The Bedding Snob

Cultivating relaxation need not leave you starving for style …

Posts by Dan

Your Short Guide to Sheeting Fabrics

Sheets

Have you ever wondered what the difference is between sateen sheets and percale sheets?

Or why some people claim they only sleep on voile in the summer and flannel in the winter?

With so many different options to choose from, it can be hard to narrow down what type of sheets are best suited for your sleeping preference and weather changes.

Luckily, we’re here to help! From percale to sateen, batiste and voile, we’ll help you pick the perfect sheets, no matter what your preference or season.

 

flannelFlannel

As winter comes to a close, let’s start out with this cold-weather classic.

Known for its insulating warmth and typical accompanying plaid pattern, flannel has been a staple fabric in American apparel and bedding for more than a century.

Uniquely combed on both sides for extra softness and warmth, there’s nothing quite like it when it comes to staying cozy in the fall and winter months. If you’re looking for something to keep you warm at night, flannel sheets are a no-brainer.

For an even more in depth look at the history of flannel, check out our history lesson!

percalePercale

On the other end of the spectrum, let’s take a look at a fabric that is designed for warmer temperatures. Cool, crisp and lightweight, percale is the perfect sheet for almost any occasion.

In fact, depending on where you live, percale just might be the ideal sheet for you and your family year-round.

Made from a simple basket-weave, this fabric is known for its versatility, and is often found in hotels and other similar establishments.

sateenSateen

Silky, soft, and sumptuous are the best words to describe our next fabric.

Known for its luxuriously smooth feel and texture, sateen is woven more times than percale for an elegant, lustrous look that is also ideal for year round use.

Not to mention most sateen is wrinkle-resistant by design, making cleaning and folding a breeze!

 

voileVoile & Batiste

Lighter than any other fabric typically used for bedding, voile makes the perfect summertime sheeting for your room.

Typically made from 100% cotton, this lightweight ultra-sheer fabric is known for its superior breath-ability, allowing those in warmer climates to sleep throughout the night without overheating. And while it may be lightweight, it’s also durable as well!

Also known for its lightweight, breathable characteristics, batiste is another fantastic choice for those living in a warmer climate or tend to have a higher body heat while sleeping.

Whatever your choice, you can’t go wrong with either of these options when you’re sleeping in a warmer climate!

For additional information on how to choose the right fabric for any time of year, be sure to check out our Cuddledown Resource Center!

Give Your Bedroom a Spring Makeover

hydrangeasThe seasons are changing and winter is slowly, but surely turning to spring.

While nature is going through changes outside, there’s no better time for you to revitalize your home inside and prepare for the warm months ahead.

With a whole new array of inspiring colors brought forth by nature, why not incorporate some of these blossoming floral tones and patterns into your bedroom design?

Check out our tips below for creating a lively spring setting in your bedroom!

Color, Color, Color

ladder-1977946_640Nothing says spring quite like a nice splash of color, so why not start big and give your bedroom a makeover with a new coat of paint.

Liven up your bedroom with bright, inspiring colors like bright blue, and red, or more muted shades like pink, yellow and green for a classic spring look.

For further inspiration, why not try incorporating the Pantone color of the year “Greenery” into your design?

Selected for its “zesty yellow green shade that evokes the first days of spring”, you can’t get any more seasonal, or trendy, than that!

Create a layered effect to your springtime palette by doubling up on your bedding with even more exciting pastel colors.

Bring the Outside, Inside!

pexels-photo-175974Just because it came from the outdoors, doesn’t mean you can’t incorporate elements of nature into your interior design.

Embrace your DIY spirit, and craft a small bouquet of flowers to brighten up your bedside table.

Have some extra garden ornaments hanging around?

Repurpose old water-pails or birdbaths into decorative table side ornaments by creating small terrariums to add a rustic charm to your home.

You could even bring a lasting sense of spring flowers into your home by adding a floral wallpaper to your room.

For even further springtime inspiration, try coordinating your bedding with your new aesthetic by adding a duvet cover, or sheets, with a similar flower pattern.

Experiment and have fun!

Make it pop

VivianaThere’s no better way to highlight color in your room than by contrasting different textures, patterns and designs.

For starters, accent your room with exciting spring colors like bright yellow, green and pink against a neutral wallpaper, or vice versa.

Try to find something that makes a statement and run with it. Get creative and let your inner designer shine!

By inviting color into your room you’re sure to infuse an additional dose of fun and excitement to your daily life.

What are some of your favorite ways to freshen up your bedroom for spring? Let us know in the comments!

A Guide to Choosing the Right Foods for Great Sleep

We’re all guilty of the occasional late night snack…

foodcoverBut did you know that certain foods can actually affect the quality of your sleep, both negatively and positively?

