most extensive collection of linens in the twin cities
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Pratesi: The Elite of Linens
A century old Tuscan tradition saw mothers and daughters gather in groups to embroider by hand the most exquisite linens. At the turn of the century, the young wine merchant, Remigio Pratesi, had the interesting idea to have beautiful table linens hand embroidered by hiring these ladies on an exclusive basis. In this way, Remigio could achieve the highest quality and unique style. It was a brainstorm, which would transform the fortunes of the family in one of today’s legends of luxury.
Remigio’s son, Brunetto, started “selling” their masterpieces to English merchants in the port of Livorno and, soon after, became the major supplier to the chic holiday Tuscan resort of Forte Dei Marmi, where the family opened their first Pratesi store in 1946. The fabulous store in Via Montenapoleone in Milan was inaugurated in 1958: the Pratesi brand expansion began.
Athos Pratesi, the third generation of the family, had not only a brilliant entrepreneurial mind but also a strong desire to make the Pratesi name known worldwide. He was conscious of a very delicate balance: preserving his father’s touch while introducing their collections to untapped markets.
Around 1966, Aldo Gucci introduced Athos to New York. A small wholesale operation began and the most elegant American linen stores started to carry the line. Athos and his wife Dede chose in 1972 Madison Avenue as the location for their very first store in the US; the street became in a short time one of the most elegant in the world and Pratesi one of the most desired destinations.
Other boutiques followed and the Pratesi family became friends with tycoons, artists and Hollywood celebrities as the brand became a status symbol among the world jet set.
If it is true that behind every great man there is always a great woman, this is certainly the case of Dede Pratesi, at the helm of the creation department: creativity and passion for their product have inspired the Pratesi family to create the most innovative and timeless signature patterns in home decoration.
Today the company is run by the fourth generation along with a strong managerial team, both working passionately to achieve a common goal: the next level.
Busatti Since 1842
Busatti is an eight generation Italian artisan fabric house weaving linen and cotton in Anghiari, Tuscany since 1842.
Every production phase is carried out in Italy with extraordinary care from the dying, spinning and weaving of the fabrics to each hand finished piece made in the historical Busatti workshop. Raw threads are treated with olive oil before being spun and custom dyed before weaving. Shuttle looms slowly insert weft-threads giving a sheen and softness to the fabrics that is so often lost today. Artisans exercise their craft with pride, skill and passion passed down through centuries of experience.
Design inspiration is drawn from the rich Busatti archives and developed with some of the world's leading creative contemporaries to delivery an ever current, always timeless collection which reflects the essence of the brand.
Skill, style and Italian sensibility now available in Wayzata.
The Busatti process easily accommodates customization and most finished items are made to order. Double width linen and cotton fabrics and finished table, bed, bath and kitchen linens have crafted beauty and evidence distinctive personality. Busatti products are made to be used and are enhanced with use, softening to the touch and retaining rich color and complexity. Busatti provides a connection to a place and another time, transforming today.
Sferra: Celebrating 125 years
The story of Sferra is not just a history of fine linen-making, but one of family, of determination, and of the American Dream. From the storied journeys of our founder to the first-of-its-kind reimagining of linen itself, Sferra has woven its own place in history.
The company was founded in 1891 Italy, when Gennaro Sferra first set foot on a cross-Atlantic steamer that would carry him to America. Aspiration led him to join the waves of immigrants seeking a new life, but it was a family history of craftsmanship that enabled him to sell the exquisite, meticulously handmade lace that would become his future. Initiating the business with his two brothers, the company was formed as Sferra Brothers Limited. From the beginning, Sferra’s linens were not merely crafted, but dreamt, owing as much to imagination and inspiration as to the looms and hands that wove and embroidered them.
In 2004, the company evolved the brand name to the singular and more easily recognizable, SFERRA. And under new leadership in the 21st century, SFERRA melds the technology of the times with that tradition of inspiration—on the one hand introducing an award-winning iPhone and iPad app; on the other, bringing Brahms Mount into the fold, a rustic Maine textile mill weaving on vintage shuttle looms. From a humble Italian immigrant pursuing the American Dream to the new Made-in-America dream, SFERRA will always live at the forefront of craftsmanship and luxury.
125th Anniversary Bed
Libeco: Believe in Linen
Flax has been farmed and linen fabrics woven in Flanders for centuries. By the 18th century, Meulebeke, situated near Kortrijk, had emerged as one of the villages with the largest linen production. By the 1800's, there were dozens of weaving firms operating in and around Meulebeke. Of these, only two remained: Libeco and Lagae Linens.
