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How to Make a Perfect Bed: A Complete Guide to Bedding Essentials

  • by Mary Babinski
  • 6 min read

At Fine Linen and Bath, we've made a mission of helping our clients put together the beds of their dreams. Your bed is your oasis, and your fine bed linen should reflect your personal taste, style, and sense of comfort. With so many stunning options on offer, our luxury linen brands are sure to capture your imagination. You may choose the peaceful vibe and airy brightness of classic fine white linens; dive deep into bold colors, patterns, and textures; or opt to combine styles for a look uniquely your own.

So, what linens do you need for your bed? Whatever size bed you have -- a king bed, a queen bed, full size or even a twin XL -- you'll find answers below. From the bottom up, we break down luxury bedding essentials and offer recommendations to stock your linen closet with everything you need for luxury and comfort. These are only suggestions...please feel free to call Fine Linen and Bath at any time to get more information, specific guidance, and complimentary swatch samples.

Building your perfect bed one layer at a time

Start with Premium Quality Sheets

First things first: sheets! The fine bed sheets and pillowcases are the most important part of your bedding and deserve the utmost attention. Choosing the right fine bed sheet set will help ensure a blissful night's sleep. Start by selecting the fabric style, which requires pinpointing your personal preference. If you're choosing cotton, first decide whether you prefer luxury percale sheets or sateen sheets. Below is a quick comparison, and you can learn more here: The First Step in Shopping for Luxury Bedding - Deciding between Percale or Sateen Sheets. Look for high-quality Egyptian Cotton in a bedsheet for luxury and softness and choose the proper depth fitted sheet for your mattress (be sure to measure your mattress topper if you use one; a memory foam topper definitely adds height and even a thick mattress pad may require a deeper pocket sheet).

Luxury Percale Bed Sheets

Percale is a crisp, cool and luxurious textile. Percale bedding is high-quality, closely woven percale is light and breathable with a fresh feel. It's ideal for summertime sleeping and can also be used year-round by people who like to sleep "cool." High-thread-count percale is cozy and durable.

Percale Bedding Pros:Most durable, light, cool, and crisp. White sheets made of percale give a 5-star hotel bedding feel.

Percale Bedding Cons:Wrinkles*. Luxury percale sheets look best when they are pressed. It's also a crisp fabric; some people don't like their "crunchy" sound.

*Putting percale sheets on the bed right out of the dryer helps minimize wrinkles. Iron the pillowcases, since those will show.

Luxury Sateen Bed Sheets

Sateen sheets are thicker and known for their luster and drape. Sateen bedding feels silky and soft to the touch. Sateen is a warmer fabric and ideally suited for cooler weather or those who are looking for warmth in their bedding.

Sateen Bedding Pros: Soft, silky feel. Warmer, good for cold climates, wrinkle less than percale, typically more color options.

Sateen Bedding Cons: Warmer (not ideal for summer months) and wrinkle lightly.

Top Percale and Sateen Brand Recommendations

Best Luxury Percale Sheets/Bedding Brands

Best Sateen Bedding Sheets/Bed Sheet Brands

Matouk Nocturne Hemstitch sheets

Silk Sheets - a third option

Silk is another option for sheets, with a completely different look-and-feel than either percale or sateen bedding. Silk sheets are prized for their beauty and luxurious feel as well as for their unique properties. Like hair, silk is protein-based; it's known to be gentle on both hair and skin, Beauty experts tout the restorative properties of sleeping on silk is a wonderful way to minimize both sleep wrinkles and "bed head." Silk is hypoallergenic, non-irritating, and breathable, which makes it a good choice for regulating body temperature.

Best Silk Sheets/Bedding

Learning to Layer High End Bedding

Your next step is deciding on the bedding layers. Do you like the feel of a full bed with luxury blankets, designer duvet cover, shams, and high end decorative pillows? Or do you prefer a lighter-weight quilt or coverlet? Perhaps you want just a simple blanket. It's a lot to consider…but there's no need to stress. We'll address this one layer at a time, beginning with the lightest weight bedding: blankets and coverlets.

