· Bright Ideas · 5 Easy Ways To Put On A Duvet Cover

5 Easy Ways To Put On A Duvet Cover

duvet cover

I’ve said before that I’m one of those strange people who really LIKES doing laundry. I actually find it rather therapeutic and I love the challenge of making really dirty clothes, clean again! BUT, one thing I do NOT like to deal with in the laundry is the duvet covers on our beds.  Actually it’s not the washing of them per se….but the fact that AFTER I wash them I have to PUT THEM BACK ON!

Over the years I have come up with my own way to sort of smashing and smooshing the duvet back into the duvet cover, but have never been really satisfied with this method. I figured there had to be a better way…and wouldn’t you know it….there was!!  Actually SEVERAL better ways than mine! Go figure.

Instead of trying to re-create all of them for you…I am going to share from some other reliable online sources.

Let’s start with the “hand puppet” method as shown by The Fine Bedding Company. After a lot of research, this seems to be by far the most popular method, but after watching all the videos, I’m not convinced! You be the judge!

YouTube video

Looks very smart! But my questions is….how does one person do this with a KING size duvet cover? hmmmmm.

Next, for your consideration is the “10-second duvet trick” from WomansDay.com.

YouTube video

Pretty tricky huh?! It appears that this would work with ANY size duvet.

Next up we explore the “duvet burrito” method of putting on a duvet cover from Scott Culley on YouTube.com.

YouTube video

binder clips

One major advantage I see to THIS method vs. the hand puppet method is not having to be 10 feet tall to shake the duvet cover all the way down the duvet.

Lastly, I present the “binder clip method”. Unfortunately I couldn’t locate a video demonstrating this method, but this is how it was explained on Lifehacker.com

To quickly and painlessly install a duvet cover, put the duvet in the cover one corner at a time, securing each corner with a large binder clip. Spread the combined cover and duvet on the bed. Reach the center underneath and lift; hold it over your head with your hands and let the sides fall around you. Shake the duvet so that the sides fall to the sides of the cover. Spread the duvet on the bed and give the final touches. Remove the binder clips.

And just for fun…I found one more method in the comments section at Lifehacker.com worth mentioning simply for its’ entertainment value! The “birthing whale technique!”

duvet cover 2
Photo by Meals and Miles

“I do what I call the “birthing whale technique” I lay the cover out flat and then I crawl inside the cover with the duvet in hand so I’m like basically completely inside it. I can see what is going on and line up the corners and what not. Then I wiggle out (like a birthed whale) and button it up after a few shakes. Works awesome and the cats enjoy attacking me while I work.”  ~~npage148

Thanks for sharing that npage148! Made my day envisioning this. :-)

Now if I could just figure out how to get the corners of the DUVET to stay in their respective duvet cover corners!!

What’s YOUR favorite method?

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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee


Bright Ideas

  • These are all fine but the only thing they do they covers that we have don’t have that big of an opening it doesn’t even go to have to link at the bottom of the duvet cover

  • We have a flannel duvet cover with hand holes in the top two corners…super easy to make sure the duvet fills the cover perfectly…

    Here is my problem…we cannot find covers with this feature anywhere…HELP please

  • The birthing whale technique was the only one that worked for me.. after 35 minutes of intense internet research and making up my own techniques, i resorted to well, the birthing whale.

  • I have sewn a shoelace type of material on all four corners and the middle of each section of both the duvet and the duvet cover then I insert one corner at a time and tie the strings together and it doesn’t move around ! and when it comes time to wash just start at the top bull the bottom corners up and and untie super easy and takes little amount of time to do!

  • Duvets are common in Europe. I just returned from a trip to Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic. All our hotel rooms had double beds consisting of two twin size mattresses placed side by side in a frame. Each side of the bed had a twin size duvet and cover. The two duvets were each folded in thirds crosswise and placed on top the bed like burritos. This made for a very tidy and easy way to make the bed. Because the duvets and covers are never larger than twin size they are easy to manage. A bonus is that a couple in bed never needs to have a “tug of war” with the covers and can “cozy up” when they want! We make our beds at home, in the U.S.A., this way and love it.

