Considering you spend about a third of your life in bed, it’s a wonder why more of us don’t make the investment for quality bedding. In a town where making a notable investment on things such as outdoor gear is common, here is a closer look at the value in a good night’s sleep. I’d like to first share my experiences with bedding, and what I’ve learned about my suppliers and the products we carry. Then, go to your linen closet (or duffle) and take a close look at what you wrap yourself in each night. Then, come down to the shop and browse what we have to offer!
- What should I get? (and how do I explain it to my honey?)
- What’s the best bang for my buck? (all my research in a nutshell)
- Where is it coming from? (yes, lots from Canada!)
If you have other questions, or a sleep issue that you’ve been hunting for an answer to, please feel welcome to leave a message through the contact form at the bottom of the page, and we’ll work on an answer to incorporate into our next version of this tour of bedding!
What should I get? (and how do I explain that to my honey?)
What should I get? (and how do I explain it to my honey?)
I sleep hot. Like a furnace.
Look for breath-ability in all layers; it only takes one layer to block air movement and make you sweat. Start with your mattress; avoid memory foam (it doesn’t breath well). Feather beds are an option for extra softness with breath-ability, and work best on a tight-top mattress. Protect your investment in a good mattress with a mattress protector; any stains void most warranties and sweat stains count. Cotton breathes well, cheap polyester can feel like a plastic bag. This applies to the next layer as well, sheets. Hot Tip: the better quality cotton/poly blends combine the breath-ability of cotton with the wrinkle-free, easy care nature of polyester.
I sleep cold. I’d like a hot brick in my bed each night.
Get a good duvet and avoid cotton next to the skin. Crisp cotton is nice and cool in the summer, but can feel like ice when you first crawl in on a cold night. Fleece and flannel feel much warmer to the skin, even in a cold bed. Bamboo is a good middle ground, and silky smooth to boot!
I sleep cold and my honey sleeps hot, what do we do?
A good set of flannel or fleece sheets will breathe enough for your “furnace” while making the bed feel warm as soon as you crawl in. By good, I mean good. Good flannel has been hard to find for years (supply issue), but we’ve had tremendous success with our fleece-like Drap Sante Sweet Sleep sheets from Quebec. No pilling, no catching, no sweating. Trust me. Ask Glen.
We spend a lot of time in bed; there’s a TV in there and it’s private. We sometimes spill water/wine/coffee and occasionally have the baby hang out in the morning.
Look for easy washability, as well as protection for your mattress/ featherbed. Polyester or down duvets will work well for you. Hot Tip: avoid silk and wool if you expect to want to wash it often. Use down only if you expect to only wash the cover regularily; down is happier only being washed once a year at most, ideally only every 2 years. Consider a waterproof (but breathable; not plastic-y) mattress protector. (Any stains will void the warranty on your mattress) Seeing as a lot of time is spent in the bedroom, consider a sharp looking bedding set; there’s something to be said for a comforting, inspiring environment for a room we spend so much time in.
What's the best bang for my buck? (all my research in a nutshell)
I like to research. I learned the tricks back in university, and I have a head for facts, if not for names. I have a computer system to help me with the names, so I can focus on choosing the best products. I’m always happy to chat in the store about what I’ve learned, but I want to share more of it on the website so you can peruse and learn from the comfort of your couch 🙂 (my favourite place for research).
When it comes to bedding, I really feel that we deserve to invest in our own sleep. The bedroom becomes especially worthy of updating if you have a larger bedroom with a TV and spend a lot of time there. The bedroom is a place to relax, to have privacy and quiet from the rest of the world, or to laugh with family and cuddle over movies. If you have always bought bargain basement bedding, consider the first time you bought a quality pair of shoes, a higher end/newer car, got the real ice cream. Soft, fuzzy or crisp, good bedding means a comfortable sleep and cheerier morning and more energy to get you through your day. Trust me now, thank us later :).
As for value, that’s different for everyone. I summed up a few suggestions earlier based on common situations, but below is all the info that goes into that recommendation. I’ll try and keep it to the point and explain a lot of the terms you’ll see in reference to bedding.
Thread count (TC)
So many ads focus on thread count, but there’s so much more to the quality of a fabric than a number. The higher the number, the denser the fabric. The lower the number, the more air can pass. It’s more of a preference thing once you’re up above 200TC.
Not all cotton is equal. There are so many options out there, it’s hard to figure out, but that’s my job! Consider the different fabrics like flavours of D Dutchmen ice cream; they’re all great, but different. So, here we go with an intro to all the lines of sheets that are a part of the sale:
- “Jubilee” (Combed Cotton, 300TC) – Combing removes impurities that cause pilling (the little balls that rub). These sheets have great breathability, and are great for tighter budgets or guest rooms. Queen sheet set: $99.99 regular retail.
- “Classique” (Cotton/Poly Blend, 200TC) – The breathability of cotton with the washability and wrinkle-free nature of poly. Queen sheet set: $79.99 regular retail.
- Bamboo Sateen (330TC) – relatively new to the mainstream bedding scene, but gaining in popularity quickly. Antimicrobial, very breathable, silky smooth without catching on rough skin, and washes well. Queen sheet set: $129.99 regular retail.
