The foundation for good sleep starts with great bedding in beautiful designs writes Meera Murugesan
THE first set of bedding I bought coincided with me moving out of home and starting my first job.
I was only renting a room but I still wanted a nice bed. I bought that first sheet based on colour and thread count because someone had told me that thread count is crucial and the higher the count, the better the sheet as it would last a long time.
I have been buying bedding using that formula ever since and it took over 20 years for me to finally realise that I have been doing it wrong.
Thread count is apparently not a reflection of quality. This particular piece of information was passed on by Paul Gould, group general manager of Sheridan, the Australian bath and bedding brand.
Needless to say I looked kind of washed out after finding out I have been buying my bedding wrong all these years.
It’s a common mistake Gould assures me. Most people do tend to be impressed with thread counts without realising what they really mean.
HANGING BY THE THREAD
There’s a common myth that a high thread count guarantees high quality, but thread count is simply a measure of the weight of a sheet.
The higher the thread count, the heavier the sheet but quality is actually defined by various factors including the choice of cotton, the quality of spun yarn, the weave and the finishing as is explained in Sheridan’s website.
“We make bedding with various different thread counts but the quality is the same,” says Gould.
But some brands may offer a very high thread count sheet in low quality.
Good bedding he stresses always starts with the basics - the raw materials.
Sheridan uses only superior long-staple cotton, which, as its name suggests,has been cultivated to have very long fibres. Fabric woven from these fibres is more durable, less prone to pilling (a surface defect of textiles) and possesses a softer touch.
This essentially means the sheets can be used for a long time, rather than replaced after just one or two years.
Gould says some customers have Sheridan sheets which they have been using for 20 years. The products are designed to last and go through rigorous testing to ensure they meet the brand’s quality standards.
We test everything a hundred times and we design all our products to be able to go into the tumble dryer and this means they won’t shrink.”
Sheridan’s Palais range for example is spun from superior long-staple fibres in a lustrous sateen weave which creates a luxuriously soft feel on the skin.
These 1200 thread count sheets also feature a close weave that yields a silky yet durable fabric.
Gould says as a brand, Sheridan works hard to create products that feel good on the skin and that should be the first criteria when choosing bedding.
The second step is selecting something that goes with the design of your bedroom.
Gould says a bed is a personal space and we should create something that we look forward to coming home to everyday.
“Don’t worry about what everybody else thinks. It’s your space and your sanctuary.”
To promote sustainability, Sheridan also uses fibres and products that minimise environmental impact. For instance,it uses renewable fibres like organic cotton and Tencel.
Tencel is a renewable and innovative cellulosic fabric that leaves no trace on nature. Gould adds that Tencel sheeting is also extremely robust and it can be commercially laundered.
SLEEP IN BEAUTY
Sheridan was established in 1967 by Claudio Alcorso, an Italian immigrant and visionary who believed an Australian textile business should have an Australian identity.He started to work with emerging artists in Australia at that time to create unique artworks which were translated into textile prints.
“We have always believed that artistry should be part of everyday living and something we can all experience in our homes and we have followed this dream for over 50 years,” says Gould.
Even today, there are six full-time artists working with the brand and each year, they travel to unique locations within Australia to view and sketch scenes which become the inspiration for the brand’s new collections.
“ We create truly unique designs that celebrate the Australian vibrancy and colour, something we believe will also resonate with customers in Asia.”
Sheridan has made a re-entry into the Malaysian market with the launch of its luxurious Spring 2019 collection at its flagship counter at Parkson Elite Pavilion.
The new collection features a nature-inspired seasonal palette which draws inspiration from Australia’s signature natural surroundings and sun-soaked days by the beach.
It features depictions of Australian flora and foliage, using a palette of warm neutrals - hues like coral, rose, wheat and gold, accented with natural greens and blues.
SHEETS and bedding are the most used items in the bedroom so it’s important to care well for them to ensure they last.
Here’s how to do it right:
*Wash your sheets weekly.
*Reduce wear and tear by alternating your sheets for a fresh set once a week to ensure your sheets last longer.
*Avoid using bleach as it tends to be too harsh on cottons and natural fibres and is damaging to the colour and texture of your bedding.
*A warm, gentle machine wash is the best laundry temperature to clean linen. Always read the care label though as there may be exceptions to this rule.
*If tumble drying your sheets, pop them onto the bed whilst still warm so the wrinkles smooth themselves out.
*Make sure your bedlinen is completely dry before storing in your linen closet to prevent any dampness and mildew.
*Make sure your linen closet is cool and dry. Damp closets result in mouldy sheets.
WE spend one third of our lives sleeping, so there’s no greater investment than quality bed linen and bed accessories. When building the foundation for a restful sleep, it is important to start from the mattress up.
Here are some tips:
1.Protect your mattress
Acting as the first layer of bedding, a mattress protector works to prolong the life of your mattress by controlling dust mites and minimising the growth of any bacteria.
2. Top off your mattress
A mattress topper is the second step in building the foundation for a beautiful night’s sleep. Toppers are perfect if you’re looking to either prolong the life of a new mattress or refresh an old one.
3. The perfect quilt
One of the most crucial components for comfortable sleep. To begin with, you should consider the type of sleeper you are, as well as your typical sleep environment. Ideally you want to match your quilt fill to the fill of your mattress topper.
THE JOY OF SLEEP
THE quality of your bedding and the design or set-up of your bedroom plays a huge role in ensuring whether you feel calm and relaxed in the room and wake up rested and refreshed.
Your bedroom can change your mood and even improve your health. It can calm us, make us more friendly, creative, relaxed and more romantic.
Here are some tips from Nikki Hunt and Andrea Savage of Design Intervention:
1.Choose bedding derived from natural fibres like cotton or linen which feel cool on the skin to provide better sleep.
2.With pillows, think about your sleeping position. Side sleepers generally like fuller, taller pillows while those who sleep on their backs need even support around the head and require a lower, slighter flatter pillow. If you sleep on your stomach, a soft pillow is best. Latex pillows are ideal for allergy sufferers.
3.Placement of the bed is vital. You do not want to make your bed look like it’s caught in a corner or a “dark dungeon”. Look for the source of natural light.
4.Keep the bedroom slightly cool as this sends signals to your brain to go to sleep. Ceiling fans are good for circulating air and healthier than air conditioners. When set to low, these fans emit a low level background noise that can induce sleep.
5.The right plants can clean the air in the bedroom and look good as well. Scents like lavender and jasmine can also soothe and calm so do use your favourite essential oils in your room.
6. Choose good curtains, blinds and floor covers which can block out light and absorb noise to help you sleep better.
7. Clear clutter because a messy room is a lot harder to sleep in. A neatly made bed at bedtime also evokes a feeling of relaxation.
8.Cool neutrals and soft pastels are good for the bedroom because they are very relaxing colours. This isn’t the best room to paint a bright red or to use clashing colours.