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CONTINENTAL QUILT, DUVET OR DOONA?

Different names for the same thing. Around the world people give it different names.

Duvet, Doona, Quilt, Continental Quilt, Eiderdown, Cotton Blanket - and quite likely many other names are used for this wonderful thing comforting us at night.

Duvets (from the French duvet "down") reduce the complexity of making a bed, as it is a single covering instead of the combination of sheets, blankets, and quilts or other bed covers, which is traditional in many parts of the world. The cover is called a "duvet cover" or a "quilt cover".

In Australia a Duvet or Continental Quilt is called a "Doona", and has become a generic term for a duvet or quilt.

Which Doona is right for my accommodation establishment?

When it comes to doonas there are three main options to choose from: Duck Down Quilts, Microfibre / Down Alternative or Wool.

Duck Down, Feather Doona

 

This is the traditional choice, as the oldest duvets (from the 18th century onwards) were made out of eider duck feather. Feather and down, traps air fantastically well, is light and most importantly big and fluffy! Polar-grade sleeping bags and clothes still commonly use down to keep in the heat, so you know it's warm.

 

Cons: Down doonas cannot be washed by machines and the bacteria loves the pockets of warm air between the feathers. Experts recommend that feather doonas are puffed/beaten, aired and left in the sun every so often to dislodge the smell and dust and kill bacteria. However, even with brand new doonas the minute duck fluff is also known to trigger dust allergies or irritate asthma or eczema conditions.

Also over the years you will need to get the stuffing removed and cleaned professionally to keep away dark stains, funny smells and bed bugs.     

 

Microfibre / Polyester Fill Down Alternative Doona

 

For a hypoallergenic, easy clean option that is still light, fluffy and retains heat fantastically well Microfibre doonas are hard to beat. Microfibre is a blanket term for synthetic fibres. They mimic the warming air trapping that down provides but, as synthetics, are much less prone to gathering bacteria. The majority of Microfibre products are also made with allergy sufferers in mind.

They are fully machine washable, meaning bed bugs and bacteria just won't build up the way they do in down and feather doonas. Microfibre won't clump and gather like feathers do within their chambers. Also microfibre is fully recyclable, so more hotels and larger establishments are choosing it as the more sustainable option.

 

Cons: Fans of Down might find the lack of weight or "real" feeling a turn off. Although microfibre doona technology is always improving, it still takes more microfibre per square cm than down to produce the same amount of heat, so microfibre blankets have to be bigger than down to get the same effect; inevitably they are a similar size but a little cooler.

 

Wool Doonas

 

The often forgotten third option, wool doonas are a warm and insulating option that retain heat exceptionally well. It is also friendly to allergy sufferers and machine washable, and a more "natural" option than microfibre for those that dislike synthetic materials. Plus wool is fire retardant.

Wool doonas and products will often be advertised with a "GSM" measurement - this refers to grams per metre and basically describes the weight of the material. Weight does not always equal quality, but it is one good indication of how thick and solid your doona will be.

 

Cons: Wool, even in doona form, is heavier and "flatter" than down or microfibre. You won't get that "sleeping in a cloud" feeling that down is famous for (and that Microfibre imitates). The thinness doesn't bother some people but in bedding the "fluff" or "cuddle" factor is as important as the practicality!

 

In the end it's your choice.

At John Batman Group we recommend microfibre quilts. They are a comfy option all year round and are perfect for climate-controlled properties. They are very easy to care for without the weight of wool.

To view our range of Quilts please click here.