Dreams of Italy & the World’s Finest Linens

Italy Farmhouse

I enjoy my job every day but, you know how it goes, some days are full of desk work and the necessary background tasks that keep things running smoothly. So on the days I get to touch and feel beautiful linens, I remember all over again why I fell in love with this field.

I love linens. Their aesthetic and tactile qualities are equally appealing. I love the silky feel of a high-quality sateen sheet. I love the whisper-thin drape of a cotton voile duvet. I love the immense and perfect detail of applique or cutwork on the cuff of a pillowcase. And I love the feeling I get when I imagine generations of people designing and crafting these linens for over 100 years in Italy.

I’m thinking specifically today of one of our oldest and best-known linen vendors; Sferra. What started in 1891 as one man, Gennaro Sferra, selling intricate Venetian lace collars and cuffs has become a luxury linen supplier to the White House, Vatican and celebrities alike.

Giza 45 is one of the most fabulous things about Sferra’s product line. This super-fine, super-long Egyptian cotton is usually reserved for high-end men’s dress shirts but Sferra has secured a small portion of the yearly yield to fabricate their silkiest sateen sheets. Once you feel these you’ll wonder what else you’ve been missing out on!

On the other end of the spectrum, but equally fabulous, are their crisp linen sheets. These are loved (especially in Europe) for their ability to keep you warm in winter and cool in summer thanks to their open weave.

On the decorative side, Cornova is a new collection with delicate lace flanging on each sham and adorning the top of a crisp, percale duvet cover.  I think this makes for a dressy but livable master bedroom, don’t you?

Another of my favorites is the Elda collection . . . you can’t believe this tissue-thin cotton voile could possibly be used for sheeting and duvets but it’s incredibly durable and machine washable! These cool and breezy linens sound like just the thing for a coastal retreat.

And did you know that Sferra makes table linens as well? If you love to set a proper table for your guests then you will love their selection of traditional cotton and linen tablecloths, placemats and napkins. They even occasionally veer off the path of tradition to give you a wrinkle-free, stain-free finish on those table dressings . . . we won’t tell if you don’t.

Well there you have it–just a sampling of the world’s finest linens. These finishing touches are the icing on the cake; the elements that make your beautifully furnished home feel like home . . . or Italy. However, you like to think of it.

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