While everyone is aware of the turkey-induced sleep coma associated with Thanksgiving, often mistakenly attributed to tryptophan, studies have shown that we tend to fall asleep after big meals simply from overeating.

That’s not always a good thing however, as overeating certain foods, such as too much protein, can inevitably lead to restlessness later in the night as your body works overtime to digest everything.

If you’re looking to improve the quality of your sleep with a more balanced diet, check out the list of foods below and try to incorporate some into your nightly routine.

The Good

 

bananaBananas

Everyone knows that sugary foods aren’t the best option before bedtime, but if you’re craving something sweet it’s perfectly fine to reach for a piece of fruit! Bananas make an especially great choice at night because they are full of snooze-inducing carbohydrates.

 

cherriesCherries

Perhaps you don’t think of this ice-cream topper as an ideal snack to catch some z’s, but you’d be surprised to find out that the tart fruit helps to naturally raise levels of melatonin, a natural sleep hormone produced by the body.

 

cerealCereal/Oatmeal

Loaded with fortified carbohydrates to help raise insulin production, cereal and oatmeal are just the thing to ease your mind and prepare your body for bed. Just make sure you choose a healthy whole-grain option, and not something that resembles a bowl of candy.

 

teaValerian/Chamomile Tea

Valerian Root and Chamomile are long-purported to have mild sedative qualities, making them the perfect choice for a relaxing nighttime beverage.

 

 

almondsAlmonds/Walnuts

Loaded with magnesium, a natural muscle relaxant, these nuts are a great choice for a quick and easy snack before bed.

 

 

 

milkMilk

Warm milk has long been associated with sleep, and for good reason. Filled with calcium, it helps release melatonin and promote relaxation and sleepiness.

 

 

 

lettuceLettuce

Believe it or not, lettuce reportedly has a unique nutrient known as lactucarium that has been shown to provide a sleep-inducing effect similar to that of opium. For a tasty tea, simply steep the plant in hot water and a little mint.

 

jasmine riceJasmine Rice

Studies have shown that people who ate rice, namely Jasmine Rice, a few hours before bedtime, were able to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer according to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The reason is believed to be the high-glycemic index, which raises blood sugar levels and promotes sleep.

hummusHummus

Rich in vitamin B-6, this quick and easy snack is the ideal treat before bedtime.

 

 

 

 

salmonSalmon

While protein in general takes a long time for the body to digest, a little fish before bedtime can still be helpful as part of dinner. Loaded with b-vitamins, they’re an ideal protein source for late in the day meals.

 

popcornPopcorn

Low in fat and high in carbs, this movie-favorite will have you sleeping soundly in no time. Just be sure to choose a healthy option and not to overdo it!

 

 


 

The Not So Good…

 

coffeeCoffee

It almost  goes without saying that stimulants of any kind are probably not the best choice when you’re trying to wind down to go to sleep. Same goes for energy drinks of all varieties as well, whether they’re sugar free or not.

 

alcoholAlcohol

While alcohol may help you fall asleep faster, the effects are often-short lived as our bodies become dehydrated, causing us to awake in the night and not enter the crucial REM stage for deep sleep. Not to mention an excessive intake of fluids in and of itself can leave you stumbling for the restroom in the middle of the night.

 

dark chocIce Cream/Milk Chocolate

Unfortunately that after-dinner desert may be just the thing keeping you up at night. Because it contains caffeine, chocolate is best avoided at night.

 

chickenChicken

Believe it or not, most protein sources, even lean ones such as chicken and turkey, are not great to eat before bed. The reason? Protein takes longer for the body to digest, which is what makes it great to eat during the day, keeping you full, but not before bed.

 

fast foodFast-Food

Filled with fat and sodium, increasing acid production and dehydration, there’s really not much of an argument to eat fast food in the first place, so you definitely want to avoid it when you’re trying to fall asleep.

 

 

 


Next time you’re feeling hungry before bed, skip the bowl of ice cream and grab something carbo-licious.

And remember, even though these foods are considered healthy, you’re still going to want to watch your portion size before bedtime. Sweet dreams!

New Apps for Better Sleep

Can  Smartphones actually help us sleep better?

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If you sleep next to your smartphone at night, don’t worry, you’re not alone. According to a recent survey from Bank of America Trends in Consumer Mobility Report, a staggering 71% percent of Americans bring their phones to bed. And while that number may be shocking, it’s not entirely surprising.

As smartphones continue to become a more ubiquitous part of our culture, our devices tend to stay glued to our side at all times – even when we sleep. But can smartphones actually help us sleep instead of keeping us awake at night? Turns out that might be true.

