The Bedding Snob

Cultivating relaxation need not leave you starving for style …

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Pillow fight aftermath, and last chance to save on new pillows!

Cuddledown Pillow Fight team - 2013

Cuddledown Pillow Fight team - 2013

As part of International Pillow Fight Day, this past Saturday, our Cuddledown team of fighting “Pillow Ninjas” and peaceful “Pillow Protesters” (employees, families and friends) joined a crowd of several hundred people of all ages for Portland, Maine’s first-ever pillow fight!

Portland Pillow FIght 2013

Portland Pillow Fight 2013

We were featured in the media by several local newspapers and our major CBS affiliate on their nightly news program. You can enjoy some clips from the Portland Press Herald and the Bangor Daily News here.

Whether you joined millions across the world in the epic International Pillow Fight or not, you may have pillows that need replacing! Save 30% off pillows until midnight tonight!

We’ve all recuperated, and are eagerly planning next year’s battle!

 

Pillow Ninjas are back, and featured in the Portland Press Herald!

Cuddledown Pillow Ninjas 2013

Cuddledown Pillow Ninjas 2013, courtesy of the Portland Press Herald

Flashback Friday  – just two years ago, our intrepid web team came up with a great promotional idea around International Pillow Fight Day…  the debut of the Pillow Ninjas!

Now, two years later, Cuddledown’s Pillow Ninja team has grown, and will be a part of tomorrow’s big pillow fight in Portland, Maine – they’re so popular, they’re even getting press coverage!

For those who would say it’s juvenile seeing grown people act like children, we say, what a great way to let off steam, and what better way to fight fluffy than with a super soft Cuddledown pillow!  Check back tomorrow, or view our Facebook page and you just might be encouraged to go out and get a Cuddledown pillow of your own!

Four fun ways to style your bed by the seashore!

Bed at low tide_Cuddledown catalog '86-87

Bed at low tide_ '86-87

Over the past 40 years, we’ve seen a wide variety of bedding designs, and our photographers have shot probably thousands of beds at this point. So on this Flashback Friday, we thought we’d take a look at some of the more interesting Cuddledown catalog images of our bedding, starting with this one.

Doesn’t everyone want to place their bed in the seaweed at low tide – I’m sure there’s some soothing aromatherapy there?

 

 

Fishing tackle on bed_Cuddledown catalog '91

Fishing tackle on bed_'91

Of course, as long as we’re on the nautical theme, your favorite fisherman no doubt would think a comfy bed is the perfect place to store his fishing tackle – I mean, who wouldn’t?

 

 

Or if you’re out picking up seashells by the seashore, why not bring them to bed for a cozy night’s sleep – your honey will love the feel of a spiky shell under his pillow!

Seashells in bed_Cuddledown catalog '93

Seashells in bed_'93

 

 

 

 

And finally, for a truly romantic gesture, why not pick some cattails from the swamp and place them on your sweetheart’s bed – you’ll be sure to enjoy a good night’s snuggle!

Cattails on bed _ '93-94

Cattails on bed _ '93-94

Bedding designs – then and now!

Cuddledown Calico shams 1994

Cuddledown Calico shams 1994

For this week’s Flashback Friday, we thought we’d revisit some of our Cuddledown bedding from the past.

In the 1980s and early ’90s, the “Laura Ashley” look was huge – sweet florals and delicate calicos, so soft and feminine. Here at Cuddledown, we certainly had our share of calico bedding, embellished with ruffles too! As always, our sheets were fine quality, but customers didn’t demand quite the same emphasis on thread count and softness as they do today.

Mimosa sateen bedding by Cuddledown

Mimosa sateen bedding by Cuddledown

Today, our sheets come in a wide variety of patterns and colors. Our customers still love florals, and elegant paisleys, and we continuously source up-to-date iterations of those classics.

Airmail Sateen bedding by Cuddledown

Airmail sateen bedding by Cuddledown

We also have a huge array of solid colors, textural bedding, and unique novelty prints such as our Airmail bedding.

Whatever the design, our sheets are all made from the highest quality cotton and thread count. Our best-selling, 400 thread count sateen bedding is our customers’ favorite item by far!  And right now, it’s on sale!

