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Story

Garment Dyeing

All Matteo products are garment-dyed to order right here in Los Angeles.

We cut and sew the fabric first, we then dye the finished products after they are already sewn.

Inspired by the color and hand-feel of vintage fabrics collected at flea markets, we partnered with a local dye house to re-create the look and feel of a well-loved textile.

Traditionally an apparel technique, we are one of very few bed linen companies that use this modern dyeing technology. We ran test after test to achieve the right balance of softness and stability.

Then came the challenge of trying to ensure corner-to-corner color consistency on 210 square feet of duvet cover...

There are 3 basic ways to dye fabric

Pigment

The color is pasted onto the fabric through a physical bonding agent or glue. The color eventually rubs off. Pigment-dyed garments tend to be less colorfast. The pigment dye is a layer on the surface of a textile; therefore the fading is imminent.

Vat

A complex dyeing process that creates a strong chemical bond that is very resilient and difficult to remove. Vat dyed items are resistant to bleach and other whitening agents.

Reactive

The color is chemically bonded to the fabric. The color will fade if bleached. The color will fade when exposed to direct sunlight for a prolonged period of time. For example, sunlight reflected through a window can fade the color over time.

Here at Matteo, we use the Reactive process for dyeing and printing all of our fabrics. We do this because the Vat process of dyeing does not allow for re-dyeing which is often necessary to produce our Matteo colors and ensure that color is consistent throughout each piece.

Our garment-dyed products will maintain color if cared for properly. We recommend not using bleach and avoiding continual exposure to intense sunlight. Please see the care section on each product page for specific care instructions.

We work closely with the dye house to develop our MATTEO colors. Each color is the result of hours of lab testing and careful consideration. Once we have selected a color, we create "standards" which serve as a baseline for all dye baths.

The largest challenge with garment-dyeing is the truth that it is an art, and not a science.

We must allow for a shade variation of +/- 10% from dye-lot to dye-lot. What does this mean?

It means that as hard as we try to control all variables, bed linens dyed in one of our colors today will be a slightly different shade than bed linens dyed in the same color tomorrow.

All of us at Matteo sleep on our sheets and we notice that after a few home washings, we really cannot tell the difference between two pieces from different lots. We find that we appreciate the singularity of each piece.

For us, the greatest appeal of garment-dyeing is that in fact each and every product is unique and different than anyone else’s.

We are very proud of being the industry leader in garment-dyed linens and intend to use this exiting technology to better serve you for many years to come.