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Glossary of Bedding Terms
Before you purchase items and accessories for your bed, the first thing you need to determine is the type of mattress you have. From there you can choose everything that will properly fit your bed. Check the reference chart below to help determine your bed type.
Twin- 39" wide x 75" long. The smallest of all the mattresses; it's meant for one person
Twin X-Long- 39" wide x 80" long. Found most commonly in college dorm rooms, the "Twin XL" as it's affectionately known, is just that - longer than the standard Twin; the width is the same.
Full- 54" wide x 75" long. Also referred to as a Double Bed. Can sleep two and is shorter in length than its larger cousin, the Queen size.
Queen- 60" wide x 80" long. Sleeps two and is both wider and longer than a Full sized mattress.
King- 76" wide x 80" long. Largest, most luxurious sized mattress. May be referred to as the Eastern King.
Cal-King- 72" wide x 84" long. The California King mattress is a large luxury size like the Eastern King, however it is narrower and longer. And yes, it is found most commonly in the State of California.
Pillow Top and Extra Deep mattresses have become very common. Before selecting your sheets and mattress pads, it is important to know the depth of your mattress. Here are some dimensions to use as a guide:
Standard- 7 to 9 inches
Deep- 10 to 15 inches
Extra Deep- 15 inches to as high as 22 inches
Nothing can improve a night's sleep like a quality pillow... and nothing can spruce up your bed more than the right sized pillows. Here is a guide to the common sizes:
Standard- 20 x 26 inches. Uses a Standard size pillowcase. Use one on a Twin bed, two on a Full or Queen, and three on a King bed.
Queen- 20 x 30 inches. Uses the same pillow combination as the Standard. Since there is no Queen size pillowcase, use a Standard pillowcase with a Queen size pillow. It fills up a Standard pillowcase more completely, and it is also a perfect fit across the top of your Queen size bed.
King- 20 x 36 inches. You guessed it, use these on your King size bed. These extra long pillows are perfectly paired across the top of both an Eastern and Cal-King bed, and use a King pillowcase.
Euro- 26 x 26 inches. These large, square pillows are great to prop yourself up in bed with. They also add a decorative accent when covered with a decorative pillow sham in place of a Euro pillowcase.
Since all daybeds are outfitted with a twin mattress, selecting the sheets and mattress pads for them is a no-brainer. Choosing what to put on top of the daybed can be a bit more challenging, as sizes and styles can range. There are daybed covers, which typically have three sides (two sides and the front), and daybed spreads, which typically have four sides, and are usually quilted. The "drop" of a daybed cover, or how far down to the floor the front of the cover reaches, will determine if you need a dust ruffle, also called a bed skirt. A standard twin 14" dust ruffle is all a daybed requires, though some dust ruffles feature split corners to make navigating around bed feet a bit easier. Pillows for daybeds are covered with shams when not in use. Most people use either three standard pillows or two king size pillows lined up across the daybed. Below are some sizes for daybed covers and spreads. Since there is no standard size, keep in mind that the main intent is to cover a twin size bed:
Covers and Spreads (range)- to 60 inches W x 95 to 106 inches L
Acrylic- is a synthetic or manufactured fiber that is both soft and lightweight. It dries easily and is machine washable. Acrylics are popular because of their ability to retain their shape and texture after washing and drying.
Bamboo Cotton- Bamboo cotton is a supremely soft fabric comprised of both bamboo and cotton fibers in varying ratios. The bamboo plant lends itself perfectly to the making of fabrics. Bamboo's porous fibers make a cloth with a breathability and moisture absorption greater than cotton and a softness comparable to silk and cashmere. Bamboo fibers have a natural sheen to them and are naturally antimicrobial. Bed and bath linens made of bamboo cotton provide the very best qualities of each fiber. Machine-wash warm separately gentle cycle. Tumble dry low, warm iron as needed.
Chenille- Chenille yarn is manufactured by placing short lengths of yarn, called the "pile", between two "core yarns" and then twisting the yarn together. The edges of these piles then stand at right angles from the yarn's core, giving chenille both its softness and its characteristic look. Chenille will look different in one direction compared to another, as the fibers catch the light differently. Chenille can appear iridescent without actually using iridescent fibers. The yarn is commonly manufactured from cotton, but can also be made using acrylic, rayon and olefin.
Combed Cotton- Combed cotton uses finer fiber than carded yarns and is more regular and expensive than carded yarn. When cotton or another fabric is "combed," the shortest, additional fibers of a batch are removed. The result produces high-quality, extra soft yarns with excellent strength hand softness.
