offer people the chance to really test and try the bedding which is why you have 90 days to sleep, wash and fall in love with their bedding!
So they decided to create La Chambre Paris and found a factory that shared their values of exceptional quality, eco-responsibility and transparency. They developed a curated range of French washed linen, sateen and percale and brought in little details such as duvet ties and by cutting out all the middlemen they can sell to you at an affordable price.
Now is the perfect time to refresh your bedroom with beautiful new sheets and support a local expatriate-run Made in France business.
La Chambre Paris Commitments
- You have 90 days to sleep, wash and fall in love with our bedding.
- They are sure you will love the quality but if for any reason you want to return them you can.
- They work directly with a single factory to offer you quality bed linen at the fairest prices, all year round.
- Free delivery and returns in France to make your life easier.
- They plant 10 trees for every order through their partner the Eden Reforestation Project.
Here is an interview with Ian, the co-owner of La Chambre :
Can yon tell us more about you and how It all started?
In 2016, Alison’s mom came for an extended stay in Paris and we wanted to upgrade the sheets for her visit. I went to a large department store to buy new linens and my experience there was pretty negative. I found it difficult to see the value in the high price tags. The salesperson was dismissive. If you brought the bedding home and didn’t like it – tough – you couldn’t return them. We started to look at the French bed linen market. It was traditional, opaque and very expensive. We learned that if we worked directly with the right factory, we could significantly cut costs, improve transparency and manufacture product eco-responsibly. By cutting out the middle men and the high margin of retail stores, we are able to deliver exceptional bedding for an accessible price. After 14 months of hard work we launched our new ecommerce brand in September 2019. La Chambre Paris (www.lachambreparis.com) is a leading new French ecommerce business with a simple idea. Create timeless bed linen essentials of exceptional quality for an accessible price. We believe that the details make all the difference. We included ties on the duvet cover to keep your duvet in place, added long side / short side tags onto the fitted sheets, and used envelope closures on the pillowcases for easy care and a refined aesthetic. We are also a business that cares deeply about our impact on the environment. We work with a factory that is at the forefront of eco-responsible practices. For every order made, we plant 10 trees which offsets a return flight from Paris to L.A. We package our bedding in reusable pouches that can serve multiple purposes.
When, where and how did you find your first FUSAC?
In 2017, we were looking to find someone to translate our French citizenship dossier. I found FUSAC and your ads which were enormously helpful.
Where do you come from ?
Alison is originally from Boston, MA in the United States and I am originally from a little village in Nottinghamshire in the UK.
What languages do you speak ?
We both speak English and French. But our children were born here and go to French schools. They are bilingual. The eldest has just started « helping us » improve our French.
How did you end up living in France ?
We met by chance in Antigua, Guatemala in a little town square in 2005. We fell in love and travelled together but then reality caught up with Alison studying law in the USA and I was working in London. We tried long distance but it didn’t work so we split up for 4 years. We reconnected at my sisters engagement party in New York in November 2009 and got engaged 6 weeks later and then married in August 2010. Alison moved to London and whilst we loved living there we wanted a new adventure. We persuaded our companies to let us work out of the French offices for 3 months and we rented an apartment online and jumped on the Eurostar with 8 bags. 3 children, a dog, and now nine years later our new business we have become French citizens and we love living in France.
What is the most satisfying thing about owning your company ?
Is it okay if I answer with two points? Our business motto is « better sleep, better you. » We believe that sleep is transformative and we know that our best days normally come after a good night’s sleep. So to go back to your question, first, it is very satisfying to follow through on an idea that you think can make a difference in people’s lives; and second, owning your own company makes you feel like you have control over your own destiny.
What is your chief characteristic ?
I am focused and determined. Alison might also call me stubborn. Ultimately – you need to be a bit head strong to start a new business from scratch and to have such underlying belief in your vision that your belief sustains you through the rollercoaster of launching and making it successful. I am also exceptionally lucky that my business partner is also my wife. Trust and confidence are crucial elements in a business partner and we have that part down. We already run a business together – we are raising a family – so we know each other’s strengths and weaknesses and we are able to challenge and support each other. We are also totally invested in the other person’s individual success.
Keep taking positive steps forward every day.
What are you the most proud of?
Plucking up the courage to walk across the park in Antigua, Guatemala to say hello to Alison for the first time. It literally changed my life.
What do you do to evacuate your stress?
I have to exercise. Either training or running.
How do you use social networks for your company?
We have built a strong organic following on Instagram and Facebook since we launched our business last September. We advertise on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. One of the biggest challenges of launching a new ecommerce business is working out how to get people to come to your website / store in the most cost efficient way possible. Social networks are one of the best ways for a startup to build an audience but it takes a lot of work to make it effective.
How were you impacted by the Covid crisis?
We were very lucky compared to our friends in Paris who run bars and cafes and who had to abruptly close in March. Due to the heroic effort of essential workers, we were able to keep shipping throughout the confinement. Whilst March was quiet, we have seen record growth in April and May. When people are confined to their homes for an extended period of time, they can become hungry for a refresh, a way to renew their space. Buying new sheets is an easy way to make your bedroom feel like you’ve totally redecorated and also given your self a treat. Climbing into a freshly made bed of exceptional quality linens feels amazing – but climbing into that bed without it costing you a month’s rent feels even better.
What is your next project?
Continuing to grow La Chambre Paris. We have a long journey ahead of us if we are going to suceed in our goal of transforming the French bed linen market which I would otherwise describe as very traditional, opaque and unnecessarily exceedingly expensive. It is going to take time but we will make it happen.
Visit the website : https://www.lachambreparis.com/