Good quality duvets are expensive, filled with luxury goose down they should last for at least 10 years or more if properly cared for. Duvets should not ideally be washed as some washing machines can ruin the fillings. Many high street commercial laundries do not understand how to look after your quilt and cannot understand why you are so disappointed when they ruin your investment. Some duvets are sold as all seasons, this is where two duvets of different TOG ratings can be used separately or together to give you the ideal temperature settings in both winter and summer. Normally you get a 4.5 TOG summer quilt and a warmer 9 TOG duvet that can be used in both autumn and winter, the two combined makes a super warm 13.5 TOG which is ideal for those really chilly months around December, January and February.
Good storage is essential if you only use your duvet at certain times of the year, most manufacturers supply them in a handy storage box but if this is not the case then you will need to purchase a good quality bag with a zipper to keep out the dust and moisture. Just before you store any items give them a good shake and air them out for 24 hours so they smell fresh before going into the airing cupboard for the next few months.
All bedding should be kept dry so a good place like a linen cupboard or linen box is essential as they allow good circulation and prevent the build up of moisture and dampness which can affect your duvet and makes it smell which is not ideal. Once the fabric is affected it is near impossible to remove the smell completely unless is it fully washed and dried which is not good for the fibres and natural down. Try to use a place that is not subject to different levels of both warm and cool climates, excess heat can make the filling dry out and become less effective at removing moisture from the body when you sleep, cotton also dries out when exposed to different heat levels. Also think of where you store the bedding, if you are in the country garages and attics may not be ideal as they are a haven for small insects and if you are unlucky you could have a winter mouse infestation. They would make a bee line for your quilt as this also offers them the best protection from the cold weather.
Once you have stored the duvet and now want to use it again, try to take it out a few days before you wish to use it and air it out on a washing line if possible, the air will revitalise the fillings making them fresh again. A good shake is all that is needed to make the duvet plump and ready to do its job once more. In order to keep it clean, use a good cotton duvet cover and wash this weekly, not only will this protect your duvet but it will also help keep dust mites at bay which are a menace to allergy sufferers. The same applies to summer weight duvets that are made from pure cotton, the fillings react to light, heat and moisture in the same way so it is good practice to look after your quilt from day one. Some of our Hungarian goose down duvets can cost a small fortune but the benefits of a good night’s sleep are well worth the investment.
European sourced down is well documented as being some of the finest, lightest and most efficient, so look for a good quality manufacturer that gives you the correct information such as Fill Power, source of Filling, complies to UK BS manufacturing codes, ethical farming policies and good environmental practices, as some of the cheaper duvets use harmful chemicals in the cleaning process and they also use caustic bleaches in order to make the filling pure white. A good thing to remember is that there is no such thing as a pure white goose or duck so if your fillings are ultra white you can bet that they have been bleached which will make the feathers and down brittle. Spend wisely and invest in your sleep, you only live once.