How to choose the best Luxury Blankets

While both are light in weight, blankets differ from coverlets mostly in feel and finishing. Luxury blankets typically feature a softer cotton feel with a relaxed drape. One blanket style, for example, is plush, brushed cotton with a bound edging. Another is a woven knit, typically finished with a rolled edge. The relaxed drape offers a casual look where a blanket can be cleanly tucked in or left out. In general, luxury blankets come in a limited range of colors.

Top Luxury Blanket Recommendations

Luxury Coverlets

These are similar to the luxury blankets in weight but lend a more sophisticated style. Coverlets are often a tighter weave and can be woven to a matte finish (a little more casual), or a sateen finish with a slight sheen (a touch more sophisticated). Coverlets are usually part of a layered bed, lying between the flat sheet and a duvet cover. This makes luxury coverlets quite versatile in transitioning from a summer bed with the coverlet alone, to a winter bed with an added duvet.

Top Luxury Coverlet Recommendations

Quilted Coverlets

Next up in weight are quilted coverlets. This style of bedspread is most often a sateen finish and can feature any number of quilting patterns. Filled with polyester batting, they range in thickness. These can be paired with a blanket underneath for additional warmth when needed. Quilted coverlets used to be quite popular; in recent years, however, most luxury brands have reduced production to one or two styles or discontinued them entirely (likely because most quilted coverlets require dry cleaning). The exception to this trend is Home Treasures, which is the go-to source for custom quilted coverlets, with dozens of options in weave and color.

Top Quilt Coverlets Recommendations

High End Duvet Covers

High end Duvet covers are a must for the quintessential 'fluffy' bed. Soft and super inviting, duvet covers come in a wide variety of fill weights and materials. (Note: a duvet stuffer / insert, or comforter, is a separate topic. Today we are focusing only on covers). To maintain a consistent design ethos, we recommend matching the duvet cover to your chosen sheet collection. For instance, if the sheets feature a touch of color and embroidered line finish, the high end duvet cover will follow suit, normally a framed design on the top of the bed. If the sheets are a bold color, the duvet cover will mirror that as well.

Finishing Touches for the most Luxurious Bedding Ensemble

High End Bed Skirts/Dust Ruffles

A bed skirt or dust ruffle is a piece of decorative fabric that runs along the sides and foot of a bed, placed between the mattress and the box spring, reaching down to the floor. A luxury bed skirt covers the sides of the box spring, the bed frame, and the space under the bed. A bed skirt also adds a style component to the bed ensemble. There are two types of high end bed skirts: gathered and tailored.

Gathered Bed Skirt

A gathered bed skirt provides a traditional look, with fabric loosely bunched and secured to create appealing folds. The corners are often split to accommodate bed posts.

Tailored Bed Skirt

Tailored bed skirts look modern and sleek, with box pleats and straight lines.

Shams and High End Decorative Pillows

Shams and high end decorative pillows are your final layer; they're added over the standard sleeping pillow. A pillow sham should match a coverlet or quilt if one is used; if not, match the high end duvet cover. Lastly, a high end decorative pillow can add a touch of pizzazz and personality to the bed. Pull ideas from the surrounding decor and for recommendations, feel free to email us a photo of your space and we'll be happy to send you some ideas!

Luxury Throw Blankets

A great high end throw blanket can add color and style as well as provide a sense of comfort and warmth to the bedroom. In choosing a luxury throw blanket, draw your inspiration from the room's décor: artwork, curtains, or paint colors. You can even pick up color from the décor in an adjoining master bath; this is a creative way to connect the two spaces.

Luxury Throw Blanket Recommendations:

Fine Linen and Bath: An In-Store Shopping Experience Delivered to You Online 

At Fine Linen and Bath, our mission is to deliver a concierge luxury linen shopping experience with online convenience. Browse our website to access an expansive collection of bedding, bath, table linens, and accessories from the world's premier brands.

When you need answers, consultation, or help to narrow your choices, our team of expert design consultants is here to assist you. We offer individualized recommendations, personal consultation, and even complimentary swatch samples for your review. We'll help you make the right buying decisions for your style, budget, and design goals.

Please connect with us online or -- even better -- give us a call at (866) 352-4522. We'd love to get to know you!