Thursday, 3 December 2015

Protecting Your Guesthouse Beds

Tourism in South Africa is already one of the biggest industries and many people are building up thriving guest houses. Google ‘guest house South Africa’ and you will discover thousands of great b&bs all over the country.
However - one of the main worries - especially good guest house owners -  are their beds. Not only are people worried about ensuring that they have good quality and durable beds that are comfortable, but they also have to worry about frequent cleaning and washing of their mattresses
and bed linen. A simple method that many people use to protect their mattresses, duvets and pillows is to use a protector.

Mattress Protectors:
Bed retailers across South Africa stock a wide range of mattress protectors that are both waterproof and reduce the wear and tear on your mattresses. They are also great for protecting your mattress from stains or spills. They absorb oils and liquids and prevent them from damaging your mattress.
These protectors work not only to protect the mattress itself, but also offers great hygienic benefits such as preventing bacteria or dust mites being able to settle in your mattress. Some models are also allergy-free and come with a miracle membrane that allows heat transference, while at the same time allowing the mattress to remain cool and breathable.
When it is time to clean your bed, just remove the mattress protector and wash it in a washing machine.

Pillow Protectors:
Just like the mattress protector, pillow protectors prevent dirt build up on your pillow and will extend the life of your pillow significantly. The oil and moisture from your head and hair can quickly discolour and damage your pillow. Using a pillow protector will negate this while at the same time preventing dust mites or bacteria build up in your pillows. This is an essential for everyone, especially for those people who suffer from allergies. To clean your pillow protectors, just throw them in the washing machine when you clean your mattress protectors.

Need more advice? A reputable bed shop often supply to the hospitality industry and would be able to furnish you with loads of tips and how-to’s to ensure that your guests sleep happily!

Original content from:

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Unfamiliar ‘Bedtime’ Stories

Comfortable and supportive mattresses and beds have become a common household item, so common that someone, somewhere decided to name an entire room after it – the ‘bed’ room. However, we don’t often think about how we arrived here and how the bed and mattress evolved into what we glibly accept as out bedroom comforts today. So why not lie down, rest your head upon your pillow, and allow us to tell you a tale that takes you back in time to the birthing and evolution of what we know today as ‘the modern day bed’.
The Beginning
More than 10,000 years ago, during the Neolithic period, people began to sleep on primitive ‘beds’, which were created with common garden refuge, such as straw or grass. In 340BC common people began to sleep on palm bows in the corner of their homes, but it wasn’t long until the Egyptian Pharaohs discovered that there were significant benefits to sleeping on a raised pallet. King Tutankhamen even possessed his own elevated bed that was made from gold and ebony.
The Roman Empire and the Renaissance

The first “luxury bed” was created during the time of the Roman Empire. These beds were often decorated with gold, silver, or bronze and the mattresses were stuffed with hay, wool, reeds or feathers. Similarly, Renaissance mattresses were made from pea shucks, straw or feathers, and stuffed into coarse sticks. This was then wrapped in sumptuous velvets, silks, and brocades. In addition to this, the Romans also played a part in discovering the Water Bed, of a kind! A sleeper would lie in a cot of warm water, until they began to feel drowsy. They would then be lifted onto a nearby cradle with a mattress and rocked gently until they fell asleep – the ultimate in heavenly rest.
The 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th Centuries
Louis XIV was particularly fond of spending time in his bed. In fact he even proceeded to hold court in his Royal Bedroom. He was said to have owned 413 beds and he displayed a particular liking for beds that were ultra-spacious and ostentatious.

In the late 18th century cast iron beds and cotton mattresses were invented. Not only did this create a demarcated space for sleeping, but it was also less attractive to vermin and bugs. In 1865 the first coil spring was created and placed into the mattress, but it was only in the 1930s that the Innerspring mattresses and upholstered foundations were introduced into the market.
Modern Sleeping Equipment
Futons became fashionable to North America in the 1940s and, following this, foam rubber mattresses and pillows appeared in the 1950s. Yet this wasn’t enough. Inventors were keen to experiment with the four elements, and water beds were introduced in the 1960s, airbeds in the 1980s, and the electric blanket in 1912.

