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Devon Duvets Blog

  1. Why British wool has been prized for over two thousand years

    Why British wool has been prized for over two thousand years

    Wool cloth production in Britain started in the Bronze Age, in around 1900 BC, although fleece from domesticated sheep had been used for warmth as early as 6,000 BC. Initially, wool was combed from the sheep during the time they lost their fleece in the warmer months, with the first evidence of shearing, dating back to the Iron Age.

    Even before the dawning of the 1st century, the Ancient Britons had already developed a woven wool industry. In fact, when the Romans arrived on our shores in 55 BC, British wool cloth was considered a luxury item. The Romans were so impressed by British woven wool cloth that they established a wool plant in Winchester in 50 AD, to further develop the skills of British weavers and ensure a steady supply of this prized item. By the 4th century, the British birrus (hooded cape) was amongst the highest prized and most desirable items listed in The Edict of Diocletian, a summary of traded goods across the Roman Empire.

    Britain continued to export woollen fabrics to mainland Europe, and beyond, throughout the next few centuries, and this gathered momentum after the Norman Conquest in 1066 to such an extent that by the 12th century, wool was England’s greatest national asset. Over the next 500 years, Flemish master weavers settled in the UK, followed by Huguenot weavers from France, all adding their unique skills to the production of British wool cloth. By the end of the 17th century wool cloth amounted to over 65% of the value of British exports. Throughout this time, the wool trade created some of Britain’s wealthiest merchants, who then made sizeable donations towards the building of churches, schools and universities.

    With the Industrial Revolution in the 18th and 19th centuries, mechanical processes for spinning and weaving British wool meant that Britain was able to produce considerably more cloth for the domestic and international market, wit

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  2. Our award winning Botanic duvets are not just for vegans

    Our award winning Botanic duvets are not just for vegans

    What do Venus Williams, Morrissey and Ariana Grande all have in common? They are all passionate Vegans, and this month, over 500,000 people pledged to go vegan. That’s an extra 100,000 from last year!

    Deliveroo’s vegan orders spiked by 163% in 2020 and over 7.2 million Brits alone enjoy a meat free diet. Even the big fast-food brands are offering vegan alternatives to attract the new customers, Greggs vegan sausage roll anyone?

    But being a Vegan isn’t all about facon, oat milk and the search for the perfect vegan cheese. It’s a lifestyle choice that many people embrace. It’s discovering lifestyle alternatives for everyday things like make-up, clothing, homeware and adapting your life to this new way of thinking and being. 

    At Devon Duvets we are very proud of our luxurious, soft award-winning Botanic range of duvets, made from a 100% plant based filling and casing. What’s more, it’s the only duvet of its type to have been Registered by the Vegan Society.

    One of our co-founders, Pauline, says: “There’s a lot of people talking about sustainability but we really, really want to support that, sustainability is, in our view, the way forward in the world and this is why we continually look at how we source our materials and the type of materials that we source.

    For example, for our Botanic duvet, we wanted a product that would be 100% plant-based but was also responsibly sourced, so the Botanic collection is actually made out of wood from FSC forests and an ECO award-winning process is used to turn it into the beautiful fibre that we use in our duvets.”

    So whether you are Vegan, Vegetarian, Pescatarian, Flexitarian, or are just taking steps to make small changes to help the planet…it’s good to know we are all doing our bit.

    If you want to know more about our Botanic duvet range then do get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.

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  3. The care that goes into handcrafting our 100% British wool duvets

    The care that goes into handcrafting our 100% British wool duvets

    We’d like to take you behind the scenes at Devon Duvets to give you a glimpse of the love and care that goes into each step of handcrafting our award-winning certified 100% British wool duvets.

    Firstly, our talented seamstresses cut the 100% natural cotton fabric required for the duvet casing, to the customer’s specific requirements. This could be for a duvet for one of our standard UK or EU sizes or could be a bespoke size for a custom-sized bed, campervan or berth in a yacht. This is still done in the traditional way, using a measuring table and classic dressmaking scissors that are specially sharpened to ensure accuracy and straight lines, and ensures the cotton is not stretched out of shape or torn. Two matching sized pieces of cut cotton fabric are required per duvet casing.

