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Winter blankets: Create the cosiest bed ever with these layering tips
Everyone loves snuggling into a cosy bed when it's cold outside, don't they? Creating a winter-time nest by layering plenty of winter blankets and throws makes for a bedroom style that's warm and welcoming - the perfect place to sip on a cuppa or read a good book before nodding off.
Snug bedding can also help you get a good night's rest. Research shows we sleep better in a cooler room, so that nice warm blanket cocoon saves on heating energy and makes for a better-quality snooze.
How to stay toasty? Rather than popping on one big heavy cover, layering is the way to go if you want to maximise cosiness. All those warm air zones between blankets keep you snug through the night. Plus, you can always remove some if you get overheated.
Here's how to layer blankets for the warmest (and most stylish) bed this winter. Sweet dreams!
Start With A Knit
Once you've got your fitted sheet and top sheet in place, it's time for your first winter blanket layer. This shouldn't be too thick and heavy. Ideally, you want a looser knit or weave, something with plenty of little spaces to create warm air pockets right next to you as you sleep.
A cotton waffle blanket is a great option, with the added bonus of keeping breathable natural fabrics close to your skin. Any knitted or loose-weave throw will work, just make sure it's nice and soft to the touch. For added cosiness, sandwich another sheet on top - this is what fancy hotels do to create luxurious warmth for their guests.
We tend to think that blankets are the things that keep us warm - but actually it's the other way around! Layers of blankets trap our body heat inside, keeping us nice and cosy through the night. The trick is to balance warmth with breathability.
Make It Snug With Outer Blankets
Next comes a toasty outer layer (or two if it's extremely chilly!) Here we need something quite heavy and dense to insulate all that good warm air and keep it inside. Think quilted coverlets, wool blankets or throws in plush or fleece - nice and weighty and touchable.
Remember that this outer blanket will be on show once your bed is made up, so aim for warm and welcoming colours and textures for that extra cosy look. Velvets and faux furs are snuggly and glam. Cords and quilts are invitingly touchable. Choose something that says 'good night's sleep' to you.
If you're using two outer blankets, try laying one over the whole bed, and fold the second one down about one third from the top. This shows off the style and feel of both blankets and creates a fuller, fluffier look on the bed.
Finish With A Throw (Or Two)
A decorative throw or two completes your cosy nesting look. What says 'snug' to you? Try soft and inviting textures like knits and chenilles - or look at throws edged with tassels or pom poms for a touch more fun.
Having a throw at the foot of your bed makes it easy to grab when you want to curl up in a reading chair, or pull up for extra warmth when you're ready for sleep. Fold your throw lengthwise and place it over the foot of your bed, or go for a more casual look and drape it over one corner.
Warm lighting, scented candles and some extra plush pillows will complete your snug winter-time sanctuary.
Choose The Right Fabric For You
Cotton blankets with plenty of texture (like waffle knits) make ideal, naturally breathable, inner blanket layers. Use them in winter with other coverings, or on their own for light summer bedding.
Make a cosy statement with luxe faux fur or faux shearling sherpa blankets for an extra fluffy and inviting bed. Teens will love this look (and so will lots of adults).
Fleece, plush, teddy
Plush blankets like fleeces and teddy throws trap warm air in their textured fibres and make a wonderful outer blanket option. Choose complementary colours or go for a single statement hue that's rich and cosy-looking.
Knits and weaves
Looser knits and weaves are ideal inner blanket layers, providing plenty of little pockets for warm air to be stored. For decorative throws, choose interesting textures and patterns that work into the rest of your bedding scheme.
Soft and touchable - and undeniably glam - velvet is wonderfully cuddly, and can have a great sheen, too. Its density and thickness makes it a fabulously snug choice for your outer blanket.
Wool is a hard-wearing and naturally breathable choice that will give your cosy bed scheme a classic look and feel. Wool blankets are a great choice for an outer blanket, or a knitted inner layer.
For more useful info on blankets and throws, head to our blanket and throws buying guide.