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Mar 172013

The Persia design was added to the sheeting collection in 2005 and has become one of the most highly recognizable of all ANICHINI designs.  Why is it so beautiful?

The bedding is made up of 4 different fabric designs. A medallion, a wide awning stripe and 2 borders. This makes the construction complicated but very interesting. I know of no other bedding collection constructed like this.

In addition, all the fabrics are reversible. The reverse side is just as beautiful and interesting as the “right” side – and because we produce the bedding right here in our workroom we can customize the constructions. For example, we can leave off the flange entirely, or insert it into the body of the pillow cover.

Persia luxury jacquard sheets with alternate flange construction.

Allow me to go further. Persia is woven in Italy by one the very few remaining super high quality boutique weavers. This small factory, near Lake Como, embodies everything legendary regarding Italian textiles.

The product is a woven jacquard. The threads are of the finest, smoothest quality and 100% colorfast.  But the coup de grace is the fact that the weave itself is a twill weave. This twill translates into durability and longevity you cannot find elsewhere.  The bedding also requires little or no ironing due to the twill construction and the silkiness of yarns.

Persia is in a class by itself in the sheeting world. If you are interested in the best  of the best…..this is it.

Persia sheets in camel, orange, spaqua, and green

May 112012

As you may have noticed, I like glass a lot. Especially tableware. I collect it – old and new. I took a trip to Venice 30 years ago. Two things happened. I learned about Venetian glass in Murano and also found women still doing embroidery by hand in Burano.

These 2 experiences shaped my aesthetic and direction for life.

I was recently in Paris and found this glass tableware still handmade in Venice. I am fussy about glassware, being the avid collector that I am. This collection is gorgeous and fun. A perfect combination. We carry stemware as well as the tumblers. They may only be purchased through our store in West Hollywood.

May 042012

My daughter, Ivy Mix, is an identical twin, an artist, a business woman, philanthropist and a feminist. (She would not describe herself that way but I do.) After college, she moved to Brooklyn where she works in a small studio and supports herself by tending bar. At first, I was not supportive. Then one day I realized I had no control over this and told her “If you are going to be a bartender, be the best one there is!”. She accomplished this in short order and this year was feted by Zagat as one on the “30 under 30” dominating the NYC restaurant scene.

Fulfilling her philanthropic bent, last year Ivy co-founded an organization named Speed Rack that hosts women only bartending competitions throughout the USA with 100% proceeds going to breast cancer education, prevention and research.

Next Thursday, May 10, in NYC, will be the finals. The winners from all the other cities will come together to compete for the Best Female Bartender in the USA. The tickets are $40.00. Even if you cannot attend, consider purchasing one as a donation to an important cause. I will be there and hope you join us for a fun filled evening.

Read more about Ivy: 30 Under 30
View her artwork here


Jun 282011

Robin Mix Glass, Tunbridge VT

Robin Mix is my good friend and father of my twins, Tess and Ivy. He is also a brilliant glass designer. He lives and breathes glass. Sometimes I think he doesn’t think of anything else!

We met in Tunbridge 35 years ago. He still maintains his studio here in a beautiful brick Federal farmhouse overlooking the valley.

Needless to say, I have the foremost collection! Years ago, he would trade me a piece of glass for a haircut. Some of these early pieces are misshapen and small, but I love them and so do my girls.

As the years progressed, so did his talent and design capabilities. Honestly, there is no one that comes close to him. He produces every piece of glass alone and by hand. Each piece is one of a kind and a true collector’s item.

Robin’s work can be found, alongside other glass masters, in several museums, including the Corning Museum and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Design. His work has always been available through Barney’s, but starting in September, it will also be available through Anichini showrooms. View Robin’s work at

May 272011

I was visiting the West Hollywood store a month ago and had the pleasure of meeting Gayle Tzemach Lemmon, author of The Dressmaker of Khair Khana. Gayle is a journalist who has written a very insightful book about women in Afghanistan and how they have survived war and the Taliban using only a needle and thread and their own ingenuity.