These days beds are bought according to choice, comfort, and convenience – bunk beds were even invented to save space. The market is full of variety, and when shopping around for new bedding, it is one of the few guarantees in life that a bed shop will be able to find the mattresses, beds, pillows, or sleeper couches that matches your preferences, bolsters your comfort zone and fits your space.

Monday, 5 October 2015

Getting Ready for Spring: Redecorating Nightmares

Every time spring rolls around I swear that I am going to redo the bedroom and make it a little more fashionable. And every year spring comes and goes with me too busy with a thousand and one other things around to house and the bedroom redesign gets put off till next year. But not this year! Living and working in the digital sphere means that my first stop for bedroom design ideas is of course the internet. And that is where it all went wrong.

From the first Pinterest Board to those uber pretentious design blogs, there seems to be this assumption that not only should I rip out everything that I have previously had in the bedroom and start from scratch every year, but that I earn roughly the same amount as the Queen of England, Bill Gates. Seriously, for the same amount that one of these bedroom makeovers costs I could probably afford to buy a small Greek island.

The only thing that is more depressing than looking at these uber expensive bedroom makeover sites is looking at the cheap or budget ones. Sure these makeovers might be done on a shoestring, but I am pretty sure that there are prisons cells that have better style.

So where does that leave me when it comes to decorating the bedroom this year? In need of help. Fortunately, having friends that have recently just finished redoing their home means that they have some really great ideas. It is amazing what supposedly good friends think of your home when you have shared a bottle of wine or two. It was refreshing and a little alarming to hear what they actually think of the way in which the bedrooms currently decorated. Apparently my current design is what they would generously call ‘bold’ and my throw pillows on the bed are ‘different’. Moral of the story: if you are going to ask friends for design advice and criticism, have a thick skin and a spare bottle available.

So far the best ideas and trends that I have been assured are going to be ‘hot’ are:

  • Green eco bedrooms: While I love plants throughout the house, I am not sure about the bedroom. But I love the idea of having eco-friendly materials throughout the home. Bamboo furniture and upcycled furniture is a must.
  • Bold hues: While I think that bold primary colours are more suited for the children’s rooms, there is nothing wrong with having rich and inviting warm hues in the main bedroom. Dark shades might not work in smaller spaces, but they look amazing in larger bedrooms.
  • The classic look: Having a chandelier in the bedroom might work in design magazines, but I can’t help but think how difficult it would be keep clean and how ridiculous it would look in any room smaller than an airport. But aside from that there is a reason why the classic look never truly goes out of fashion.
  • Modernist: Abstract or creative art and bold statements take a lot of guts, but if pulled off right, they look amazing. Finding the right art could make this an expensive style, but there are so many rising stars in the South African art scene that supporting them just makes sense. Besides, it could turn out to be an investment.
But all is not lost, there is a lot that currently works in the current bedroom, and with a little tweaking and a few select pieces, redoing the bedrooms is not going to be as difficult as I thought. Spring demands a fresh beginning, so the the first thing that I am going to do is to toss out all the old bed sheets and duvet covers. This year I am going to go for clean white bed linen accented with a pastel throws. It seems ridiculous to already be thinking about buying new quilts, but this way I can get the perfect year-round look now.

Redoing the walls is actually quite easy. This year I am going to take the plunge and have get some custom designed wall graphics or some unique wallpaper printed done. Friends have had it done and it looks amazing. The floors are definitely going to be redone with dark wood with a so. But I’m going to start with the kids’ room first. It will make a great testing area.

Complementing this I think that this year abstract art is going to be the way to go, while the kids are old enough now that they can be trusted not to draw on the walls so they might be getting a little input on their theme. Just no Frozen. Or Minions. I don’t think I can take anymore of either.

But you know what, planning what to do is a lot more fun than actually doing it, so I might just invite the friends over again for another planning session. In the mean time I’ll be looking through these bedroom furniture ideas I found on At least they don’t criticize my favourite throw pillows on the bed.

Originally published on: Beds Cape Town

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

14 Super Easy Mattress Care and Maintenance Tips

Since I bought my new mattress at Bed King I am extremely cautious about how I have to take care of it. Then I came across this article and thought I should share it with you. Happy reading!
Every night, our mattresses provide us comfort, rest, and allow our bodies to rejuvenate for the next day.
Come to think of it, it’s probably one of the most important pieces of furniture in our home.
But when it comes to caring for our mattress, most of us are in a “set it and forget it” mode. For example, when’s the last time you rotated your mattress?
Once you know what to do though, caring for your mattress is actually pretty easy. Some occasional TLC goes a long way towards preserving that mattress set you spent hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars on.
Below is a list of Do’s and Don’ts that will have you sleeping like a baby on your amazing mattress for years to come.


