Home means lots of things to different people: somewhere we live and can be ourselves and somewhere to share with family and friends. For most of us it means somewhere for a safe and peaceful sleep. And to enjoy that sleep, we should choose the best bed linen we can afford.
Duvets and sheets: what type of fabric?
There are a range of fabrics to choose from when selecting duvets and sheets, with cotton being the most popular for bedroom linen. Cotton is a soft and breathable fabric available in a range of qualities while a mix of cotton and synthetic fibres is also available, called polycotton.
* The number of threads per square inch is a measure of the quality of the fabric and a count of 180 or more means the fabric is of a higher quality and is called percale. This fabric feels smooth to the touch and is ideal for good quality bedroom linen.
* Fabric is made from different types of cotton plants and those with longer fibres give a better quality and silkier fabric. Combing the fibres removes the shorter fibres. Supima Cotton is made from long fibres into a high thread content fabric, resulting in a very high quality fabric for bedroom linen with a luxury, silky feel.
* It is also possible to find a mix of natural fabrics such as cotton and linen.
* Flannelette, which is fluffy and warm, is especially popular in winter.
* Cotton sateen is made from a combed thread and gives a fabric which is smooth to the touch and has a sheen.
* For the utmost in luxury and sensuality, there is silk.
Choosing colours and designs
Different colours in a room give a different mood or atmosphere. Plain white can be romantic or clean and crisp. It may be in stripes of plain white with shiny white which looks very luxurious. Other colours, either bold or pastel make their own statement. Small sprays of roses have a country cottage feel, while big swirls of ruby, emerald and deep blue looks exotic and regal. Designs may be simple stripes, checks and spots. Children might enjoy Disney characters, the Gruffalo or Superman. As children grow older, favourite football teams might be popular with boys and characters from literature such as Harry Potter would be suitable for boys and girls. Patterns may be based on traditional designs such as that of William Morris or inspired by the art of cultures such as the Aztecs.
Coming home to sleep in a bed with luxurious or funky bedroom linen is a great end to the day. What is lovelier than slipping between fresh sheets, cosy or crisp, depending on your taste? Breakfast in bed on a Saturday in a bed made up in linen chosen with care is a great start to the weekend. There is a huge range of duvets, sheets and pillow cases to choose from and there should be something to suit every taste.
Mary Yohanan writes for a range of websites and blogs on ideas for making a house into a home. She has a particular interest in the way that textiles such as luxury bedroom linen can add to the comfort of a home.