Of course, I was attracted to the title. My grandmother was a dressmaker. But I am always interested in stories about brave women; especially women who become overnight entrepreneurs out of need to keep their families alive and well.The Dressmaker of Khair Khana - Buy the Book

War stories have become the norm but rarely do they remember women. Stories of these women who are left behind must be told. They are the women that hold families and communities together until the men return. This story is one. The courage, creativity and sheer energy of Kamela Sidiqi and her sisters is awe inspiring. I hope to meet her one day.

I have asked Gayle what I can do to help. Her answer is that the story needs to be told. We will be giving away her books next week in our showrooms. Of course, you can always buy on line or at your local store. You will be glad you did. It will help you to understand Afghanistan in a very personal way.

May 112011

“Today is Monday. Today is Monday. Monday wash day. Is everybody happy? Well, I should say!”

I grew up in the Midwest, the oldest of five children. I loved to help my mother with the laundry. This involved a trip to the cool basement where I would sort lights and darks and begin to learn the fine art of textile care.

In those days, we only used fine quality percale sheeting which was sent out to the local laundry and returned wrapped up with brown paper and string. I would open the package and carefully sort the sheets and cases into small matching piles. The jumbled gigantic heap that had been pushed into that coarse laundry bag was returned in a small package neatly pressed and folded. Miraculous.

My love of laundry certainly must have had something to do with my attraction to the business I am in today. If I have a day where I can sort and wash and dry and iron, I am in heaven! I also realize that few people share my passion. Unfortunately, the craft of laundering has been lost in just a couple of generations due to the introduction of polyester and the home dryer. (I now want to hear everyone BOO).

For those of you who have lovely linens but are fearful of doing them yourself, or you dislike laundry, have I found the place for you! Gerri Young developed her business called Allo Laverie at her home in New York City. She is even kookier than I am when it comes to laundry. She reads ancient laundry manuals from Europe in her spare time!

Let me introduce Gerri:

Allo Laverie is a niche service dedicated to the care and maintenance of fine and heirloom linens. French Hand Laundry is the term most commonly associated with our work.

Founded in 2000, Allo Laverie takes old world techniques in caring for fine linen and updates them with modern knowledge. A graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology, Gerri Young has the required background and understanding of textiles to know design proper methods to clean, restore and maintain textiles both modern and vintage.

For generations French laundresses were prized for not only making items clean, but the care and delicate treatment applied which saved items from harm during the process. Linens were ironed until they were glace (iced), then folded in such way to make them not only fit into a cupboard or drawer, but to show off any pattern such as embroidery or lace trim.

To find out just how all this was done I began to search out and read vintage French laundry manuals from the early 1900’s. Learning about properties of soaps suited what type of water and soil conditions. How to prepare various starches including the famous “clear starch” used on most all linens, but when done properly you cannot tell it’s there. The amazing thing about the process, though it was laborious, linens lasted for ages using these methods. Proof of this lies in the armouries full of vintage linens all over France that are making collectors on both sides of the Atlantic happy.

I wanted Allo Laverie to be more than simply a service that launders linen. Anyone can do that. What we bring is our love and understanding of textiles which shows in the final product. An avid Francophile, I understood the method behind the madness at once. The unmistakable love for beauty and appealing to all senses that is the essence of French life and culture. Just as a meal must appeal to all five senses, the method of French laundry produces a product that does as well. First you see the shimmering linen, then the fresh scent of clean linen mixed with perhaps lavender or another scent, as you touch the smooth fabric there is a slight rustling sound, all of which makes slipping into bed or even just using a napkin a sensuous delight.

It is this affect, which cannot be mass produced, I was after and like to think, by the glowing compliments of customers, have achieved.

I use Gerri myself for difficult to launder items like coarse linen tablecloths. The results of her work are perfection.