    Next comes the wool – certified 100% British wool, purchased from British farmers. The wool is cleaned in British mills, without the use of chemicals or bleach, and then needled to our exacting specifications to create soft layers with plenty of ‘loft’. The wool arrives at our Devon workshops from the mill in large rolls and so, again, the amount of wool needed for each duvet is measured by hand, carefully cut and then encased inside the cotton fabric, taking great care not to stretch the wool but still ensure there are no areas of the duvet that do not contain the soft woolly filling. Although this is more time consuming, we do it to ensure we create a duvet with a beautiful drape that will wrap around your body for a luxurious slumber.

    The wool layers are then stitched inside the casing, making sure that when you are tucked under your duvet, the wool will always stay nicely in place and so there is no need for shaking the duvet when you make your bed. This is also a time consuming and delicate process and includes ‘overlocking’, done by specialist seamstresses in our team. They use an overlocker sewing machine that stitches the edges whilst trimming at the same time

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  4. Why it is harder to get out of bed on winter mornings

    Why it is harder to get out of bed on winter mornings

    Are you finding it harder to get up and go in the mornings? It’s not just you, we do too!

    Those dark winter mornings are the real culprit behind your morning struggles, along with a bit of science…

    The sleep hormone, Melatonin, stops being produced when the early morning sun rises. However, in winter, we’re not exposed to sunlight as quickly due to the darker mornings. This means our bodies continue to produce Melatonin for longer, making us feel extra sluggish when our alarm clocks sound. You can purchase a ‘light’ alarm clock (also known as sunrise clocks) to help resolve this, as they slowly emit light prior to your alarm, to ease you into wakefulness.

    The reduced amount of sunlight in the winter also has a knock-on effect to your health, as our bodies are receiving less Vitamin D. If we don’t get enough Vitamin D, it can cause us to feel tired and irritable, so it may be worth taking some supplements during the winter months to help combat this.

    Colder temperatures are another thing that keeps us from getting out of bed with more gusto in the winter mornings. We all know how difficult it is to leave the warm and snuggly sensation of your duvet, especially if your bedroom is particularly cold. A solution to this is to have your heating on a timer so that it fires up shortly before you wake, ensuring a nice warm temperature for when you get out of bed.

    Finding the nights too cold or too hot can lead to less restful sleep, causing you to feel even more tired on top of the seasonal waking worries you already have. That’s why our certified 100% British wool duvets are the perfect choice to keep you snuggly this winter. Their temperature regulating and breathable qualities will work with your body temperature and help you to get a better night’s sleep, making it easier to get out of bed in the morning!

    Find out more about our award-winning 100% British wool duvets on our website.

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  5. Why we love Devon

    Why we love Devon

    We know how lucky we are to be based in Devon! When our founders, Dick and Pauline, left their busy international careers 12 years ago, they decided to settle on Dartmoor because they loved the area and wanted to enjoy all its natural beauty and the outdoor lifestyle.

    When they developed their idea for Devon Duvets and started to grow the company, production was moved to an area just outside Plymouth, close to the edge of the moor. At that point, we found another reason to love Devon. We discovered that there are many talented seamstresses who live here and now work with us, putting love and care into handcrafting each of our duvets, pillows and mattress toppers. It makes us very proud to be able to say that our filled bedding products are 100% made in Devon!

    So…Devon is beautiful and has talent but that’s not all!

    Tors, clotted cream, fudge and sheep are usually the things most often associated with Devon, but it is also a county that is full of other enterprising businesses that have based themselves here. We thought we’d share some information on some of our favourites.

    • First up is Twool, an Ashburton-based company that uses wool from Whiteface Dartmoor sheep to make wool twine (perfect for traditional garden use but also great for wrapping gifts), caps, bags and dog leads. Like us, Twool supports British farmers, and has placed responsible sourcing and sustainability at the heart of its business.
    • ViSpring are based just down the road from us and they are manufacturers of high-quality beds. They also make wonderful mattresses, using natural materials, such as cotton and wool. One of their most luxurious mattresses is created using hand teased Devonshire wool.
    • Continuing on the bed theme, Bakare (also based very close to us), make award-winning electric beds, inclu
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  6. Seven Reasons for Choosing a Devon Duvets Wool Duvet

    Seven Reasons for Choosing a Devon Duvets Wool Duvet

    When Devon Duvets was founded back in 2010, we had already made the decision to make wool duvets the focus of our business. Since then, we have gone on to develop other products, but our wool duvets have remained the most popular throughout the years. Beautifully soft, deliciously snuggly in winter, yet cool in summer, wool is a wonderful natural product that turns a duvet into a slice of sleep heaven!

