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Mattress makers in Toronto

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12 Mar 2013 16:57 - 30 Jul 2015 15:21 #1 by crank
Hi,

First off, thanks for this website. It has been a great resource and has demystified the bizarre and complicated world of mattresses.
I'm shopping for a new mattress and thought I would share where I am and hopefully get some feedback.

Queen size. Back sleepers for the most part. 6', 180 lbs / 5'7", 125 lbs. Like to keep it as natural as possible and under $1000. Also like to keep the mattress under 12". I've narrowed it down to (generally) a 3" talaly latex comfort layer over 7-8" HD foam. Wool quilting and cotton ticking.

Was looking at a Serta Perfect Sleeper Tempo Latex Firm (2" talaly over 8" HD soy biofoam) at nineclouds on sale for $1199, the same (I think) at mattressonline.ca for $799 and then found this website... and decided that the best route would be to contact some local manufacturers.

I've called Dreamstar Bedding, Ideal Mattress Ltd, Sleepworks, Springmade, Dreamtime and New Dawn (Fabric Fabric).

Dreamstar - their Natural Escape Firm is 4" of natural talaly over 8" of HD soy foam with a density of 2.4 (diff specs from their website). Organic cotton ticking and wool holofil quilting. Seems like they will sell from the factory direct but wouldn't give a price over the phone. Person I talked to generally seemed knowledgable.

Ideal - they will build the bed from components in their showroom. Christina (sp?) seems very knowledgable. They use Qualux foam for the support layer. Wool quilting, cotton zip cover. But are expensive, quoting $1700 for 2-3" of talaly over 7" of Qualux plus $50 for delivery.

Sleepworks - spoke with Mario, who was knowledgable and no-nonsense. Also recommends Qualux for support with 2-3" of talaly comfort. Said all foam is made with soy now as per Canadian regulations. And that Qualux is "70% similar to latex". Can do wool quilting and cotton ticking. Quoted a very reasonable $800 incl tax and delivery.

Springmade - not sure who I spoke to, but he seemed knowledgable, no-nonsense and opinionated. Doesn't believe in zones. Doesn't use wool. Likes bamboo quilting and cover. Doesn't like zips as it's harder to fit in the mattress. Recommended 6" 40ILD support foam and 6" talaly. Quoted $950.

Dreamtime - Talked to Chris. Recommended 8" of 2.8 density Blue Biofoam with 3" talaly. Wool and cotton cover. Quoted $850 + tax + $50 delivery.

New Dawn (Fabric Fabric) - Didn't seem as knowledgable. 2" talaly over foam - didn't know what kind. Wool and cotton cover. Quoted $1000 incl tax and delivery.

My instinct, based on the calls, is to visit Dreamstar, Ideal and Sleepworks.

So my questions are:
- Any thoughts on Qualux? I'm assuming that I can't afford a latex support layer (Mario told me that latex was 8-10X the cost).
- Any experiences with any of the above vendors?
- Any other vendors I should check out?
- For now, the mattress will go on the floor (low pile carpet) until we find a platform bed we like. Should we be considering a foundation for the interim (not currently wanting to spend for something that ultimately we won't use).
- And anything else I should be thinking about?

Appreciate any thoughts or feedback and will report back on my progress.

Cheers
Last edit: 30 Jul 2015 15:21 by Phoenix. Reason: edit for search terms

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12 Mar 2013 21:59 - 12 Mar 2013 22:00 #2 by Phoenix
Replied by Phoenix on topic Mattress makers in Toronto
Hi crank,

First of all I have to say I'm very impressed with the Toronto research you have done and I think the biggest issue you will face is deciding between so many good choices rather than trying to decide between 'best and worst". When you are down to these types of choices ... then all the objective, subjective, and intangible differences that are the most important parts of your personal value equation is the only way to make final decisions but you are in a very enviable position that it would be difficult to make a "mistake" in terms of quality and value and that the only thing that you need to find out for certain is how the mattresses compare in terms of PPP (Pressure relief, Posture and alignment, and Personal preferences) with some good objective testing.

- Any experiences with any of the above vendors?


