As a designer who has viewed over 300 of my client’s bedrooms in the last decade, I know many of you remain a bit stymied over how to “make your bed”. I’ve seen my share of ornate; scratchy; motel-style bedspreads pulled right up over the pillows in a bumpy mess. Rather than go to therapy for my messy bed nightmares, I thought I would show you how to present your bed when potential buyers might be strolling through your master bedroom or when your designer comes to call. No matter what style of decorating you prefer, I have some simple rules for you to follow:

1. What to do with the duvet?

Many of you will have down duvets or just Poly-Fil duvets. Lately I prefer to purchase silk duvets for my clients as they arejust as lofty and warm, yet have none of the bumps but with a little careful fluffing and tucking, your puffy duvet can still have a crisp well-tailored look. When you are making the bed for a special occasion, consider tucking the ends of your duvet under your mattress, army corners style. This will give your bed a much neater appearance when you add any additional blankets or toss cushions.

2. My theory is if you can’t actually sleep on it or under it shouldn’t be on your bed.

I don’t go for those ornate or lacy duvet covers and bed coverlets. Blankets and pillows should all be soft to the touch and usable. Your best bet for duvet covers is to purchase one made of the same fabric as your sheeting. That way it is very easy to wash along with the rest of your sheets every week. This is especially true if you have pets who like to snuggle in your bed. Rather than purchasing small throw blankets for my client’s beds, I generally prefer to buy them an additional full size blanket to dress the fully made bed up. That way you have an extra blanket on those cold nights, yet you can easily fold it across your bed for purely decorative effect as well. A nice cotton or wool blanket is an excellent choice.

3. Toss cushions are like cilantro; you either love them or hate them.

I’m a designer and I love them. I always make custom toss cushions for my clients in soft velvets and cottons. Perfect for propping yourself up while reading in bed. Make sure your toss cushions have a zippered cover so you can clean the covers frequently. If you hate them don’t worry, I have a solution for you as well. You are the client I purchase printed sheeting for. That way, your bed is already decorated without any extra fuss.

4. The perfect ratio of pillows to blankets (according to me) is two quality down pillows for each side of the bed, three toss cushions and one additional blanket.

I prefer stacked pillows unless you have a very high headboard. I prefer 100 per cent, 500 thread count cotton sheeting and I don’t care if you never iron it. Cotton looks great a bit rumpled if you ask me. Who has time to iron sheets anyhow? My little rules are so simple you will be able to make any of these beds in less than five minutes. Who knows an inviting, well-made bed might turn out to have extra bonus points in your life.