A good night’s sleep.
It sounds so simple. But it’s something that eludes many of us, especially as we age. And believe it or not, your pillow has a lot to do with it!
Unfortunately, not many people can say “I love my pillow,” but those who’ve discovered natural buckwheat pillows tell a different story.
And, thanks to a home ec teacher-turned-seamstress, these sought-after pillows have now come to Lehman’s – and perhaps to your own bed!
“Most people just love these pillows, and would not go back to anything else,” said Mary Jane Weise (aforementioned teacher-turned-seamstress). She discovered buckwheat pillows back in 2005, when a friend and fellow sewing enthusiast shared a buckwheat pillow with her and told Mary Jane of her success selling the pillows at craft shows.
“Sewing has always been something I’ve enjoyed; my mother taught me to sew,” Mary Jane said.
She began making her own buckwheat pillows and taking them to local craft shows, and was surprised at their popularity. With the help of her husband Allan, Mary Jane began providing pillows to area doctor’s offices – chiropractors in particular highly recommend them to their patients.
Today, the couple runs a thriving small business from their home in Ohio, working with a small sewing company near Cleveland to help fulfill large orders. Mary Jane makes many of the pillows herself, and handles quality control on every single pillow, Allan said. “And my wife’s standards are pretty high,” he chuckled. Allan manages the finances and helps with ordering materials.
A big selling point of their pillows is that 100% of the materials, including the buckwheat hulls, are American-made and grown, the Weises said.
So what’s the benefit of a buckwheat pillow? Well, there are several!
Superior Support: Hypo-allergenic buckwheat hulls naturally shape to the contours of your head and neck for less muscle tension, restlessness and soreness upon waking. The pyramid-shaped hulls interlock and cause the pillow to hold its desired shape, unlike synthetic fillings, which push back against your head. And, Mary Jane’s pillows are smaller than standard pillows: they’re sized “to fit your head, not to fit the bed,” she said. Makes sense, right?
Fullness You Can Customize: Each pillow has an invisible zipper that allows you to adjust the fullness of your pillow. Add or take out hulls to achieve your own personal comfort level and ensure optimum spinal alignment while you sleep.
Keeps You Cooler At Night: Due to the circulation of air between the hulls, buckwheat pillows have minimal heat build-up. This equals better rest – no more pillow flipping needed!
User-Friendly: With a gentle scrunch or punch, distribute support where you need it. Remove the hulls and wash your pillow cover as needed (each pillow comes with a fitted, soft, 100% cotton case). The smaller size allows you to tuck your pillow into your luggage and never miss even one night of good sleep.
Age-Old Sleep Secret: In Asia, buckwheat hulls have been the pillow filling of choice for centuries. We’re just starting to catch on in the USA.
Easy on Tender Ears: Besides a love of sewing, Mary Jane inherited something else from her mother: tender ears. Sleeping on her side can cause painful pressure to build up inside her ears. This results in a less-then-restful night, to say the least. So, Mary Jane developed the “Solution Pillow,” which has an “ear well” indentation in it for your ear to rest in. No more pressure or pain!
Many people still don’t know about buckwheat pillows, Mary Jane said, but positive word of mouth testimonials definitely drive their business.
“The most satisfying part (of making the pillows) is knowing that some people are being helped,” said Mary Jane. Many people who have chronic neck problems, including prior neck injuries, find much comfort in the pillows’ gentler, more natural support.
One woman said “she had not used a pillow for 20 years, because she could never find one she liked,” Mary Jane said. “Now she uses a buckwheat pillow and has her whole family using them.”