Cotton- Cotton is the thread or cloth manufactured from the fiber of a cotton plant. Cotton can be washed in the washer at even the hottest of temperatures. Any detergent can be used and bleach can also be used as needed. Cotton can wrinkle easily but an iron on the highest heat is still safe to use on the fabric.
Down- Down is the material used to fill comforters, duvets, pillows, and other bedding products. Goose down will last longer than duck down. Synthetic down can give the appearance and feel of goose or duck down. Dry clean only.
Egyptian Cotton- Egyptian Cotton is the fine, somewhat brownish long-staple cotton that is grown in Egypt; believed to be derived from sea island cotton or by hybridization with Peruvian cotton.
Faux Leather- Faux leather is a fabric made to imitate animal leather.
Felt- Felt is a fabric of matted, compressed animal fibers, such as wool or fur, sometimes mixed with vegetable or synthetic fibers.
Fleece- Fleece is a fabric with a thick, heavy surface resembling sheep's wool. It may be a pile or napped fabric of wither woven or knit construction.
Jacquard- Jacquard is a way of weaving cloth that allows for some intensely gorgeous detailed designs to be woven directly into the fabric.
Jersey- A type of fabric with a flat appearance, knit on a circular, single-knit machine; its principal distinction is that it is not a fabric with a distinct rib.
Jute- Jute is a long, soft, shiny vegetable fiber that can be spun into coarse, strong threads. .
Leather- Leather is the dressed or tanned hide of an animal, usually with the hair removed.
Linen- Linen is a natural fiber that is very strong and comfortable. Linen can be hand washed and/or dry clean only. It irons nicely to a nice crisp fabric. Linen also has a nice comfortable shape and feel.
Matelasse- Matelasse fabric can be either hand-stitched to create the decorative features of the fabric, or woven on a jacquard loom for the appearance of quilting. Matelasse fabric is a heavy, thick textile that appears to be padded, but actually has no padding within the fabric.
Microfiber- is tightly woven from a very fine poly thread and has a suede finish for a luxurious, soft feel. Microfiber fabric is naturally water repellent due to its construction process and when specially treated, can also be waterproof.
Micro suede- Micro suede is a man-made fiber. It is a knit blend that is made from very fine fibers that can sometimes be a hundred times finer than human hair. These delicate fibers are tightly woven together to create a dense fabric that has many of the same qualities as suede leather.
Mohair- Mohair is a silky textile produced from the hair of the Angora goat. It is most often spun into a thread that can be woven, knitted, or crocheted depending upon the application. Mohair is durable, warm, insulating, and light. It also has moisture wicking properties that carry moisture away from the skin..
Nylon- Nylon is a synthetic fabric made from petroleum products. Nylon is valued for its light weight, incredible tensile strength, durability, and resistance to damage.
Poly and Polyblends- are manufactured products made from synthesized polymers. It tends to be very resilient, quick drying, resistant to biological damage such as mold and mildew, easy to wash, and able to hold forms well. These materials are, however, highly flammable, so care should be taken.
Rayon- Rayon is one of the most peculiar fabrics in commercial use today. Strictly speaking, it is not an artificial fiber, because it is derived from naturally occurring cellulose. It is not, however, a natural fabric, because cellulose requires extensive processing to become rayon. Rayon is usually classified as a manufactured fiber and considered to be "regenerated cellulose".
Sateen- Sateen is a cotton fabric with a luster resembling that of satin.
Satin- Satin is a type of glossy fabric first made from silk in China.
Silk- Silk is a filament fiber formed from proteins secreted by Bombyx mori, or silkworms. Highly prized for its softness, insulating properties, and strength, silk is a natural animal product and therefore quite expensive. Making silk requires monitoring and feeding the silkworms constantly, and a great deal of effort results in a surprisingly small amount of thread.
Tencel®- Tencel® is the registered trade name for Lyocell, which is a biodegradable fabric, made from wood pulp cellulose.
Velvet- is a soft pile fabric that has been manufactured for almost 4,000 years in one form or another. Velvet has long been considered a luxury fabric because it requires more thread to manufacture than other fabrics, as well as multiple steps. Velvet can be made from any type of thread, although traditionally, velvet was made with silk thread, making it even more costly. In the modern era, cotton and synthetics have been used in the manufacture of velvet, and several related fabrics, such as velour, velveteen, and corduroy, have been invented for consumers on a budget.
Viscose- Viscose is a unique form of wood cellulose acetate that can be used for the manufacture of a number of different types of products.