While light from electronic devices has been shown to interrupt sleep, many app developers are now trying to create programs that actually help us sleep, not hinder it. From alarm clocks, to podcasts, we’ll check out the latest in sleep tech and let you know what works and what kept us up at night.

Using Apps to Your Advantage

sleephoneClock App

For those of us with iPhone’s, the latest update included a special “bedtime” function within the existing clock app that allows you to add a separate alarm just for sleep.

To access the app, you simply go to the clock, and select the “bedtime” tab to set a specific time, sound and frequency. Pretty neat!

SleepCycle

If you’re curious about the quality of your sleep, you may want an app that can help you keep track of the exact number of hours you spend slumbering. That’s where Sleepcycle comes in.

This nifty app uses the iPhone accelerometer (tracks acceleration and provides data for a variety of functions) to record your sleep patterns and report back with a detailed log on your sleep habits.

Over time the app will use the data to provide a custom alarm clock to wake you based on your individual sleeping habits!

Similar apps for Android phones exists as well, Sleep As Android, and SleepBot.

pzizzzInsomni-App’s

Are you struggling to fall asleep at night? Before you rush out to the store and buy an expensive noise canceling machine, or similar sound generator, check for an app!

If you enjoy listening to the sounds of the ocean, an exotic rain forest, or any other soothing sounds, check out the “Sleep” app, which lets you customize your favorite soothing tones and fall asleep in no time.

Interested in more of a blanket white noise sound? Noisli, available for iPhone and Android, may be more your speed. The app allows you to create custom mixes of different white noises and save them for use anytime, anywhere.

A new app called Pzizz is even more innovative! Pzizz uses a unique combination of music, words, sound effects and binaural beats to create a one-of-a-kind soundscape that you personalize to lull yourself to sleep.

awokenGet Lucid!

Have you ever heard of lucid dreaming? It’s the phenomenon that you can wake up within your dreams and actually take control of the environment around you.

Awoken helps train your brain to lucid dream by sending audio cues to you while you are sleeping to let you know that you aware of the fact you are dreaming.

There’s also a handy journal you can use to take notes and boost your memory of dreams. Far out!

You’re Getting Sleepy…

Have you ever considered using hypnosis to get better sleep? Relax and Sleep Well Hypnosis does just that. Using guided meditation, the app teaches users meditation and self-hypnosis as a means to soothe yourself to sleep.

deepsleepDigipill is another guided meditation app in which users can select the type of meditation they want (pill) and fall asleep, including everything from stopping smoking, to easing stress and preventing insomnia.

For even more guided sleep, check out Deep Sleep with Andrew Johnson! Used to treat anxiety and stress, this app is based off the best-selling authors CD’s and guides users through step-by-step meditation in order to ease the mind and fall to sleep.

Talk, Talk, Talk

If you prefer the sound of someone talking you to sleep, you should check out podcasts.

Podcasts are essentially mini radio programs covering any subject imaginable that you can download to your smartphone and listen to at your leisure.

One of the most popular sleep-related podcasts, Sleep With Me Podcast, is hosted by a former librarian, Drew Ackerman, who deliberately speaks in a monotone voice while discussing various topics in order to lull you to sleep.

The objective of the podcast is for Ackerman to be as dull as possible, and the unique approach has helped many fall asleep.

For those who are fans of Game of Thrones, the host has an equally soporific podcast, entitled Game of Drones, in which he provides recaps of previous episodes, all with a signature lull.

If you’re into meditation, check out the Daily Meditation Podcast, for short instructive meditations on a variety of topics.

If you’re struggling to fall asleep, forget counting sheep and get creative.

Have you ever used an app to help you sleep? Share your experience in the comments!

Living the Hygge-Life

love-pen-bed-drinking

Here at Cuddledown, we’re connoisseurs of all things cozy. So when we heard about a new trend called Hygge – a trend that celebrates our favorite feeling – we had to check it out ourselves.

Originating in Denmark, “hygge” (pronounced hoo-ga) is a general philosophy, or way of life, described as “a quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being.”

While that might seem long-winded, some have referred to hygge as “coziness of the soul”, or simply interpreted the quaint expression as “coziness”.

pexels-photo-298660

Whatever your definition, hygge-living essentially encourages people to slow down and savor the moment, taking the time to enjoy the finer things in life that fill us with a sense of warmth and gratitude.

Snuggling up with a cozy blanket and a good book? That’s hygge. Relaxing by the fireplace with a glass of hot-cocoa? Hygge. Enjoying a home-cooked meal with friends. Hygge. Creating a cozy candlelit atmosphere as you tuck into your warm comforter and flannel sheets. Definitely hygge.

StockSnap_1H9BBLIJAA

For many in Denmark, hygge living is a point of pride that embodies a national spirit.

