What is thread-count and is it important? Is Egyptian cotton really the best there is? So many questions, it’s no wonder you’re not getting enough rest. Debbie Hall of The Hall Collection cuts through the terminology so that you can have your best night’s sleep yet.
How to dress your bed
- Choose a mattress protector made from natural fibres, which make it easier for the body to maintain a healthy temperature and also prevent static electricity around the body.
- Add a bottom sheet, which can be either fitted or flat, followed by a top sheet if you like one. Some people prefer only a bottom sheet and then a duvet. (See How to Choose the Perfect Sheets.)
- Duvets are a popular covering choice but partners’ different temperature requirements can make it difficult to choose the right one. Using two single duvets or one with different tog (thermal) ratings on each side are ways to get around this. Filling choices include goose down, silk, wool, cotton or synthetic.
Add colour and texture
- A coverlet is a thin, decorative bed cover that does not hang to the floor or cover the pillows, while a bedspread does both of these. Use either to create a polished look.
- A throw is normally smaller than a blanket and is used as a decorative accent or to add extra warmth.
- A comforter is a bed cover stuffed with fibre and sewn together on all four sides. The fabric is decorative, which adds colour and texture.
- A continental pillow is a large square pillow usually used for back support when reading or watching TV. The most practical size is 65cm x 65cm.
- A sleeping pillow is a medium rectangular pillow that’s either standard size (XXcm x XXcm) or king size (50cm x 90cm). The thickness of your pillow is determined by how you sleep. If you sleep on your stomach or back, you need a very thick pillow. If you sleep on your side, you need a firm pillow to support your neck. These pillows absorb moisture at night so it’s important to air them during the day.
- A decorative pillow can be any size but we recommend 65cm x 65cm, or 45cm x 65cm.
- A bolster is a decorative tubular pillow that can range in size from small to the width of a bed.
- A bed skirt is a decorative piece of bedding that covers a mattress base. It can match the bedding, the headboard or another aspect of the room.
How to choose the perfect sheets
1. Thread count Egyptian cotton may make the best sheets but there are different grades and this is never made clear on the label. Thread count measures the number of threads per square inch. It is the simplest weave there is and fabric woven with a less than 200 thread-count starts becoming a muslin cloth. But a higher thread count does not always mean better quality – that is determined by the quality of the thread used to weave the fabric and the expertise of the weaver.
2. The touch test You basically have three choices: cotton percale, cotton sateen or jacquard weaves, and then linen (woven from flax). Sateen weaves will drape against the body while percale will lie on top of the body. There is no right or wrong, so choose what feels good to you.
3. The weight of the sheets Different fabrics have different weights. Choose the weight that you like.
4. Creasing All natural fabrics crease. Linen creases the most, then cotton percale. Cotton sateen creases the least.
5. Choose the colour that makes you look and feel beautiful Most people choose a colour of sheets to match their rooms. The Italians suggest that you choose the colour in which you feel most beautiful and that suits your personality and mood. Think about the colour you want to see first thing in the morning – maybe bright white is not ideal.
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