Wool- Wool is the dense, warm coat of sheep, also called a fleece.
Cotton- - Cotton is the thread or cloth manufactured from the fiber of a cotton plant.
Down- is the material used to fill comforters, duvets, pillows, and other bedding products. Goose down will last longer than duck down. Synthetic down can give the appearance and feel of goose or duck down.
Euro feather- actual feathers on geese and ducks as opposed to the soft cluster of down found on the breast are durable and springy, making them an essential support element in medium and firm pillows.
Latex- Latex provides a great deal of support and they can vary from soft to firm in texture.
Memory Foam- is a type of material that is both pressure and temperature sensitive. Designed to be breathable, memory foam is able to distribute pressure evenly over its surface and return to its original state when the pressure is removed.
Microfiber- Microfiber is tightly woven from a very fine poly thread and has a suede finish for a luxurious, soft feel. Microfiber fabric is naturally water repellent due to its construction process and when specially treated, can also be waterproof.
White Goose Down- Down is the layer of fine feathers found underneath the outer feathers of adult ducks, geese, and other water birds.
Anti-Bacterial- Just how it sounds, this bedding is treated to protect against bacteria.
Anti-Microbial- Bedding that is treated with an ingredient that kills or inhibits bacteria, viruses, molds or any other unsavory things in which you’d rather not share your bed.
Bed in a Bag- A completely matched bed ensemble that you can carry home in a bag. You can even get them complete with sheets! Decorate your whole room with a click of a button with a Bed in a Bag.
Bedspread- A bedspread will cover the entire surface of the bed extending all the way to the floor, and will completely cover the pillows as well.
Comforter- A comforter is a thick and comfy bed covering. Comforters are typically filled with layers of material including polyester batting (a synthetic fiber), down feathers, wool or silk. The loft, or thickness, of the filling determines the weight as well as how warm it is. Comforters are stitched down in order to help secure the filling and ensure that it is evenly distributed.
Coverlet- A lightweight, non-reversible bedspread that is usually either quilted or woven. It is typically used more as a decorative cover, than for warmth. Coverlets often have a thin layer of batting, making them appropriate for use as a lightweight bed covering. They are typically shorter and do not reach the floor.
Duvet and Duvet Cover- A duvet is basically a soft flat bag filled with down, feathers or a synthetic alternative. The duvet is designed to fit within a duvet cover. Duvets and duvet covers are designed to be used alone (with no sheets) because the duvet itself can be removed and the outer cover can be laundered. With duvet covers, changing out the look of your room is as easy as switching covers.
Eco-Friendly- Sometimes referred to nature friendly, environmentally friendly and green, are products that are produced with minimal or no harm to the environment.
Featherbed Covers- A featherbed cover is a large comforter shell used to protect a featherbed. What else could it be?
Featherbed- Featherbeds are mattress toppers that provide extra cushion and comfort. Featherbeds can add years of life to your mattress. Filled with feathers, goose or otherwise, a featherbed is a separate piece that is placed on top of the mattress and covered by a bed sheet.
Hypoallergenic- Having a decreased tendency to provoke an allergic reaction.
Organic- For a fiber to be labeled "organic” it has to be grown without the use of pesticides or fertilizers. Once the fiber is harvested, it should be processed separately from conventional fibers, using non-toxic dyes and finishing agents. If the fiber is from an animal, that animal was treated well and not treated with synthetic hormones or insecticides.
Quilt- A quilt is traditionally composed of three layers of fiber. The top layer is a woven fabric, the second is a layer of batting and then finished with a woven back. All three layers are stitched together in decorative patterns. Quilts are different from other forms of bed covers because they are generally pieced together with many pieces of cloth.
Thermal Regulated- Bedding filled with a material made from a revolutionary micro-encapsulated fiber that magically draws heat away from the body when your temperature rises.
Thread Count- Index of the compactness of a fabric determined by counting the number of warp yarns and filling yarns in 1 square inch of fabric. Also known as cloth count.
Water Proof- Waterproof bedding is made out of fabrics that can not be penetrated by water. They may be extremely tightly woven, such as a fine polyester/nylon blend, rubber or plastic or other non-porous material, or coated with a finish that makes them breathable but closed to water.
Water Repellant- Water-Repellant bedding is more effective than water-resistant bedding as it is made of fabrics that are either very tightly woven or coated with a finish that causes the water to make little beads when it hits the fabric rather than going through.
Water Resistant- Water-Resistant bedding is able to resist penetration of water to some degree but not entirely.