At its core, hygge invites people to focus on the things that really matter in life, such as friends and family, and making sure that you take the time to treat yourself and cultivate an inner sense of peace and well-being.

Luckily, you don’t need a crackling fireplace to experience the full benefits of hygge (although it wouldn’t hurt), you just need a cozy little nook that you can call your own for a brief moment in time. And maybe a relaxing beverage.

Not sure where to start? Don’t fret, just get comfy! How are you incorporating Hygge into your home and lifestyle? Let us know in the comments!

Design Your Bedroom for Great Sleep

 

bed3

Is your bedroom “sleep-positive”?

Here’s a fun fact: according to the National Institute of Health, we spend more than one-third of our lives sleeping.

That’s a lot of time spent in one room!

But when is the last time you actually considered the interior design of your bedroom? More importantly, when is the last time you considered how the interior design of your bedroom may affect the quality of your sleep?

Design to unwind

When designing a room for the home, one of the most important things to consider is what function that particular room will serve.

Just as you would decorate a guest room to cater towards a visitor traveling from away, it’s important to take into consideration the main reason your own bedroom exists: to fall asleep.

Thankfully, there’s many different aspects of the bedroom that can be adjusted to your liking to insure you get a better night’s rest.

From choosing specific color tones, to selecting certain fabrics, we’ll walk you through some of the key changes you can make to your own bedroom to be more “sleep-positive”.

bedroom2Dream in Blue

Did you know that the color of your bedroom can actually affect the quality of your sleep?

According to Sleep.org, studies have shown that cool colors, especially light blue and green, have been show to improve sleep and even lower blood pressure, as opposed to red, yellow, and other warmer colors.

And that goes for more than wallpaper.

To make your bedroom as sleep-positive as possible, start by choosing colors for your bed that promote sleep, rather than hinder it.

When selecting bedding for your room, make sure to coordinate colors with new matching sheets as well.

sheets1Finding the right temperature

Speaking of sheets, did you know that 100% cotton fabric sheets help promote air-flow and breath ability, to keep you warm without overheating?

Finding the right temperature is crucial to maintaining sleep throughout the night, whether it be during the summer or winter.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, the ideal temperature of your room should be somewhere between 60-67 degrees to keep you snoozing throughout the night.

If you happen to live in a colder climate, consider flannel during the winter months for extra comfort and warmth.

Let there be no light

One of the most important aspects of creating a sleep-positive bedroom, is controlling the amount of light that enters your room.

And that doesn’t just mean natural light. According to the Sleep Foundation, light emitted from electronics such as cell-phones, laptops, televisions and other devices can cause disturbances in sleep as well.

If you’d like to add some atmosphere to your room, try using flame less candles, an ambient night lamp or even an oil diffusing light with lavender for additional relaxation.

featherbedA Quality Mattress Matters

Last but not least, comes the shining star of your bedroom: the mattress.

According to BetterSleep.org, mattresses should be changed every five to seven years to maximize quality of sleep.

Looking for even more additional comfort?

A featherbed, or quality mattress pad might be just the answer for you.

While you’re making over your bed, be sure to invest in a quality pillow that supports your head and spine as well.

While there’s no cure-all for insomnia, the changes you make to your bedroom will certainly add up in the long run, and by keeping a clean, organized place of living, your mind will naturally feel at ease as well.

But don’t take our word for it, try it yourself, and make your bedroom more “sleep-positive” tonight!

Best Sleep Gifts of 2016

gift-banner

The holiday season is finally upon us!

If you’re searching for the perfect gift for friends and loved ones on your list, we’ve got you covered, because a great night’s sleep is the best gift of all.

From important health benefits, to increased mental power, to financial boosts and more – high quality sleep truly is a gift that keeps on giving.

We compiled a list of some of our coziest comforters, pillows and blankets, along with other great gift-ables for everyone on your list.

700 Fill Power White Goose Down Sateen Pillow

sateen-700-fp

Our 700 Fill Power White Goose Down Sateen Pillow is a customer favorite for good reason – it’s super comfortable! Give the gift of a better night’s rest with a down-filled pillow. Great sleep is a gift they’ll cherish for years to come.

Shop: http://cdown.me/2h7u2zA  

Grazing Sheep Flannel

sheep

They can count the sheep on our flannel, or let the comforting warmth of the fabric ease them to sleep. Either way, it’s a gift sure to delight anyone on your list. An added bonus: our Grazing Sheep Flannel is kid approved (big kids included)!

Shop: http://cdown.me/2gG2Jvy 

Besa Floral Silk Pajamas & Sleep Mask

besa

Help her block out light and sleep through the night with our luxurious Besa Floral Silk Sleep Mask. Make the gift totally extravagant by adding our matching Besa Silk Pajamas.