I think your experience with the manufacturers you've talked with reflects my own more limited experience with them on the phone and on their sites in terms of their knowledge and pricing as well as some of the forum feedback. This thread started by Hobotrader also has more feedback about some of the manufacturers there which also reflects your own experiences for the most part. Forum searches on each one will likely bring up more feedback yet about some of them (use the forum search tab rather than the site search) but overall you really do have some very good quality choices and some great value available.

- Any thoughts on Qualux? I'm assuming that I can't afford a latex support layer (Mario told me that latex was 8-10X the cost).


I think 8 - 10 times is a real exaggeration but Qualux is a high quality "family" of polyfoams made by Carpenter with latex like characteristics (see post #2 here ) but there is also a wide range of quality/density available in the "family" so finding out the density that is in a mattress you are considering would be important to make meaningful comparisons.

- Any other vendors I should check out?


The Toronto list is in post #1 here but I think you have already uncovered most of the best "value" and you already have so many great choices that at best I would call the ones you haven't out of curiosity rather than necessity. Of course from a more selfish point of view it would always be great to have more feedback on the forum about the ones you haven't talked with as well :)

- For now, the mattress will go on the floor (low pile carpet) until we find a platform bed we like. Should we be considering a foundation for the interim (not currently wanting to spend for something that ultimately we won't use).


In the short term I think this would be fine with perhaps a blanket under it for protection. While I would be hesitant to do this in the longer term because of the lack of ventilation and the risk of higher humidity and the mold, mildew, and dust mite issues that can go along with this ... I personally wouldn't have any problems with it for a few weeks although I would probably keep an eye on things and lift the mattress from time to time to check for any problems or dampness.

- And anything else I should be thinking about?


There's not much that you haven't covered besides of course personal testing and making sure you know the density of any polyfoam base layers. I would also make sure that you include the type of cover and quilting in the mattress when you are making comparisons because this can also be a significant part of its cost (cotton or bamboo with wool quilting for example can be more costly than just a stretch knit cover without quilting).

Other than that you are definitely on the way to a high quality/value mattress it seems to me and I just wish everyone had the same amount of good choices that you do. I also think your experiences will also prove to be very valuable for others in Toronto as well.

Thanks for all the great feedback :)

Phoenix

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Last edit: 12 Mar 2013 22:00 by Phoenix.

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20 Mar 2013 00:43 - 30 Jul 2015 15:22 #3 by crank
Replied by crank on topic Mattress makers in Toronto
An update on shopping for a mattress in Toronto.

My partner-in-sleep and I visited Sleepworks, Dreamstar and Ideal Mattress Ltd.

On Saturday, we went to Sleepworks first, as Mario, who I spoke to earlier in the week, was only there in the morning. He was as he sounded on the phone... knowledgeable with lots of experience and opinions. Although he didn't have any mattresses exactly like we were looking for on the floor, after trying out a few and talking quite a bit, we decided that 5" of soft Qualux and 3" of latex would work for us. The latex, however, was dunlop and we were hoping for talalay. After some discussion, we agreed on the price that I was given previously over the phone. We were told that latex prices were going up on the Monday and that we should confirm our order before then. Since this was our first store visit, we said we'd call back after we shopped more.

The next store we went to was Dreamstar. We tried their Natural Escape Firm, which we found a bit soft, and then talked with Ali about having a mattress made. We discussed 6" of HD soy foam topped by 4" of talalay latex. Not sure what the HD foam was, but it was not Qualux. Price was $1600 with wool quilting and cotton cover, delivered.

That afternoon, we called back Sleepworks and asked them for a price for talalay instead of dunlop. We were told they'd check and get back to us.

The next day we went to Ideal Mattress. They have a nice set-up where you can see what the mattress components are and try out different combinations to find the one that works best for you. After trying the beds on the floor, we soon settled on a mattress that was 8" Qualux topped by 3" of medium firm latex and 1" of softer latex. That 1" of softer latex really seemed to make the difference for us.

Unfortunately, neither Stan nor Christina were in that day and the salesperson didn't seem as knowledgeable about the materials (talalay or dunlop, etc.). But the real disappointment came when we talked price. We were told $2700 for that mattress, lowered to the "special price" of $2500. That compares to $1700 quoted for 7" of Qualux and 3" of talalay latex that Christina had quoted me over the phone earlier in the week. A bit of a difference and it left a bad taste in our mouths.

