Buying guides

Bed Linen


Give your bedroom the finishing touch with bedding that suits your sleep as well as your style.

We put a lot of time and care into our bedding; for over a century we've explored the world to source new cottons and discover innovative weaving methods. We're passionate about bringing you the finest quality bed linen, because a good night's sleep is one of life's essentials.

In this guide we'll take you through types of fabric, weaves and finishes to help you choose your perfect bedding.


The finer the fibre, the softer the feel – for everything from sheets in soft Egyptian cotton to natural linen duvet covers


Weight can significantly affect how your sheets feel: we cater from super lightweight through to the ultimate in cosy comfort

Thread count

This is the density of threads per square inch: generally, higher thread counts mean a softer and smoother feel. Our bed linen range goes from 200 to 1000 thread count.


This important step determines the final texture, colour and softness of the sheet, resulting in a unique handle


Washing bed linen before use is a personal choice. We recommend that you do: it refreshes your linens after manufacture and enhances the feel of the cloth


Our measurements are for UK bed sizes – non-UK mattress sizes may vary slightly from their UK equivalents. Our fitted sheets and valances are unlikely to be suitable for mattresses that vary greatly from these measurements, though our flat sheets are generously sized so may offer a useful alternative.

Size of bed linen
Flat & fitted sheets to fit mattress
Duvet covers to fit duvet size

Small single

90 x 190cm

135cm x 200cm


135 x 190cm

200cm x 200cm


150 x 200cm

230 x 220cm

Super kingsize

180 x 200cm

260cm x 220cm

Standard fitted

Up to a depth of 26cm


Deep fitted

Up to a depth of 32cm


Pillowcases to fit pillow size

Standard: 50 x 75cm

Oxford: 50 x 75cm (excluding border)

Square Oxford: 65 x 65cm (excluding border)

Kingsize: 50 x 90cm

Boudoir: 30 x 40cm

International sizes

Approximate equivalent sizing for non-UK mattresses

Our Single = Twin

Our Double = Full

Our Kingsize = Queen

Our Super Kingsize = King



Best for... efficiency and easy care

  • Made from a blend of durable polyester and soft cotton
  • Comfortable and dries quickly with minimal ironing

Egyptian cotton

Best for... softness and a huge choice of colours

  • Renowned as one of the finest cottons in the world
  • Soft, strong, lightweight, longer lasting
  • Cool in the summer and warm in the winter
  • Our main range Egyptian cotton is grown on the rich land of the Nile delta, woven in plain percale weave with a 200 thread count.
  • We also stock Egyptian cotton bed linen with various thread counts up to 1000
  • Requires minimal ironing

Cotton & brushed cotton

Best for... versatility and soft comfort

  • The world’s most widely used natural fibre
  • Versatile
  • Soft and comfortable
  • Lightweight and breathable
  • Brushed cotton is woven from 100% cotton, delicately brushed to achieve a soft and cosy feel

GOTS (organic) cotton

GOTS (the Global Organic Textile Standard) is recognised as the world's highest processing standard for textiles made from certified, organically-produced raw materials. 

  • GOTS assures that throughout the entire supply chain, from organic farm to product packaging, environmentally and socially responsible manufacturing processes and raw materials are used
  • GOTS also ensures that the supply chain reduces waste, energy and water use
  • Currently you can buy GOTS cotton from us in this John Lewis & Partners range


Best for... anti-allergenic natural luxury

  • Enhanced breathability – cool in summer and warm in winter
  • Pleasant, fresh and cool feeling
  • Natural pH balance and anti-static
  • Regulates your temperature as you sleep
  • Pure linen is bacteria resistant for anti-allergenic properties
  • Twice as durable as cotton


Best for... the feel of silk with the ease of cotton

  • A fine, silky smooth finish, thanks to 1000 fine yarns in every square inch
  • Machine washable for ease and suitable for tumble drying
  • Exceptional strength and quality
  • Luxurious feel with coolness to the fabric
Bed Linen Example


Thread count refers to the number of threads in one square inch of fabric. It applies to threads woven vertically – known as the 'warp’ – and threads woven horizontally – known as the ‘weft’.

The feel and quality of bed linen is based on more than thread count: fine, high-quality thread and different weave types create duvet covers, pillowcases and bed sheets that feel softer against the skin. Our bed linen ranges go from 180 to 1600 thread count.


Percale weave

A matt finish with exquisite crispness for a fresh and cool feel against your skin

Satin weave

Soft with a subtle sheen and smooth touch: perfect if you love the feel of silky bed linen


Specially woven with two colour threads to create the distinctive chambray look

Brushed cotton

Woven from 100% cotton, delicately brushed to achieve a super soft and cosy feel

Jacquard weave

Created on a jacquard loom, producing a pattern or image through the weave construction itself

Textured weave

A dobby loom can produce decorative patterned weaves, for a touch of textured luxury

Rotary print

Print technology offers vibrant colours and patterns, ensuring that colours last longer

Digital print

A specialist technique for photographic images, achieving optimal colour and detail


Bedspreads, throws and cushions add decorative character to your bed: use them to layer up on warmth and comfort, or to add the finishing touch to your carefully made bed.


Great for warmth, it can be fine and lightweight or chunky with a heavier weight. Dry clean to avoid shrinkage


Cashmere is a soft, warm and luxurious natural fibre combed from the underbelly of the cashmere goat


Alpaca fleece is warmer yet lighter than sheep's wool, thanks to hollow-cored fibres that hold in your natural body heat


Easy care and often machine washable, acrylic is available in a wide variety of finishes – from fine to chunky


Cotton is cool and lightweight, with natural fibres making it breathable. It's also machine washable


The ‘easy care’ choice for bed linen: polyester dries quickly and keeps its colour and size through washes


Plain bag / standard duvet cover

A plain bag or standard duvet cover encases your duvet, with the seams tucked away

Standard pillowcase

A standard 50x75cm size pillow, also referred to as a housewife pillowcase

Square pillowcase

Also known as 'shams', these large pillows offer support and decoration

Boudoir pillow

Small decorative pillows to layer the bed

Oxford border

A decorative border of fabric at the edge of the standard size seamed pillowcase or duvet cover

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