Shop: http://cdown.me/2goARP0 

Sleep Solutions Pillow

sleepsolution

Do you know someone who is experiencing neck pain or other discomfort when they sleep? Consider gifting them with relief and high quality sleep. Our sleep solutions pillows offer a wide range of options for anyone looking for a specific type of cushioned support, no matter the sleep position.

Shop: http://cdown.me/2h9NRJF

400 Thread Count Sateen Sheets

400sheets

The key to any good night sleep starts with a comfortable bed! Perfect for anyone on your list, our 400 thread count sateen sheets are luxuriously soft, and guaranteed to keep them snoozing throughout the night. Makes a great gift for the person on your list who “has everything”.

Shop: http://cdown.me/2haDwdR

Giesswein Fuzzy Lambswool Slippers

slippers

Slippers make fantastic holiday gifts, and our Giesswein Fuzzy Lambswool Slippers take the coziness and comfort of slippers to another level. 100% lambswool and leather soles make our slippers a luxurious gift that’s guaranteed to delight.

Shop: http://cdown.me/2hoQC65

Plush Wool Fleece Mattress Pad

mattpad

Adding a mattress pad to their bed is a surefire way to increase their comfort, and give them great sleep. Our plush wool fleece is a customer favorite, because it’s cushiony-soft and so supportive. This is THE perfect gift for anyone in your life who suffers from arthritis or sore joints.

Shop: http://cdown.me/2h7vsdm

600 Fill Power White Goose Down Travel Pillow

travelpillow

Do you know someone who is constantly on the go? Upgrade their travel comfort to First-Class status with our luxurious  travel pillow! It’s filled with lofty white goose down and perfect for long trips, whatever their destination may be.

Shop here: http://cdown.me/2gf4lvo

Down Throw Blanket

blankets

Our easily-giftable oversized down throw blankets are soft, warm and available in your choice of 13  colors. Everyone loves to be cozy! Our Down Throw Blanket is a gift you can’t go wrong with.

Shop: http://cdown.me/2h9Tpnm

What is your favorite sleep-related holiday gift? Let us know in the comments!

Find your sleep solution: Sleep Apnea

couple2

Here at Cuddledown, we’re determined to help people get a better night’s sleep.

From alleviating neck pain, to finding the right pillow for your sleeping position, we’ve tried to come up with a solution for all of your slumber needs.

However, while some of us may toss and turn in the night, for others, difficulty sleeping can be related to a serious medical condition.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, an estimated 18 million American adults have some form of Sleep Apnea, a disorder characterized by frequent pauses in breathing for 10 seconds or longer during sleep.

Left untreated, the disorder can lead to serious problems such as hypertension, heart disease and mood and memory problems.

While many people with Sleep Apnea are forced to install a CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machine to help keep the airway open to their lungs, we wondered if there were other bedding products that may also help to relieve symptoms.

Thankfully, you responded to our sleep solutions bedding, and let us know which pillows, mattress toppers and other bedding materials worked best.

Check out some of the reviews below, and let us know which bedding works best for you.

For those with Sleep Apnea, and Acid Reflux, one of the main things to consider when selecting bedding to help manage and alleviate symptoms, is proper elevation.

Our Solutions Foam Mattress Topper is specially designed to raise the angle at which you sleep, all the while providing cushioned comfort throughout the night.

To make sure that your sheets fit properly, we recommend our 18″ or 21″ Deep Pocket Fitted Sheets.

According to a customer from Tappahanock, VA the mattress topper helps relieve her allergy, sinus and sleep apnea symptoms.

matvert1Another customer from Virginia also agrees that the mattress topper improves snoring from sleep apnea.

matrevvert2

For additional support, it is suggested that people with Sleep Apnea situate themselves in an upright position to promote airflow to the lungs.

To help keep your head properly aligned and comfortable throughout the night, our Synthetic Fill Contour Cradle Gussetted Pillow is specifically designed for a soft, yet supportive feel.

According to a customer from Wellsboro, PA our Synthetic Fill Contour Cradle Gussetted Pillow is “like sleeping on a cloud!”

pilrevvert

Do you have any tips for relieving Sleep Apnea? Let us know in the comments below!

The Fascinating History of Flannel

When it comes to fall fashion, there are few symbols of American culture that are as synonymous with the changing seasons as plaid flannel.

Known for its distinctive pattern, the once utilitarian clothing designed for comfort and warmth has since become a ubiquitous fashion icon, creating a trend that continues to live on to this day.

But where did it all begin? From lumberjacks, to rock musicians, and everyone in between, let’s take a closer look at the history of flannel, one thread at a time.