1) DO vacuum the mattress every 3 months. This is definitely a must-do if you have allergies as dust mites and dander can build up in your mattress over time. When vacuuming the mattress use the upholstery attachment of your vacuum cleaner. It’s recommended to do this every three months, but if your allergies are bad, you’ll benefit from vacuuming more frequently.
2) DO use a protective mattress pad. A washable, protective mattress pad is one of the best investments you can make to protect your mattress from dust, allergens, and stains. From what I’ve seen, most are made from either cotton or memory foam with each type having slightly different benefits. Both, however, provide additional comfort and create an additional barrier between you and the mattress. Water-resistant mattress pads are especially good if you have young children who are prone to bed-wetting. A mattress pad also helps reduce the need to vacuum the mattress as often.
3) DO rotate and flip your bed every six months. Some say to do this every 3 months, other say to do this every 9 months. We decided to go for the middle ground and do it every 6 months. If your mattress is brand new you’ll want to flip and rotate it more frequently during the first year since this is when most of the mattress settling occurs.
In case you’re not sure how, here’s a great video that shows you what to do:

Here are some other quick DOs:

4) DO keep bedskirts off the floor. Bed bugs can’t fly but they can crawl up bed skirts that are touching the floor. Doing this helps reduce the possibility of bed bugs getting into your mattress.
5) DO use upholstery shampoo for cleaning your mattress. Unless indicated otherwise by your mattress’ manufacturer, you should use upholstery shampoo to clean any stains or spills on your mattress. Use in accordance with the product’s directions.
6) DO strip down the bed when you leave for vacation. If you’re going to be away from your home for any length of time, allow your bed to fully air out by taking off the bed sheets. This allows your mattress to breathe and prevents any odors from lingering.
7) DO replace broken foundations. If the box spring, frame or support structure is broken, replace it to ensure that the mattress is supported. This will prevent bowing or breakage.


8) DON’T use the mattress handles to lift the full weight. The handles on the side of the mattress are only supposed to be used for shifting and adjusting the mattress once it’s in place. If you try to lift the full weight of the mattress using these handles, there’s a good chance they’ll tear.
9) DON’T eat, drink or smoke on your bed. No matter how careful you are, eating or drinking in bed can lead to spills. This can result in odors lingering and can lead to mold and other infestations. Besides being a fire hazard, the smoke from smoking leaves behind an odor that saturates into the mattress.
10) DON’T remove that tag. There’s this urban legend that it’s illegal to remove the law tag on mattresses. That’s not true – for consumers. It’s there mainly to reassure consumers that the mattress they’re getting is brand new and that the contents inside the mattress hasn’t been tampered with. Once you own the mattress it’s not illegal for you to cut that tag off, but before you do, just know that the information on that label will serve as a means of identification for any warranty claims so don’t remove it unless it’s really bothering you.
11) DON’T ever use dry cleaning chemicals. The chemicals in dry cleaning agents can be harmful to the materials in your mattress, and should never be used for it. Instead use an upholstery shampoo to clean and remove stains from your mattress.
12) DON’T put a board between the mattress and foundation. This may enhance the sense of support for a while, but this only delays the problem which will just get worse over time. When you find yourself contemplating putting a board underneath your mattress, it’s definitely time to get rid of it and buy a new one.
13) DON’T bend, fold, or drag your mattress. Unless a mattress or box spring is made entirely of soft material (like foam or cotton), or is specially built for folding, it probably has a border wire inside that is not meant to be bent. That means, do not bend your mattress or the corners when applying fitted sheets, going through doors, etc. It also means to avoid sitting on the edge or on the corners of your mattress.
And last but not least…
14) DON’T stand or jump on beds. I know, this is such a downer. I really didn’t want to add this in because it brings tons of joy to so many kids (and maybe some adults too). However, jumping or even estanding on your bed can put too much weight in one spot of your mattress – which would permanently damage it. Sorry to be a partypooper but that’s what the manufacturers recommend.
On a side note: I’ve never broken a mattress from jumping on it, nor have I ever seen it happen. But as always, the final choice is up to you.
It will, of course, also benefit you if you buy your mattress from a trusted bed and mattress supplier - such as Bed King.

