Temperatures are Rising

duvets_1Warmer weather has arrived, while friends in the North may not be ready, here in the Lowcountry it’s time to change our duvet(comforter) from our winter weight to our summer weight.  In the past I have had to send the duvet to the cleaners at a cost of around $40.  However, I can now use my amazing Samsung Steam Washing machine to clean my winter duvet. Using the “bedding” cycle I can be sure to deep clean and sanitize the duvet.

Why change from summer to winter weights?

 It’s a personal preference which takes into account the ambient temperature in the bedroom (I run it cool), our mattress (memory foam tends to be on the warm side) and preference for having a lighter covering in the summer and denser, fluffier cover in the winter.

Duvet Buying Guide

The perfect duvet weight and filling will keep you at the best temperature to enjoy deep and restorative sleep.

There are two main things to decide on:

  1. Type of filling – natural or non-allergenic
  2. Tog rating – high or low

Natural

Natural duvets are filled with feathers and/or down. They’re generally regarded to have the most luxurious feel of cover, although their weight can massively vary.

Non-allergenic

Non-allergenic duvets contain fillings made of synthetic fibers, like hollow fiber and microfiber, or silk, which is naturally free of dust mites.

Synthetic duvets

These days, synthetic duvets aren’t necessarily made of stiff and clunky foam. Many on the market are silky soft, cozy warm and beautifully lightweight with a wonderful drape. Just beware of cheaper versions, which will soon become lumpy and uncomfortable.

Synthetic duvets are inherently dust mite free, but make sure you choose one with a mite proof cotton cover. You can machine wash synthetic duvets at 30°C.

Silk duvets

Silk and silk blend duvets are ideal if you suffer from allergies but want the luxury of a natural fiber

filling. They’re filled with silk floss, with mulberry silk floss being the most premium due to its fine

long yarn for a softer feel and silkier drape.

Silk is wonderfully lightweight and naturally hypoallergenic. It also helps to regulate your body temperature by trapping warm air next to your skin in winter and drawing it away from your skin in summer.  Silk duvets rarely need cleaning, though you can machine wash them at 30°C. More often than not, you should simply freshen them up by airing outside on a sunny day.

Tog rating

A tog rating tells you how warm a duvet is. The higher the tog rating, the warmer the duvet. Tog rating is based on a duvet’s ability to trap warm air. Natural duvets have better thermal properties than synthetic duvets, so they need less filling to achieve the same warmth.

A tog rating is given irrespective of filling. So a 9 tog natural duvet will be just as warm as a 9 tog synthetic duvet. It might just feel a little lighter.

Silk duvets can’t be measured by tog rating because the fill is made of floss. Instead, their warmth is shown by weight in gsm (grams per square meter), but we’ll always give you a comparable tog value too.

Summer Lightweight Spring/Autumn Warm Winter Toasty
3 to 4.5 tog 7.5 to 9 tog 10.5 to 13.5 tog

Duvet casing

Duvets are filled, or quilted, and then stitched with box or diamond casing to make sure an even spread of filling. More premium duvets also have ‘baffle walls’, which improve loftiness by saving feathers and down from getting trapped in the seams.

While in theory you can wash and dry your duvets at home, we strongly recommend professional laundering because you need a very big machine to properly tumble dry them.

Dust mites are killed at around 57°C

What’s best for children?kidsduvets

Babies under 12 months Children under 10 years Children over 10 years
Shouldn’t sleep with duvets, quilts or pillows.Instead, we advise using a baby sleeping bag, which is difficult to kick off or slide down over their head. Young children should use a lightweight tog rating as their small bodies trap more air, making them much warmer than adults would be under the same duvet. Older children may want a toasty warm 10.5 tog duvet, especially if their room is quite cold.Help your child to regulate their own temperature by choosing a lower tog duvet and leaving a quilt or blanket, folded concertina style, at the bottom of the bed. That way, they can easily pull it up for extra warmth when they need it. In high summer, switch the duvet to a cool top sheet with a quilt or blanket
Choose 1 tog in summer and 2.5 tog in winter. A first duvet should be the lightest 3 or 4.5 tog. As a child grows, they may want a warmer 7.5 or 9 tog. Child may want a toasty warm 10.5 tog duvet,
Small bodies get hotter in bed than adult bodies

 With thanks to The White Company, London for this excellent buying guide.

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