The first information on Libeco dates from 1864. At that time, the company was a collecting point and warehouse for pure linen fabrics produced in the homes of the cottage workforce of the region. From this first warehouse, the woven goods were transported by handcart to Kortrijk, where they were dyed and sold. By 1904, a production facility had been established and the factory had begun to install power looms; by the end of the first World War, 140 looms were in operation. Fine quality, pure linen fabrics and linen-cotton blends were produced for sheets and table coverings. Even then, exports were important to the firm, especially to South America. World War II heralded a difficult period for the company but by the early 1960's, Libeco's shareholders adopted an ambitious investment plan to ensure stability and allow the firm to grow once more.
Established in Kortrijk in 1858, Lagae Linens produced fine cambric and handkerchiefs. With their takeover of Tissages de Gryze in Meulebeke, the Lagae brothers began to actively merchandise their expanded weaving production. Despite partial destruction of their weaving workshops in 1940, production facilities at Lagae Linens have been rebuilt and continually expanded over the years resulting in a firm with very modern production equipment. At the time of their merger with Libeco, the firm was equipped with the latest Sülzer-Rüti projectile and rapier weaving machines.
These venerable and uniquely complementary weaving firms merged on June 2, 1997, into a single company known simply as Libeco·Lagae. The strength and synergy realized by this friendly merger ensures that the age-old craft of Belgian linen weaving heads into the new millennium stronger than ever.
Libeco Home and the manufacturing of finished products has always been part of the activities. Between 1864 and 1950 mostly focussed on the production of very fine handkerchiefs, table linen ,bed linen and towels. In the sixties and the seventies the company increased the range to prints and yarn dyes. Since 1980 the division became more and more active in promoting a complete concept of linen for the home. Today it is one of the most creative lines on the contemporary market for household linens.
Abyss & Habidecor
Producing the very finest in luxury towels, bathrobes & bath mats is a speciality of Portuguese brand Abyss & Habidecor. They believe that luxury begins with the selection of the highest quality raw materials, in this case the very best cotton yarn. In every towel, bathrobe & bath mat luxurious Giza Egyptian cotton yarn is used. Specifically the cotton used is Giza 70, which refers to the year the cotton was planted, 1970, as around an age of forty is when cotton plants produce the best cotton.
Created in two factories in Viseu, Portugal, Abyss is the brand name of the towels & bathrobes, and Habidecor the bath mats, which are so luxuriously soft they can also be used as rugs. Carefully made using hand-tufting machines, the two thread yarn is also long-staple, ensuring the utmost absorbency. The factories are ecologically friendly, and recycle all the water used in the dyeing process.
Abyss & Habidecor have a wide variety of towel, bathrobe & bath mat styles to suit every taste and every space. They boast over sixty different color options alone, and they can also offer a range of bespoke sizes, colors and embroidery, simply contact Highcroft to enquire about the bespoke service.
Abyss & Habidecor instinctively seeks inspiration from life itself, and believes in nothing less than the very best in every step of the creation process.
John Matouk & Co.
In 1929, John Matouk founded a company whose mission was to give Americans ready access to the world’s most luxurious linens. Mr. Matouk, who was born in Damascus the son of a fine jeweler, understood the principles of meticulous workmanship and good taste. As a young man he immigrated to Italy where he learned the fine linens business, gaining particular expertise in the intricate lace and hand-work that were very much part of the tradition there. He began exporting Italian linens to the United States and he developed a partnership with the outstanding Olga Asta linen and embroidery house located in St. Marks Square in Venice.
In July 1929, he fulfilled his life-long dream to go to the United States. He brought with him trunks of exquisite fabrics and cloths that he sold to the finest stores and elite families. Even in those difficult times there were those who had a passion for fine things and the means to afford them.
During World War II, with his supply lines from Europe cut off, Mr. Matouk moved his production to the U.S. He located his factory and offices in Manhattan. When linen became scarce during wartime, he pioneered a special blended fabric of mohair, rayon and cotton. This became Matouk's first signature tablecloth and sold thousands of units.
In 1963, John's son George F. Matouk joined the business and became president three years later after his father's death. During his 36 years leading the company, George Sr. grew Matouk from a maker of fine table linens and a limited selection of embroidered sheets to a full-service luxury home textile source, with a broad spectrum of linens for the table, bed and bath, featuring custom sizing, embroideries and monogramming. In 1985, George Sr. moved the factory to southern New England, home to both a tradition of American textile production and a community of skilled craftspeople.
Today, the Matouk factory and headquarters are located in Fall River, Massachusetts in a world-class building featuring a solar energy system that produces over 25% of the electricity the company requires to operate. It is an environment where old world techniques live hand-in-hand with state of the art tools and production philosophies.
Under the leadership of John Matouk’s grandson, George Matouk Jr., the company remains committed to our purpose of enriching the lives of our customers and their families by creating the most beautiful and beloved collection of bed and bath linens.