The words we use to describe our bedding have changed across time and between countries. But what do they actually mean, and where do the words come from in the first place?
It’s a duvet to most of us now, but my grandmother tucked us up under an eiderdown and if you ask an American for a comforter you might get a duvet, or a dummy shoved in your mouth.
Duvets, Quilts and Eiderdowns all mean the same thing essentially: two pieces of fabric stitched together with a layer of filling in between. Traditionally of course the filling would be duck or goose feather / down – and not the polyester, microfibre or hollowfibre fillings we often use nowadays.
Comforters are also made in the same way but this word seems to just be used by Americans. Fillings can be either natural or synthetic, just like duvets, though it can sometimes be thinner than a full duvet. The term is most often used in the USA. Comforters are often used with a top sheet as well. Like a duvet, they come in a variety of sizes, but don’t seem to reference TOG ratings, but rather warmth seems to be referred to by Fill Power!
For more information about down types including ‘eider down’, go to our ‘About Down’ page here.