Thursday, January 20, 2011

Winter Whites

Yippee! It's clean-slate time!
A new year begins with white sale month and
 a desire for starting fresh, tossing out the old, gray, and frayed
and bringing on the snowy white, pure, and clean...
I'm a sucker for it every year.

I've torn apart my linen closets
 and indulged in a sensuous tumble of textures...
 new towels, sheets, duvets, duvet covers, and rugs.
While I'm reorganizing, redesigning, and recycling,
Mr. Softie's in the garage sorting through his tools.
It's a good thing--Martha would be proud.

We've explored sleeping in beds with European duvets for years...
and like it better than blankets and quilts.

While in Bergen, Norway,
we slept on a bed fitted with TWO duvets, one for each sleeper.
 It was the most divine rest I've ever had...
my sleeping partner couldn't steal the covers.
I planned to try it at home.

So here I go--tossing out the old king-size duvet
and going for a couple twin-size duvets and covers.

Choosing a duvet
The ideal duvet, a down- or feather-filled comforter, measures at least 18 inches wider than the bed and provides lightweight, self-adjusting warmth. When buying a duvet, note the fill power (number of cubic inches an ounce of down occupies). The higher the fill power (300 to 700) the more ability the comforter has to trap air and provide greater warmth. Also, note the quality of the fill.The best natural filling is white goose or duck down. A label reading "down and feather" indicates a lesser filling--feathers mixed with a larger amount of down. A "feathers and down" label means more feathers than down.

Thread count of the cover fabric determines how well the fill is contained. A higher thread count and tight stitching keeps the cover from leaking feathers or down. Choose from tight or loose cover construction. Baffle covers contain the fill in tightly walled squares, keeping the loft high and balanced. Channel construction or ring stitching allows you to shift the duvet contents and vary the concentration of warmth. While not as warm or natural, non-allergenic down alternatives are available. Synthetic, wool and cotton downs weigh more, but have the advantage of washability.
 Silk-filled comforters are more expensive, warm and lightweight.

I love the simplicity of making the bed with a duvet.
A duvet can be used without a cover, but a cover protects it from body oils.
 Usually made from sheetlike fabric, the duvet cover is washable
and replaces the top sheet and bedspread. The mattress pad is covered with a fitted sheet.
To re-make the bed, I just plump up the pillows,
 fluff the duvet in the air and lay it loosely over the bed.
Now I'll fold each twin duvet and lay it across the bed as the Norwegians in Bergen do.

what's your sleep or bedmaking style?
I'd really love to know!



Isn't January a wonderful month. Two months ago we moved across the States and into an apartment in Chicago. It is such a treat that we actually have a linen closet. I have been saving it for my last task - organizing and prettifying it. But after reading your post today . . . I want to finish it NOW.

We sleep with a queen duvet, but I still use sheets. Not sure why.


Linda@ Lime in the Coconut said...

Two on a king....I think I like that. But how are they on the bed when not in use? folded?

S. Etole said...

All the different shades of white in that top photo ... they just say peace and comfort.

rosaria said...

Love, love duvets, and never thought of two on the same bed, one per person. Clever!

I don't make my beds in the morning. I roll off the top layers to expose the bottom sheet to air out all day. At night, the bed is made just before we jump in.

p.s. I started this early in our married life, noticing my husband remained in bed later than I and the bed looked terrible when I returned home after work. The minute I came with this, strip the bed routine, life got easier.

Donna said...

Love your idea, Becky!! We were just fighting about the covers last! I'm going to be on the lookout now to find what I want and a new look is always fun...especially this time of the year when you can get it on sale!! Thanks for a great idea!!!

ELK said...

looks so very comfortable .. white is so soothing

Julie@beingRUBY said...

Hi Becky...