400 Thread Count Scroll Jacquard sateen bedding by Cuddledown

400 Thread Count Scroll Jacquard sateen bedding by Cuddledown

Who knows what the future will bring – maybe we won’t need sheets, or a bed for that matter? Perhaps we’ll all just hover mid-air in a temperature regulated air cloud?  What do you think?  We’d love to hear your thoughts about where you see bedding design going in the next 20-30 years! Feel free to add your comments to this post.

Celebrate spring with Maine Maple Sunday!

Maine Maple Sunday - sap buckets

Maine Maple Sunday - sap buckets,
courtesy of the Greenville Inn

Those of us in New England are not too thrilled with the Groundhog at this point – we’re thinking spring may never come with yet another foot of snow on the ground…  However, things are looking up, as spring began today at 7:02 a.m. EST with the vernal equinox. From Latin, the word equinox means “equal night” with days and nights being approximately equal everywhere. Spring brings increased daylight, warmer temperatures, and plants begin to bloom once again. Well, at least that’s what’s supposed to happen…??

Maine Maple Sunday - boiling kettles

Maine Maple Sunday - boiling kettles, courtesy of the Portland Press Herald

In the meantime, we’re looking forward to a springtime activity for which New England is known worldwide – maple sugaring! Our friends at Downeast Magazine sent a reporter out last year on Maine Maple Sunday to sample as many maple sugar shacks’ offerings as she could, so we’re sharing their article here for a fun read. And if you’re in and around Maine, you can discover Maine Maple Sunday for yourself on March 24th!

Maine Maple Sunday - pancakes

Maine Maple Sunday - pancakes,
courtesy of Maine Today Media

Maine Maple Sunday is an annual event where maple syrup producers throughout Maine allow visitors to sample their offerings (often free!) and enjoy discovering how the golden goodness is created. The syrup is created essentially by boiling the sap of the maple trees, and it can vary from being dark and rich to pale gold and delicate, depending on the soil, terrain and weather, making it similar to wine in that respect. In addition to the samples, visitors can also enjoy extras such as wagon rides and more! You can find out where to go by viewing this map of the various maple producers who are participating.

Monet bedding – customer fave for 20+ years!

Monet bedding 1991

Monet bedding 1991

Today’s Flashback Friday proves the old French saying “plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose” (the more things change, the more they remain the same).  There’s a reason companies bring classic designs back, and that reason is the customer!

Our all-time customer favorite bedding design, has to be our exclusive Monet print. This Impressionist-inspired bedding has returned in various hues of green or blue over the past 20+ years, thanks to our customers insisting upon it!

Since this Sunday is St. Paddy’s Day, we thought we’d share images of our lovely, dark green Monet, both past and present.

Monet bedding 2013

Monet bedding 2013

Also, if you have any Monet sheets, duvet covers, shams or decorative pillows in your possession, we’d love to see them! Post your images on our blog Gallery here and/or Facebook page.  Please feel free to share with or without your full name.

And have a Happy St. Patrick’s Day this Sunday!

 

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZs – how to get them in 3 easy steps

Kitty catching Zzzzzzzzs on our Faux Fur Throw

Kitty catching Zzzzzzzzs on our Faux Fur Throw

Having trouble getting a good night’s sleep after the clock changed?  We thought we’d share some pointers from Good Housekeeping magazine!

Among their many great tips (who knew cherry juice would be a good sleep aid)? were the following.

1) Not to state the obvious, but stress can cause people sleepless nights. According to Good Housekeeping, researchers have proven that raising your skin temperature may enable you to fall asleep faster and then shift you into deeper sleep. You could take a warm bath, or, you could also get a programmable, heated mattress pad that clicks off automatically – so you can slip into a toasty, snuggly bed, but not wake up sweating later!

2) Choose the right sheets. GH’s experts have tested many, many sheets, and they recommend that you choose your sheets based on the finish. They say it’s more important than thread count for sleep comfort. There’s a finish for every taste – you may like warm, cozy flannel or jersey, or silky smooth sateen, or crisp cool percale, and if you’re unsure, check out our sheet guide!

