The first and most important thing to consider with new bedding is American made bedding sizing. Bedding sizes are standardized in the United States, which makes the process easier. The first step to any purchase of luxurious new sheets is to determine what size of mattress you need the sheets to fit.
The Traditional Sizes
There are six traditional bed sizes, with two recent additions. The six sizes are: Twin, Twin X-Long, Full (sometimes called Double), Queen, King, and California King. With the exception of the recent California King and the Twin X-Long, these sizes have been standardized for many decades. Where in the past mattresses may have been made to any number of different styles and dimensions, these six categories are fairly well standardized all across the country.
Twin and Its Larger Cousin, Twin X-Long
The Twin size is the smallest mattress size, designed for one person. Fitted sheets typically run 39" x 76" x 15", while the flat sheet measures 72" x 100", the duvet 66" x 90", and the comforters 66" x 90" as well. While certain types of toddler or child beds can run smaller, this is the smallest common bed designed for adults in the United States. This bed is also sometimes called the Single, in reference to the Full bed's alternate name, Double.
What is the size difference between Twin and Twin XL sheets?
The fundamental difference in Twin and Twin XL sizing is the length of the bed: 76" for a Twin, and 81" for a Twin X-Long. The Twin XL bed frame and mattress are found most often in colleges. Students appreciate the extra length because a wider bed like a Full or Queen is hard to fit into a dorm setting.
The Twin XL, however, uses the same flat sheet, duvet, and comforters as a regular Twin, which is an advantage when transitioning from one size of bed to the other. Rather that buying an entirely new set of sheets, you can buy a new fitted sheet to match the new mattress--although an opportunity to purchase luxurious new sheets made in the United States shouldn't be passed up so easily!
The Full or Double is the smallest bed that can sleep two adults. The fitted sheets typically measure 55" x 76" x 15", the flat sheets 85" x 110", the duvet 86" x 92", and the comforters the same as the duvets. While these beds can and do sleep two adults in many households, this article cautions that while it's possible, it's equivalent to each person sleeping on a crib mattress, with 27 inches of sleep space. Therefore, many couples or partners opt for the Queen size.
The Queen of Beds
The Queen is both wider and longer than the Full, at 61” x 81” x 15” for the fitted sheet, 95" x 110" for the flat sheet, 92" x 96" for the duvet, and the same for the comforter. This gives a much more manageable 30" of width for sleep space per person.
A Mattress fit for a King
The King is the largest of the traditional sizes, clocking in with a fitted sheet at 77" x 81" x 15", a square 110" flat sheet, and duvet and comforters at 106" x 96". The extra width--38" per person--is especially useful for those with small children who often take refuge in a parent's bed!
The final of the six conventional bed sizes is commonly called the California King, due to its inception and widespread adoption in the Golden State. It is narrower than the King, but longer, at 72" x 84" for the mattress size, making the duvet and comforter 102" x 94". Often these beds use the same flat sheets as the King, just as the Twin XL uses Twin-sized flat sheets.
More Useful Information
For a useful comforter sizes chart, as well as a convenient table of the mattress, flat sheet, and duvet sizes, click here. Also remember to consider mattress height: 12 inch mattress sheets and 12 inch fitted sheets may not be tall enough sheets for 13 inch mattress beds. If you enjoy extra soft pillow top mattress pads, take this height into consideration as well when purchasing sheets. The DreamFit sheets offered here have special bands in the corners to help overcome the difficulty of fitting sheets to thicker mattresses.
Mattress Size Chart. Retrieved October 16, 2016, from http://www.beddingexperts.com/mattress-sizes-chart/
Sizing Up Your Bedroom. Retrieved October 16, 2016, from https://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/guide/sizing-up-your-bedroom/dc1700004
Bedding Size Chart. Retrieved October 16, 2016, from http://www.beddingstyle.com/content/bedding-size-chart.asp