In the dry cleaning business, average is just another word for mediocre
In June 2017, dry cleaners from all around the USA, Canada and beyond will descend on the Las Vegas for the Clean Show, a biennial trade exposition showcasing the latest in equipment, technologies and services.
They’ll all be searching for the holy grail: how to push more and more pieces of fabric (aka your fine garments and household textiles) faster and faster through their production facility using a mix of low skilled labor and highly automated equipment.
The problem for all these dry cleaners is that they’ll continue to face that same recurring dilemma — year in, year out — no matter how many Clean Shows they attend and no matter how many labor saving machines they buy.
In this post, I posit that success in the dry cleaning business isn’t a function of the number of trade shows they attend or the number of labor saving machines they install.
The answer is to say no to being average. That the answer is to stand for something instead of standing for nothing.
Cleaning fine bed and table linens in the metro Phoenix area and beyond
Luxurious, distinctive European and American bed and table linens – antique, vintage, or modern – are costly and can be easily ruined if mishandled in the cleaning process.
Fact is, these linens demand a level of care that shouldn’t involve merely tossing them into a washer with hot water, caustic detergents and bleaches, tumbling in a dryer and folding.
This blog post is not a “how to” guide for washing, drying and folding your fine bed and table linens. The internet is awash in such guides.
Rather, this blog post is intended to address various issues faced by the owners of fine bed and table linens for whom home laundry results rarely meet expectations.
This blog post also introduces readers to the processes that should be followed by specialized french laundries who clean and restore fine bed and table linens.
Summer’s here. Keep those white, dry clean only garments brilliantly white.
The color white is truly timeless. White is classic, sophisticated, distinctive, versatile and soothing. All at the same time.
To put it bluntly, white – with all it’s countless variations in hues and intensity – is simply brilliant.
With Memorial Day just around the corner, it’s time to bring out those white cottons and linens from their winter hibernation.
But you’re anxious. Your dry cleaned whites probably look yellow, gray and dingy.
Don’t despair. It’s not your fault that ordinary cleaners have abandoned all quality standards in their never-ending quest to “produce” a garment ever more cheaper and faster.
In this post, we explain why your fine white, dry clean only garments turn yellow, gray and dingy. And what you can do about it.
Fire and water damage: what to do in a disaster situation
A fire and/or water disaster – natural or otherwise – can occur at any time.
Before you turn over your fine garments, household textiles (such as bed and table linens, bedspreads, coverlets, comforters, cushion covers, draperies and area rugs) and accessories (such as handbags, purses, wallets, shoes and boots) to a dry cleaner for restoration, there’s much that you can do – and not do – to mitigate further damage.
In this post, we identify many of those “do’s” and “don’ts”.
The most important “don’t” pertains to your selection of a restoration dry cleaner.
If you have a significant investment in bespoke, made-to-measure, designer, high fashion, specialty and couture garments, household textiles and accessories, it’s critical to understand the difference between an ordinary restoration dry cleaner and a true quality restoration dry cleaner.
It’s even more important to understand your rights under your insurance policy, particularly your right to choose your restoration dry cleaner without being “steered” or “prodded” — against your better judgement — to the restoration dry cleaner “selected” or “recommended” by the insurance company, agent or adjuster.
In this post, we explain your right to choose and why you should forcibly exercise that right.
A tale of 2 dry cleaners: Which one would you choose?
Imagine that there are only two dry cleaners in a particular city.
Further, imagine that they’re situated next door to one another.
One has a sign which that says True Quality Cleaners; the other sign says Ordinary Cleaners.
Let’s say that you mostly shop at high-end boutiques and department stores, that you have a relatively significant investment in your fine garments and that you have the financial resources to pay for the very best in on-going maintenance of that wardrobe.
Which of these two cleaners would you choose?
The purpose of this post is to help you make an informed decision by highlighting the differences between extraordinary (true quality) dry cleaners and ordinary (middle market) dry cleaners and the operating philosophies underlying those differences.
Cleaning and restoring handbags: Removing ink stains from interiors and linings
One of the most difficult stains to remove from the interior or lining of an accessory is ink.
The reason why ink is so problematic is because of the number of variables involved and the thousands of combinations of those variables.
In this blog post, we discuss those variables, caution against the use of various “miracle cures” that can be found on the internet and illustrate, through two examples, the results that can be achieved — one almost completely and the other not at all (because of the type of lining involved).
Do it yourself handbag cleaning: Exercise caution – a case study
If you’re going to clean your leather or leather trimmed handbag, purse, wallet or backpack at home with any type of “cleaning product, we’d suggest that you proceed with caution.
If you, nonetheless, proceed to use one of those “cleaning products” and the results produced are not as expected, we’d suggest that you ignore any advice you might fin=d on the internet on how to fix the problem caused by one of those “cleaning products”.
Because there is an element of experimentation involved with using these cleaning products. The outcome is often a crap-shoot. Maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t. You’ve got a 50:50 chance of getting it wrong and the consequent results can be disastrous.
And if you take the advice of some internet-based Helpful Heloise, you’ll probably just compound the problem.
In this blog post, we illustrate this point with a Prada leather handbag with an ink stain that was cleaned at home with one such “cleaning product” and then further complicated by poor internet advise. Then we show you the results that can be achieved with the application of the right skills, judgement, products and processes.
Dry cleaners: Competing on the basis of “better” and “cheaper” is a fool’s errand
Almost every dry cleaner in the USA competes on the basis of “better customer service” and “cheaper prices”
This is dry cleaner code for targeting the largest segment of the market — the vast middle market between the discount cleaner and the extraordinary cleaner.
In this blog post, we explain why dry cleaners prefer to compete on the basis of “better customer service” and “cheaper prices” and why they almost never talk about the quality of product they deliver — the primary reason why you entrust your fine garments, household textiles and accessories to a dry cleaner.
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