Linen Forum

Thomaston Mills, with its more than century of experience and team of dedicated associates, most of whom have been with our company more than 20 years, offers you unparalleled experience in institutional linens.  This section of the website is a resource point for the end users of our product.  

 

While we sell our products through distributors in the US and Worldwide, we are not the nameless, faceless labels you normally see on most bed sheets.  We are a team of people in Thomaston, GA and Wyncote, PA dedicated to making long-lasting high value linens in a socially and environmentally responsible way.  Please scroll down for some resources, tips and care guides for housekeepers, laundries, and institutions on our products.

 
Quality Overview

By Kayla Nix Wheeless, Scheduling Coordinator

 

As a 24 year employee and hometown girl, I have worn many hats at Thomaston Mills. I started as an automatic hemmer operator.  Striving to move up, I then moved to an automated machine operator, flat sheet area supervisor, ticket room supervisor (bar code generating and labeling and then inventory management.  My current role of 20 years as the Scheduling Coordinator ensures a product is put in production in a timely manner so we can deliver it to a satisfied customer on time.  I am proud to be an employee of a local company that has positively impacted our community for over 100 years.

 

At Thomaston, we have the ability to customize to your needs.  We can sew colored hem thread products to distinguish sizes in your laundry as well as print CIM and kaumograph ID markings to prevent pilferage.  Special sizes and labeling are routine here at Thomaston Mills.  With imports, these options are virtually impossible unless the customer orders 4 months or more in advance.  In our industry, most customers do not have the luxury to wait that long.

 

Thomaston Mills sheets look better longer because of their construction and finish.  This becomes even more apparent over many launderings as Thomaston white sheets remain smooth, white and crisp while imports often turn yellow or gray and wrinkle excessively. Our colors also maintain their shade where others fade in institutional laundering.  When you waste time and energy with extra ironing and handling and have to replace sheets frequently, you are not saving money!

 

Our own in-house quality lab ensures ongoing compliance with all of our specifications for important physical characteristics.  This includes thread count, weight, tensile strength, and many other quality points.  Our quality is widely considered to be the best in our industry.  Our care for our customers shows in every one of our sheets.

 

Avoiding problems with hotel laundries
Guide to Avoiding Problems with Hotel Laundries

By Theo Miles, Quality Assurance and Technical Manager

 

I started work at Thomaston Mills while in college in 1956.  I initially worked in fabric weaving, dyeing, and finishing and installed weaving and finishing equipment during Summer breaks during college.  After finishing college with a degree in chemistry and a minor in math, I served two years as a nuclear missile officer in the Army Air Defense station in Okinawa.  After finishing the service, I came back to work to Thomaston Mills full time in 1966.

 

During my career at Thomaston Mills, I was promoted to the Corporate Director of Quality and Technical Service, overseeing all of the laboratories and travelling extensively servicing our customer’s needs and developing products.  I worked on the AAMA and ASQC committees to develop shade control and physical performance standards for the apparel industry.  Additionally, I helped to develop and establish military fabric standards for the US armed services.

 

I have visited many hospital and hotel laundries in my long career at Thomaston Mills and would like to share these general tips with you to avoid many of the problems I have been called on to resolve:

 

  • Do not lay the product on the floor of the laundry.  Frequently laundries which do this expose the linens to battery acid and other contaminants from the floor that destroys or degrades the cotton.

  • Do not combine too many different types of products in the same load.

  • When laundries combine items like tablecloths (whether colored or not) with white sheets they contaminate both products.

  • Do not wash colored sheets with the same process as white sheets.  Including optical bleach on colored sheets changes the apparent shade of the colored sheet.

 

The above 4 tips cover most of the problems I have seen in my career. I have also submitted the downloadable laundering guide on the next tab.

 

 
Avoiding problems with hotel laundries
Suggested Care Instructions for Thomaston Mills Sheets

 

Sheets manufactured by Thomaston Mills contain polyester and cotton fibers. The laundry care instructions can vary depending on the equipment used by various laundries but should follow the below listed guidelines.

 

  1. Wash water temperatures will cause very little variation in shrinkage or color up to temperatures of 160 degrees F. 

  2. Optical brighteners have been added during the finishing process to both the cotton and polyester.  Normal alkaline wash conditions are acceptable (pH of 9-10) and the addition of an  optical for the cotton in the wash cycle is recommended to help maintain the white  shade over repeated laundries. Chlorine, peroxide, or sodium perborate bleach can be used in moderate amounts. In all cases, the pH of the fabric should be brought back to  5.0-7.0 pH range prior to drying. 

