Why Store Bought Duvets Can Be Disappointing


I can't tell you how many sales I lose each year to clients who have just spent a lot of money on a duvet, but are really disappointed by it.

I've been there.  You're at your favourite department store and you're staring at a wall of duvets that all look the same.  They're all in the same plastic containers.  They all have pretty labels.  And they all have names that sound like fun places you should be sleeping.

And then you look at the pricetag.  This one is $100.  That one over there is $600.  What gives?  And how do you keep from getting disappointed?

They All Come From The Same Place

All of those duvets you see on the shelf at your department store pretty much all come from the same manufacturer.  It's a place called Down Inc. and it's a pretty big deal.  Many years ago they listed all of the names their product was labelled under but it got to a point where there were so many that they took the page down. Odds are that the duvet you see was made by them and it just has a different label on it.

Now don't get me wrong, they can make a good product.  But the chances that it's going to be exactly what YOU need are small.  We've had clients come to us who had spent thousands of dollars over the years buying multiple duvets but having the same experience.  This is why.  They were the same duvet.

What's On The Label Is Not IN The Duvet (Or Pillow)

Down fraud is a HUGE problem in North America.  This stems from a lack of serious government regulation.  We've heard horror stories of duvets that were sold as goose down yet were filled with uncleaned duck down.  (Now duck down isn't a problem by itself.  It's a less expensive option.  But when you think you are buying expensive goose down, you should be receiving expensive goose down. Plain and simple.

How do you know if what you're buying on the label is what's in the duvet?  It really comes down to the manufacturer and if you trust them or not.  Which can take some time.  Even if your department store duvet has some celebrity on the package, they probably aren't sleeping on their own product.

You Get What You Pay For

We sell a luxury product at a luxury price point.  Why?  Because we know what it takes to have a high quality piece of bedding on your bed.  There are no shortcuts. That is why we have a spectrum of products at various price points.  We want someone to be able to come to us and say, "I have this much to invest in my duvet."  And then we can provide them with the best possible option, fully guaranteed.  From Eiderdown, to Canadian duck down.  It's the best option at the right price point for that client.

The problem arises when someone looks at a white goose down duvet and thinks that they can get the same product somewhere else, cheaper.  This is where people get into trouble.  The down industry is a global industry and goose down is bought and sold just like you would buy coffee beans, or oil.  There is a standard price for the right quality product.  Any large deviations in price usually mean you're not getting what you think you're getting.  So remember, you get what you pay for. 

With our clients, it's not a matter of going elsewhere to buy a cheaper priced product that sounds like the same thing.  We have so many clients who come to us and say, "I should have bought your duvet last year.  But I bought this other cheaper one I saw online and I've been disappointed ever since.

More Down Doesn't Mean Better Duvet

When you're looking at all those duvets and they all look the same, how do you tell what's different about them?  Well one place that you can be taken advantage of is in the "weight' of the duvet.  

A duvet obviously has a certain amount of down in it depending on it's size.  But buying a duvet because it has more down in it isn't the right answer.

First off, down is light.  Feathers are heavy.  Quills (that plasticky looking thing that runs down the middle of a feather is really heavy compared to down.  So if you're duvet has quills or feathers in it, then it's probably not that good.  Feathers and quills aren't insulating either.  

So one way that companies can take advantage of an uneducated consumer is to sell them a heavy duvet.  Let's say you see King Duvet #1 over here and it says it has 36 ounces of down in it.  But over here you see King Duvet #2 and it has 40 ounces of down in it.  #2 must be better, right?  I mean, if everything else looks the same the one with more down should be better.  Not necessarily.  That's how manufacturers like to trick you.  They know that, if you're uneducated, you can fall for this little trick.  Manufacturers can order fills to their specifications and say, "Hey, Jim, let's throw a cheaper mix in this one to keep the price point the same and raise the ounces. That'll get 'em."

We once saw a twin duvet on a website for sale with 40 ounces of down in it.  In a TWIN!!!  And it was less than $400.  I'm sorry but that is NOT down in that duvet.  

Don't fall for that trick.

Don't Skimp On Baffle Boxes

Here's a big place manufacturers can save money but that will drive you crazy. Baffle boxes.

Or more importantly, lack of baffle boxes.

On our duvets we use a true baffle box.  It's a three dimensional chamber that has a height, a length, and a width to it . What that does is keeps the down in your duvet evenly distributed for the life of the duvet.

But what that does, it adds to the price of the duvet.  Why?  Because it takes more fabric. And more stitching.  And more labor.  And more love, and care, and all the stuff that goes with it.

Now, the consumer can be tricked by using all sorts of words that sound like "baffle box" but aren't.  Your question needs to be, "What do they mean by 'baffle'?"  Because they might not mean what it should mean. 

They can call it a baffle, but just tack the fabric together every so often so it looks like a grid but doesn't actually do anything.  They can have little 'x's sitched into the duvet but it doesn't connect.  Or, they can just be channels that run the length of the duvet but don't run horizontally as well.  

Why do baffle boxes matter?  Because they keep the down in the duvet evenly distributed across your body. (I don't want to be repetitive, but it's important!) . Anything else will result in the down in your duvet travelling to one end which results in cold zones which will make you miserable.  Believe me when i tell you there is nothing "authentic" or "cute" or "zen like" having to fluff your duvet before you go to bed every night.  You just want to fall into bed and fall to sleep.

Don't Get Fleeced!

So I hope that helps a bit.  You can really get fleeced at the department store and these are just a handful of reasons why it can happen.  

If you have any questions about a duvet you're looking to buy, please don't hesitate to ask.  Like I always say, even if you don't buy your duvet from us, we want you to be happy.  Because we know, that somewhere down the line, you're going to be coming back to us to buy the duvet you've always wanted.  

Cheers.