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

How to use light, texture and placement to create the perfect bedroom

The modern world is fast-paced and in a constant evolution. At the end of every day, when we finally put our stressful and busy minds to rest, many of us find it difficult to fall asleep. Not only that, but often our sleep patterns are disturbed throughout the night, leaving us feeling tired and drained the following day. Luckily there are a few quick tips at hand that don’t involve a prescription but can help us increase the duration and improve the quality of our sleep naturally!
After analysing the layout of your bedroom, you may find that a few simple changes to the lighting, texture, and object placement will help you to improve your sleep patterns.

1. Create a Serene Space

The more peaceful your environment then the better the quality of your sleep will be. Cluttered spaces result in agitation and anxiety, which is why you should always keep your nightstand and bed clutter free, particularly of mobile devices. A mini Zen garden or a water feature are two of the best items to have on your nightstand. These small and simple treasures will create the perfect atmosphere for relaxation and tranquillity, and what could be better than falling asleep to the sound of running water?
However, if you prefer to keep your nightstand free of any objects then either purchase or create your own paintings for the wall above your bed. Remember to pick a scene that is aesthetically pleasing to your surroundings.

2. Turn off the lights and keep it quiet

Try to keep in mind that your bedroom is your own personal sanctuary and place of rest. For most of us, the bedroom will remain the only room in the house where guests are not permitted to visit. Just like guests are restricted from entering your personal sanctuary, so light should be restricted too.
Light should only be permitted to enter the room at dawn and throughout the day. Bright lights throw off your biological clock and tell you that it’s time to wake up. You don’t want this happening at 1:00am when your phone lights up with a new message, so before going to bed remember to turn off the computer, television, phone, and bedside lamp.
If you are the experimental type then try investing in a Himalayan salt or rose quartz lamp. These provide a soft, gentle glow and they also release negative ions into the air. Negative ions assist in alleviating depression, relieving stress, and boosting our energy.

3. Create a comfortable and cosy bed with soft textures

The quality of your bed, mattress, duvet, and pillow affects your level of comfort, as well as the quality of your sleep. One thing to keep in mind is that everyone’s body is different and because of this you may have to search for a mattress and bed that fits the shape and weight of your body. On the brighter side you might be pleased to know that there are many options to choose from.
Some people like to decorate their beds with pillows, quilts, and throws, while others may prefer a more simple design. Whatever your preference make sure that you use sheets, blankets, and duvets that are warm, but which allow space for air to seep through so that you don’t overheat.

As orginally posted on

Friday, 26 June 2015

The Inside Story on High Density Foam Mattresses


High Density Foam Mattresses were a popular type of mattress in South Africa for many years, but thanks to modern sleep technology their effectiveness in providing a healthy sleep have come into question. But why is this? For us to understand more about High Density Foam Mattresses we will need to look a little closer at them…

Friday, 12 June 2015

Sleeping tips for a cosy and snug winter

Winter is well and truly on its way and fleecy pyjama days and nights are becoming all too frequent. Don’t let yourself become glum with the shorter days and the cold nights, as we’ve got you covered with all the best tips to keeping out the winter chill.

The main problem sleepers face during winter is climate control: am I too hot or too cold? It’s easy to pile on the layers to make sure you are warm while you sleep, but as body temperature drops during the night, those layers can become all too hot and uncomfortable. To help make sure that you maintain a constant level of comfort during the night, try our 3 stages of sleeping prep.

Make yourself warm and cosy before climbing into bed:

  • Bathing or showering is a great way to warm up before going to bed so that your body stays around a fixed mean temperature during the night. Try putting a spoon of mustard in your bath water as this will increase your core body temperature and help to relax you as well.
  • Make sure your feet stay warm. Don’t wait to cool down after your bath, step straight into your pyjamas, putting on slippers and socks until you are ready to climb into bed.
  • Before getting ready for bed, place a hot water bottle under the sheets or turn on your electric blanket so that your bed is already warm. This way you won’t have to use your own body heat to warm up the sheets.
The next thing to consider is that every sleeper is different and has varying heat needs. Take the time to research what bedding and mattress types work best for your needs.

