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Differences of Flat and Fitted Bed Sheets


Whether you prefer flat sheets or fitted bed sheets, both are used for the same purpose – to protect the mattress and create a comfortable, smooth surface to lie on.  When buying your bed linen you need to decide if the bed sheet should pull snugly over the mattress, so that it's less likely to come loose, or if you want it to fold easily and neatly when not in use. Some of us love the simplicity and speedy fitting of fitted sheets, while others prefer a flat pile of folded sheets and an extra layer of covers as we sleep.

Flat Sheets

If you value a truly luxurious sleeping experience and enjoy soft, sumptuous bed linen, you might like to know how we use flat sheets and fitted sheets. So, here's the lowdown on all things sheet-related, plus an explanation of the differences between fitted and flat sheets.

How to choose a fitted sheet

Traditionally, fitted sheets cover the mattress - the elastic band holds them firmly in right place. Their function is to protect the mattress and ensure a smooth, soft surface for you to lie on. When purchasing fitted sheets, it's important to have the right dimensions of a mattress. You need to know the length, width and thickness to ensure the fitted sheet will pull snugly over the mattress and not be easily pulled off. The wrong size fitted sheet simply will not be able to go neatly round the corners, and will not stay in place.

Fitted Sheets - LinenMe

How is a flat sheet used?

  • The flat sheet, also called the top sheet, was originally placed between the sleeping person and their blanket. Now that many of us use duvet covers, flat sheets are usually used to make your bedding feel more welcoming. Think of it as an extra layer of warmth and softness as you slumber. It also protects the blanket or the comforter from getting dirty. On warmer nights the flat sheet can be used by itself instead of a blanket. A linen flat sheet will help keep you cool in summer as it allows your skin to breathe, while in winter it keeps you cosy. You don't need to know the exact size of a flat sheet when purchasing as it is used separately and can be draped over the sides of the bed. Just make sure it's big enough for your bed.
  • You can use a flat sheet over the mattress as well, if you don't mind having to tuck the corners in. It's worth ensuring your flat sheet is the right size to leave room for tucking under your mattress, so it stays in place better.
  • Although bed linen sets usually consist of a duvet cover and two pillow cases, you can buy bed linen sets containing a flat sheet, a fitted sheet and pillow cases.

Choosing bed sheets

Both flat sheets and fitted sheets can be made from all types of fabric, but we strongly recommend linen sheets. We've discussed the many benefits of linen bed linen sets in this post, but - in short – we love linen sheets as they are soft, breathable, durable, sustainable and super comfortable for your skin.

Linen Sheets - LinenMe

Linen bedding makes your bed a place of true rest and tranquility. A place where you can cosy up and retreat from the world for a bit, nestled in softness and nurtured by natural fabric.

Whatever your sheet style preference, new bedlinen is the perfect way to refresh your bedroom and create a fresh look. Choose clean whites and minimalist greys for a Scandi vibe, or rich jewel tones for an enticing, sensuous aesthetic.

For tips on how to fold a fitted sheet go here.

vanessa ann merriman

I like flat sheet sets

Mayra Carlson

This generally depends on once personal perspective and comfort. If he doesn't feel comfortable, he will never be going to use both flat and fitted together or if he is lazy enough to change both... :-D


What a great article! I really like and follow your site :)

Thank you for sharing!

Kind regards,


The fitted sheet is destroyed the beauty of the flat

1. It is impossible to iron it properly.
2. It requires lots of time and effort to do half assed job.
3. To fold it properly it is impossible.
4. To store it properly it takes a full drawer
5. To store it on the shelves it is impossible to keep it from sliding
from the other sheets .and pillowcases.
6. If you are a Rockefeller with the mansions and the dozens of help you perhaps can do it.

Banner Mattress

It may be flat or fitted, what is important is that you are comfortable with your bed and beddings. It will set your mind to fall in a deep sleep and make you all ready for the next day's challenge.

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I'm Inga and this is a space where I celebrate simple, slow living. It's a place to be curious and creative, to share ideas on how to live and work sustainably and mindfully. Being the creative force behind I also write about my love for linen and natural fabrics. Linenbeauty weaves inspiring stories of slow living with interior style features, travel and cookery tips and outfit ideas. Thanks so much for stopping by.