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The Ultimate Quilt & Doona Buying Guide
Your quilt is a vital element of any bed - it keeps you warm, comfortable and also plays a big role in decorating both your bed and the space around it. But choosing the right quilt means wading through a mass of different fillings, cover materials, sizes and thicknesses - how do you find the right combination to suit your specific needs? That's why the bedding experts at Spotlight have created this handy quilt buying guide! This quilt guide will go through everything you know about finding the best quilts for your home, with a few care tips and brand recommendations thrown in as well.
- Quilt vs Doona - Which Is Which?
- Quilt Size Guide
- What Is Loft?
- What Are The Kinds Of Quilt Fillings?
- What Does GSM Mean In Quilts?
- Brands That Provide The Best Quilts In Australia
- How To Wash A Doona Or Quilt
Quilt vs Doona - Which Is Which?
In Australia, the terms quilt and doona are often used interchangeably. Both terms refer to the filled blanket you place on the top of your bed that is often paired with a decorative cover. The technical term is quilt, but 'doona' became popular when it was first used by the Australian bedding brand Tontine. Doona referred to a type of quilt made by the brand, and it became so popular across Australia that many still use it today when talking about their bedding!
The third party in the quilt vs doona debate is the 'duvet', which you see used in Britain, while in the US it is sometimes called a 'comforter'.
Quilt Size Guide
When choosing the size for your quilt, you can always safely go with the same size as your mattress - so a single, double, queen or king quilt to match your mattress. If you want more quilts to move around with or you find yourself fighting for the quilt with your partner, you can also go up a size. It will drape far over the sides of your bed, but this may be the elegant, oozing-comfort look you are going for!
See the below quilt size chart for your convenience:
140 x 210
Single bed & bunk beds
180 x 210
Double bed and king single
210 x 210
245 x 210
SUPER KING QUILT
270 x 240
Super king bed
What Is Loft?
When we talk about the 'loft' of a quilt, we are referring to the fluffiness and density of the quilt filling. Low loft quilts will be thinner and lighter, whereas a high loft quilt will be softer and thicker with a more obvious increase in size.
If you want a more luxurious and fluffy quilt then look for a high loft quilt. For a lighter summer quilt, low loft is the way to go.
What Are The Kinds Of Quilt Fillings?
The major factor in determining how your quilt functions is what it is filled with. The filling can determine how warm your quilt feels, how breathable it is, how it can be washed and if it has any antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.
One of Australia's favourite quilt fillings is wool, which is a natural and sustainable material and a high loft quilt classic. A warm and insulating natural fibre, wool creates a microclimate that is excellent at regulating body temperature and humidity. This means it's a great choice for sleep partners with differing body temperature needs.
Wool is not naturally hypoallergenic so allergy sufferers or asthmatics should check if the filling has been treated to manage this issue or not, otherwise it may irritate them. Wool quilts are also mainly dry clean only. Check the care instructions before buying if this could be a problem for you.
Feather and down quilts
Down - soft, fluffy duck feathers - is a popular, natural choice for sleepers who want comfort and warmth but also want to retain a light and lofty feel. It is a natural insulator and helps reduce sweating. Down is often mixed with feathers in a quilt - the more down there is, the softer, lighter and warmer your quilt or doona will be. These quilts usually come in a boxed style (where the quilt is sewn into smaller squares) which means the filling is distributed more evenly.
Feather quilts and doonas are similar to down but feel heavier. Renowned for their warmth and cosiness, they're usually safe for those who suffer from allergies.
Another lightweight filling that absorbs moisture well, cotton helps you sleep cooler during summer or in warmer climates, as well as keeping you reasonably comfortable in the cold. As a natural fibre, it is machine-friendly, durable and usually well-suited to people with allergies.
Bamboo/bamboo blend quilts
Increasingly popular as a sustainable and hypoallergenic choice, bamboo quilts offer comfort and breathability.
Eco-friendly bamboo fibres are lightweight and softer than man-made fibres, and they don't irritate the skin. Perfect for allergy sufferers, it's naturally anti-bacterial and naturally resistant to dust mites, mould, bacteria, fungus and odour.
Bamboo also draws moisture away from the body, increases absorbency and offers a consistently good night's sleep.
Synthetic fibres are man-made and come in several different types, including polyester and microfibre. Polyester is popular due to its low maintenance and high loft, while microfibre is finer than polyester and may feel similar to down.
Synthetic quilts are easy to throw in the washing machine and fast drying, which is ideal if you expect to be washing a lot. They are soft and lofty, as well as hypoallergenic and odourless for sensitive sleepers. They're usually lower priced than natural fibres but, although they are relatively durable, they tend not to last as long.
Here is a comparison table of the benefits and drawbacks of each type of quilt:
- Temperature regulating
- Can be hard to clean
- Can trigger allergies
- Can be more expensive
- Soft and fluffy
- May occasionally trigger allergies
- Light and soft
- Retains moisture
Bamboo/bamboo blend quilts
- Viscose is a processed material
- Easy to wash
- Not as breathable
What Does GSM Mean In Quilts?
GSM stands for grams per square metre, and in regard to quilts, it refers to the number of grams of filling per square metre inside the quilt. A higher GSM will indicate a higher amount of filling, which then leads to a warmer, fluffier quilt. Under 250GSM will mean your quilt is light and cool, perfect for summer, while a GSM of 450 or more will be a cosy quilt for winter.
Brands That Provide The Best Quilts In Australia
At Spotlight you can find some of the best quilts in Australia that many quality brands can offer. Some of our favourite quilt brands include:
- Tontine - an Australian favourite, Tontine created the iconic Doona and is known for providing quality bedding to Aussie families for over 60 years. Tontine is passionate about sustainability, supporting charities and using Australian materials such as wool and duck feather/down.
- KOO - the perfect balance of luxury and affordability, KOO quilts are comfortable, long lasting and great value of money. The range includes premium wool, feather and bamboo blend quilt varieties.
- EverRest - this Danish brand has been in the bedding business for over 20 years, with its products sold in more than 50 countries across the world. EverRest is known for its quality design and Scandinavian traditions in detailing and organisation.
- Logan and Mason - this Australian-owned brand that creates products perfect for the idyllic Australian lifestyle. Drawing inspiration from global runways, cultures and fashion, Logan and Mason quilts are great for all seasons.
- Jaspa - proudly Australian-owned and making the majority of their products locally, Jaspa has been operating since 1991 and used to be called Aussie Pillows. Many of their quilts feature a high loft for superior comfort with a speciality in wool seen at Spotlight.
How To Wash A Doona Or Quilt
With their multitude of fillings, figuring out how to wash a doona or quilt can be harder than you think. Your quilt should be washed once a year (unless you dirty it and need to wash it immediately) to help keep it fresh. Every quilt will have a tag with specific washing instructions, with the most important feature being whether it is machine washable or not.
Usually, feather/down quilts must be dry cleaned, and polyester and cotton quilts can be machine washed. Wool quilts can go either way, depending on if the wool has been treated for machine washing.
The best way to dry your quilts is outdoors in the sun. This will get rid of any excess moisture and the bright sunlight will kill off any remaining bacteria and can even bleach your white quilt to make it brighter!
Find The Best Quilts At Spotlight
Has this quilt guide helped you? If you are ready to pick the best quilts for your home, choose from our quilt selection and then match it with a gorgeous quilt cover set! Browse the collection of some of the best quilts in Australia online, where you can pay your way and have your order home delivered, or visit your nearest Spotlight store to choose the best quilts in person. Find more amazing bedding in our bedding section online or in-store. And for a handy guide on cleaning your bedding, read our washing bedding guide.