Calm And Cosy
SquareRooms|July 2021
Experts share everything you need for a great night’s sleep.
Yuen Yi Ying

Advice on: Shopping for bedding

Experts:

Rae and Zee Co-founders of Annette homewithannette.com

What are some of your best tips for a calming bedroom?

• As the bedroom is a place for retreat and rest, avoid strong white lighting and opt for soft, warm lighting instead. It’s also helpful to have dimmers and a variety of lighting options in the room, from bedside lamps to recessed lighting, to suit your mood and needs.

• Soft furnishings (think comfortable bedding, soft throws and pillows) help to pull a cohesive look together and give texture to the space for calmer and cosier vibes.

• Scent in the form of oil diffusers or candles can introduce a sense of calm and create a sanctuary-like atmosphere. As scents are very personal, take time to look for a scent that works for you.

You stock linen bedding, could you share some benefits of the material?

Linen is made from the natural fibres of the flax plant and is known to be breathable, absorbent, and cool to the touch, making it perfect for our humid weather. Those with sensitive skin would also be pleased to know that linen is naturally hypoallergenic. The best part is that linen will look and feel better over time, and if cared for correctly, this durable fabric can last for many good years. Beyond its physical properties, linen is considered to have a lower environmental impact as compared to other types of fabrics, especially synthetic ones.

TIPS ON STYLING AND MAKING A BED

The key is to play with texture and colours which complement your bedding. Some simple ideas: Pair standard pillows with your choice of a lumbar cushion in the middle, two pillow shams in front of the standard pillows or two European pillows at the back. Reversible duvet covers can also add a pop of colour to an otherwise simple set-up. To complete the look, drape an unfolded throw across the bed for a more casual vibe, or fold the throw neatly and place it over the duvet cover and across the bed, for a neater look.

“It’s best to get at least three sets of bedding so you can use them on rotation, to prevent them from wearing out so quickly.”

How should one choose bedding?

Bedding is very personal and it is important to know the texture and feel that you prefer—some people prefer a smooth and silky feel, while others prefer a more rumpled and textured feel, like that of linen. When it comes to comfort, we recommend looking out for bedding made of 100% natural fabric as opposed to synthetic materials, which generally trap more heat. Bedding also plays a big role in the aesthetics of the bedroom. Therefore, choose a colour or print which complements the paint colour and design of your bedroom. If you’re unsure of the texture of the bedding or how the colour or print would work in the bedroom, consider purchasing smaller items like pillowcases or bolster cases first. If they work for you, you can then purchase the bedding set with peace of mind.

How about mistakes to avoid when shopping for bedding?

Many perceive thread count to be the best indicator of quality—the higher the thread count, the better. However, thread count may not always be a meaningful way to measure all types of bedding. For example, you will not see a thread count for linen sheets because flax fibres are thicker. Instead, linen is measured by its weight, in terms of GSM (grams per square metre). A good gsm to look out for when purchasing linen bedding will be about 170–180gsm. Generally, most linen bedding will fall under this range as a heavier weight may be too thick and uncomfortable for sleeping on.

Care advice to make bedding last longer?

Wash your sheets at low temperatures, using the gentle machine cycle and a mild detergent to protect the fibres. Avoid dry-cleaning your sheets or using bleach and fabric softeners which could be harsh on the fabric. To the extent possible, line dry your bedding, but if you have to use the dryer, do so on low heat and a gentle tumble setting. By investing in quality bedding and caring for them properly, there should be no need to replace your bedding so frequently.

Bedding trends you’ve been spotting?

We have definitely seen an increased interest in linen bedding. When we first launched linen bedding in December 2019, it was relatively new to people then. Some wondered if linen sheets would be comfortable and whether the natural creases of linen will mean having to iron the sheets all the time. Two years on, more people now appreciate the qualities of linen and embrace its creased and relaxed look, which adds a touch of cosiness to the bedroom.

Also, with people becoming more environmentally conscious and aware of how their actions and purchasing patterns could have an impact on the environment, more seem to be looking closely at the material of the bedding and opting for eco-friendly options such as linen and responsibly grown cotton.

Advice on:

Picking bedroom essentials to avoid stiffness and aches

Expert:

Jo Ng Director of dormiente Singapore dormiente.sg

Could you tell us a bit about your brand?

As a market leader in natural latex mattresses and an orthopaedic bedding specialist in Germany with 33 years of healthy sleep experience, dormiente is geared towards helping customers create the perfect sleeping environment. Our products are made of high-quality natural and organic materials, catering to allergy sufferers. Customisation is key: we offer mattresses with different levels of firmness and support, adjustable bed bases and height-adjustable pillows. We also carry organic bedding and 40 toxin-free solid wood bed designs. Dormiente is your onestop solution for great sleep!

Picking a bed can be tricky, how do you help customers choose a bed for their needs?

During a consultation, we’ll discuss existing orthopaedic concerns, like neck, shoulder or back pain, scoliosis and slipped disc. These issues help us identify pain points and the support needed. We will also consider the customer’s height and build, preferred firmness and sleeping positions, and if they have allergies. These factors are key to understanding their needs and helping them find the right mattress and bed frame. What should one look for when testing the bed and pillows? It is essential to have a good mattress that supports your body and spine, a supportive pillow for your neck and cervical spine that prevents your shoulders from being compressed, an adjustable slatted base under your mattress— even better if it enables fine-tuning for your lower back—as well as a sturdy, toxin-free solid wood bed frame. Avoid having a solid plank base platform under the mattress as it has no give or flexibility and results in the mattress being too firm. It blocks ventilation too.

How long do mattresses, bed frames and pillows last on average?

A good mattress should have a lifespan of 15–20 years, it is in fact the most important piece of furniture at home, used daily for 6–8 hours by up to two people. Bed frames made of solid wood will last a lifetime. In Singapore, it is common for people to replace mattresses earlier due to humidity and moisture from sweat accumulation.

It’s time for a change when you constantly experience aches and a sore back when you wake up. It could also mean the mattress is too firm or too soft, causing bad spinal alignment and poor support for your body. The height of the pillow could be incorrect too.

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