Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Art of the Finely Made Bed

As I have shared on this blog before, some of my work includes home staging projects. I work predominantly on vacant properties. One of the main rooms I focus on for my staging projects is the master bedroom- the person buying the home is usually the person (or persons) who will be sleeping in the master bedroom so that is a big impression room. When they walk into the master bedroom I want them to say "wow!" and one of the most effective ways to get that reaction is by enticing them with the bed

Source: via Joanne on Pinterest

So what makes a bed snuggle-worthy? As with good fashion and good interior design, the secret to a swoon-worthy bed is in the layers.

First you need the basics: a good box spring and a good mattress. I didn't have the best experience with a pillow-top mattress (with a 6'4" husband- they just don't seem to hold up or be firm enough in our experience.) What we do in our house is get a great supportive mattress and then invest in a great mattress topper usually of the feathery kind.

Gusseted Feather Bed with Down Pillow Top.....Yum!
For the box spring, you'll need to decide on whether you'd like a bed skirt or a box spring cover. This is just a style preference, sometimes dictated by the bed frame you have. In a sleigh bed or a platform style bed, a bed skirt wouldn't work. In that case you should get yourself a box spring cover so the bed looks nicely tailored. I like the one here with the diamond quilting:

Now that you have the underpinnings of the bed in place, you move on to the next layer: the sheets. I definitely think you should buy the best sheets you can afford: one fitted and two flat. Don't be fooled by thread count, though. You can have a high thread-count but a cheaper quality of cotton and the sheet won't feel as soft as a lower thread-count of a high quality cotton. Trust your touch (or if you are ordering on-line read the reviews.)

Next you need to get yourself a nifty blanket. I don't recommend anything too heavy because it is all about layering to keep you warm and give you options so you can regulate how much coverage you have. I like to get a lightweight blanket like the one below and nestle it in between my two flat sheets.

Cotton Comfort Blanket
You may have seen this done in hotels- it keeps the blanket from slipping and shifting. Here is how you've made the bed so far:

On the mattress:
  • Mattress Topper
  • Fitted Sheet
  • Flat Sheet
  • Blanket 
  • Second Flat Sheet

Now for the dressing. When dressing a bed for staging, I like to invest in both a comforter set and a coverlet set. I lay the coverlet over the bed and tuck it in all around the bed with the sheets and blanket so your mattress is wrapped all snug. (I can't say I have perfected those hospital corners but it is a process...) I then fold the top third down and re-tuck so the bed looks like a little wrapping dumpling.

Then I like to lay the comforter (folded into thirds) across the foot of the bed.

Source: via Leigh on Pinterest

You could do the reverse and use the comforter on the bed and fold the coverlet in thirds on the foot of the bed. That is a matter of preference. Here is an example of that technique:

Source: via odelia on Pinterest

The idea behind using both a comforter and a coverlet set is that you have the opportunity to mix patterns, colors, textures, etc. You can then use all four pillow shams that come with the sets and have a coordinated look on top. Here are a few more of my favorite beds on Pinterest:

As for pillow arrangements, there are a wide variety of options. I love to mix up what I use depending on the style of the room, colors and patterns. I did find this nifty guide to pillow arrangements on Pinterest from Marissa Waddell Interiors and thought is would be great to share!

What are your tips for the perfect bed? Anyone know how to do those nifty hospital corners? I am always looking to learn....Happy Decorating and Happy Sleeping!

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Linen Chest who had the wonderful idea of a post on bedding. The ideas, thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.


  1. Beautiful bedrooms with gorgeous bedding!


  2. Love that you go to the extra effort for staging~! The result is beautiful.

  3. I LOVE this post!!! I have been wanting to figure out how to best dress my bed, especially now in the new house! You have totally inspired me!!!

  4. I think being a home stager would be a great job, so I admire that. Now, I want to get a feathered mattress topper, it looks soo comfortable, and the pillow arrangement tutorial is great!

  5. How am I supposed to choose?!! I hope you'll hold onto these when it's time to style my master bedroom! Love the different ides for pillow arrangements, I'm visual, and needed that. You're always so inspiring!

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