Well I am defineitly a white sheet girl.. and definitely a duvet girl as well.. [although we also call them doonas here]... i hate the weight of blankets... and find them scratchy!! hahah.. delicate little petal I am.. hahahaha

Sounds interesting this two doona idea.. although there is just me and I sleep smack in the middle.. hehe

Have a lovely weekend Becky... ciao xxx Julie

PS.. in answer to your question.. as I am on the east coast the moon does come up over the sea... but I always seem to miss the moment it rises... I always notice it once it is already up a bit.. most be more observant and stop playing with the gulls.. hahah

B. Meandering said...

I'm a quilt person all year round--two or one and a comforter in the winter. I used to sleep under a quilt made by my Grandma J until it became so worn I was afraid it'd end up a rag, so I folded it up and display the best part on a quilt rack. I have several of hers on that rack.
I grew up sleeping under quilts and I don't sleep nearly as well under anything else.
I've always been curious about duvets though.

I'm with Susan, the shades and textures of the whites in your picture evoke serenity. :)

Love of the Sea said...

Thats funny. My husband and I have been sleeping with separate duvets for years. I did not realize we were being European. I am not a good blanket sharer.

Barefoot from Heaven said...

Oh Girl welcome to the world of wonders. We don't know different from the norwegeans....yea duvets are the best and so comfortable sleeping in. But I do still have a dubble king king size so no gab in between me and my hubbys and still KING size....but a hand full of work to make it...
I have a dubble duvet fall and summer and when you put them togheter (there's a neat system for it) you create your winter one.
And yea those fit tights for the matresses just hmmmm....I've got the soft ones.

Oh and guess what I only only only have white's too.....
I'll shoot a picture soon.
Hugs D.

Stacey Dawn said...

Nice, fresh and crisp - love it!

mimi said...

Your new linens look divine!

I love all the winter white you've pictured and the lovely textures... a little slice of heaven I'd say!We use a King duvet..I probably am guilty of stealing the covers

Jeanne said...

Talking sheets and duvets, I love it Becky!

I confessed to the 10 pillows last week...We use a king size duvet and a possum fur blanket for the bed for extra cold nights. At the moment we are using 500 ct white for the duvet cover and it is heaven...just that little extra weight for winter. All cotton top and flat sheet too. The duvet is goose, duck feather or something to that effect, all I know is that it is heavy!

I like your two duvets on a bed idea. We did that last year while all our linens were on a slow boat from New Zealand to England. We each had a double...and you are right, it is a more restful sleep :)

Jeanne xxx

Anonymous said...

In Italy or England I use white (or cream)cotton sheets and have to be organised when we have lots of guests in the Summer. Linen used to be part of an Italian girl's 'bottom drawer' even when I got engaged and the quality of sheets meant they lasted for years! Now duvets make life easier, but I still use a top sheet. The idea of single duvets on a double bed is interesting.

Dimple said...

I had heard of duvets before, but never took the time to find out what they were...
We use sheets, a blanket, a quilt made by my mother-in-law, and in the winter add a comforter.

sharon said...

Hi Becky
On our big bed we have a huge duvet and loads of pillows. I love to add an extra antique linen sheet under the duvet, it folds back over the top of the duvet and makes the whole thing look more 'made'

RuneE said...

And you have been here and didn't make any contact??? :-)

Interesting to see your take on the things we take as an ordinary thing. The photos were impressive.

mise said...

That's a beautiful heap of new fresh whiteness you have there. I have a fondness for the weight of old-fashioned blankets, but nothing beats duvets, as you say, for ease of bed-making, so that's what I go for.

Jeanne Klaver said...

Your post is so inspiring. I've been thinking about twin duvet's for would solve many problems!

Vintage Linen Treasures said...

LOVE all the white on white linens! You're so right. What a wonderful, crisp way to start out the new year. I slept with duvets while traveling in Europe. Mostly loved it, but there were a couple of times when it was TOO hot with them, and TOO cold when I threw them off. LOL
We sleep with one big blanket over our kingsize bed and a smaller than twin blanket on my side. Nice and cozy!
Patricia :o)

Daisy Rogers said...

Those goose feather duvets looks so elegant and as well as so comfortable for night sleep's. I ll buy the same duvets for my bedroom to get relaxed after a long work.
Thanks for the share!!!