Posted by Bridget Reed

Coverlet vs Quilt: What’s the Difference?

5 min read

Choosing the right bedding is important. The obvious reason is that we all want our living spaces to look good. But the aesthetics of your living space aren’t the only reason you should spend some time considering your bedding. 

The quality and quantity of what goes on your bed can actually have a tangible impact on your sleep. By figuring out what bedding pieces are best suited to your sense of style and sleep needs, you can help create the best environment to promote a full night of restful sleep.

So let’s get into it — what’s the difference between a coverlet vs quilt? We won’t get into coverlet vs duvet here, but keep an eye on the blog for info on duvet covers sometime soon! 

Why Does Bedding Matter?

Your bedding can impact the temperature your body reaches while you sleep. That can make a big difference to your sleep quality overall. Some studies show the ideal bedroom temperature is between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. 

This varies slightly from person to person, but most people generally experience the most restful sleep in this zone. So it’s important to have breathable bedding if your sleeping space is naturally warm and more options for layering and staying cozy if your sleeping space is especially cold.

On top of that, a tidy, relaxing bedroom can make it easier for you to fall asleep. Visual clutter can make you feel anxious or stressed, which goes double if it’s in your bedroom. If you have trouble sleeping at night and consider your decor style to be something like “organized chaos,” the two things could be linked.

The link can go the other way, too. Some studies have shown the tendency to have way too many things, such as in extreme cases like hoarding, could be linked to a lack of impulse control caused by poor sleep. 

So, either way, choosing the right bedding to make your space feel clean, cozy, and relaxing can help to improve your sleep quality.

What Is a Coverlet?

So, what is a coverlet for a bed? Coverlets are the top layer of your bed. They come in various sizes and can either be much smaller to add a pop of color, pattern, or texture, or they can be the full size of your bed — it just depends on your preferences.

Because coverlets are largely about style rather than warmth, they come in a nearly endless variety of patterns, designs, or textures. So it’s easy to find a coverlet that suits your personal style. You could even get more than one coverlet, as they’re a simple way to change up the look of your bedding when you feel like it or even seasonally. 

Also, because they don’t provide much warmth, they’re best suited as either an additional layer over your Miracle Made Comforter and another blanket if you live somewhere cold or as a light layer to add to your bedding in the summer.

What Is a Quilt?

Quilts are a more substantial option than coverlets, although sometimes they can be styled similarly. They’re kind of a classic with a rich history. You can buy a quilt commercially, or you might have one in your family with some special heritage or meaning. 

Quilts are typically made from four distinct layers. The top layer is the decorative one. It’s usually made using techniques including (but not limited to) piecing, applique, or other types of fancy stitching. The abstract patterns you’re probably familiar with on more “classic” quilts often hold some hidden symbolism. 

But there are more modern versions available, and they can be made from anything ranging from individual pieces of fabric to old, meaningful t-shirts sewn together to give them a new life as a keepsake. 

The second layer of a quilt is the batting, the inner layer that gives you that cozy warm feeling. The batting can be made from cotton, wool, or synthetic fibers. 

The third layer is the backing, typically a plain, solid color to offset the rich pattern on the other side. The final layer is the quilting, which holds all the layers together. This stitching is often an art form in and of itself, but it may also be minimal and functional.

Which One Is Best for You?

The differences between quilts and coverlets mainly boil down to form vs. function. While coverlets can be very stylish, and while they may add a thin, light layer to your bedding, they’re much more about aesthetics than keeping you warm.

On the other hand, quilts can be much more substantial, and while they can add some stylish flair to your bedroom, they can also add some serious warmth if you’re looking for a way to stay cozy during a chilly winter. 

Which one works best for you ultimately comes down to your personal style and the weather where you live — not to mention the accessibility of air conditioning or heating. If you live somewhere with sub-zero winters and want to save money on heating costs, adding a quilt or other substantial blanket to your bed can help. 

Alternatively, if you like the look of layered bedding but live somewhere with a very warm climate, adding a coverlet can give you the punch of color, texture, or pattern you’re looking for without forcing you to remove 10 pounds of layers from your bed each night, or else risk sweating to death.

The other thing to consider is durability. If you’re just looking for a quick way to change up the look of your bedding, a less-durable coverlet may suit you perfectly. 

But if you want something that will last the test of time, a quilt is better suited. Because quilts are comprised of multiple layers, they tend to be a bit more sturdy.

But What If You Don’t Want Extra Laundry?

It’s a valid concern. While adding layers to your bed may help keep you warm or pull your bedroom together, it can be a chore enough to wash your bedsheets regularly. Luckily, you have two things in your favor. 

The first is that quilts and coverlets will likely be layered over your comforter. So they probably won’t have much direct contact with your skin, which means you don’t have to launder them as frequently. So it’s not adding too much to your laundry pile, even if you have one of each.

The second is that you can easily reduce your weekly laundry by up to 3x if you switch to Miracle Made Sheets. They’re made from breathable cotton and infused with antimicrobial silver, which helps you stay at the perfect temperature all night. It also reduces 99.7% of bacterial growth, meaning you can go longer between washes.

In Conclusion

While it may not seem important to know the differences between quilts and coverlets, knowing what each piece of bedding is and what they’re best used for can help you design the perfect sleeping space. 

By empowering yourself to really choose everything that goes into your sleeping environment, you won’t just end up with a better-looking bedroom — you’ll end up with a better night of sleep, too.


What are Quilts | International Quilt Museum

The Best Temperature for Sleep | Sleep Foundation

Stress Management | Mayo Clinic

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