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Frette

 

  Frette
Frette
Good in bed
by Vivian Manning-Schaffel
September 15, 2003

If you count threads instead of sheep for a good night’s sleep, you are probably well acquainted with Frette. An Italian brand in the luxury linen supply business for over 150 years, Frette has built a rich identity with the world’s royal and affluent.
 
Today’s Frette positions itself as “a trademark of absolute prestige in the field of home couture throughout the world.” The definition of home couture extends well beyond the home with a booming hospitality business, supplying sheets and linens to top hotels such as the Ritz in Paris, Claridge’s in London, Cipriani in Venice, and Plaza Athenée in New York.

Can Frette.com envelop the user with the same care and craftsmanship as a night between its sheets?

 
 
Frette The site is offered in Italian and English. A splash introduction appears in the center of the main page displaying a model swathed in glorious bedding as a soothing piano riff tinkles in background. A click on to the G clef icon silences the musical accompaniment, although this takes a minute to figure out. In fact, one of the bugs of the site is that each site section has a theme song. Pleasant enough at first, deep into browsing, the icon disappears, leaving the user with no conceivable way to turn the music off. Another annoyance is that every page fully reloads, which is unnecessary and time consuming.

However, overall, Frette does execute a virtual catalog with the same panache as its off-line pursuits. The design is both functional and attractive; the color scheme and aesthetic perfectly in sync with Frette’s advertising and retail outposts.

Product pages display an image of the product flanked by a well-written product description. Virtual swatches appear below, which, when clicked, alter the image to portray the chosen color or pattern of the product. Showing the special care expected of Frette, the Product area offers a Customer Service link elaborating on the care instructions for each product. In exchange for a bit of contact information, users can quickly download a version of a print catalog viewable with Adobe Acrobat.

The majority of product is linen related with a small selection of accouterments for the Frette baby, a limited foray into loungewear and shoes, and other accessories, including fragrances, yachting (yes, yachting), spa and gift ideas.

Another standout section is the Company, which houses a comprehensive history lesson of the brand’s legacy, a detailed explanation of Frette’s age-old weaving process, an exhibition of recent ads, and an explanation of Frette’s relationship to parent company Finpart Group.

 

Vivian Manning-Schaffel is a freelance writer who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

     
*Due to the constantly changing environment of websites, some reviews may no longer reflect the current website for this brand.
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