The new-look layering for your bed

How to dress a bed
Jennifer Morgan,-Interiors Editor

Colder months mean more layers – and we’re not just talking about your winter wardrobe…

Yes, cosy can be chic – your bed is the perfect place to experiment with your style, building up layers of colour, pattern and texture as well as embracing the change of season. As top interiors stylist Sally Denning says: ‘I’ve styled so many beds over the years, but a relaxed look is key for me – it’s all about keeping it inviting and piled high with different textures.’

How to dress a bed

Start with small updates

Swap your plain duvet cover and pillowcase for something textured – it’s a great way of introducing a new element to your scheme, as Jody Ewen, Partner & Assistant Buyer, Decorative Bed Linens, explains: ‘Natural linen bedding is a quick and easy way to soften a room scheme, giving a more relaxed style.’

Prop your pillows up for hotel chic or stack one on top of the other for a casual look. Top pillows – which you remove to sleep – help maintain that just-ironed look each morning. ‘Coming home to a made bed after a long day is one of life’s little pleasures,’ says Jody.

Restyle your bedside table too, clearing the clutter and adding a new scented candle, diffuser or shapely vase and a bedside lamp (go for a pendant if space is tight), and pile up those magazines you’ve been wanting to read for a while.

How to dress a bed

Throw on textured layers

For an extra touch of luxury, add a throw or bedspread. Use a quilted one to introduce texture – think velvet, silk or linen – and look for a design with a linen or cotton reverse, offering two looks in one. Pay attention to the quilting on your bedspread, as narrow lines of stitching in one direction tend to give a sleeker, more contemporary look than large ‘squares’ – often formed by single stitches or French knots – which are puffy for a more indulgent feel.

A throw is a great cover-up, but follow a two-thirds/one-third rule when it comes to styling – just use on the bottom section of your bed, giving bed linens and cushions a chance to shine. ‘A simple, great-quality throw can be just as impactful as a selection of cushions,’ says Jody.

How to dress a bed

Pile up cushions to make it cosy

Enter the age-old interiors debate – just how many cushions should be on your bed? ‘There is no such thing as too many,’ says Jody.

‘I like lots of cushions on a bed – it’s all about cosiness for me,’ says Sally. ‘I tend to mix big oversized linen cushions, which are ideal for when you’re reading, with smaller rustic linen ones and an accent one in velvet. Mixing and matching colours and textures makes for a relaxed, layered look.’

How to dress a bed

Add a blanket – or two

Finish your bed with a beautiful blanket – think of it in the same way as that sumptuous scarf that tops your winter coat. ‘You can never have too many blankets,’ says Bethan Harwood, Partner & Home Design Stylist. ‘They are great for the change of season and are perfect for dressing your bed come autumn.’ Look for super-soft alpaca, cashmere or wool.

‘I think it’s important to create a space that you can retreat to, a space that makes you feel truly relaxed,’ says Sally. ‘Choose colours you like and can live with – you don’t want to wake up to a colour that you don’t love.’

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