Bedding Glossary

Use this handy reference guide to help choose the right bedding for you.
Related To:
Linen and Towel Armoire

Linen and Towel Armoire

Baffle box (or Box Construction)

A type of construction for a down comforter that places walls of fabric perpendicular to the top and bottom panel of the comforter, creating a series of boxes that enclose the down; considered superior to "sewn-through" stitching, in which stitches go through the down and connect the top and bottom panels directly

Bedskirt (or Dust Ruffle)

This decorative fabric piece skirts the bed on three sides and can be used functionally to hide stored items underneath.

Bolster

A cylindrical throw pillow so named because it can be used to support the neck.

Boudoir Pillow

A small rectangular or square throw pillow used primarily for decoration. 

Combed Cotton

Cotton that has been combed to remove short fibers so only long fibers remain, creating a strong, soft yarn.

Comforter

A thick bed covering packed with down or synthetic fill and usually quilted; does not require a fabric cover.

Coverlet

A bed covering that's generally thinner and lighter than a comforter and may be quilted. 

Duvet

Term used to refer to a thick comforter filled with down or a down alternative and requires a fabric covering.

Duvet Cover

A decorative fabric sleeve that encases the duvet. Typically held closed with a series of buttons, snaps or ties. The duvet cover is easily removable for cleaning.

Euro

Square pillows that measure 26" x 26". Typically not used for sleeping, these pillows serve a decorative purpose when covered with a fabric sham and placed behind the shorter bed pillows. Their large size also makes them ideal for propping up your head while reading in bed. 

Quilt

A bed cover that's made up of 3 layers: the decorative top, the batting (or fill) and the backing. The three layers are held together with stitching that can add another decorative pattern or simply create a grid. Traditional handmade quilts can be very valuable and collectible. For a more budget-friendly option, many mass retailers carry machine-made quilts.

Sham

A fabric cover for decorative bed pillows.

Sheets

Can be purchased singly or as a set. Sets include a fitted or bottom sheet, a flat or top sheet and matching pillowcases. Sheets are available in a variety of fabrics from cotton to bamboo, linen and polyester. For most people, 100 cotton sheets are the best bet for durability, comfort and affordability. 

Thread Count

For any fabric, thread count refers to the number of woven threads per inch. Typically, the higher the thread count, the softer and more durable the fabric. For maximum comfort, select sheets with a minimum thread count of 300.

To see what types of bedding are best for you, check out our Guide to Buying Sheets.

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