How To Choose Linens and Towelling Like A Pro
Choosing linens and towels can seen daunting but with some insider hints and tips everyone can choose like a pro and we promise it will save you time and money!
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Before you do anything, measure the mattress! Don’t assume the dimensions, there are so many depths, lengths and widths of bed on the market and they can vary from shop to shop so take the time to measure your bed up because having everything fit correctly makes the world of difference.
Hints and Tips from the experts
Thread count is no measure of quality, it is purely a construction term. High quality products are dependent on the quality of the yarn, the processing and the finishing.
Thread count is the number of threads in a square inch of fabric and to squeeze more in, the yarn needs to be finer which tends to mean the yarn is higher quality. However, the yarn can be twisted in pairs to double the thread count artificially. There also comes a point where the number of threads are so tightly packed the fabric becomes impermeable.
Look for a minimum of 12 stitches per inch on hems to ensure that the linen will last for many years.
How do you want the linen to feel?
Matt finish, cool and crisp, tougher, thicker or more traditional? Go for 200tc percale. It’s a simple classic construction in a percale weave with a matt finish.
Semi-matt, smooth and sateen? 300tc is the thread count of choice of our hotel clients. it is harder to launder domestically to the same finish of a hotel but not impossible and a great choice if you are sending the laundry out.
Sateen finish, smooth, soft with a higher lustre? The go-to thread count is the 400tc as this is the easiest to launder in house, and to achieve the hotel glazed lustre on the linen with a domestic iron.
600tc is the highest thread count that we offer clients because if it is good enough quality there is no need to go any higher! It is truly the creme de la creme of luxury linen. It has a superior drape, lustre and silk like feel on the skin and is used by our clients in their most exclusive suites.
As a rule of thumb, the higher the percentage of feather the heavier the duvet and the plumper it will look.
Make sure your duvet choices have high thread count down-proof casing and double stitched edges to keep the filling in. Ensure that the feather and down are sourced from European Down and Feather Association registered suppliers and are by-products of the food industry.
For almost all UK homes which are centrally heated, a 10.5tog duvet provides the perfect level of warmth for the majority of people. For those buying for warmer climates or who run particularly warm, you may choose to opt for a 4.5tog.
How much weight or snuggle do you want?
Weightier and higher loft? Our Savoy Duck feather and down duvet has a high feather content for weight and volume and is a very popular choice with hotels.
Pillows are the most important component of the bed and you should invest in the highest quality ingredients in the perfect blend for your home. We do after all spend around a third of our lives with our heads buried in them!
Like duvets it’s important to look for pillows from suppliers who work with European Down and Feather Association members and use only the highest quality feather and down.
Pillows are such a personal and subjective items that its a good idea to think about how much support you prefer.
Side sleeper? Go for a firm, high pillow that will help to keep your spine and neck aligned. Tielle pick: Marquis Duck Feather and Down Pillow
Front sleeper? Protects your back and neck with a soft pillow. Tielle pick: European Goose Down Pillow
Back sleeper? Alleviate stress on your neck with a soft down pillow. Tielle pick: Duck Down Pillow
Mixed or combination sleeper? A medium height pillow with a balance of support and shallowness. Tielle pick: Savoy Duck Feather and Down Pillow
Generally between 550 and 650gsm is the optimum weight for comfort and function, both commercially and domestically.
These GSM’s are weighty enough to envelop you in a generously soft and fluffy towel but is also absorbent and practical to launder and dry.
When choosing towelling, look for double stitched hems to avoid fraying, check for bright whiteness preferably in a natural light and ensure you choose the right mix of sizes for each bathroom.
Guide to talking the lingo
GSM: Grams per square metre
Warp and Weft: Along the length and across the width
Threadcount: A construction term for the number of threads in a square inch of fabric
Oxford versus Housewife pillowcases:
Loft: The fully plumped up height of a pillow or duvet
Combed versus Carded Cotton: Processes involved in the construction of towelling items which can affect the feel and the price
Par stock: The number of complete sets of linen and towelling a room needs to manage changes, laundering and spares. Typically 3-5 par is standard
For more information on common myths when it comes to bed linen check out our Myth Busting blog, from thread count to Egyptian cotton we’ve got the low down to the actual truth.