    Thousands of happy customers have already discovered the benefits of a wool duvet but if you’re still pondering if it’s the right choice for your bed, here’s seven reasons to consider a Devon Duvets wool duvet.

    1. Wool is Natural and Sustainable

    In the same way that our hair grows, wool fleece continuously grows and so sheep need shearing to relieve them before it becomes too heavy. We only ever use 100% British wool in our wool duvets, certified by the British Wool organisation – and we only ever use wool from live sheep that have been shorn in the traditional way in spring or summer, when the fleece has grown long over the winter. Our wool is washed (known as ‘scouring’) in British mills without the use of bleaches or chemicals, so our wool duvets are 100% natural.

    2. Wool is Breathable and Temperature Regulating

    As a natural fibre, wool is breathable. This means that, unlike synthetic materials, it will work with your body temperature, retaining heat when you are cold, but releasing heat if you get too warm. Your wool duvet will also work with the ambient temperature in your bedroom, helping to keep you warm if your bedroom is cool, but also radiating heat away from your body in the warmer months. Wool also wicks away moisture. This makes it the ideal duvet filling for temperature regulation and especially if you suffer from ‘night sweats’.

    3. Wool is Wonderfully Soft

    Once our wool has been washed, it is then needled to our exacting specifications, to trap air and create loft. This results in

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  7. This Christmas, Give Yourself the Gift of a Little “Me Time”

    This Christmas, Give Yourself the Gift of a Little “Me Time”

    This past year has a been a particularly challenging one for all of us. That’s why this Christmas you deserve the gift of a little “me time”. It’s important for your mental health and wellbeing that you take time out of your busy schedule to relax and unwind, and that’s why we’ve put together a few tips on the best ways to de-stress this winter.

    With social distancing still very much in effect, we’ve decided on a few of our favourite relaxing pastimes that you can do from the comforts of your own home.

     

    • Make time for that book you’ve been meaning to read. We all love to escape to another world and reading is the perfect way to do just this! We normally all have a book or two that we’ve been meaning to read and just haven’t had the time – so try and make the time! Find a nice cosy corner and tuck yourself away with a good book.
    • Watch your favourite film. With Christmas fast approaching, perhaps it’ll be your festive favourite film that you choose? Grab a mug of hot chocolate and snuggle up on the sofa while you enjoy a classic!
    • Treat yourself to a nice hot bubble bath. Go all out! Get the bath bombs, the scented candles, bubbles for the bath…and maybe even some bubbles for a glass to sip while you’re relaxing!
    • Cosy up in a snuggly duvet! Wrapping up warm when it’s cold out is one of the best feelings in the world. Our duvets are 100% natural, 100% sustainable and 100% individually handcrafted in Devon… giving you the best snuggle factor you could wish for.
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  8. The Story of Devon Duvets is back on TV

    The Story of Devon Duvets is back on TV

    We’re delighted that the programme telling the story of Devon Duvets is back on TV and being aired several times over the coming days! It all began in 2010, when Dick and Pauline Beijen left their busy international careers behind and bought a smallholding on Dartmoor. Keen to live a more sustainable, self-supporting lifestyle, they were soon crafting natural products to sell, and were discussing the possibility of making wool filled duvets with other local farmers.

    It was at this point that they were discovered by the hugely popular TV presenter, Monty Don, who asked the couple if they would feature in the first episode of his new series ‘My Dream Farm’. Monty Don was so excited by Dick and Pauline’s idea to make wool filled duvets that he introduced them to the buyers in the bedding department of John Lewis and it wasn’t long before the idea became a reality and the seamstresses in our Devon-based workshops were working hard to create, first, our 100% British wool duvets and then our mattress toppers and pillows.

