For many years, it was widely believed drycleaning was invented in 1825 by Frenchman Jolly Belin, founder of the first commercial “dry laundry” in Paris. As the legend goes, Belin accidentally spilled kerosene (some say turpentine) from a lamp onto a grease-infested tablecloth. Once the spot dried, he observed that it was much cleaner. However, a couple of years before this in America, the science of drycleaning was officially born. Then, it was called “dry scouring” by its American inventor, Thomas L. Jennings, the first African American to be granted a patent (Patent x3306). The date was March 3, 1821
After the highly acclaimed virtual FallFest Expo sponsored by NEFA, SEFA, and PDCA last fall, surveys demonstrated a strong desire for more virtual education opportunities in 2021. Respondents to an after-event survey overwhelmingly supported similar events in the future and specifically called for a smaller spring version.
Last year verified one more thing: the emergence of Wash-Dry-Fold (WDF) is here to stay. At the last Clean Show, we had more and more laundromat/coin-op owners come by our booth to talk about pick-up and delivery. Now, our phone continues to ring as we see WDF franchises buzzing around.
I once spent 30 minutes in line talking to Joe Biden as we were both registering our teenage daughters for a field hockey camp in Pennsylvania. Then Senator Biden and I were graduates of Syracuse University College of Law, so we talked about law school, gray weather days in upstate New York, and his train ride each day to DC from Wilmington. We lost touch after a couple of letters, and even if we shared the same political views, I would never take the time to fill out the questionnaire for an appointment to a position in the federal government..
The sun has not set yet for Cowboy Cleaners of San Antonio, Texas, but it dipped pretty close to the ground last year. Still, current owner Vicky Maisel was not ready to give up on the business started by her father 60 years ago. Don Maisel was many things — an Air Force B-47 pilot, an insurance agent, an entrepreneur — but before any of that, he was a clothes horse. Growing up, all Don ever wanted was to wear nice clothes and take care of them. Over 20 years before he launched Cowboy Cleaners, he dreamed of wearing pants in a time where the unspoken rule seemed to be boys always wear shorts until they reach a certain age. Young Don took issue with this idea.
This Mythbuster is a beauty. Really. Here goes: Laying off employees doesn’t necessarily save labor! It might increase your labor cost!
A major international company just laid off 60,000 employees. Can you believe that? Sixty thousand. At each headquarters, the employees were called into an assembly hall of sorts and read a prepared statement that outlined the severance package, instructed them to clean out their desk by day’s end and bid everyone a fond farewell.
Last month, I explored the basics of monitoring and getting a handle on your business reputation. This month we will explore the need to build and enhance your reputation. This is a great time to take a personal inventory of what your own individual brand says and how that translates to your company’s brand
The new protein formulas available have changed in many ways. The big change is the safety factor. Years ago, removing a stain on a silk, wool and bright and vivid colors were a problem due to the ability of the alkali to bleed or change the color of the fabric. The protein formulas that are now used are very mildly alkaline so the safety factor has improved drastically. Cleaners can now use the protein
In this issue, I’ll be finishing the series on gaskets and adhesives with two more useful families of products. Cyanoacrylates, much more difficult to pronounce than use, and silicones, which are amazingly versatile gasketing material. Let’s start with cyanoacrylates, popularly known as Super Glue and Crazy glue, which have some unique qualities.
Does your drycleaning business differentiate itself through a higher level of service? If so, you are probably disproportionately impacted by the economic disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Consumers are cutting back on services to avoid human contact and conserve cash, but we are still buying products that solve a specific problem. Businesses are buying products like Zoom and Slack for teleconferencing, and consumers are dropping services in favor of products
While Covid numbers have trended down a bit lately, it’s still a long way out of the woods. As a result, don’t expect the Drycleaning and Laundry Institute to temper its virtual offerings anytime soon. In fact, the association has planned ten more training sessions and ten more peer-to-peer Zoom meetings this month. The Zoom meetings will be held every Tuesday at 10 a.m. and Wednesday at 3 p.m., EST.
For two centuries now — ever since Thomas L. Jennings received his “dry scouring” patent on March 3, 2021 — the drycleaning industry has worked to make people look their best, an often thankless job that goes unnoticed. Most people seems to have little clue of what happens behind the curtain (or, in this case, the wall that typically separates the production area from the lobby). To be fair, most don’t care... as long as they don’t have to clean them.
Nearly 15,000 cleaners and their suppliers throughout the United States and around the world read Clothesline
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