114 57 Stockholm, Sweden and online
Lesley Pennington, Owner/CEO
A summer home…A sofa… A dream…. The result: Bemz (www.bemz.com) custom sofa covers for IKEA sofa and chairs and cushions.
5 years later Bemz is one of the fastest growing ecommerce businesses worldwide (in her category) and Lesley Pennington has sold over 100,000 sofa covers globally via the internet.
Several years ago, Lesley Pennington, founder and CEO, fell in love and relocated to Sweden. It was there that she inherited a family, started her own, and purchased a summer home.
Pennington bought into the idea of the Swedish design; of course she went to IKEA. There she found the fabled (infamous) IKEA sofa. The rest is Bemz history…
That IKEA sofa inspired a business idea. An idea so self evident she couldn’t believe that any one else had thought of it first. It was a very simple idea- custom sofa covers for IKEA sofa and chairs.
“Bemz is full circle for me—back to my design and entrepreneurial roots. Bemz nurtures the value of family, my creative spirit and my entrepreneurial soul,” said Pennington. “I chose BEMZ as the name for my new company because it is an anagram of the initials of the children in my life. I wanted it to remind me of the really important things in my life, and the reason for doing what I do.”
Pennington has realized that the interest in Bemz is not just about sofa covers- it’s about something much bigger!
People desire to express their individuality. They want to take a mass market product like an IKEA sofa and create a unique, one of a kind product which reflects their individuality and personal design choices.
And that is why today Bemz is focused on individual design, and personal expression.
Today, Bemz is a very successful company, selling slipcovers to 35 countries worldwide, offering nearly 180 textile options including famous designer labels and “up and coming” designers. With Pennington’s continued devotion, passion, and innovative ideas Bemz will continue to soar to new heights as the trendsetter of accessible design—Bemz is a brand.
Check out what Bemz has to offer: www.bemz.com
A green option: here is a solution that allows you to restart and restyle your IKEA furniture.
Bemz was started by Lesley Pennington when she went on maternity leave and decided to do something better with her work life afterwards.
Named after her four children (four!), Bemz sells removable, washable slipcovers for sofas, armchairs and cushions which fit most IKEA models. All covers are 100% cotton and prewashed so that they won't shrink. There is a wide variety of colors AND patterns, but you may be surprised that the covers cost half as much as your sofa itself. Still, it's a not a bad investment if it gives your piece a new lease on life.
(Re-edited from a post originally published 07.10.06)