Featherbed Guide: Don’t Get the Wrong Featherbed

A featherbed is a feather-filled mattress that is usually placed on top of a regular mattress. The prospect of sleeping in a comfortable, feather-soft bed may be tempting enough to make you buy the first featherbed you see. However, to buy the best featherbed for your needs, spend a little time researching the market and analyzing your preferences. Because the best featherbeds last a long time, you want to be sure you make a good investment.

>> Who is the bed is for?

Buying a featherbed is in many ways just like buying a regular bedroom furniture bed: take into account who the bed is for. This is closely tied not only to the size of the bed but also to individual preferences and, often, budgetary considerations, which may be a concern if you are considering a featherbed vs. memory foam.

If you consider the best featherbeds for your comfort level to be the softest, look for ones made with 100 percent white goose down; these tend to be the most expensive. A combination of white goose down and duck down is a more affordable option. Consider these factors when you are figuring out how to buy a featherbed to get a step closer to the right choice for you.

>> What size featherbed do you want?

One of the most important things to consider when determining how to buy a featherbed is the size of your bed. Just like mattresses and accessories for bedding, featherbeds are available in twin, double, queen, king and California king bed sizes. If you want a featherbed for the bed that you currently have, you can simply match the size. For example, if you have a twin bedroom furniture set, you will want to look for a twin size featherbed.

You want your featherbed topper to fit your bed, so if you are not sure about the dimensions of your existing mattress, measure it. The best featherbed will completely cover your bed.

>> Consider the construction of the featherbed

The construction is an important featherbed feature to consider when you are thinking about how to buy a featherbed.

Baffles are stitches that run in squares (in the case of baffle boxes) or stripes (in the case of baffle channels) and prevent down from shifting from one part of the featherbed to another. Baffles ensure that there are no cold spots, that the down can expand to its furthest limit and that your comforter has some depth. The highest quality and the most comfortable featherbeds have baffles.

Gusseting refers to stitches that run parallel to the four sides of the featherbed.

If you are looking for the best featherbeds to buy, look for baffles. If you are looking for more affordable options, you can buy a featherbed without baffling, in which case you will have to fluff and adjust the filling more frequently.

>> Consider the thread count

Take a look at the thread count when deciding how to buy a featherbed. Thread count indicates how many threads have been used to weave one square inch of fabric on the featherbed. As a rule of thumb, the best featherbeds have a higher thread count. This is because the more tightly woven the fabric is, the less likely the filling will escape. A tightly woven cotton covering, also known as ticking, means a more comfortable and smoother feel. Look for featherbeds with a minimum thread count of 200.

>> What support do you need?

The right kind of featherbed support has a direct bearing on your comfort. If you prefer a universal support layer, look for a featherbed that has only down filling. If you need a more layered support for a good night's rest, choose a featherbed that has another firmer layer under the down.
>> Consider the filling

Traditionally, featherbeds are made of goose down or duck down or both. A goose down featherbed is the softest and perhaps the most comfortable type of featherbed; duck down featherbeds are similar to their goose down counterparts but heavier. The more economic options are made of a feather and down mixture. The proportions in which these are blended determine the quality and price of a featherbed.

If you are allergic to natural feathers, look for hypoallergenic options. These have the same softness and comfort but are made with various kinds of synthetic down alternatives that can give you the same feel without triggering allergies.

Because a featherbed may become your most used piece of bedroom furniture, you will want to take good care of it. Consider buying a cover that will protect it from spills and spots and will extend the life of your featherbed. Refer to your featherbed's care instructions on cleaning, and use professionals to do that job if necessary. Your featherbed will be an investment that will pay off by providing you with many years of comfort.

Fence Guide: Don't Get the Wrong Fence

Fences are a very popular addition to various properties, homes and businesses. When thinking about how to buy a fence, there are a few points you will want to keep in mind.

>> What do you want the fence for?
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When first thinking about how to buy a fence, consider what you want to use the fence for. Security fences are usually six feet high or higher and are intended to keep people and animals out of your property. With these fences, consider pickets for added protection.

