Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Sheet Rant



When did sheets get so expensive? Why are they so complicated? And more importantly - why am I so fussy about sheets?

I know this is a low priority problem compared to some, but what are blogs for if not to occasionally rant about low-priority dumb stuff? It's the mundane that takes up a huge part of our lives.

I've been sheet shopping this week. The bottom sheet seems to have sprung a tear - just when they were the most soft and comfortable. Of course it's that way. Just when something is perfect, we find ourselves in replacement mode.

My first stop was the Internet. Just to remind myself what constitutes a good sheet - softness, durability, sheen, color, price. Of course it must be 100% cotton for maximum comfort, at least for those of us that are hot, not hot, hot, not hot, hot... Egyptian cotton is the most sturdy, with long fibers. So I'm looking for high thread count for softness, Egyptian cotton for durability, sateen finish for comfort, in the color Ivory. (I'm known for my comfortable beds - mine should be no exception!)

Next stop was Macy's, and a very sweet young man who knew his sheets. He steered me to two different ones, and I made my choice. Off to the check stand ---  total price - $800. No, that is not a typo! $800 for one set of sheets and (2) extra pillowcases.

Next stop - Bed, Bath & Beyond. I found 750 count, 100% Egyptian cotton sheets with a satin sheen in Ivory. Great. Only $199. Much better, I thought. Although spending $200 on sheets should be something that that is off-putting,  but after looking at so many sheets, I'm happy to pay it. Off to the check stand.

Okay, so the sheet set was $199 but I needed an extra set of pillowcases. The extra set of pillowcases came to $69. That is $35 per pillowcase! Really?? 

So there is my consumer rant for the year. I hope not have to buy sheets for several years, but when I do - I plan to go into our 401k to pay for them.

Addendum: The additional pillow cases, once washed, were a different color.  Geeze. Back to BBB. Or maybe my old ones will do...

28 comments:

Natalie said...

My fave sheets are from Aldi and they tick all my boxes. $60 Aussie bucks. :)
I couldn't even contemplate $8oo....
and you may rant away dear Nancy, we spend a lot of time in bed. :)

Rob-bear said...

What? $800 for sheets. You can buy a brand new, high-quality mattress for $800.00, or less.
Bear shakes his head at the unfathomable. $800 for sheets?

Brian Miller said...

omg. prices are rising for sure...esp food...does not surprise me on sheets.

Grandmother said...

Rant away, $800.00 for sheets gives you the right! I'd be ranting too. We have an outlet near us in Italy and I thought their sheets were expensive at 160 euros ($225). Gorgeous, Italian but expensive. I'm now informed.

Leah J. Utas said...

Comfortable bed means good sleep, and good sleep is important. Not sure about dropping $800 for sheets, though. Good for you for looking around.

DJan said...

Bed Bath and Beyond is where I get my sheets, but I haven't bought any in a while. The ones I've got will have to keep on working at that price, Nancy. I don't think I use quite the quality sheets you do. I found this very informative...

luksky said...

I just recently had to do some sheet shopping myself. It was torture to say the least...

desertsandbeyond said...

I've been looking for sheets, too, but refuse to pay that much...sigh...it is a dilemma. I think I'll just put it off for now! And, yes, I love Egyptian cotton, too!

Kathy G said...

That's a lot of money for sheets, but when you figure it on a per-night basis it becomes not so unreasonable. They'll last a long time!

A second package of pillowcases has ALWAYS been a rip-off, proportionally, to the original set. I've settled for using different colored ones for the extra pillows...white, ecru, or anything that coordinates that's in the sale section.

ellen abbott said...

We recently (well in the last couple of years) bought several sets of sheets but $200 for sheets is still way beyond me. We did stumble on some Egyptian cotton, 450 thread count sheets that were on close out for about $30 at Penney's and then kicked ourselves for not running back and picking up another set once we were at check out. It took us about 6 months of shopping different stores and sales to get 4 sets of sheets that were all cotton with a high thread count for about $40 a set.

Nancy said...

Nat - We do spend alot of time on them, don't we.

Rob - I know!

Brian - You are right about food. That really worries me.

Grandmother - Italian linens are the best, in my opinion, but unfortunately not in my budget. I do oogle them online on occasion, however. :-)

Leah - No, I wouldn't pay that much for sheets. But by the time they need to be replaced I should never say never, I guess.

DJan - BBB is just a good all-round store.

luksky - It is not an easy chore, for sure. Too many things to consider.

desertsandbeyond - I always put it off until they tear and it becomes essential. I thought about repairing the tear because the sheets were so soft, but figured it would just tear in another place. They were 8 years old.

Kathy - Good idea about the pillowcases. The lady at the store said they always use a white sheet somewhere in the beds they have on display.

Ellen - That was a great buy! I ususally order mine through LinenSource because they have good sales. I just didn't want to wait for them this time. I read somewhere that you should always buy an extra bottom or top sheet (whichever wears out on you) for replacement. Makes sense. Unfortunately they did not sell them that way for the ones I bought - only the full set. Now the $800 ones were sold separately...