Grazing Sheep German FlannelWhen Life Gives You Sheep, Make Flannel

Like most advancements in society, the need for flannel arose out of necessity. Faced with a chilling winter, and an over-abundance of sheep, the material was first crafted by the Welsh in the 17th century as a means to stay warm in an increasingly harsh climate.

The fabric, which was uniquely brushed on both sides, was a hit, and slowly made its way across Europe during the Industrial Revolution, as “carding” mills were able to produce the fabric cheaply and efficiently. Soon enough, the new fabric gained notoriety, and was named “flanelle” in France, and “flannell” in Germany.

As time passed, flannel slowly made its way to American shores, and in 1889, shortly after the civil war introduced the material to soldiers, Hamilton Carhartt built a factory in Detroit, MI to outfit the working man across the country with the new material.

It wouldn’t take long before the fabric’s signature plaid look was cemented in the public consciousness when the fictitious character Paul Bunyon was created in 1916 by the Red River Lumber Company, inspiring lumberjack everywhere to don the classic red-flannel look.

Let’s talk about plaid

As a quick aside, it should be noted that “plaid” and “flannel” are not interchangeable, despite their common pairing in the fashion industry. In short, “plaid” is a specific print (with its own unique history), and “flannel” is a fabric that can feature any number of prints. Moving on!

Lachlan Flannel BeddingFlannel continued to weave itself into the fabric of our society throughout the remainder of the century, as the distinctive material was placed at the forefront of significant events in pop-culture.

In 1956 “The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit” starring Gregory Peck was released, shifting cultural perception of the material from working class to upper class, and prompting businessmen everywhere to adopt the look as standard work attire.

Shortly thereafter, flannel shirts were appropriated by other celebrities in pop culture as well, from the Beach Boys to John Fogerty, as well as the television show “Dukes of Hazard.”

Despite flannel’s relative popularity, no one could have predicted what happened next.

With the release of their album “Nevermind” in 1991, Nirvana launched “grunge” music into mainstream popular culture, and the band’s flannel wearing rock stars sparked a resurgence in the fabric that helped define the look of a generation.

Maisie Plaid Flannel PajamasToday, flannel can be found in many shapes and forms, from bedding to pajamas – even dog blankets!

So next time you’re sporting that famous soft fabric, just remember the rich history of flannel!

To read more about the specific type of flannel Cuddledown uses, check out this article in our resource center!

How to create a cozy guest bedroom

 

guestroom-1As the leaves begin to change, and the holidays steadily approach, our homes are often opened to friends and family visiting from afar. And what better way to welcome loved ones into the warmth of your home, than with a guest room that is equally stylish and cozy?

To help design the perfect space for your guests, we’ve outlined a plan to create a warm and inviting room from the top down. Check it out!

 

“Home away from home”

If there’s one thing that’s most important above all else when decorating your guest room, it’s to capture that “home away from home” feeling that’s going to keep your guests both comfortable and cozy during their stay.

To help achieve this, you’re going to need a bed that is both snug and stylish. And what better place to start than with a comforter?

Start off by picking something lightweight and warm, that way your guests will fall asleep soundly and stay cozy throughout the night. For an introductory comforter that is great during the colder months, our 600 Fill Power Sateen Colored Down Comforter will do just the trick.

Incorporate cozy materials and inviting patterns

flannelNothing says Fall quite like flannel, and rightfully so. As the weather begins to drop, your guests are going to need that extra warmth to keep them cozy throughout the night.

Try our Lachlan Plaid Flannel Bedding!

The soft texture of flannel will keep your guests snug, and the plaid color is the perfect accompaniment for the changing scenery outside.

A great pillow goes a long way

You’ve got a long day ahead of you, so your guests are going to need to be in their best shape when they wake up the next morning.

Whether you’re going apple picking, or opening gifts, a good night’s rest is crucial to maintaining energy throughout the day, and nothing affects the quality of one’s sleep more than a pillow.

To help make sure your guests aren’t tossing and turning, choose a pillow that is stuffed with comfortable fluffy down, yet supportive enough to maintain the head and spine, such as our 600 Fill Power White Goose Down Damask Stripe Pillow.

It’s all in the details

serving-traySo you’ve got your bed set up, what next? When designing a guest room, it’s the little things that make the biggest difference, and that sentiment especially rings true when it comes to your guests overall hospitality.

Supplying items like toiletries, water and other refreshments are crucial to making your guest comfortable, and just the thing they’ll never forget when they talk about their time with friends and family.

For added convenience, try adding a tray and ice bucket, such as our Leopard Ice Bucket and Tray to keep drinks cold and ready to serve.

 Creating a cozy, memorable guest room is a wonderful way to show appreciation to your most valued visitors.

What are the best items you’ve seen in a guest room? Leave us a note in the comments and share.