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Apr 192011

I just returned from The City of the Angels, aptly named in 1781. I am certain it was paradise on earth. Only one hundred years ago, the city boasted a population of 100,000. Navigating the expressways today, this statistic boggles the mind, as the city rolls on forever.

Mostly surrounded by L.A. proper, there is a spot called Culver City that used to be the epicenter of the motion picture industry. Outside the center of Culver City there are long stretches of low lying warehouses and gritty nondescript buildings; many in poor repair or empty. The remains of another time, it was never a pretty sight.

I am setting the stage for a remarkable story concerning one man and his passion for creating his own paradise on earth. His name and the name of his business is Charles Jacobsen.

My friend and I are looking for the address of his showroom; driving past yet another low slung faceless building, we turn into a wide alley. The first clue that we had arrived was a beautiful green wall of plantings with a spot to park. As soon as we stepped out of the car and glanced over to the interior wall, we saw it was covered with brilliant clear dark purple flowers climbing 30 feet into the air.

The gate opens and we are transported into a spectacular garden. Full grown trees and shrubs, fountains, furniture, objets de jardin…the whizzing cars and world outside are lost. We have entered into a perfect world of beauty and order; the most lovely commercial venture I have ever seen.

I hesitate to call it a showroom, but that is what it is. Charles, a tall and elegant man born in Hawaii, has traveled extensively and has brought his perfectly chosen treasures back to this garden where they live until sold. There is everything you can imagine from Japanese stepping stones to carved marble from India to antique Dutch furniture from Sri Lanka to stone pillars, chairs and beds and sinks lighting, textile, and….well….just about everything. He also offers a collection of stunning upholstered furniture.

All of this is merchandised with a painter’s eye and an architect’s precision. It is just plain glorious and you must visit soon.

If this hasn’t intrigued you enough, I leave you with this: Hung on the branches of the trees throughout the grounds are old bamboo cages with song birds in them. Their sweet chirping merges with the sounds of the fountains and leaves you feeling that you are far, far away in the Garden of the Angels.

Interested? Email

Mar 232011

I fell in love with yak blankets and throws and we now carry them at Anichini. They are 100% natural and reflect the dark brown color of the yak. They have a very soft hand, close to cashmere, but the blankets are more durable.

Like the cashmere of goats, yak hair is a secondary fiber (called down) grown each winter and shed in the spring. The nomads collect the fiber when the yaks molt either with combs or just pulling it out by hand. It is also collected off the hides of butchered animals in the fall. The down fiber then works its way to spinners via traders buying from the herders, selling to consolidators who sell to de-hairing factories and then it’s bought by either spinners or end users who have it spun.

Yaks require more forage than goats and sheep so the larger herds are seen more to the north and east in Amdo and Kham of Tibet (Qinghai and Sichuan today). The grasslands there are more lush than in Central and Western Tibet where goats and sheep predominate.

To lessen chance of calamity, traditional herders keep a mixture of animals – goats, sheep, and yak. Yak give the best meat and milk and the coarse outer fiber (guard hair) is used for tent fabric, ropes etc. The best quality yak hair comes from Outer Mongolia followed by Amdo and Kham. There are also herds in Inner Mongolia. There are wild Yak in remote areas of Tibet, these are an endangered species and trade is prohibited. All the yak hair in the market is from domestic animals.

Write to us for further information about yak blankets or call our West Hollywood store at 310 657 4292

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Mar 032011

In the last few years, we have seen a resurgence of interest in linen. From clothing to home textiles it has reappeared. There are many reasons for this. It is a green material and lends itself to a natural look. It is durable. The next turn for linen has arrived, and that is the re emergence of the linen towel.

Linen has long been used as bath towels. In Europe, flat woven linen towels are not uncommon today and, in fact, are the norm in many countries such as Italy and Eastern European countries like Lithuania. They are also the original towel. As in most old forms of textiles, there is reason people used them long ago: they worked and they lasted forever. This couldn’t be any truer of our ANICHINI linen towels.

