Monthly Archives: July 2012

Care Tips for Fine SFERRA Bed Linens

Since 1891 SFERRA has been the purveyor of the world’s finest luxury sheets, distributing beautifully refined linen to the hospitality, private label, retail, and wholesale industries. Serving more than 1,000 of the finest luxury and home lifestyle stores worldwide who carry their premium Italian-woven sheeting and top-of-bed supplies, SFERRA is proud to count Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Horchow, and Bloomingdale’s among its stable of discerning customers. SFERRA fine linens are also sold internationally in Canada, Europe, South America and Asia.

As an educational service to its luxury boutique market, SFERRA provides SFERRA UNIVERSITY. “SU” readers are encourages to ask questions about the products and product care. Below is a question posed by a SU reader:

Q: What is the best way to care for your bed linens?

A: Caring for your bed linens can be easy if you follow some simple suggestions. In return, Wholesale Fine Linens by Sferrayou will prolong the life of your bed linens and preserve their beautiful appearance. While SFERRA bed linens are made from natural fibers that generally can be machine-washed at home, please be sure to read the care label on each item for best results.
Washing – Pre-wash your linens before first use. Separate your linens from other items in the wash, especially those containing polyester, which tends to create pilling, and items with heavy zippers, which can damage the fabric. Separate light and dark colors. Avoid overloading the washing machine, which can cause fibers to break down from excessive abrasion and agitation. You can wash most linens in warm water on a gentle cycle with a cold-water rinse, but be sure to check the care label.
Detergent – Use a mild detergent without added bleach, whiteners, or fabric softeners. Do not pour detergent directly on textiles; rather, add it to the water as the wash tub fills or dilute detergent with water, then add linens. Unless linens are very soiled, you only need to use half the recommended amount of detergent.
Bleaching – Chlorine bleach will weaken fibers and cause the fabric to yellow. If white fabrics need bleaching, use only an oxygen-based bleach.
Drying – While line drying outdoors is gentle, safe, and imbues linens with the fresh scent of the outdoors and natural bleaching of the sun, it is not always practical. You can machine dry most linens on low heat, but be sure to check the care label. Shake out damp linens before placing in the dryer. Never use a high heat setting, which will weaken the fibers, damage the fabric, increase shrinkage, and shorten the life of your linens. Remove items from dryer promptly, while still damp, to minimize wrinkles. Smooth and fold, or press with an iron, if desired.
Ironing – Check to make sure your steam iron is clean – mineral deposits could cause brown spotting. Iron linens while still damp. To restore the lustrous face of sateen fabrics, iron on the reverse side. For embroidered linens, iron them on the reverse side atop a towel to preserve the three-dimensional effect of the embroidery. Use a press cloth to protect delicate lace and cutwork.
Shrinkage – All natural fibers will shrink to some extent, but in most instances we generously overcut our products to allow for shrinkage. Do not wash or, especially, dry linens on a hot setting, which is most likely to damage the fabric and intensify shrinkage. Always follow instructions on care label.
Storing Linens – Store bed linens in a cool, dry, well-ventilated area. Linens stored long-term should be wrapped in white cotton, muslin (old pillow cases work well) or acid-free paper. Avoid storing linens in plastic bags or boxes, which can cause permanent yellowing; natural fibers need to breathe. Cedar chests can also yellow or streak fabrics.

For more information  on wholesale fine linens by Sferra call us at 1-800-877-4667 or visit our website.  At InnStyle we will provide you with the correct product for your particular property – all at wholesale pricing—with the personal service that you deserve.

Considering Opening Your Own Bed and Breakfast? There are Many Things to Consider First

So you’re thinking about opening up your own bed and breakfast establishment? Congratulations!! You are among a growing number of entrepreneurs who have accepted this calling. So much so that the innkeeper industry, which only had approximately 1,000 properties and hosted a million guests in 1980 has grown to 28,000 properties hosting 50.5 million guests annually by the turn of the millennium, according to the Professional Association of Innkeepers International (PAII).

Bed and Breakfast-Hospitality Industry Fine LinensCertainly your imagination is filled with images of a perfectly restored historic home, romantic rooms that are tastefully appointed, lovingly rejuvenated and re-purposed antiques, the smell of fresh coffee and warm cinnamon buns made from your grandmother’s secret recipe wafting through the kitchen and up the stairs, gently waking your smiling guests…

But wait! The Lavender Room has a clogged toilet and the gentleman from the Queen Ann Cottage just spilled Pinot Noir on your homemade chintz pillow case!

The life of a bed and breakfast owner is undoubtedly a mixed bag of developing and nurturing positive visitor relationships and, well… dealing with flawed and often demanding human beings, known in the industry as “guests”.

Here are just a few of the many important considerations you must be clear on BEFORE you commit to making inn keeping your life’s work:

  1. Look at your home objectively, as if you were a guest in your own home. Sleep in each room and be sensitive to annoyances such as street noise, barking dogs, squeaky bed frames, glare from outside security lights and signage, ticking clocks and other potential irritants. Is there adequate closet space, climate control, space to move around?
  2. There is a growing demand among those who frequent B&B’s for private baths. Although this may not be a deal breaker for all potential guest/customers, adequate sharing arrangements must be made and the rules made clear to guests. Ultimately you may lose free bathroom access in your own home.
  3. How will security be handled? Will you supply keys for the front door and individual rooms, or set times by which the front door will be locked. What if a guest loses a key? Will you require an upfront deposit or charge a lost key fee after the fact? There is not right or wrong answer; you must however have established policies regarding security.
  4. Are there enough year-round activities available to your guests to keep the vacancy rate low and the profit flowing 365 days a year.
  5. And speaking of 365 days a year… are your ready to forfeit your own privacy as many days?

Once you have made the decision to enter the hospitality industry, let the knowledgeable staff at InnStyle be your source for everything you will need for establishing your B&B or inn. Call us at 800-877-4667 and ask for our B&B or Inn start-up guide. Inquire about our wide variety of wholesale bed and breakfast and inn supplies and services. Let us assist you in selecting the perfect bedding and linens to suit your unique needs, saving you time and money. We will guide you about the items and quantities to make your opening day run smoothly. Of course we will send you samples to see, test and touch.

We are certain you will not find another company as accommodating as InnStyle in providing you with the personal service you need to provide the accommodations your guests expect.