The one good thing to come from that experience was the idea that an extra 1" of soft latex would likely suit us.

We didn't hear back from Sleepworks about the price to upgrade to talalay on Sunday or Monday. When I talked to Laura at Sleepworks on Tuesday (today), I mentioned that we may want an extra inch of latex and that ideally, we would try out the assembly with and without it to see if it suited us with the other components. She said that Mario had yet to get a price and that she'd call me back.

When we connected again later she said that the prices had gone up 15% and that it, combined with the upgrade to talalay (I'm assuming), would add another $200 (25%) to the order.

But more importantly, that they didn't offer the service I asked for of trying the mattress with and without the extra inch of latex. I asked her about this and she gave the following reasons:
- Someone would have to be there when we tried the assembly out.
- If we didn't want the extra inch that they would be stuck with the latex.
- If they make the mattress, we might change our mind about the extra latex afterwards.
- Gluing the foam would change the feel of the mattress so trying it wouldn't be the same as the end product.

I told her that I understood that the assembly might not feel exactly like the finished mattress, but that I was sure that it would be close enough. I also reassured her that if we didn't want the extra inch of latex for the mattress, then perhaps they could make a mattress topper from it for another mattress we have. Either way, we would pay for the latex. And if they wanted, I was happy to pay a deposit or pay up front. She seemed adamant though, that they wouldn't or couldn't offer us the service of trying the mattress with and without the latex and in the end, basically said that they couldn't help us.

It was a bit of a shock and a disappointment. Sleepworks is the type of business that we like to support. Local, family owned and run. Knowledgeable and caring. But I guess part of the privilege of having your own business is setting your own rules and turning away business for whatever reason.

After all that, I called back Springmade. This time, I got a different fellow who didn't seem as knowledgeable as the last guy I talked to. He wasn't sure about kinds of latex (didn't know what talalay was) and had never heard of Qualux (though they do buy foam from Carpenter). But he said that he'd call up his suppliers and ask about those materials and call me back.

So that's my report so far. Not exactly what I expected. But then, what ever is.
Last edit: 30 Jul 2015 15:22 by Phoenix. Reason: edit for search terms

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20 Mar 2013 04:11 - 20 Mar 2013 04:13 #4 by Phoenix
Replied by Phoenix on topic Mattress makers in Toronto
Hi crank,

Thanks for the detailed feedback on your Toronto experiences so far.

I've often mentioned that Toronto was a "difficult" market and in spite of there being some very good quality and value mattresses there ... there is also some confusion and mixed information, expertise, and little consistency.

I'm particularly disappointed with the prices you were quoted at Ideal. When I've talked with them about the discrepancy between the prices they have mentioned to me and the prices that some of the members here reported on the forum they seemed to think they was some mistake but even though I don't know all the details of the mattress you were looking at ... it certainly seems to me to be quite high compared to most of the other options that are widely available in the area. I'll have to talk with them again to see if I can find the reason for the pricing discrepancies.

When we connected again later she said that the prices had gone up 15% and that it, combined with the upgrade to talalay (I'm assuming), would add another $200 (25%) to the order.


Given the change to Talalay and the extra inch along with the increase that still doesn't seem bad at all to me on top of the initial price Sleepworks quoted you which was low. I'm surprised though that they didn't want to make the mattress or order the latex if you offered to pay for it all in advance. All I can think is that perhaps they've had some bad experiences with this type of arrangement but of course I don't know what is behind their decision.

The person I talked with at Springmade was also not the most knowledgeable about the different types of foam and was more experience oriented than "spec" oriented in assessing what was good quality or not

I'm curious though as well ... is there a reason you are looking past Dreamtime who seemed to have some very good value.

Toronto is still a bit of a puzzle to me but gradually ... and with the help of forum members, feedback like yours, and more research until consistent patterns become evident ... a clearer picture will emerge.

Thanks again for all your feedback so far ... its been very helpful

Phoenix

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Last edit: 20 Mar 2013 04:13 by Phoenix.

