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Thread Count Shopping Tips For Luxury Sheets

Trying Out Thomas Lee Sheets

After receiving my first set of Thomas Lee PerfectCale sheets over a month ago, they're the only sheets my mattress has seen since. Tightly woven with 500 threads per square inch of 100 percent Pima cotton, they have the softness of some of the cotton blend linens I've tried, but breathe so much better.

The extra deep corner pockets are ideal for my whopping 18-inch mattress, which can make sheet shopping difficult. By paying attention to the laundering instructions, I've noticed that the sheets are feeling a bit smoother after each cycle and haven't begun to pill, which is always a nuisance. While slipping cozy flannels into the rotation can be nice for extra chilly nights, I have a feeling these will be my go-to, year-round sheets.

Keep reading for a couple of tips on how to choose quality sheets you won't regret splurging on!


One of the tricks is taking a closer look at thread count. The type and quality of the yarn and how it's woven are just as important as the thread count number. Linens made from single ply yarn, like Thomas Lee linens, have a much higher quality than those that twist individual plies together to make one thread. When that happens, thread count numbers can be a bit deceiving since they include the individual plies that make up one thread in the count.

Another thing to look for when sheet shopping is ring spun yarn, which is also a method used in Thomas Lee linens. Finer sheets have finer yarn and can fit more threads in one square inch. Although more costly and time consuming than other methods of yarn spinning, ring spun yarn tends to produce high quality yarn.

Looking for 100 percent cotton is also important when shopping for luxury sheets since cotton is naturally soft and super absorbent. The quality of cotton is usually decided by the "staple" length, which is the length of the actual fibers in each cotton bloom. The longer the staple, the better the cotton. Egyptian cotton is famous for having exceptional quality because of its staple length, but the often-overlooked Pima cotton also yields a long thread that is ideal for soft and durable bed linens.

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