3) Lovely lavender doesn’t just smell nice. GH says that in numerous experiments, subjects have reported sounder sleep when exposed to the scent. You can use lavender-scented oil or spray to lightly sprinkle on your bedding, or enjoy a lavender-infused, heatable wrap to ease those tired muscles.

To read more ideas on how to catch those ZZZZZZs, check out Good Housekeeping’s article, and stay tuned to our blog!

 

 

Daylight Saving Time – yay or nay? Flashback Friday

Daylight Saving Time _ ClockThis Friday’s Flashback post is all about time.  The powers that be have long debated whether we should tinker with the clock – pushing our observed time ahead or not. Daylight Saving Time is meant to essentially transfer an hour of daylight from early morning to the hours when more people are out and about, purportedly to save energy and help reduce traffic accidents.

Although the concept of Daylight Saving Time has been around for more than a hundred years (the first mention of it was by Benjamin Franklin in a 1784 essay titled “An Economical Project”), it was primarily utilized in World War I and II, and then didn’t make a more consistent appearance again until 1966. At that time, due to too many different times being followed by various states, Congress passed the Uniform Time Act, which stated that Daylight Saving Time would begin on the last Sunday of April and end on the last Sunday of October.

After the “energy crisis” of 1973, the government approved the Emergency Daylight Saving Time Conservation Act, which put the United States on Daylight Saving Time for the fifteen-month period between January 1974 and April 1975. Many of who were schoolchildren during that time, will undoubtedly remember the little glow stickers schools handed out for kids to put on their lunchboxes, backpacks and clothing since it was darker during the morning wait for the bus.

More recently, in 2007, the federal government’s Energy Policy Act extended Daylight Saving Time to begin earlier, on the second Sunday of March, and end later, on the first Sunday of November. For many of us in the Northeast, adding that extra hour of sunlight at the end of the day when we’re all returning home from work, is something we all look forward to. In Maine in December, the sun sets around 4:30 p.m. – making the commute home under the night sky a pretty depressing prospect. However, many others would debate that it causes the morning commute to be equally dark, especially for children waiting for the school bus.

Like bears and other hibernating creatures, perhaps the early afternoon darkness indicates we should come home and curl up in a cozy comforter and just go to sleep (something we at Cuddledown certainly can get behind!), rather than stay up watching TV, or being glued to our computer screens working, but unfortunately that’s not the way the world works.  So for now at least, we’ll look forward (or not) to turning our clocks ahead this weekend (remember “Spring Ahead”) and gaining that precious hour of light!

Let us know what you think – Daylight Saving Time – keep it, or trash it?

Love a bargain? Save up to 70% off at Cuddledown’s Outlet Store!

Cuddledown Outlet Store Clearance SaleFrom today through Monday, March 11, you can save up to 70% off select items, and 20% off all regularly priced items at our Cuddledown Outlet Store in Freeport, Maine!

Looking for a cozy down or synthetic comforter? Or perhaps some super soft blankets or sheets in 100% cotton flannel, percale or sateen?

There are a plethora of pillows to choose from, not to mention soft, absorbent towels in bamboo or cotton.

And we’re not just all about bedding and linens – we carry a wide selection of sleepwear and apparel! From pajamas, nightgowns, robes, bed jackets and slippers to comfy yet chic loungewear, apparel and footwear too, by brands such as Lilla P., Ramblers Way, Ugg and more!

In addition to the items you can find at cuddledown.com or in our catalog, our buyers for the Cuddledown Outlet Store seek out unique gift and home decor items, some of them locally sourced, that you won’t find anywhere else!

So drive on over to Freeport – our store’s located on Route 1, just off exit 20 on I-295. Store hours are Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Phone # is 207–865–1713.

First Friday 40% off sale on our Temperature Regulating Comforter!

March 40x40 sale_Temperature Regulating Comforter

March 40x40 sale_Temperature Regulating Comforter

Since it’s the first Friday of the month, once again we’re celebrating our 40th anniversary with our “First Friday 40″ special sale!

