Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Preparing for hibernation

The weather is starting to change. Chilly nights followed by crisp mornings. Only a few months from now the snow will be flying, and bitter winds will be whipping. Now is the time to start preparing your bed for fall and winter, and long, dark nights. Hibernation.

First, start with a great mattress. How old is the one you are sleeping now? Do you wake up feeling tired, and achy? If so, it's probably time to invest in a new mattress. You should shop around, and don't be scared to try them out. Make yourself at home and actually lay on the mattress as you would at home. Spend some time on each one. Sitting on a mattress is not the way to judge comfort, unless you sleep sitting up!?

Next, invest in a good quality mattress pad. This will protect your mattress, and adds an extra layer of cozy comfort. Make sure you find one that will fit your mattress correctly, and is machine washable and dry able. If you would like to notch up the cozy factor, add a feather bed over the mattress pad, and under your fitted sheet!
Now select sheets. Cotton is a great choice. Do not be fooled by high thread counts. 400 is perfect, 1000 does not always mean great quality. Choose patterns and colors that work well in your design scheme. Have a few sets on hand in so that you can change them out weekly. There's nothing like sleeping on a bed with freshly laundered sheets. Tip: remove the sheets from the dryer right away, and make the bed. this will cut down on wrinkles. If you are feeling ambitious, you can fill your iron with lavender scented water, and press them! I usually only iron the parts you can see whenever company is coming!
Pillows come in a wide range of fills. I prefer a blend of down and feathers. 100% down tends to be a bit too firm, and can be costly. There is also hypo allergenic, but these are often flimsy, and offer little support. Memory foam and buckwheat are also great choices. Don't forget to purchase pillow protectors. These can be simply zipped off and laundered, and will keep your pillow clean and fresh longer.
Layer on a blanket for added warmth. Cotton is great for warmer climates, and wool for colder ones. Again, select one that is easily laundered at home.
The final layer, especially for those bitterly cold months, is a duvet. These come in assorted fills again. I like a medium fill. Some people switch out the fill weight seasonally. I find medium works well year round. In the warmer months I simply remove my blanket, and use the flat sheet and the
duvet. Find a duvet cover that compliments your sheeting, and adds a bit of color and pattern. Duvet inserts generally have to be professionally cleaned.

Now that your bed is set for great sleep, make sure to wash your sheets weekly, and make your bed daily! Add a few decorative pillows for a pop of color! Not too many, because these will usually end up on the floor nightly. And who wants to pillow unload every night before bed? What do you love about your bed? Where have you had the best nights sleep? Which hotels have you stayed at that have had dreamy beds?

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