Similarly, private fences are tall to keep your privacy at a maximum. Safety fences are for pets and to prevent wildlife from coming onto your backyard. The best options for safety fences are wire fences and chain link fences, as well as plastic meshes with metal posts. You can also add a coating to the fence so that it better blends in with the environment.

Decorative fences are usually waist to chest high in level. These fences are best for establishing property lines, adding an aesthetic element to your landscape or embellishing the curb. You can space out the pickets and add latticework or ornaments as you see fit. Other uses include gardening, farming and other such pursuits.

>> Consider the types of fences

When determining how to buy a fence, consider the different types of fences available to you and how they pertain to your needs.

• Wood panel fences are typically sectioned six to eight feet and are four to six feet tall. They are used for decoration and privacy, but are also great for creating boundaries for children and pets. Wood panel fences are available with pointed pickets. You can also paint this fence to better match your landscape. An alternative to wood panel fences are composite fences made from plastic. These fence designs require less maintenance and have the appearance of real wood.
• Post-and-rail fences have split or round rails ranging from eight to eleven feet, and two posts that are usually from three to five feet high. These fences are best for defining areas in your landscape or drawing property lines. This fence style also gives your property a rustic, country appearance.
• Decorative metal fences are made from aluminum or steel, but give off an appearance of iron. They come in a plethora of sizes and designs and they are easy to install. Decorative metal fences are also available as no dig fences.
• Chain-link fences are made from steel wires. They are intended to enclose areas to keep pets in and other animals out. These fence designs can be coated with vinyl for weather-resistance and for better appearance.
• Picket fences are made of vertical blocks attached to horizontal rails. They are a very flexible fence style and can complement many different properties. They offer some ornamental value but are better for defining the boundaries of your property.
• Garden fences are usually two to four feet high. They not only serve an ornamental purpose in your landscape, but they are also used for keeping animals from entering into your garden. Garden fences can also be coated with vinyl, typically brown or green. Consider using these types of fences with rail fencing for containment in bigger areas.
• Farming fences feature gates, panels, heavy wire and barbed wire. They are used to contain your animals and keep others out.
• Pool fences are meant to enclose a pool area for safety. There are fences for both in-ground and above-ground pools. Pool fences can be aluminum, iron, wood or mesh. They can be made climbable or come with a gate and latch.
• Electric fences are intended to contain your animals in an enclosed space and keep other animals out. When thinking about this type of fence, consider how much voltage you want and what material you want the fence to be.

>> Determine the fence dimensions

When deciding how to buy a fence, consider the fence sizes of each section. Some fences will come sectioned off, while others will come in rolls. Consult the following table as you continue thinking about how to buy a fence.

Size of light-duty posts Post height above ground Fence section width 3 feet 2 feet 24 -28 inches 4 feet 3 feet 28 -36 inches 5 feet 4 feet 48 inches 6 feet 5 feet 60 inches Size of heavy-duty posts Post height above ground Fence section width 5 feet 3.5 feet 36 inches 6 feet 4.5 feet 48 inches 7 feet 5.5 feet 60 inches Genearlly, heavy-duty posts are for the corners of your fence while light-duty posts are for the straight sections.

>> Consider the material of your fence

When figuring out how to buy a fence, consider the material of the fence.

• Fences made out of steel or aluminum are typically chain-link for protection or wrought iron for decoration. Metal fences can rust, so make sure to look for rust-resistant metals or ones with coatings. This fence design is available in many different color and styles. Fences made out of steel and aluminum are uniform and look the same from all sides.
• Fences made from stone, concrete and metal are best for protection and privacy. They can be either assembled or molded on site and then can be made to match the look of your house or left natural.
• Fences made out of vinyl can give the appearance of wood or metal minus the maintenance requirements of each. Vinyl fences are flexible and durable. They resist peeling and deterioration.
• Fences made of wood are extremely versatile. They come in a wide variety of styles, including panel and post-and-rail. Consider using wooden fences with metal poles to prevent the wood form touching the ground to ensure a longer life.

Think about these materials when making your fence comparison as the material influences the look and durability of your fence.