When it comes to bedding, Annie’s a firm believer in building a “wardrobe,” much like you’d build your personal wardrobe. Having a variety of linens and accents on hand ensures that you can rotate items (which helps them last longer, and saves you beaucoup bucks) and keeps your bed looking fresh and unique from season to season. Here are her tips for putting together your dream bed.
- Start with the good-quality, classic basics; this is investment dressing. Buy the best-quality sheets and covers you can afford, like fine linen—they’ll last for years to come and will become luxuriously soft with time and washing.
- Find the main event—this could be the quilt, coverlet, the duvet cover, or whatever you’d like your focal point of the bed to be. Think of this like you would a dress or a beautiful top, and base your color palette for the rest of the “outfit” on this piece.
- Make a neutral bed more interesting by mixing tones from bright white to ivory, sand, and chocolate, or go with a couple of similar shades in a variety of textures and dressmaker details like pintucks and ruffles. If you’re dressing an all-white bed, for example, add tons of different antique shams in a range of whites—this is where you’ll get the drama factor. For a colorful bed, choose a fun pattern for the quilt or duvet, then mix in vibrant, coordinating solids in the same palette.
- For each “main event” duvet or quilt you own, have three coordinating sheets sets—one on the bed, one in the wash, and one in the linen closet—so you can switch up the look for different seasons. Go for one basic white or ivory set, one embellished set, and perhaps one patterned set that works with your main event.
- Add a matelassé or blanket—or both!—depending on the season, for extra warmth and a rich, cozy quality that will make you want to dive in every night. Here is where you can add another color or texture that works well with your main event.
- Box springs are, well . . . not pretty. Camouflage yours with a simple box-spring cover for a tidy, finished look; a tailored bed skirt for a streamlined, more contemporary look; or a gathered or ruffled skirt for a softer, more feminine look.
- Once the basics are in place, add some Euro pillows across the back of the bed; match them to the bed skirt, if you’re using one. Include two Euros for a queen-size bed and three for a king-size, plus two standard or king-size pillows for sleeping, and two standard or king-size decorative pillows. Matching the decorative pair to the coverlet, duvet, or quilt gives the bed a polished look.
- The final touches are a throw and one or more decorative pillows. Select colors or patterns that highlight one or more of the colors in the overall palette. This is a great place for giving your bed an affordable seasonal change-up. It’s like buying a new scarf to perk up your navy suit!