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20 Mar 2013 10:10 #5 by crank
Replied by crank on topic Mattress makers in Toronto
Hi Phoenix,

I agree that the $200 increase from Sleepworks was reasonable given the low price. I was somewhat disappointed that more effort wasn't made to get me the information I asked for before the price increase, but perhaps that wasn't possible.

Funny you mention Dreamtime... I think that initially, I chose Sleepworks over Dreamtime because I liked the way Mario sounded over the phone and I became "sold" on Qualux as the base layer. Given what has happened though, I had planned on calling Chris again and getting a price with my new specs.

In terms of that, a couple questions for you. Am I putting too much on getting Qualux instead of the "Blue biofoam" that Chris had mentioned? Also, we would prefer a lower profile, lighter mattress so would like to minimize the thickness of the base layer. Mario and Laura at Sleepworks thought that 5" would be about right. Do you have any thoughts on that?

Finally, I did ask Mario about foundations and his opinion was that a solid (not slatted) base was preferable for foam mattresses. And when I did a quick check at Ideal, their bed bases seemed to be solid. Mario didn't think that ventilation was an issue and that a solid base ensured that the foam didn't deform on the bottom of the mattress.

More to come.

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20 Mar 2013 20:14 - 20 Mar 2013 20:16 #6 by Phoenix
Replied by Phoenix on topic Mattress makers in Toronto
Hi crank,

In terms of that, a couple questions for you. Am I putting too much on getting Qualux instead of the "Blue biofoam" that Chris had mentioned? Also, we would prefer a lower profile, lighter mattress so would like to minimize the thickness of the base layer. Mario and Laura at Sleepworks thought that 5" would be about right. Do you have any thoughts on that?


I would put more emphasis on the quality and density of the foam than on the brand name. Qualux is a family of foams and there are better and worse versions of it depending on the density ... just like all polyfoam ... but there are also many other high quality polyfoams that are made by other manufacturers.

The height and the firmness, specs, and the characteristics of the base foam all work together along with the type and thickness of the comfort layers so height by itself is not really the main factor that determines the suitability of a mattress for you. Lower quality foams may need more height while higher quality foams may be fine with less height because of differences in their firmness, how they compress (their compression modulus) and how they respond to pressure.

A 5" base foam would be fine if it's the right one in combination with the comfort layers for your needs and preferences. All other things being equal though ... thicker base layers will have a greater "range" of compression which can be helpful with higher weights (see post #14 here for more about layer and mattress thickness). HR foams also have a higher range of compression than HD foams. What one foam is able to do with 7" may be possible with only 5" of another type of foam with higher quality or better specs.

Finally, I did ask Mario about foundations and his opinion was that a solid (not slatted) base was preferable for foam mattresses. And when I did a quick check at Ideal, their bed bases seemed to be solid. Mario didn't think that ventilation was an issue and that a solid base ensured that the foam didn't deform on the bottom of the mattress.


There are many people who share their opinions and this is one of the issues where it's more about "risk tolerance" than it is about right or wrong. I personally prefer slatted bases perhaps because of an overabundance of caution and perhaps because I am less "risk tolerant" or the benefits of ventilation are more important to me. If the slats are close enough together and the mattress is evenly supported, then the support they provide is fine and there is little to no risk of sagging. There are certainly advantages over a breathable base that a solid base doesn't have. You can read more about this in post #10 here . Interestingly enough ... I personally sleep on an adjustable bed which has a solid surface because the tradeoff was a "compelling reason" and was worth it to me.

Phoenix

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Last edit: 20 Mar 2013 20:16 by Phoenix.

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28 Mar 2013 19:20 #7 by crank
Replied by crank on topic Mattress makers in Toronto
Hi Phoenix,

After not hearing back from the two companies that were investigating latex for me and doing more calling and encountering all sorts of contradictory information, I've decided to pursue a new course and construct my own mattress.

However, it has proven difficult to find distributors of talalay latex near Toronto. I emailed Latex International about distributors but they have not replied. Foamite in Toronto seems reputable but is expensive. Foamco seems a bit dubious at less than half the price. There's a company called Foam Factory based in Clinton, MI, with a Canadian operation ( canada.foambymail.com/ ) with prices that seem reasonable. However I have noted some customer complaints (mostly product issues) in addition to customer approvals.