Kala said...

Yikes, $800 for sheets? I don't think I will be able to sleep on them...insomnia brought on by the guilt of how much they cost:):)

Whitney Lee said...

Well, the issue with the cotton crops raised prices a bit, but sheets have been pretty ridiculous for awhile now.
I did learn something interesting about Bed Bath and Beyond the other day. If you hang onto your receipt you can get some money back...all you have to do is take in one of those coupons that BB&B sends out all the time. It just has to be within a couple of months of the purchase. So you can still get back $20 or so...

karena said...

Totally with you on this. The worst is when you've made your selection and get them home, wash them, sleep on them a night, and find out they just aren't the right softness you were looking for. My rant is about pillows...they are outrageously expensive as well. Of course there are cheap ones...but they don't hold up but for a few months. I've gone the distance to buy the more expensive ones and found they don't hold up any better than the cheap ones. Arggghhh....don't even get me started....
My rant for the day is the increase of Netflix...they knocked out the competition, and now feel they can up their price by 60%....Greediness at its best.

Nancy said...

Kala - I could never get that one by my husband, even if I wanted to.

Whitney - Thanks for the tip. I get those all of the time and just toss them since I'm mostly in downsizing mode.

Karena - I've found the ones at Costco seem to hold up the best. We use down pillows, and for the price they hold up well. For around $55 for a king size pillow they are about half the cost of the department store prices. Also, you can wash down pillows. You just have to dry them for several hours on low.

California Girl said...

$1000 on sheets? I'd rather buy shoes!

T said...

I think I'll stick with the sheets I have!

Thank you for putting up the synchro button!

claudia said...

I got 400 count sheet sets for around $30 at Ross Discount Department store. They have proved to be soft, durable and nice and cool when it's needed. I love Ross.

Pat said...

I sure hope you had a 20% off coupon! If not, you can ALWAYS find one on line and then go back with your receipt. It would be well worth your time! I, too, am have sheet issues, and as a matter of fact am writing a post about the same issue! How funny is that!?

Mary Ellen said...

I've had some great luck with the Lands End Nearly Perfect store. I don't care too much about things matching, and the quality has been good. I'm all for deep discounts!

Catherine said...

I'm with you on this one! Just found a tear in our softest pillowcase and have begun the hunt. I don't do online w/ sheets because they may sound great but then you get them and...ugh.

Even $200 seems like a lot but as many have mentioned you use them every day.

Thanks for the timely post!

GYPSYWOMAN said...

listen, lady - i was there with you on the sheets thing [when i was employed and had a real paycheck and could spend my money like i wanted] - and i bought from macy's too - now, i've never even paid half of that $800 but i have bought really nice [translated = expensive] sheets - and then i came across several articles that said that once sheets get over about 400-500 thread count, the quality difference in the sheets is not enough to justify the extra money - anyway, that's just what i've read - i stay at about the 500 thread count - nothing like nice sheets though! yummmmmmm......

Midlife Jobhunter said...

My soft sheets tore, too. Just when I loved them best. Now, the ones I have feel like a slip'n'slide. I'm praying they'll wear out soon.

susan said...

It's so funny you should post about this because I've been sheet ranting myself recently. I bought 2 sets last year of the best I could afford at Macy's - cotton, high thread count, sateen, cream colored - in the $200 price range and with the extra pillowcases (yes, extra pillowcases that cost a lot and don't match). The problem is that with one set the bottom sheet is so tight I need my husband's help to make the bed. The other set has a top sheet that isn't wide enough to tuck in. All the pillow cases are smaller than they should be. It's weird.

Nancy said...

California - Me too!

T- No problem!

Claudia - I really should shop there more often.

Pat - That is funny!!

Mary Ellen - I'll have to check that out - thanks.

Catherine - Good luck!

Gypsy - I read the same thing. Most of mine have been in the 400 thread count range and have been just fine. We'll see if these are any better.

Midlife - I have a pair on another bed that are like lite blankets - ugh - I don't plan on bringing them with me in my downsize next year.

susan - I know what you mean! What is up with the extra narrow pillowcases??

susan said...

I figure they make everything a tiny bit smaller so that for every two inches saved they eventually get to make another expensive set. It's a reprehensible scheme. Just wait til the next time you have to buy towels :-)

Kate said...

I found the best way to buy linens and towels (also quite expensive) is during the Black Friday sales. I spread Christmas shopping across the year, so BF can be my towel and linen re-stock sale! I have also gone all white on all linens and towels across the board so mix and match in not an issue, and I can bleach wash them all! It also means I can change out the look of the room without needing to swap sheet colors, since white goes with everything.

Kate Dunkin said...

Great post! I definitely agree that prices can get outrageous for quality like Egyptian Cotton Sheets but I also believe that you get what you pay for. Thank you for sharing this with us!