Today is a very good day. And not just because it's Friday.
Today is a very good day because Bloomingdale's is having a one-day Home Sale.
Why is this so good? Because Bloomingdale's doesn't have just any home goods - Bloomingdale's has FEATHER AND DOWN PILLOWS SENT FROM HEAVEN that make life on earth worth living. And don't we all deserve to sleep on the stuff of the gods?
Normally, these heavenly pillows are a cost-prohibitive acquisition -- I mean, seriously, eye-gouging -- but today... today... they are 50% off.
Even at 50% off, they're still pretty pricey. But here's the deal: They're life-changing. Literally life-changing. Up until a year ago, I was both against down-filled pillows (they seemed too soft and expensive?) and also pillows that cost more than $30 (because why should pillows cost so much?). I didn't realize down pillows came in different forms and levels of firmness. I also didn't seem to realize that you have the power to set your bed up so that it feels like you're staying in a luxury hotel on a nightly basis. So when Matt and I got married five years ago, we bought a bunch of synthetic pillow inserts from Pottery Barn, thinking Pottery Barn would have generally good pillows, but Pottery Barn does not have generally good pillows. It turns out that Pottery Barn has terrible, lumpy, rock-hard pillows that get worse with time. Pottery Barn wants you to suffer in your sleep, not rest on a cloud sent from heaven. Now those pillows are in our guest room, and I'm embarrassed when guests stay over.
About a year ago, when I was sitting at physical therapy having my post-surgery foot cranked about in exquisite angles of pain, my physical therapist Frank (the best, by the way) looked up at me and noticed that, while I was certainly wincing from the pain he was inflicting, I was also holding my neck in a separate form of agony.
"What's going on there?" he asked.
"Oh nothing. My neck just hurts. I think I slept on it weird or something."
"You need to get a new pillow."
"Huh?" Crank. Yelping. Efforts to breath. "Oh, well, yeah. Probably." Crank. Yelping. PG curse words. "They just seem so expensive and I have no idea --- AH! -- what kind to get."
"I'm serious. Go over to Bloomingdale's after this and get yourself a real pillow."
And because I did everything Frank told me to do, because Frank is wise and also funny and endlessly cheerful and always right, I went across the street to Bloomingdale's and headed to the pillow section.
It's a strange experience to pick out a pillow. Everything is wrapped in plastic. You're aware that you're not the only person who has gone to select a pillow and so you think about the germiness factor of your situation. Have they pressed their faces on the plastic? Is there a protocol? Is what I'm about to do wrong? And also everything is horrendously expensive, so you're stuck sort of eliminating based on cost alone and then trying to find the best option within the price range you can somewhat stomach. I wandered aimlessly for a while and then, once I'd convinced myself that no one was looking (since no saleswoman wanted to help the limping girl with the cane), I decided to see if I could test the pillows out. What do you do? Hold it up to your face and squeeze? Bend over and lay your head on it? How do you know if it's good? I tried a few different things ever so covertly, and finally a saleswoman came over and tried to upsell me.
"You like that one? What kind of sleeper are you? You should try this one. Everyone gets this one in the medium."
So many invasive questions and opinions, and I had just been caught pressing my face against the plastic covering a pillow - I felt dirty.
"Oh. Well, I don't know. Um, I'm a side sleeper? Do side sleepers get medium or firm? But that's like $300. I don't think I can spend that on a pillow."
"You're choice. But everyone gets medium."
here are several levels of pillow quality sold at Bloomingdale's, and I ended up buying the cheaper version available and getting the medium even though I knew I should get the firm. The medium after all, because it's less dense, was cheaper. There was a $25 off deal being run, so I felt some level of victory and sheepishly brought the purchase home with me, ashamed of how much I'd just spent on a pillow. I gave it a shot. Too soft. It needed to go back.
But instead of taking it back, I kept the medium and went back after my next PT session and bought the firm version. Another $25 off victory. The firm, as it turns out, was just right.
I feigned to Matt that we would keep both temporarily to "decide what we like better." Matt was completely appalled at my expensive taste at first, claiming he did not need a fancy pillow and I should return one of them immediately, but then he slept on the pillow for a while and realized that his life had begun to improve and he had Frank and my overspending ways to thank. Over time, as sales have run, I've managed to buy one more medium density version and one more firm density version, so that both Matt and I now have one of each. Because as it turns out, the perfect pillow combination is one firm on the bottom, one medium on the top. It gives you both support and softness. It makes going to bed feel like the most magical experience on earth.
Soft density = for stomach sleepers
Medium density = for back sleepers
Firm density = for side sleepers
I now have the single desire to acquire two king firm density versions for our room (to sub as body pillows and because they're useful) and a combination of medium and firm density standard pillows for the guest bedroom, so that we can do away with our lumpy rocks from Pottery Barn for good. I had actually just broken down last week and purchased $40 mediocre down pillows from Macy's to fill the need in the second bedroom, and just this morning, after I received the email from Bloomingdale's alerting me to today's glorious sale, I tore through our trash and fished out the Macy's bag and receipt so that I can return the sub-par pillows and get the ones of the gods that are sold at Bloomingdale's at 50% off.
So, yes. Today is a good day indeed. My mediocre Macy's pillows will be returned. My Pottery Barn rocks will be discarded once and for all. And my home will be one step closer to being a luxury hotel. All at 50% off retail. I mean, it's still beyond expensive. But sleep is an investment isn't it? An investment in ourselves? And investment in making sure we wake up excited every day (for breakfast or otherwise)?
I sure think so. And I'm sure Frank would agree.
Where to Buy:
Bloomingdale's My Flair Medium Density Down Pillow Collection, $119.99 for standard (normally $240)
Bloomingdale's My Flair Firm Density Down Pillow Collection, $147.99 for standard (normally $295)
Happy Friday and Happy Home Shopping!
I am an artist/designer and former financial professional with a background in comparative literature, business and design. I live in New York with my overworked lawyer husband and my two boys Michael and Theo and spend much of my free time dreaming about how to enhance the aesthetics of our little world. I am endlessly inspired and always in search of something new. This is a blog about my search, my inspiration and things I just really, really like or want.