I also grew up with linen towels, which makes me an advocate for many reasons. I know first hand the longevity of these towels. Whenever I go home to Vermont, I use the same linen towels that my mother dried me off with when I was a baby. It still amazes me that they look the way they did when we bought them: elegant, clean, and luxuriously timeless. I know how they feel and I know how cotton terry towels feel and the level of clean and calm I get from using a linen towel can’t be beat. And I am not the only one who says this. All friends and family that stay at my home all want linen towels when they leave.

I realize that most Americans  have a hard time letting go of what they are used to: fluffy cotton terry towels. People are concerned that the linen won’t be as soft. Linen, being a natural fiber, will get softer as time goes on. But I think what people mean is they are going to miss the plushy terry. They think that linen won’t be absorbent. This is false. Have you ever tried to dry off a piece of china or stemware with a terry wash cloth? Try it. You will notice that the water just  swirls around. Essentially, that is what you are doing to your body. Of course, the cotton terry towel will absorb a lot of moisture, but it also leaves a lot of water to evaporate on the skin, which can cause dry skin. Linen, on the other hand invigorates the skin, circulating blood flow and giving your skin a more healthy appearance. Linen is a natural exfoliant.

In addition, terry has a very difficult time drying once it is wet. Linen towels are naturally antimicrobial so they don’t become  “sour” like terry can (especially in the summer with humidity). They are classic and modern at the same time. They speak to all ages and all times. And they are a green product. Terry takes a long time to dry not only after you use it but also after you wash it. You also can only fit about 4 terry bath sheets in a washing machine at a time. You can more than double that load with linen bath sheets. On top of that, you must dry terry  on medium to high heat, which eats up energy. Linen can be air dried or tumbled shortly to dry and they look fantastic.

Give the linen towels a try. See how you feel. See how you look. See how much longer you can use them and how much energy you save to clean them. It is a green product that is good for you and the environment. The world is catching on…

~ Tess Mix

Feb 032011

Persia luxury jacquard sheets with alternate flange construction.

The idea of luxury has evolved in the most wonderful direction in the last ten years. Luxury’s exacting standards of absolute perfection have softened to embrace the distinctive qualities of handmade. When you think of luxury for the home and the interior, it has a specific definition that is more open minded and more earth bound. Luxury today is filled with artisanal goods.

The illusion of what constitutes luxury, high thread counts for example,  is changing. This is wonderful progress. People are starting to trust more in what they find luxurious: because of the slowed US economy, people want long lasting; because of the impersonality of the digital age, people want sui generis, they want it just for them.

In trends in luxury, our biggest challenge is what I have started to call “The Beige Coma.” In the past 5 years, a trend has erupted of the home being cloaked in shades of beige and I feel like it is so… safe. Safe and inside the box.

The beauty of luxury—and we see this in fashion—is its ability to tie the simple with the extreme, the old with the new….Innovation. That is what I feel Anichini offers and why we stand apart. It would be nice to see more in the luxury market that works outside the box in this way.

There is also building interest in natural products that may play off the “Beige Coma.”  People want green, natural products. My customers come here for the fact that we offer natural fabrics that fit this need. Our True Story Collection, for example, is a series of hand loomed fabrics all made from untreated, undyed silk. On the other hand, our Taj Collection meets the call for more vibrant colors in natural fabrics. The brilliant colors and high quality of this cotton textile have become a trademark Anichini pattern and example of our innovative choices.

Instead of altering our product for greater profits, we have continued its level of excellence. We remain competitive by continuing to bring new and interesting products to the market while recognizing honestly the challenges that we all face. Not giving in is what makes ANICHINI stand out. It has been difficult, but it suits our mission to bring the world the most beautiful and well made products on earth. Standing our ground and continuing to evolve in this direction is what we mean by enlightened luxury.

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