I Always Break This Bedding Rule (and It Makes my Bedroom So Much Better)

published Jun 24, 2024
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Plant filled bedroom with neatly made bed topped with pale yellow quilt. Colorful pink rug lines the floor.
Credit: Erin Derby

When it comes to bedding, there are plenty of ways to decorate your space. You can use patterned sheets, add decorative pillows, invest in a duvet cover, and, of course, change up your bed frame. However, if you’re investing in your aesthetic, it’s equally important to keep your space neat to make your style really pop. And when it comes to neatness, I have one simple trick: Using a flat sheet on my mattress instead of a fitted sheet. 

I know it’s controversial, but it was the norm for me growing up outside of the United States. Most sheet sets were sold as either a flat sheet or a fitted sheet set, and my mom always bought the flat sheet sets. Top sheets weren’t a thing, and I made my bed up with a flat sheet and a duvet for most of my childhood. I didn’t try using a fitted sheet until I was about 11, and even then it never seemed to hold the same appeal. 

For one, no matter how much I tug at a fitted sheet, it never seems to lie neatly on a mattress. There’s always that one corner where it doesn’t fit properly, and it just makes my sheets look messy, which doesn’t do much for my aesthetic. No matter my decor, that single corner always stands out to me, and using a flat sheet on my mattress eliminates that problem entirely.

It also saves me some effort — I don’t have to lift my deep mattress to get the sheet all the way around it, nor do I have to make sure my sheet fits the depth of the mattress. All I do is tuck my sheet into the sides, and voila! I’ve got a neatly made bed. 

As it turns out, this technique isn’t common in most homes, according to Brooklinen’s Design Director, Katie Elks. However, there is one place where flat sheets rule: hotels. “A lot of hotels use two flats instead of a fitted one, as it saves time on housekeeping and washing. Sometimes hotels even use a third flat sheet on top of the duvet instead of a duvet cover; this is called ‘triple sheeting,'” says Stephanie Starrett, business development strategy manager at Brooklinen.

Because Brooklinen works primarily with smaller/boutique hotels, fewer than five of their partners actually do this. Starrett points out that this is a technique more commonly used by larger hotels that have more turnover and a greater need for speedy cleaning. 
If my bedroom matches a hotel room aesthetic, I’m not going to be mad about it. If you want to try this out for yourself, you might not be able to buy a flat sheet set, but you can opt for buying a flat sheet and matching pillowcases separately.