Christian Siriano is a jack-of-all-trades. Since winning the fourth season of Project Runway, the fashion designer has been dressing A-list stars from Michelle Obama to Lady Gaga, as well as helping break gender norms by creating inclusive, show-stopping red carpet looks for actors like Billy Porter. When he's not busy serving as the current mentor on Project Runway, which is in its 19th season, he's building an empire that spans fashion, bridal wear, custom furniture, interior design, and now – wait for it – mattresses.
"I really think that couples are focusing on getting important staple pieces for their home, whether they're getting married or as a new couple," Siriano told Travel + Leisure. To help, the multifaceted designer teamed up with Beautyrest to create Beautyrest by Christian Siriano, "a luxurious offering featuring an elegant ruffles top-panel design, with intricate and sophisticated details inspired by his latest bridal collection." An ode to his stunning gowns, Siriano wanted to create a mattress "designed by a designer that feels luxurious and special and creative."
For Siriano, creating a great mattress was also an opportunity to reflect on self-care and the importance of a good night's sleep. "I feel like it's something that we forget about because we are just used to, you know, going to bed," he explained, adding that people should go to sleep on something "made to perfection." This mattress, using cooling technology and the company's most advanced support spring system, is exactly that. "You don't even want to put sheets on them, they're so pretty."
As a fashion-turned-mattress designer, Siriano has traveled the world showing his designs and searching for inspiration, meaning he has a lot to say when it comes to how we should dress for air travel. "I love when I see women in big hats and all their jewelry, it's so much fun," he told T+L. "But on the flip side, it's really nice to be in the most cozy hoodie. You put it up over your head and no one can see you." On a recent flight to "nowhere fancy," the designer noticed men wearing suits, people toting designer luggage, and plenty of jewelry – reminiscent of the golden age of travel, if you will. "Maybe travelers are into it now," he said.
Like making sure he has plenty of rest, Siriano uses his own flying time to disconnect and recharge. "I want to use a flight to shut off," he said. "I never buy the internet. I don't look at my emails – it's my favorite thing, even if it's a really long flight. I like to just be [and] watch movies and shows." As for the destination, he'd rather spend time searching for inspiration in new cities than sunbathing on the beach.
Now, during Pride month, Siriano is reflecting on what he loves about New York City and its history and importance to the LGBTQIA+ community. "What's so great about New York is that it has such a celebration of people and cultures and diversity," he explained. "And that's why it's such an important place to keep alive and going – there's no other place like it."
Editor's note: This interview was edited for clarity and length.
Tanner Saunders is the Experiences Editor at Travel + Leisure. He's also a big fan of Project Runway.
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