For March, we’re offering our customer favorite Temperature Regulating Comforter in fluffy 700 Fill Power Down, now at 40% off!

This discounted price is good for 40 hours only, so act fast to get our uniquely-designed, comforter – known to have saved several marriages from the eternal battle of the bedcovers!  :)

On a more serious note, in celebrating 40 years ago, in March of 1973,  the last American soldier left Vietnam. Bringing the troops home to their families safely is always a reason to celebrate!

Valentine’s Day tips – do’s and don’ts!

Valentines Day tips - do's and don'ts

Valentines Day tips - do's and don'ts

So tomorrow’s the big V-day. For those who are single, that doesn’t necessarily mean V for victory, or perhaps it does? At least there’s no pressure in trying to find the perfect Valentine’s Day present, or activity.

For couples, studies have been done indicating although the traditional gifts of flowers or chocolate are appreciated by some, as it turns out (as shared on MSN’s money.com), most women, and men, would rather receive something else. No big surprises here – men overwhelmingly want electronics. And women, just as overwhelmingly, would love some jewelry. Both indicate they’d love a date night out. In a way, as the article stated, giving your loved one candy, a stuffed animal or helium balloons, is something you might give a child!  Match.com actually included those traditional gifts, and also, jewelry in a ring-size box that’s not an engagement ring, in their top 10 worst Valentine’s Day gifts!

So whether you’re single, or a couple, one way around this dilemma is to go out, with friends or as a couple, and enjoy the evening! Here in Maine, we’re lucky to have many outrageously delectable places where we can dine, from clam shacks to nationally-acclaimed restaurants. Recently, Bon Appetit magazine posted a list of the top 20 most important restaurants in the U.S. One of Maine’s own, Primo, from Rockland (just up the coast), was included.

Of course another option, especially in colder climates where there are still feet of snow covering the ground, is to stay home, snuggle up with your sweetie in a cozy comforter, or silky smooth sateen sheets, like our customer favorites at Cuddledown!  And if you’re single, just pop in a great movie, (preferably something fun or action-oriented, none of that mushy stuff!)  and enjoy the evening.  It’ll be February 15th soon enough!

Blizzard Nemo of 2013 – how to stay warm and cozy

Blizzard of 1969

Blizzard of 1969

Here in Maine, while hunkering down waiting to see just how much snow this blizzard will bring, we thought we’d take a look back since it’s “Flashback Friday”!

Over recent decades, we can count the number of times we’ve had over 2 feet of snow in a single storm on one hand. The famous blizzard of 1978 that buried parts of New England with up to 4 feet of snow only resulted in around a foot of snow in Maine. However, the following year, in January 1979, Portland ended up with around 27 inches of snow. Ten years prior to that, in February of 1969 a snowstorm lasted for nearly 100 hours, resulting 27 inches in the city.

The current storm, oddly named “Nemo” by the Weather Channel, has had forecasts of anything from 18″ to as much as 30″ of snow, with most experts predicting around 20″ of the white stuff.  We’ll have to wait and see if we hit the magic 2 foot level!  In the meantime, like most of New England, we’ve battened down the hatches and are holed up in our homes staying safe and warm.

Down Comforter from CuddledownAt Cuddledown, we’re particularly lucky as our employees get special discounts, so virtually everyone has at least one, if not several cozy Cuddledown comforters to snuggle under. And for everyone else, while stuck indoors, you can go online and shop our heavenly warm down or synthetic comforters, which are on sale until Monday!

We hope that everyone stays safe, warm and cozy!

 

 

How to create your own spa getaway

Lavender Scented Luxury Spa Neck Pillow

Lavender Scented Luxury Spa Neck Pillow

The New England weather forecast for the end of this week is almost unbearable (right now anywhere from 15-40″ of snow… yes, really…). It’s enough to make you want to run for the nearest plane heading for somewhere warm and tropical – preferably a luxurious oceanfront spa!  Then reality enters …  But don’t despair – we’re happy to share a great solution – with some clever planning, you can create your own spa experience in the comfort of your own home! The blog MindBodyGreen even shares ideas on how to turn your shower into a spa!