  3. The use of an optical brightener is not recommended on dyed shades because of the apparent change in color caused by this addition.

  4. Drying can be in a tumble dryer or on a mangle. The fabric shrinkage has been stabilized during manufacturing by the use of resin finish for the cotton and heat stabilization for the polyester. These plant temperatures on the fabric are around 300 degrees F. 

 

Caution: 

  • If the fabric reaches this temperature during drying, excessive shrinkage can occur. Many operations exceed these temperatures by trying to run hotter in order to run faster. This will cause problems with shrinkage and color.

  • If drying in a tumble dryer, always use the cool down cycle prior to stopping the machine to prevent wrinkling.

 

NOTE: Tumble dryer temperatures should never exceed 300 degrees F. For those customers who insist on running mangles above 300 degrees, very good success has been achieved by taking the new (unwashed) sheet or pillowcase through the mangle at the temperature that it will be run one time dry before using it. This stabilizes the fabric at a higher temperature and when going into the mangle wet in future use the shrinkage is dramatically reduced. 

 

The laundry chemical suppliers can recommend the most appropriate chemicals for use in specific laundry equipment.

 

 
Care Instructions Thomaston Mills Sheets
Care Instructions Thomaston Mills Sheets

Sheets

Tumble Dry

Care Instructions.

Sheets

Suggested

Care Instructions.

 
Suggested Care Instructions for Thomaston Mills Towels

 

Wash and dry your towels before using them for the first time. Washing the towels first will remove any manufacturing finishes and allows maximum absorbency.

 

Avoid using fabric softeners on toweling, as it will reduce the absorbency of the fibers.

 

Give your towels a shake when taking them out of the washer. This will help fluff the terry loops that aid absorbency.

 

  • Don't iron towels; this will reduce absorbency.

  • Line or warm tumble dry

  • Use warm or cold water for washing colored towels.

  • Dark and medium colors should be washed separately.

  • Use regular washing detergents and never use bleach and OBA on colored towels.

  • Avoid hot water washes as this could fade the magnificent colors in your towels over time.

  • Do not let them in direct sun light for a long period, it can fade the color.

 

DRYING

While tumble- drying will make the towel fluffy, do not overdo the drying, as the heat from the dryer can damage the integrity of the cotton fibers. We recommend using a lower heat setting occasionally or alternate between air and heat drying.

 

ABSORBENCY

To maximize the absorbency of a towel, add a cup of white vinegar to the rinse cycle, about every six weeks, to restore the towel to full absorbency. The vinegar removes any excess detergent, which can affect the towels’ absorbency.

 

PULLED THREADS

As all our towels are woven, a pulled loop will not unravel the towel. If you catch the towel and pull a loop, cut off the pulled loop with a pair of scissors.

 

Care of Terry Towel

Towels

Suggested

Care Instructions.

Corporate Social Responsibility

 

By demonstrating our commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility, we aim to align our business values, purpose and strategy with the needs of our clients, whilst embedding such responsible and ethical principals in everything we do.  The below policies outline how Thomaston Mills takes account of its economic, social and environmental impacts as a business:

 

Social Responsibility:

  • Thomaston Mills complies fully with the Fair Labor Standards Act and makes a priority the welfare of our team members and the communities where we operate.   

  • We promote job growth in our local communities.

  • We act as a responsible employer in the fair treatment of our team members.

  • We support ongoing training and educational opportunities for our team members via financial support and managerial encouragement.

  • We support civic and community endeavors.

 

Environmental Responsibility:

  • Thomaston Mills complies with all relevant environmental legislation, regulations and approved codes of practice.

  • We source and buy locally to save fuel costs wherever possible.

  • We strive to prevent or minimize our contribution to pollution of land, air and water.

  • We manage and dispose of our waste in a responsible manner.

  • We are committed to monitor and continuously improve our environmental performance.

  • We work with like-minded suppliers throughout our supply chain.

  • We use recycled pallets and recycle all of our cardboard roll cores.

  • None of our textile trimmings or waste goes into landfills.  100% of it is repurposed into other products

 
Corporate Social Responsibility