Each bedding and mattress style has pros and cons in heat retention:

  • Cotton bedding is perfect for year-round use, but if you are looking for bedding that is slightly warmer, use linen-based sheets as the fibres in this bedding are better for heat retention.
  • Duck and goose feather duvets provide three times the warmth as synthetic ones do. If you are worried that a naturally filled down duvet will be too hot in summer, try a style that combines two duvets – a thin one for summer that can be added to the winter duvet for even more warmth.
  • Certain mattresses are better for climate control than others. With great moisture and heat dissipation properties, latex mattresses are best for climate control, ensuring that you’ll stay warm in winter but without the added sweat and discomfort of getting too hot in the summer months. To get expert advice on the best mattress for you, make sure to talk to a reputable retailer, such as The Bed King, that will also provides guarantees on their products.
With the winter months still to take a chilly hold on us it’s time to test what works best for you and get yourself well wrapped and snuggled for those cold nights ahead.

As published on: Beds for Cape Town

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Lighting Baby & Kids Bedrooms

There are several factors to consider when lighting your baby’s room and taking note of these before selecting the light source for that room would be wise.

Lights to stimulate brain activity

Mobile lights splash soft colours and pictures onto a wall and are ideal for stimulating infant brains.  A white wall is boring and dull to look at, and babies need colour and movement to promote brain activity.

Rest is equally important for a baby’s brain, making it is a good idea to install a dimmer control switch on your main light, so that when you feed at night, or when your baby wakes up, you can encourage him or her to go back to sleep as quickly and easily as possible.

Bedtime stories

Bedtime reading has a dual purpose of educating your toddler, and helping him or her to sleep.  Consider installing an intense directional bedside lamp.  This will ensure that you can see what you’re reading, but won’t interfere with the little one falling asleep.

As your youngster begins growing up, he or she may want the comfort of a night light, which can be left on all night, or alternatively put a mobile battery-operated touch-lamp on the bedside table, which your toddler can push on and off at will.  Another option is to install a timer-controlled lamp that can be plugged into the wall, and will switch off after a pre-determined time.

Just for fun

Light up your child’s bedroom or playroom with a delightful Eglo or Disney light fitting (contact Eurolux for your closest retailer) that will add an element of fun, and allow decorators and parents to express their creativity.  You’ll find both age-appropriate fittings as well as ones that will be suitable for many years.  Innovative designs include a cloud, a clown, the sun, an elephant, an aeroplane, a bee, and more.

The right light improves concentration

Many kids’ bedrooms double as a study, and it is important to choose a study lamp best suited to your child’s needs.  These needs change as your child grows up – a young child needs a small light focused onto a single book, whereas an older child studying from several books such as a workbook, a maths book, a calculator, etc, needs a greater spread of light to aid concentration.  The spread of light needs to be where the child is working to keep his attention on his books.  In fact research shows that concentration levels increase when working in a well-lit area. If concentration is increased, understanding of the work is easier and the time spent studying is reduced.

Fluorescent desk and floor lamps are ideal for people working for long periods of time since they don’t produce a lot of heat.  If however, you are working on something intense such as studying from a textbook or writing an article, then a halogen lamp is more effective as its colour rendering is superior.

Safety hazards and children

Ever wondered what the world looks like from your child’s perspective?  Get down on your hands and knees and take a look around.
You might be surprised to see some of the following:
  • Electrical outlets are now at eye-level,
  • Cords that can be pulled or wrapped around necks
  • Table or floor lamps that can be knocked or pulled over
  • Sharp corners and edges on furniture
  • Thick pile carpets that can hide dirt and other small things that toddlers can put in their mouths
Electrical outlets or plug points that are not in use should be covered with special covers.  Remember that small fingers can be strong and nimble enough to pry things off, so be sure the plug covers are too big to swallow.

All cords, including those attached to lamps and other appliances, on blinds, and any other ties should be gathered securely and placed out of reach, or put into a cord corral, or tacked to the skirting board.  Remember that’s what’s behind the couch may not be visible to you, but certainly is to a child crawling around on the floor.  Young children like to put loose objects into their mouths, and electrical wire can be a great (but lethal) teething toy!