Some tips for re-creating that sensational spa-like experience include:

Keep it organized/make it nice – you can get rid of bathroom clutter with some attractive, yet functional bathroom organizers.

Get organically clean - use organic, aromatic cleansers for your room as well as for your skin. For healthy, soothing cleanliness, one great brand we’ve discovered is Caldrea.

Wrap yourself in soft, fluffy goodness - there’s a reason our customers love our bamboo towels, they’re absorbent and made from environmentally sustainable materials. And après shower, envelop yourself in a big, fluffy spa robe!

Ease your body and mind – if you don’t have time for a nice, hot shower, just take 5 minutes to relax with a microwavable lavender spa wrap – it releases tension and soothes sore muscles, and allows you to experience the benefits of aromatherapy.

Cuddledown Spa products 1987

Cuddledown Spa products 1987

At Cuddledown, we can appreciate the spa experience, we’ve been doing this for at least 25 years. Check out our catalog page from 1987!

 

 

 

1973 – the birth of Cuddledown!

Cuddledown 40th Anniversary logoHere at Cuddledown we’re celebrating our 40th anniversary, so during the coming year, on “Flashback Fridays”, we’ll reminisce about our history, how things were done then and now, share old catalog images and more!  We encourage you to share your comments – we’d love to read your stories too!

With temperatures in the single digits (or lower) and wind chills as low as -35F this week in Maine, the incredibly cold weather prompted a reflection about why, back in 1973, Cuddledown was born. Any of you who lived through the 70′s, probably remember the great oil crisis of 1973. For those who don’t, a refresher — back in ’73, people had big, heavy cars that used a ton of gas and speed limits were, well, unlimited in some places. None of that mattered because the price of a gallon of gas was around $0.39 per gallon (comparatively, the median family income was around $11-13,000/year, a new house was around $32,500.00 and a basic car cost $2,500.00).

1973 oil crisis

1973 oil crisis

Then came the great OPEC/Arab oil embargo, causing gas and oil shortages throughout the U.S. The price of gas was drastically escalated, as high as $1.20 for a gallon of gas, and many gas stations ran out, with lines all around the block. In some places the gas was rationed and speed limits were lowered on highways to 55 mph. The lack of oil suddenly caused many to think of new ways to keep warm.

Original Cuddledown owners the Mansons

Original Cuddledown owners, the Mansons

When Cuddledown’s original owners, Dave and Carol Manson had traveled to Europe, they discovered the superb warmth of the European down comforters (which were uncommon in the U.S. at the time.) and vowed to bring them back home to share the comfort. Eventually they began selling them out of their home, and thus was Cuddledown born!

Today, we offer down comforters in a wide range of fill power, and warmth levels, as well as hypoallergenic, lofty synthetic fill that feels like down — something cozy for everyone!

To be continued… stay tuned for the next Flashback Friday. And stay warm – we know we will!

 

What’s old is new — from feedsack dresses to DIY pillowcase nightgowns!

Feedsack dressesToday we take for granted the easy availability of inexpensive fabric and clothing. But back in the day, especially during the Depression, our mothers, grandmothers and great-grandmothers, out of necessity and sheer practicality, made do with what they had. From the 1920s through the 1950s, flour and sugar were sold in large cotton bags. Women of that time found creative uses for the sacks, making not only household goods like towels, curtains and so on, but also creating clothing such as aprons, undergarments and dresses. Companies selling the products soon realized the opportunity for marketing and began creating attractively printed sacks.

Today with more emphasis on recycling and the current economic climate, we’re looking back at the practicality of our elders. We may not have flour sacks, but most of us have bedding we could recycle. How many of us have worn out sheets, but have extra pillowcases stPillowcase nightgownill in good shape? Rather than throw them away, or stick them in the dusty back of the closet, pretty printed pillowcases, such as Cuddledown’s floral and paisley pillowcases, could make a cute skirt, or a child’s nightgown!

There are many craft bloggers and websites with tutorials on how to make a pillowcase nightgown and even more with other great ideas for crafty recyclers! Our grandmas would be proud!

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