Bambizi came into being as the result of my wish to create the perfect nursery for my baby daughter. Before she was born, I’d worked as an interior designer and had fallen in love with the nursery furniture I’d seen at furniture shows around the world. Once it came to furnishing my own nursery, however, it was soon clear that I’d only be able to create my dream nursery by designing it myself.
The furniture I saw in the UK shops was perfectly functional — but it wasn’t what I wanted. I knew I’d be spending a lot of time in the nursery, and I wanted it to match the rest of my home. I saw it in my mind’s eye as something that would reflect my own style, and that would be well made enough to grow with my child rather than being thrown away after the first couple of years.
I was lucky enough to turn my vision into reality. My husband owned a kitchen manufacturing company, and he said that if I designed my dream nursery, he would ask his cabinet makers to make it.
At first I just wanted to create my own special space. But then I started to think: surely there were other expectant mothers out there who felt the same as me — mothers who wanted high quality nursery furniture that was well made, safe, and looked beautiful? In the few spare moments during my daughter’s first year, I designed a range of cots, dressers, changing stations and armoires. I ended up with hundreds of drawings, and then chose my favourites — and Bambizi was born.
My husband’s company was too busy to make up the prototypes, so I met up with a Norfolk cabinet maker, David Evans. An old-school craftsman, he’d worked for the best English fine-furniture makers for years and was now making pieces in his own workshop using traditional methods.
Turning my designs into actual pieces of furniture was more tricky than I’d imagined. For example, David initially thought that the wave of cherry wood on the side of the cherry cot was impossible to make — but that’s what makes the cot so special, and so he found a way to make it. On the round cot, I insisted on having the cot gate hidden as I don’t like the look of standard metal cot runners and consider them to be an entrapment hazard. Again, David thought it might not be possible to have curved wood with a hidden gate mechanism — but after many sleepless nights and prototypes he made it work, and it looks just amazing.
Safety was a prime concern for us right from the outset. We did some research into British Standards testing — and were disconcerted to discover that much of the nursery furniture on sale in the UK is not only made elsewhere but is tested to a very basic standard. For us, safety is paramount — so we changed the construction of our furniture in order to comply with British Standards. The tests are fierce, and furniture has to be very high quality to withstand them. With its traditional joints and solid carcasses, our furniture passed with flying colours.
I also had to think practically. If I was going to create a round cot, I’d have to create the mattresses and bedding to match. I also wanted the furniture to last for a long time, so I had to design cots that could turn into toddler beds and then day beds, wardrobes with height-adjustable rails that could then turn into entertainment centres, changing tables that could become beautiful dressers.
Above all, I wanted each piece to be something that children can use as they grow; something that could even become a family heirloom. The furniture is so well made that it could be passed down from generation to generation.
The pieces can also be personalised to suit your own child and your own creative vision. As we make the furniture to order, we are able to offer you a bespoke service. If you want a pink cot, we can make it. If you want a cot that looks like a swan, we can provide it. We make everything to order and by hand, ensuring that every single piece is top quality. The cots can include a plaque engraved with your child’s name and birth-date to give that personal touch.
The whole process has been hard work — but now we are proud to offer our range which includes twelve pieces of furniture, organic Bambizi-branded mattresses, organic bedding, and wall stickers. Everything is made in the UK with all the care and attention to detail that you would wish for your own child. We have just opened our showroom in the Old Post Office in Warwick’s Old Square, and look forward to welcoming you there.