    Many of our original customers saw the programme back in 2010 and were inspired to buy their first wool duvet. Both then and now, many of our customers say that they want to support a British business that is, in turn, supporting British farmers, by only using certified 100% British wool in their products.

    Since then, the series has been aired in the USA and Canada – and has now been shown once again on Together TV in the UK. The episode featuring Dick and Pauline was aired yesterday, 2nd November at 4pm and then again at 9pm, and was simultaneously broadcast on Together TV, with previews on their YouTube and Facebook channels.

    If you missed it, you can catch it on Together TV on Sunday 8th or Saturday 14th November at 12pm or at 6pm.

    Together TV can be found on Freeview (Channel 87) as well as on Sky (Channel 170), Virgin Media (Channel 269) and Freesat (Channel 164).

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  9. Why we would like to share our October newsletter with you

    Why we would like to share our October newsletter with you

    We know that not all of you who read our blogs are signed up to our newsletters, so we thought we’d share it here. Our newsletters are a mix of our latest news, behind the scenes insights, details about new products, as well as any members-only competitions.

    Autumn is definitely here! On Dartmoor, very close to where we are based - and where Devon Duvets was founded - the colours are simply glorious. The trees have turned gold and orange and the bracken (also turning orange) stands out against the, still vibrant, green grass on the tors. In the early morning, pockets of mist hover in the valleys and there is a distinct chill in the air.

    This is the time of year for changing to a warmer tog duvet, to make us feel cosy and comfortable at night, and we’ve received an unprecedented number of customers who have been busy ordering their warmer duvets. It’s also been wonderful to be able to work closely with the British Wool organisation, who represent British farmers, in order to keep a steady flow of wool coming into our workshops for turning into duvets, toppers and pillows!

    ONE…TWO…THREE!

    The good old days of duvet hogging - because one of you prefers to be toasty warm whilst the other likes a nice cool bed - are over! It’s goodbye to leaving your partner shivering in the cold because your ‘night sweats’ have made you throw off the duvet (and put it back on again) at regular intervals through the night. 

    With ‘Three’, the patented duvet combination from Devon Duvets, the UK’s famous manufacturer of handcrafted bedding, it really is as simple as one…two…THREE!

    Devon Duvets have come up with a way to marry up any combination of duvet sections, in terms of weight or filling. Step One is for you to choose a duvet section with your preferred filling and tog equivalent. Step Two is for your partner to choose theirs. Step Three is to join two duvets sections seamlessly together as one big duvet inside a duvet cover. Now each of

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  10. Double up on a Cosy Night’s Sleep this Winter

    Double up on a Cosy Night’s Sleep this Winter

    The cold weather has arrived, prompting us to start thinking about those winter warmers that we love so much. Tasty veggie soup, log fires burning, hot chocolate with marshmallows, woolly socks, and, of course, cuddling up in your favourite duvet at night. Now that it’s time to get out those winter duvets, you might be looking to invest in a new snuggly, warmer tog duvet for these colder months - and we have some great options available.

    Our wool duvets are made with certified 100% British wool and are individually handcrafted by our talented seamstresses here, in Devon. Each one is made with love and care, so that you’ll experience a ‘wrapped in comfort’ sleep. What’s more, wool is naturally breathable and temperature regulating, and as it is resistant to dust mites, it’s also hypoallergenic – all helping you to get a more restful night.

    We’ve recently introduced our Extra Warm duvet sets – and these give you three options for year-round flexibility. Each Extra Warm set comes with a medium weight (600gm) 100% British wool duvet that can be used on its own for Autumn and Winter, and a comfortable lightweight (300gsm) 100% British wool duvet that will be ideal for those warmer months. However, if you are looking to top up the snuggle factor in Winter, both duvets come with ties, so you can double them up, to create up to 20 togs of duvet bliss! The ties will also help keep the two duvets securely together inside your duvet cover.

    Our Extra Warm sets are available in Single size through to Emperor and offer a saving compared to buying the two duvets separately. We also offer interest free finance, through SplitIt, so you can spread your payments. 

    And…one final word about comfort this winter. If you purchase one of our wool duvets or duvet sets, then you qualify for 50% off our beautiful 450 thread count whi

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