So once again, I find myself asking your advice... do you know of any reputable Talalay latex distributors in the Toronto area? And do you have any knowledge of Foam Factory?

Cheers

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28 Mar 2013 22:27 - 28 Mar 2013 22:30 #8 by Phoenix
Replied by Phoenix on topic Mattress makers in Toronto
Hi crank,

Foamco seems a bit dubious at less than half the price.


I don't know their prices but in several conversations with Arun there I was impressed with his openness and transparency and had the clear impression that they are knowledgeable and doing things right. Of course I haven't been there in person so you may be picking up something that isn't obvious on a phone call.

There's a company called Foam Factory based in Clinton, MI, with a Canadian operation ( canada.foambymail.com/ ) with prices that seem reasonable


You can read my thoughts about them in post #2 here and post #2 here . They don't sell Talalay ... they only say they do.

The only Toronto sources I know of are on the Toronto list. Other than that ... local foam shops may also carry Talalay latex and post #21 here may also be helpful.

Phoenix

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Last edit: 28 Mar 2013 22:30 by Phoenix.

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13 Mar 2019 21:23 #9 by diamondshopper
Hi Crank and Phoenix!

@crank Im am in almost the exact same position as you, trying to make a bed in Toronto as I have found it very difficult to buy a custom one. Just wanted to ask where if you ended up finding your foam from. I am also looking for a piece of Q41 qualux foam 7-8" as I found it makes a great support layer (stiffer than latex for me).

I had a very similar experience with Ideal mattress, which was unfortunate as they have a good product. Was quoted $20-2100 for 8" polyfoam, 3" zoned latex + 1" latex + 1" latex, on a second visit was quoted almost $3000 for the same mattress. Didnt want to stir the pot so I let it go.

Would love to get some info if you wouldnt mind sharing what you ended up doing.

Phoenix: would also love some input on the value equation for the specs I listed, I think $3000 is out for a walk but just wanted to double check. Any ideal what a 2.8lb Q41 8" layer typically sells for?

Also from building a bed a few years ago (all latex) I still have yet to find any incredible mattress covers available as DIY, the covers at Ideal I was pretty happy with. Really wish the would shoot straight on pricing.

Thanks again Phoenix for keeping this thread, I have bought 1 and made 1 mattress, successfully with the great info here (unfortunatley having to source all the parts from USA)

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16 Mar 2019 12:14 #10 by Phoenix
Replied by Phoenix on topic Mattress makers in Toronto
Hi diamondshopper,

Thank you for the post and for your update. I am happy that the information on our site was assistive to your successful DIY and additional mattress purchase. Just for your information, the @Crank posted in 2013, so I am not sure you can expect a response, many consumers find the information they need and move on with their purchase decision.

In early 2018 we decided to discontinue the provision of listings of potential retailers in various geographic regions (unless they are already approved site members), because of the difficulty in maintaining such lists in a retail landscape that is constantly changing, and most importantly the confusion it was created with the consumer members who incorrectly assumed that these businesses had indeed gone through the strict qualification process and were approved as members of The Mattress Underground. Such an assumption is unfair to both the consumers seeking assistance, as well as the very businesses and manufacturers who meet the criteria to become Trusted Members of The Mattress Underground.

Regarding the pricing of a retail bed, it’s difficult to comment on a specific bed, especially when we do not have complete specifications. As you compare beds from people that are transparent about the materials, you will be able to see the value equation. I'd also keep in mind that retail prices in Canada, and sometimes in bigger cities, and different promotional periods can influence retail prices. Generally speaking a 13” mattress with a 2.8lb Qualux foam from Carpenter, with 5” of latex can get quite expensive.

I understand your points about the DIY covers and having less choice in Canada. You most likely are familiar with this this post . While not inclusive, there are some component supplier options listed here , with a few Canadian sources here . You can reach out to MFC , who have great experience in this area and are trusted members of our site with 30 years of experience in foam and latex foam. Dormio as well ... is a trusted member (and geographically closer to your location) that you may wish to consult, both are expert members on the site and would be happy to assist you in any way.

Thank you for the kind words about TMU, it is always nice to hear :)
I look forward to your further updates and findings when you have a chance.

Phoenix

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