The New Face of Flannel

There’s no mystery as to why our flannel sheets are so popular. They’re velvety soft and perfectly warm – the kind of bedding that makes it hard to get up in the morning. But at L.L.Bean, we know that the best can always be better. So we set out on a two-year journey to create the softest, most pill-resistant flannel possible. Was it worth all the effort? You bet it was.


Ultrasoft Comfort Flannel Sheets


Flannel, matter of factly.

Flannel pills, period. It’s part of flannel DNA, but we set out to change that. Over the course of 24 months, our jet-setting product developers bounced between Maine and Guimarães, Portugal, home of our textile mill, to find out what makes our flannel tick. Working with flannel-minded scientists and old-school Portuguese weavers (some with over 65 years of experience), we perfected a process to make our flannel resistant to pilling while keeping the softness and warmth our customers love. But it wasn’t easy.


Guimarães, Portugal

A quiet day in Guimarães, Portugal, home of our textile mill (photo: Fernando López via Flickr)

“The biggest, longest project we’ve ever undertaken.”

We could have ended it sooner, but we demanded perfection. We dyed and brushed and sheared. Each new version was better than the last, but “good enough” was never an option. Then finally, we had it: a flannel that just wouldn’t pill. We had to test every color and every pattern (there are 24, for those counting) to ensure the very best quality. Only then were we able to sit down, relax and enjoy a nice glass of Portugal’s famous sangria.



This is no ordinary flannel. This is L.L.Bean flannel. Made in Portugal exclusively for us, using a process that no other flannel maker can replicate. We’re proud to present our new and improved Ultrasoft Comfort Flannel Bedding. We enjoyed the journey. Now go enjoy the results.


Ultrasoft Comfort Flannel Sheets


Comments (15)

  1. cyndi albert | September 24, 2013 | 7:11 am

    LOVE flannel, not crazy about plaids, stripes and pine cones. Wish you had some floral selections in this bedding. Flannel doesn’t have to be all about cabins and lumberjacks!

  2. Judy Hohmann | September 24, 2013 | 7:37 am

    I wish you would sell the sheets and pillowcases separately. I never use the cases as they wreak havoc with hair.

  3. alvin | September 24, 2013 | 8:20 am

    i just got a set of pillow cases as an extra …. i have five sets of your old flannels which i love ……….. the new flannel fells cheap lighter weight and not cozy comfy …. hate them …exchanged for the old kind………….. alvin

  4. Wendy | September 24, 2013 | 9:15 am

    I have flannel sheets from LL Bean on every bed in our house in the winter. I had trouble with the pilling on the dark navy ones only. So I am game to try some more sheets!

  5. Ann Grange | September 24, 2013 | 11:26 am

    I have been using L.L.Bean flannel sheets for 10 years and have felt they are the most comfortable sheet I have ever used. Prior to using L.L.’s flannel sheets I had tried flannel sheets from other companies and never felt satisfied. The warm soft feeling of flannel was not present, and then I tried a set of L.L. Bean’s and a absolute warmth and cozy comfort enveloped my being. Sleep was blissful. My sister was envious of my L.L. Bean sheets and saved her money to buy a set.

    Upon reading of your “New Face of Flannel” I was “Wowed” and a bit dubious. Why? I wondered how anything could be better than the product you already sell. My next thought was: “I hope they didn’t ruin the material by making the flannel feel “fake.” Lastly, I can’t wait to try the new flannel sheets and I am in need of a new set for the upcoming winter.

  6. Dot | September 24, 2013 | 2:12 pm

    Shrinkage is a big, big, problem. Are these new sheets super sized and what is the per cent age of shrinking. Hopefully, they have been per-shrunk.

  7. Susan | September 24, 2013 | 4:15 pm

    The video makes me want to go to the mill to watch the weaving and finishing process.

    Handweaver from N. C.

  8. Jan S. | September 24, 2013 | 5:48 pm

    I love the L.L. Bean flannel sheets. I have been buying them for all our beds for at least 20 years. They don’t shrink at all, and the colors stay true for a very, very long time. I am eager to try the new no-pill sheets, even though I have not noticed much pilling in the past.

  9. Barb | September 24, 2013 | 6:36 pm

    I want the sheets sold in sets. I do not want to buy individually. However, sometimes I like to buy extra pillow cases, so that would be fine to sell those by the pair. I won’t even consider buying flannel sheets, unless they are in a set. Also need to be advised of the shrinkage possibilities.
    Thank you.

  10. LM | September 26, 2013 | 8:53 am

    Please off Queen size pillowcases. The Standard size are too short for Queen pillows.

  11. dorothy | September 26, 2013 | 4:49 pm

    i only use your flannel sheets. have for years. in both winter and summer. superior quality. deep pockets.
    i miss the rich colors you have done in the past. your current palette pales in comparison.

  12. Poppy | October 3, 2013 | 7:37 am

    I just want to follow your footsteps in Portugal, but the sheets look comfortable too!

  13. Lynne | October 18, 2013 | 8:46 pm

    I wish these sheets fit deeper mattresses…I have an 18-19 inch mattress, but all sets are for mattresses up to 15″ only.

  14. Priscilla | October 20, 2013 | 10:15 am

    Why isn’t the shrinkage issue addressed. I would also like to know about it.

    • Laurie | L.L.Bean | October 22, 2013 | 1:57 pm

      Hi Priscilla – Thank you for your comment. Please call our customer service number and one of our reps can research this for you. 800-441-5713. Thanks ^LB

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