Design & Lifestyle Blog

29 Aug ’10

The Siesta and its essentials

Filed under: Compliments & Accessories,Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — Sahar @ 2:19 pm

“Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything about it.”           M. Scott Peck

What do Leonardo Da Vinci, Albert Einsten, Thomas Edison, Margaret Thatcher, & Bill Clinton have in common aside from being well known, powerful, and smart people? They are famous nappers. The nap in itself is a habit many people master  naturally, some thrive to have the priviledge, and others just believe its a waste of time.

The famous nappers I mentioned earlier all had little time to sleep at night but believed in several short naps during the day to rejuvenate their brain and creativity. This has been proven over and over in numerous recent researches. The recent addiction to technology and social media is a faster way to reveal our lifestyle flaws yet we never do anything about it. I speak from personal experience, as I am getting more and more attached to the current popular devices my shut eye time is diminishing, I am sure I will soon start seeing the consequences if I don’t start taking “me” time.

A short afternoon catnap of 20 minutes  enhances alertness and concentration, elevates mood, and sharpens motor skills. To boost alertness on waking, you can drink a cup of coffee before you nap. Caffeine requires 20 or 30 minutes to take effect, so it will kick in just as you’re waking. Limit your nap time to 45 minutes maximum.

The art of napping takes practice. You have to learn to switch off from concerns, demands, and stresses of daily life for a short period.

There are many aids for napping such as herbs, mainly Lavender , chamomile, geranium, jasmine, & ylang ylang which have calming effects among others. You can apply their use  through aromatherapy oils. You can find oil burners at shops such as The Body Shop and get these soothing oils. Using these oils is part of my daily ritual, I realized when I was living in Lebanon, that friends who came over kept complimenting me for the relaxing atmosphere in my house. In addition to my hospitality *blushing* I knew the oils were a big part of that reputation.

The colors used in the room where you nap are very important. You can’t have a red bedroom and expect to wake up in a relaxed condition. Over time you will realize something is wrong. Chromotherapy is an ancient science as well. The colors to use while napping are: Rose for tranquility, Blue for relaxation, Green for renewal, Lilac for equilibrium.

Sleep Box

Researchers are realizing the importance of the “siesta”, hence the new concept most of received in our emails. The sleep box is an office workstation and resting pod designed for public places like train stations, airports and bus terminals. These small pods are rental units that provide travelers peace and quite as well as a place to work.Currently, there is construction of these units in the Dubai airport with hopefully more places to follow.

Buenos Aires 20 min Siesta Company - Preparations for a Nap

In Buenos Aires, city residents are fighting work-related stress with a 20-minute nap at the center. Employees at Siestario tailor to each client the music, aroma and colors that would be most conducive to sleep. (Photo taken from Reuters)

Many would argue and tell you the next best thing after oils is music, as much as I love the latter I don’t find it necessary in my sleep routine. What is more inviting is a set of high quality bed sheets. Before choosing your bed sheets you should know the following information.

Choosing your Bedding:

The quality of bed sheets is often conveyed by the thread count – the number of threads per square inch of material. In general, the higher the thread count, the softer the sheet, but the weave and type of thread may affect the “hand” of the material so that a sheet with a lower thread count may actually be softer than one with a higher count.

Thread count is often used as a measure of fabric quality, so that “standard” cotton thread counts are around 150 while good-quality sheets start at 180 and a count of 200 or higher is considered percale.


Frette 2010 collection

The most luxurious brands for bedding are:

1. Frette

This Italian company has supplied the finest hotels worldwide. They use French and Italian linens and Egyptian and Swiss cottons to fashion their first-class bed linens for people who like to treat themselves to the finest available.  Frette retail stores around the world make their fine products available to the public.

You can Find Frette in Kuwait in Tilal Mall in Shoueikh, In Lebanon they are on Allenby street, Downtown Beirut and ABC Mall Ashrafieh L3.

2. Bellino Fine Linens

Also sepcialized in luxurious bed linens . Their exquisite damask patterned sheets have special embroidered touches, hemstitched borders and jacquard motifs. Some of their line is available by special order only.

3. Anichini

This company prides itself on producing the finest cotton, cashmere, and silk fabrics from around the world, fabricated into shawls, throws, upholstery, pillows, curtains, bedskirts, table linens, and bed linens. Their furniture and accessories are hand-made in Vermont. Their lines of bedding are manufactured from top quality Italian yarns and are adapted to home or commercial use.

4. Peacock Alley

Their classic line is made of the finest 500 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets, matelasse covers, and fashion bedcoverings. Peacock Alley products are available only in the United States.

5. Pratesi

This Italian company with retail distribution throughout the world, manufactures bed linens, table linens, blankets, beach wear, and baby apparel.

6. Yves Delorme

Yves Delorme is one of the oldest textile manufacturers in France, having started business in 1845. This company prides itself with the finest quality and attention to detail. Their luxurious bedding line, is made of long-staple Egyptian cotton.

Ralph Lauren 2010 Bedding collection

Debenham's bedding collection

For sheets you’ll sleep on every day, treat yourself. Choose the best you can afford. After all, you’ll hopefully spend 8 hours a day lying on them! Cotton is the most popular sheet fabric, but some people prefer non-wrinkling cotton blends. For chilly winters flannel is cozy. For luxury, choose satin, silk, or microfiber. You might buy a pair of pillowcases in different styles and see which you like best, how they feel to sleep on, how they wash. Then decide if you want a whole set.

The choice of bed sheets is very personal, many don’t see the necessity of going to luxurious brands, you can find good quality in less expensive bedding such as Debenham’s & Zara Home. Just make sure to never go below a 200 thread count.

I recommend you use mattress protection covers at all times, flip you mattress 2-3 times per year to keep its shape. Change bed sheets once a week, nothing beats the feeling of sleeping on freshly laid sheets.

Useful tips

  • Always wash your bedding separately as this will stop it from becoming discoloured from being in contact with other clothes.
  • Try and use a specially formulated washing powder for colored garments. This will help the colors of your bedlinen to last longer.

Make sure you make “you” time, how are you going to dream up your best ideas if you don’t allow yourself to dream? How can you make time for others if you don’t make time for yourself?

Start taking care of YOU now.

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