Orkney knitwear designer Hilary Grant has provided bespoke blankets for rooms in a new high-end hotel that’s just opened in Dundee.
The commission, for the 102 room, multi-million-pound Hotel Indigo®- operated by IHG and located in a former mill building in the city’s Constable Street – came to Hilary Grant from Glasgow based interior design studio, Graven.
“We were approached by Graven about the Hotel Indigo project early last year,” explained Hilary. “Graven’s clients IHG®were looking to provide a more design-led, high-end hotel for the city, in light of the Dundee V&A museum opening there in September.
“Janice Kirkpatrick, one of the directors at Graven, had bought one of our scarves that previous winter and when they were looking at bespoke textile options for the hotel rooms we were lucky to have been brought up in the conversation.”
Hilary studied in Dundee and started her knitwear company there in 2011, a year before she relocated to Orkney, so the order has special significance for her.
“It was a nice personal link the city of Dundee,” she said. “We explored and costed a lot of bespoke options for the project, but they were particularly keen on our Wave Blanket, which has actually been our best-selling design. We’ve been selling this blanket since 2014 and since then they’ve been sent out to customers all over the world, so it’s nice to see it used in this context. I think Graven also felt the design worked well with Dundee’s connection to the water.”
Hilary had to go through the process of producing the blanket in various sizes and yarns, so different pricing options could be considered, along with laundering costs.
“We had to have the samples tested and certified to meet fire safety standards for the hotel,” she said. “I’m usually having to email buyers and our customers about delivery times and tracking codes, so going from that to emailing construction companies about data sheets and fire regulations was something a bit different!”
Hilary added: “It’s a huge honour to have our Orkney designed blankets in the new hotel and to be a small part in the ongoing rejuvenation of the wonderful city of Dundee.”
Edgar Balfour, project manager for Orkney food, drink and crafts, said: “Congratulations to Hilary and her team for this prestigious order, one that again demonstrates the wealth of creative talent we have in Orkney, talent which is highly respected and regarded commercially at a national and international level. This in an important year for Dundee, with the opening of the new V&A museum, so it’s nice to think that some of the visitors heading for the city this year will be kept warm in their rooms by quality Orkney products!”