Consider securing wobbly table or floor lamps by using double-sided tape or Prestik (provided your furniture or floor can withstand this).  Here’s a tip if your lamp stand has a circular base – use three pieces of tape rather than four, to ensure better stability.

Avoid using glass lampshades if you have young children, as these can present a serious safety hazard if they break or shatter.

Use energy saver globes rather than incandescent globes because they don’t get as hot and you won’t run the risk of little fingers getting burnt.  Energy savers burn much cooler than an incandescent globe because they convert 80% of electricity into light and 20% into heat, whereas incandescents work the other way around, converting 80% of electricity into heat and only 20% into light.  That’s why energy savers remain cool and save money on your electricity bill.

And finally, how to arrange bedroom furniture - ensure that it does not provide a climbing toddler with opportunities to investigate new heights. Be especially careful that there is nothing under a window that a child could climb up on! For good ideas around children’s bedroom decorating, why not contact us, The Bed King or a bed retail specialist in your area.

Article written by The Bed King.

As published on: Beds Cape Town

Photo credit: My nephew’s room via photopin (license)

Friday, 22 May 2015

How to get the best sleep during pregnancy

The National Sleep Foundation has outlined several common sleep changes that may occur during each trimester. These include constant waking, owing to the need to use the bathroom; increased sleepiness during the day; and sleep disruptions that are caused by emotional and physical stress. However, there are a few guidelines to follow which could leave you sleeping soundly and comfortably all night long. I recently found some good tips for just this on

Ordered to bed

To prevent certain complications in pregnancy there are times when your doctor might prescribe bed rest for a few days or weeks. While the thought of this might seem welcoming at first, in reality it poses its own challenges, and could even be quite tiring on your body.
In these cases the best position would be to rest on your left side and alternate from side to side as you get sore. It is sometimes comfortable to rest with your hips and knees bent, but use a pillow between your knees in order to relieve the stress on your back and keep your hips aligned.
Remember that in these cases a firm mattress and bed should be used to support the body and stop it from sinking into the mattress.

What type of bed should be selected during pregnancy?

When selecting the right type of bed for your pregnancy keep in mind that an adjustable bed may be quite beneficial in the long run. These are good for back pain as you will be able to adjust the bed to comfortably suit the needs of your body. In addition to this, adjustable beds are good to use during breastfeeding as they will enable you to adjust the angle of your head and legs, thereby preventing strain to the neck and back.

If adjustable beds aren’t for you, then try sleeping on a king sized bed before and after your pregnancy. During your pregnancy you will have enough room to space yourself out according to the needs of your body. Once your baby is a year old or no longer at risk for SIDS a king sized bed will also provide you with enough room for him or her to sleep soundly beside you.

Mattress and more

Selecting the right mattress for the duration of your pregnancy is almost as important as your pregnancy diet. We all know how important it is to cherish your sleep before the arrival of your precious baby. As such, it’s best to choose a firm mattress that will support your body, minimise partner disturbance and eliminate high pressure spots.
A good buy would be a Latex Mattress as according to local mattress experts, the Bed King, latex mattress have many benefits that could benefit pregnant women including good ventilation, as well as hypoallergenic and antibacterial properties. A point to remember when selecting a mattress is be careful to stay away from memory foam mattresses as it is said that they give off gases that are harmful. However, there isn’t much clear evidence to support this so if you do decide to choose a memory foam mattress then be certain to do some in-depth research prior to your purchase.
Once you have selected the right bed and mattress for pregnancy, then you may want to buy some additional pillows which you might need in the third trimester. Try using a full-length body pillow and then a few smaller pillows for a bit of extra support. You can use pillows under your head and arms, under your back, or between your stomach and the bed. At the end of the day the choice is yours and your comfort, or lack thereof, will tell you what your body needs.

If this doesn’t work then try the following tips

  • If you are still struggling to sleep after changing your mattress, then try trickling a few drops of lavender oil onto your pillow before you sleep. The oil will assist in easing insomnia and anxiety, whilst leaving you feeling fully energised the next day.
  • Another way to ensure that you get a long night’s rest is to go to bed an hour prior to your usual bedtime and read or meditate to relax your mind.
  • In addition to this, try to avoid drinking liquids after 6:00pm. This will decrease the need to rush off to the bathroom during the night.