Pillow Talk: Staff Pillow Favorites

Choosing the right pillow can be one of the most important decisions you make for a better night’s sleep. Everyone knows there’s nothing worse than tossing and turning in the middle of the night, trying to get comfortable, only to wake up with a sore neck the next day. To help cut down on the guess-work of pillow shopping, we collected some candid testimonials from our staff here at Cuddledown about what features they look for in their own personal pillows. From softness and support, to firmness and fill, our staff breaks down which pillows work best for them, and hopefully you as well.

 

nwgross

Norma Wilkins-Gross (President)

My favorite pillow is the 700 Fill Power White Duck Down Double Contour Pillow. I am a side sleeper and a pillow hugger, therefore I have a tendency to sleep with my pillow in a vertical position. The double contour configuration allows me to have the support under my head but still hug my pillow when sleeping. I’ve never slept better.

 

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Deb Dyer (CEO Marketing)

My favorite is the 450 TC Sateen Synthetic Fill Pillow. I love how the overfilled keep their supportive shape, night after night. I’m mostly a side-sleeper and like the neck support. I’ve given several to family members over the years and they also love them!

 

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Eric Cross (Sales Administrator, Royal River Trading)

800 Fill Power European White Goose Down Sateen Pillow Firm. I love a firmer pillow and this pillow gives me that firmness but is also very soft with the high quality goose down fill.

 

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Katrina Crowell (Copywriter)

I like the 700 Fill Power White Duck Down Gusseted Pillow. This pillow is so soft, and at the same time, it offers solid support. I pretty much can only sleep with this pillow now. I’m lost if I forget it while traveling overnight :).

 

jkruzelJessica Kruzel (Web Graphic Designer)

The 700 Fill Power Contour Cradle Gusseted Down Pillow is my favorite because it provides the perfect amount of comfort and support. As a side sleeper I prefer a pillow that won’t sink throughout the night, allowing my head to stay in alignment with my back. I wake up feeling relaxed and rested.

 

kbuthyKerry Buthy (Sales Associate, Royal River Trading)

I personally love the 600 Fill Power White Duck Down Chamber Pillow! You get the softness of down and the support of the 95/5% core!

 

 

jroodeJohn Roode (Assistant Manufacturing Manager)

Sateen King Medium. Absolutely! I like my pillow big and firm. I don’t even care what fill is in them, these are the only pillows allowed on my bed (unless my wife says otherwise).

 

biontaBetsy Ionta (Inventory Manager)

My favorite pillow is the 800 Fill Power Batiste in Queen Soft fill- but I like two :). Pillow snob!

 

 

avintinnerAmy Vintinner (Ecommerce Manager)

I like 1 Quilted Pillow Protector and 2 Stomach 700 Fill Power. I’ll double up the pillows for added support and soft cradling around my head, along with the pillow protector for added protection.

 

jgouldingJoan Goulding (Reconditioning Specialist)

My favorite Cuddledown pillow is the Down Luxury Support Pillow Queen, medium weight because the latex neck support roll fits good under your neck and you can move the down in the chambers.

 

Freeport Retail Store Employees

Laura P: I like the Gusseted Overfill Synthetic Pillow because it’s as firm as using 2 pillows.

Phil K: I like the 50/50 blend in soft because I can fold it and mold it how I want with just enough support.

Chester L: the 50/50 medium- it gives support but is also soft.

Mary H: 700 Fill Power European White Goose Down Sateen Pillow because I sleep on my back and like a soft pillow.

Jenny M: the Synthetic Fill Gusseted Sateen Pillow. It’s really soft and squishy but has enough to it to sleep comfortably.

Ginny L: 450 Thread Count Sateen Synthetic Fill Pillow. I sleep on my back and it’s very comfortable, my whole family uses this pillow.

For even more information on how to pick the pillow that is right for you, be sure to check out our pillow picker article!

Manufacturing Stories: Making Pillows with John Roode

manu6W11In honor of our annual Fall pillow sale, we’ve decided to give our readers an insider perspective on how our pillows are made. And if there’s one person who knows the in’s and out’s of the process better than anyone else, it’s Assistant Manufacturing Manager, John Roode.

Roode, who has been with Cuddledown for over 10 years, currently helps oversee all of the day-to-day operations in manufacturing, making sure each and every pillow is up to our standard of excellence.

Check out our interview below:

How long have you been working at Cuddledown? Where did you start?

I have been at Cuddledown for 10 years now – three months as a temporary employee, then the rest with the company. I was brought in through a staffing agency to package comforters for a large hotel order. I must have been pretty good at packaging because they never got rid of me!

Briefly describe your current role at Cuddledown. What do you enjoy most about your position? What makes you most proud?

