Special Nonexistent Furniture

Bedspread Buying Guide

Wayfair Guides
Whether you're looking for easy-care or luxurious bedding, we're here to answer your questions about bedspreads (the general name for all top-layer bedding). In this guide, learn the difference between comforters, duvets, coverlets, and quilts. We will also give you important information about caring for your bedspread.


A decorative top layer, comforters usually come with coordinating pillow shams or accent pillows. 

Comforters are filled with layers of material, such as polyester batting, down feathers, down alternatives, wool, or silk. They are stitched or quilted to keep the filling in place and evenly distributed. The thickness or loft of the filling material determines the weight and the warmth level of the comforter.

Warmth: Many comforters come in weights, so if you live in a warm climate or would like to use the comforter in warm months, opt for a lighter weight. The opposite applies for cold climates. Often people will swap out comforters for lightweight quilts, coverlets, or blankets in warm seasons.

Care Instructions: An easy-to-care-for bedding option, most comforters are machine washable.


Duvet and Duvet Cover

Duvets are similar to comforters in that they are filled with layers of material. A common fill is down feathers, but other options are down alternatives, polyester batting, wool, or silk.

Unlike comforters, duvets are generally plain white and are used as inserts for a colored or patterned duvet cover. Aside from being decorative, duvet covers also protect the duvet from stains and spills. This is important because duvets can often be expensive if made from natural materials. Duvets should fit snugly inside the cover and are usually sold separately from each other. If you change bedding seasonally or as your style shifts, a duvet and cover might be for you since it's easy to switch up. 

Warmth: Like comforters, duvets often come in weights. For warm seasons or climates, choose a lightweight duvet, and the opposite is true for cold seasons and climates. In warm months, some people opt to switch out their duvets for lighter weight coverlets and quilts.

Care Instructions: Duvet covers can easily be removed and thrown into the wash for cleaning.



Quilts are commonly made with three layers: a woven cloth top, a layer of batting, and a woven cloth bottom. These layers are stitched together, often in a decorative pattern. Customarily, the top layer of quilts are sewn together from many different fabrics, while a single piece of fabric is used for the bottom layer.

They are traditionally made to mark important live events, such as marriage, graduations, new babies, and more. Quilts can also be used as blankets in other rooms and hung on walls as decorations—especially if they're vintage or have a special meaning.

Warmth: Quilts are ideal for warm seasons and climates or as an extra layer when it's cold.

Care Instructions: The common way to care for a quilt is to wash it in cold water on gentle with a mild detergent in a home washing machine. If a quilt has lace or applique work, dry cleaning may be the best option. Lay flat or on a rack to dry.



This lightweight, non-reversible bedding is designed to be used as a decorative layer over thicker or warmer bedspreads. Today's coverlets can sometimes have a thin layer of batting, which makes them warm enough to use on their own. 

Coverlets are usually quilted or woven. Many decorative coverlets use matelassé, a centuries-old stitching technique that creates ornate quilted patterns, such as diamond, floral, and herringbone. Often, coverlets are sold with coordinating shams. They can also be used as a throw blanket in other rooms.

Warmth: Like quilts, coverlets work well in warm seasons and climates or as an extra layer in cold months.

Care Instructions: Be careful when washing a coverlet. Wash it much the same way as you would a quilt, in a home washing machine with cold water and a mild detergent on gentle. Partially dry the coverlet in a dryer on low heat and delicate. Remove when still damp to avoid shrinking. Do not line dry.

It's important to care for your bedding properly. Read the instructions on your duvet, comforter, coverlet, or quilt before washing or dry cleaning.

    Bedding Sets
    Coverlets & Quilts