Local mattress store
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Yankee Mattress Factory
104 Damon Rd.
How does Joe Noblit sleep?
""Great!"" says Noblit. ""I've been on a Yankee mattress since day one. I recently replaced my very first Yankee mattress, which I had for 11 years.""
Making mattresses may not be everyone's dream, but it was Noblit's. He got his start in the business as a supervisor for Simmons, the makers of Beautyrest. Later, when he was working as a mattress salesman and starting a family, he saved scarce dollars to buy used equipment for the factory he hoped to open. ""I had a vision of making my own mattresses,"" he recalls. ""I enjoyed the manufacturing and felt there was room for somebody that could give honest value. The whole key is handcrafting and taking the middleman out of the equation.""
Far from being a standardized, humdrum operation, Yankee Mattress does a great deal of custom work that requires creativity, a word not often associated with the manufacture of mattresses. For example, says Noblit, ""We've done some very difficult boat mattresses where there are compound angles involved due to the bow of the boat and the cut of the hull. For Wilbraham Monson Academy, we made mattresses a third longer than a standard mattress to meet the needs of the tall basketball basketball players. We've made round mattresses.""
Yankee Mattress is an apt name for Noblit's products because the springs and fabric come from Massachusetts, while foam comes from Webster, Mass. and Albany. Fabric is sent to a quilter in Toronto who sews it to Yankee's specifications, then returns it to the factory. Dealing with suppliers in the Northeast, Noblit points out, saves on shipping costs. Noblit says he and his staff don't make the claim that the mattresses are organic because the testing required for legal certification is expensive. But, he says, ""We often use organic materials when we can find them.""
139 Myron St.
West Springfield, MA
20 East Street