My role at Cuddledown is to oversee the daily operation of the manufacturing facility. Essentially, that means I put a daily plan together based on sales, then I run around and make sure the team has everything they need to be successful.

In my spare time I explore ways to help us improve our current processes, as well as looking at how to expand the manufacturing department.

I enjoy working with the great team that I work with in manufacturing. I like being able to help develop their skills as machine operators, but more importantly as thinkers and leaders. In return, they provide me with the same developmental opportunities, so we are growing together.

I also like that we are able to make significant cultural and measurable changes within our department. It’s always nice to live the results of hard work and innovative thinking.

I guess what makes me most proud is when we give a tour, and all the positive feedback is directed at how engaged and knowledgeable our team is. I feel our team is the absolute best at what they do, and I really like when they are recognized for it.

During our Manufacturing Day 2015 tours to hear the kids say that, “this was the best field trip ever” was incredibly rewarding for me personally.

Manuf.BjohnF08Briefly talk about the pillow-making process at Cuddledown. What are the basic steps that a pillow goes through from beginning to end before it reaches customers?

We have a machine that consists of scales and filling pipes being fed by silos. Each silo could contain any one of 15 fill types we use on a daily basis. One of our operators will program the machine to fill up to the desired pillow weight.

When our operator is ready they start the machine, and the scales will draw fill from the selected silo. Once the scales have reached the desired volume they will discontinue filling.

At this time our operator will pull a pillow shell over one of the filling pipes and activate the pipe. The entire contents of the scale will then empty into the pillow shell. Our operator will then sew closed the pillow along with all of the necessary labels.

After a standard quality check the pillow will be packaged up, to be shipped to our DC (distribution center).

What can customers expect from a Cuddledown pillow that is different from other store bought pillows?

The quality of the material will immediately stand out, from the feel of the shell to the spring of the down.

Additionally, what they are holding is handmade right here in Maine, and that’s awesome.

You’re not getting that with the other guys.

What motivates you working at Cuddledown?

The responsibility I have to our team, and frankly to our customer. Our customer wants and deserves the highest quality bedding, and our team wants to build the highest quality product as fast as they can. It’s up to me to provide the tools that helps everyone get what they want.

Is there a particularly memorable donation of pillows that Cuddledown has been a part of? What did that mean to you?

There are two that really stick out for me. One was less of a donation and more of a gift.

The first was when we were able to make pillows for the Travis Mills Foundation. Travis was injured serving our country, and is now working on building a place in Maine where wounded veterans can go and do all sorts of wonderful things.

Almost everyone knows someone who has made the sacrifice to serve our country, and to be a part of this project where we were able to actually do something in return was incredible. Meeting Travis was one of the highlights of my life so far, he’s truly a hero and an amazing person.

The second was when we invited students from local high schools to tour our facility to celebrate Manufacturing Day.

I was giving the kids an overview of the pillow filling machine, and one of the kids asked if he could have a pillow. Little did they know making a pillow for themselves was actually on the tour agenda. I told the young man, “if you make it you can have it,” and the entire group lit up with excitement. It was great. Each one of them worked with our incredible operators and made their own pillow.

ZManu4_Z157What’s a special memory about a pillow order or product type?

I was recently working the company’s annual tent sale and I had a woman ask me about our neck support pillows. I told her I never have personally used one, I prefer regular pillows. I explained the concept of the pillow, and she purchased one.

She came back the next day with two friends and told me it was the absolute best sleep she’s ever had – so much so that she purchased additional support pillows, and actually sold her friends on the pillow. I bought one at the employee store – she was right, it’s a great pillow.

Any recommendations for someone trying out a Cuddledown pillow for the first time? What are some of our most popular pillows?

Recommendations? You can’t miss. Everything we make is the best hands down. We make a ton of sateen synthetic and 800 Fill Power pillows. Sateen is such a nice fabric. That would actually be my recommendation.

Do you have a particular favorite fill pillow and why?

Sateen king medium. Absolutely! I like my pillow big and firm. I don’t even care what fill is in them, these are the only pillows allowed on my bed (unless my wife says otherwise).

We would like to thank John for providing such interesting insight on the hard work and passion that goes into handcrafting our pillows.

What is your favorite Cuddledown pillow? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Cuddledown Annual Pillow Sale 2016

The Cuddledown Annual Pillow Sale has officially begun!

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For a limited time, you can save up to 30% on our luxurious, handmade down and synthetic pillows.

Experience the difference a night of luxurious comfort can make when you sleep on a Cuddledown pillow. Be sure to shop the sale and save.

Cuddledown pillows are proudly handcrafted in Maine.

Get an inside look at how our pillows are made – check out this video of our manufacturing team in action!

 

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