- “Versaille” (Egyptian Combed Cotton, 300TC) – A step or two up from the Home Essentials line, these are fabulous quality for the master suite. Queen sheet set: $119.99 regular retail.
- “Percale Deluxe” (Israeli Cotton, Sewn in Canada, 200TC) – Don’t be fooled by the lower thread count; these are the best sheets we carry. Israeli woven (outside of occupied territory in an older textile mill), mature cotton that will wear long enough to pass on to the kids. The percale weave makes for a very strong fabric that has a crisp feel. Queen sheet set: $219.99 regular retail.
Sheets put up with a lot of wear and tear, especially if you sleep in pajamas and tend to roll around. Always wash sheets with only bedding; zippers and clasps can snag and pull on the fabrics. Don’t use harsh chemicals or bleach; if you’re having trouble with staining, come in and try our locally made laundry soaps. They’ll get out the marks without weakening the fabrics. Residues will make your sheets stiff; a 1/4 cup of vinegar in the rinse water will help get them clean and fresh.
I’ll be quick about it; the measurements are below. Twin XL is uncommon, and Double XL is rare. I can get any custom size made, that’s the advantage of working with a Canadian manufacturer! We’re always happy to chat about your specific needs and can usually get what you’re looking for within 4-6 weeks.
Your comforter. Blanky. Depending on your childhood, you may prefer a heavier or lighter weight tucking you in. All our duvets are baffle box construction so that the fill stays put. Duvets are designed to fit to the size of the bed, so many of our customers will purchase a larger size than they need (this is why we don’t stock double duvets anymore; you’ll likely be happier with a queen!)
Laundry Tip: When washing a baffle box duvet, use only a front load washer (the agitator arm may damage the duvet). When the wash cycle is finished, reach both arms into the washer and “hug” the duvet out. Put it directly into the dryer without shaking it out. If you must untangle it, be careful; the wet fill is heavy and can tear through the baffle box stitching if you shake it too hard.
Nothing has the feel of goose down feathers. Of course, nothing drives like a Jaguar. But we can’t all afford Jaguars. Fortunately, there are some great alternatives!
- Polyester is more suitable if you expect to wash it often. Down is washable, but shouldn’t be washed more than once a year.
- Silkenized polyester is a long strand fibre that doesn’t clump after many washes. It feels smooth in a duvet or pillow and is a great down alternative.
- Down is nature’s own best insulating material. It consists of light fluffy clusters from the underplumage of waterfowl. The filaments of each cluster contain tiny air pockets of warm still air which expand as the body generates heat. Down also has the wonderful ability to breathe thereby forming a blanket of warmth and comfort while lifting away perspiration. You feel none of the clamminess that often occurs with synthetics. An ounce of down will keep you warmer than any synthetic fiber and is a natural choice for luxurious comfort. Our duvets are filled with quality duck down; a much more affordable alternative to goose and still amazing. Goose down duvets are available for special order.
- Worth noting: all our duvets are treated with hypo-allergenic, anti-microbial treatments to keep your duvet feeling fresh year after year.
Fill Weight and Loft
Loft, or fill power, refers to how much space is occupied by an ounce of fill. This is a great reflection of how much air is in the down and is the standard measure of quality. The image on the right shows how different fills stand up; the far left is Canadian Hutterite White Goose Down (600-800 loft), the far right is a synthetic.
Our beds are the largest single item in our bedroom. Our duvet is the largest single piece of fabric most of us own. Having a good looking duvet cover can transform a space very quickly while protecting your investment in a duvet.
Down duvets shouldn’t be washed more than once a year, and silk duvets do best when aired out seasonally. Having a durable, quality cover that you can wash whenever the need arises can protect and extend the life of your duvet. All our covers have ties in the corner to keep your duvet where it’s supposed to be.
We want you to LOVE your bed. We have styles from simple to elaborate, floral to plaid to geometric. We’ve brought in a huge range of stock for you to choose from in Twin, Queen and King sizes! Selection will be best at the beginning of the sale, but we are happy to order your style on a rain check if necessary.
Where is it coming from? (yes, lots from Canada!
Remember, I’m working hard to handle the research on your behalf. So many of you have said you want to support local manufacturing, so I’ve been looking for it. Our bedding lines are mixed, so here’s the run down:
- Highland Feather Canadian manufacturer and distributor of bedding. Most of their stock is sewn overseas and monitored closely for quality, and their down is filled in Canada. Member of the Down Association of Canada.
- RJS Trading Vancouver based company that deals with beautiful embroidery and well sewn duvet covers, bamboo towels and more. Vivid colours.
- Cuddle Down is a fully Canadian manufacturer with all their products being cut and sewn in Ottawa. They import their fabrics from Israel, Italy and other European countries to ensure the finest quality. Since products are made in Canada, custom orders are fully possible. The Brome line of down duvets and pillows features a 600 loft Canadian duck down from Brome Lake, Quebec.
Phew. If you’re still with me, I hope this has got you inspired to take a fresh look at your bedding. Here’s to leaving the bedroom door open when guests come over!
If you have questions, or a sleep issue that you’ve been hunting for an answer to, please feel welcome to leave a message through the contact form below, and we’ll work on an answer to incorporate into our next version of this tour of bedding!