Get creative if you want to stay warm through winter. One of my solutions is to head to bed early, bury myself in blankets and get lost in a good book. If you'd like your bed to be a warm and welcoming cocoon this fall, try some of these tricks.
Go Green with Bamboo Sheets. I admit it -- I'm a sheet snob. I love white cotton sheets with as high a thread count as I can get, finished with stylish touches like embroidered lace and monograms. So it was with some hesitation that I took a friend's advice and switched from Egyptian cotton to the new bamboo sheets everyone is raving about. Now I've joined the chorus of women of a "certain age" who adore bamboo sheets because they breathe, even during the worst hot flashes. Chances are you, too, will become a fan of these environmentally friendly, hypoallergenic sheets that are silky to the touch, yet not weighty.
Pick the Perfect Pillows. When you spend as many hours reading in bed as I do, you need just the right-sized pillow to support your back and neck. I've found my ideal match with Euro shams. No longer just a great-looking bedding accessory, these large, square pillows will be the hardest-working accents on your bed. If you're feeling practical, try matelasse cases that you can launder easily. Or, have your Euros custom-made using several fabrics and trim details that accentuate your duvet or quilt.
Toss in a Throw Blanket. Since I'm a fan of Sunday naps, I need a warm throw blanket on my bed. This fall I'm transferring the adorable cable-knit throw, which usually adorns my sofa, up to my bed. However, it might get sent back downstairs again soon because I'm thinking of using a Pashmina shawl as a throw blanket instead. Made of cashmere wool, these incredibly soft shawls make fabulous throws because they feel wonderful next to your skin. Get one in an accent color that will add a pop to the foot of your bed.
Ditch the Dust Ruffle. An increasing number of my customers are saying goodbye to dust ruffles. They don't like how easy dust ruffles are to step on and tear, or how they tend to get dirty. If you're of like mind, and if the sides of your bed are beautiful enough to be exposed, you can toss your ruffle, too. Instead, cover your unsightly box spring with a mattress pad and high-quality fitted sheet so it looks as if it's been upholstered.
Feather Your Bed. Every fall, I pull out my featherbed topper to place on my mattress. I feel like a princess, floating on clouds of soft feathers. Some of my friends complain that a featherbed topper makes their beds too warm, so if you get hot when you sleep, they may not be for you.
Get Colorful. If you're in the mood to redo your bedding, think about adding pumpkin to your color palette. Pumpkin is the hot color this season, and I adore this cheery hue because it goes with just about every accent color imaginable -- apple green, navy, cream, even bright pink. When you tackle your new bedding set, re-examine your entire bedroom. Often, this hardworking room is last on our list when it comes to decorating. If your bedroom is a bit sad and shabby, give the walls some new paint, consider more functional furniture, think about better lighting and add some fresh accessories.