A True Cornerstone

04.02.2016 § Leave a comment

The spring 2016 Cornerstone collection, originally named to follow our 25th anniversary, turned out to have much more significance.  The past fiscal year our business grew in great strides while we continuously create a name for ourselves in the industry. The moral of the entire company is unfolding a promising future in both business strategy and performance.

For the first time in Brentano’s history we are introducing a catalog of our new fabric Gem, showcasing all 39 designer colorways.  Gem is a velvet I am particularly proud of in the spring collection; proud of its luxurious colors, wonderful qualities and reasonable price point. Brentano - Gem 4250Gem 4250

Alongside Gem, the Cornerstone collection holds a wide variety of unique fabrics. The assortment includes several sophisticated techniques (Intaglio and Jasper), many bright playful patterns (Keys and Tombolo), extraordinarily colorful stripes (Regalia), and an indescribable embroidered drapery (Willow). The variety of textiles within the collection demonstrates our continuous dedication to producing products that inspire our clients’ creativity and imagination.

We have vowed in our design studio, not only to be the best at creating color, we challenge ourselves to lead the industry in design, both in textile technology and surface design.

Brentano_Ambrosia 3005

Ambrosia 3005

Brentano - Willow-Porcelain 4266-01

Willow 4266

Brentano Keys-Largo 1202-10, Element-Flame 1200-05, Tombolo-Nissi Beach 8135-03

Keys 1202 & Tombolo 8135

Brentano Nova-Cygnus 4566-02, Equinox-Pegasus 4560-02

Nova 4566

Brentano Zigrino-Whiptail 3007-05

Zigrino 3007

 

Waseda University

11.08.2014 § Leave a comment

My first week at Waseda University for a short-term, intensive summer Japanese class started with a bit of heat shock. The classroom is different every day, and the teacher is different for almost every class even when the subject is the same. Despite the heat, students are encouraged to climb the stairs to any classroom below the fifth floor. The professors are not very happy if you are late for class, so I have been running to look for classes every day in this blazing hot sun.

Still, I have had time to explore and found some great Japanese textiles, museum collections and books from their library. I’ve always found the manhole covers in Japan fascinating too, so I couldn’t help but take pictures of the ones I’ve found so far on the university campus.

Kimono Collection, Tokyo National Museum

Kimono Collection, Tokyo National Museum

« Read the rest of this entry »

Discovery Collection Inspiration

30.01.2014 § Leave a comment

Hill and Dale pillows

I keep a loose diary on where I go and what I see, but the things that impress me the most usually become burned in my mind. Those are the ones that spark design ideas and eventually become patterns for Brentano products. « Read the rest of this entry »

Sustainability Consciousness

18.10.2013 § Leave a comment

Sustainability awareness has prevailed for the last decade. Although actual results are hard to see and many people are still indifferent to the movement, people in general are behaving more carefully and improvements are being made. Agriculture’s IPM systems are one example of the shift.

In our textile industry’s new eco standard, the Sustainability Assessment for Commercial Furnishings Fabric (NSF/ANSI 336), natural fibers grown using Integrated Pest Management (IPM) systems can earn extra points. « Read the rest of this entry »

Maple Key Design

19.10.2012 § Leave a comment

I designed a maple key pattern about ten years ago, but it was not successful as a fabric and I never introduced it. I am making the attempt again and making some studies. Maybe it will become a Brentano fabric design one day.

Maple Keys on Tree Stumps « Read the rest of this entry »

Bathtubs and Robes

12.07.2012 § Leave a comment

A Cultural Difference

I got into the habit of taking hot baths after experiencing the hot spring bath culture in Japan, and I started to notice the difference between the hotels in Japan and the US. First, the bathtubs in Japan are shorter but deeper so the water covers a person up to her neck. By contrast, the hotel tubs in the US are longer but shallower. If a person wants to warm up her knees and shoulders at the same time it is a bit hard. One has to sit up straight to soak her knees or lie down completely and bend her knees to soak her shoulders in hot water. Atami Hot Springs

Atami Hot Springs

Atami Hot Springs

I also noticed that the hotels in Japan always prepare you with a toothbrush and toothpaste and a pair of disposable slippers.  None of these could be found at the Minneapolis Hilton I checked into when I visited our representative in Minnesota.  « Read the rest of this entry »

All-Purpose Cleaners for Our PU

14.06.2012 § 1 Comment

Would you dry clean your sofa?

For our polyurethane product, we typically recommend that clients clean it with soap and water. In a tough stain situation, the “solvent resistant finish” on our polyurethane means that rubbing alcohol or a solution of 1:5 diluted household bleach to water is also safe to use. All of these cleaning agents have been tested at Brentano and in our mill’s lab along with Windex, Murphy’s oil soap, and Formula 409.

That’s not an exhaustive list because clients often have specific cleaners they want to use. Recently I was asked about using dry cleaning chemicals, namely Perc and hydrocarbon solvents. According to our mill, there are many kinds of hydrocarbon solvent products. The exact chemical formulas are usually trade secrets, so it is difficult to find out exactly what is in a particular solvent, and the only way to find out what kind of effect it will have is to test it. « Read the rest of this entry »

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