The different fibres for quilt fillings
Wool makes a beautiful, breathable quilt in a range of weights from summer-weight, to general use, to a true winter weight. Wool quilts can be heavier to sleep under than some of the other fibres, which can give some users a more cosy feeling. Anti-allergenic, easy to care for, and most can be machine washed.
Warm and lightweight, polyester quilts are not breathable, but are anti-allergenic and are a good option for a washable quilt.
A superior and finer form of polyester which traps the air in clusters of microfibre, also not breathable. Warmth similar to duck or goose down. Allergy free and machine washable.
Feather & Down:
The down component provides the warming action, and the feather provides the fill and bulk for the quilt. Therefore the higher percentage of down, generally the warmer the quilt, (depending on the overall weight). In addition it is generally regarded that goose down is a superior and warmer form of down than duck down. Down quilts will never be labelled 100% down. The closest option is 'down rich', meaning a minimum down level of 80%.
At MiniJumbuk we believe wool is the perfect fibre for quilts; not only is it warm and able to regulate temperature, it's also the most breathable fibre on the planet.
Polyester, microfibre, feathers, and even down, are insulators. When you get into bed when sleeping with one of these fibres, you may become cosy and warm and fall asleep, but then in the night you wake up because you are hot. So you stick an arm out of the bed, or a leg, and you cool off and go back to sleep. Then later in the night you or your partner get really hot, so one throws the quilt off or you start the nightly pushing and pulling of quilt wars. If you don't fully wake, you toss and turn. This is particularly true for children who often throw the quilt off altogether.
At MiniJumbuk we don't think this is natural, healthy or necessary. What we really need is uninterrupted sleep during which our body can fall into a state of deep sleep, when it can regenerate and heal itself. For this to happen our body temperature needs to stay at a constant level. But as we go into deep sleep, if we are under feather, down and polyester, which are insulators, they trap heat, so this can't happen. The insulators trap all of our body heat and instead of regulating temperature, we get warmer and the body wakes up thinking we need to get into action.
Wool isn't an insulator, but it does keep you cool in summer and warm in winter, just as a sheep's fleece is warm and breathable in winter and cool and dry in summer. Wool regulates body temperature, so during the night a wool quilt will actually allow the body temperature to drop and regulate, giving us the chance to get not only a really peaceful and restful sleep but a healthy and regenerating one as well. (See Woolmark study - http://www.woolmark.com/content/publicationPDFs/sleep_benefits_wool.pdf )