  • Hi Jillee, I haven’t been reading your blog too long, and I was scrolling through some of your past posts when I saw this about duvet covers. When I first looked around for one to cover a down comforter, they were either non-existent in stores near me, or were ridiculously expensive. It was awhile ago, before I used a computer. I’m not sure, thinking back, that we even owned one then, unless my hubby had one for work! So I had to look in store catalogs or go to the different department stores to find anything! Anyway, I looked in my local Jo Ann’s Fabrics, and found that there are some pretty designs on quilt backing fabrics, that are extra wide widths for backing home made quilts. I think I bought fabric that was 110 or 120 inches wide. Since my comforter was a king size, that was great, so I wouldn’t be sewing lots of 45 or so lengths of fabric together! I basically just made a big pillowcase, and for closure, sewed buttons and buttonholes on the open side, though probably you could use velcro, or pretty washable ribbon or even seam binding to tie the open end shut.
    The price was very reasonable, and protected the comforter. I didn’t add ties to the inside then, but I could do that easily. Hope this helps someone who might want to sew a cover, it’s so easy, straight seam sewing! Love your blog!

  • I know what I’m about to say has nothing to do with putting the blanket into the duvet cover… but…does anyone know why duvet covers cost more that the bed in a bags? (The whole blanket, sheet, bed skirt, pillow case(s), flat sheet set)

    I find that its cheaper to buy the whole sets than to buy the duvet covers… Now I have 4 blankets… (that take up a lot of space) and two duvet covers I switch from…

    When I look at a duvet cover… it looks so simple… two flat sheets can be sewn together… but why does it cost so much? The cheapest duvet covers I found was when Ikea had that duvet cover sale for $10.00… or was it $15.00… can’t remember…

  • Sew a button on the corner of your comforter, next make a button hole on the bottom side of the duvet. Button comforter to the duvet. That should work.

  • The duvet covers need to be slightly smaller than the duvet. Give the whole thing a quick shake in the morning and there will be no bunching and no need for clips and ties. Doesn’t help with “dressing” the duvet, but should help when the cover is on.

  • Let’s see. First I start with the hand puppet method. But since we have nothing but king beds, and I am at my largest a full sized person, I then end with Jillee’s original Stuff and Smoosh (I call it the Stuff and Curse) method. My husband and two shih tzu’s just now sat, completely stunned, as I watched and read this page through, occasionally crying out things like “Brilliant!” and “Genius!!” So this is what I’m going to try.

    I’m heading over to my favorite online, huge, shopping mall to look for duvet clips, or cloth tape. Then I’m going to give each of these a try (except maybe the birthing whale since I’m not as limber as I used to be) until I find one that let’s me get on with my day rather than collapsing into an exhausted puddle in the middle of the freshly-made bed wishing for a couple of tylenol and a drink of water.

  • I have a king size bed and I’m only 5’3 so after I get my duvet into the cover, I grab the 2 top corners and stand on my bed near the head. Then I just shake it out and when it looks pretty even, I place it down on the bed. It’s not my favorite chore but it’s not too difficult. Most of my covers have the ties inside them but since my comforters don’t, it’s not the most effective way since I can only tie up the corners of the duvet. I like the idea of velcro. Let’s see if I ever do that.

  • Love your blog! I really dont care for the moving ads. They are very distracting. I was hoping it would disappear as some do but no such luck. Too much going on to to enjoy your writings.

  • I have used the hand puppet method for years, standing on the bed to try and make myself 10 feet tall. All the methods are interesting and worth a try. I just knew the guy in the burrito method video was going to roll it up and violently throw it in the corner… that’s my husband’s method.

    But seriously, something I do when I get a new duvet cover I sew a 12 inch long piece of 1/4″ to 1/2″ ribbon (that is folded in half and stitched to form two 6″ ties) into the inside corners of the cover. I tightly tie these around the corner of the duvet to keep it in place. Once the cover is in place the ribbons inside the corners are barely visible.

    Before I pull out the duvets this fall I’m going to either make a button hole (using my sewing machine) in the corner of the duvet, or us a 1/2″ grommet to run the ribbon through. You could use a good sized button in place of the ribbon with the button hole method. This will keep the ends of the duvet in the corners of the cover.

    BTW, I love your blog!

  • We (my hub and I) use the hand puppet idea. He is the puppeteer and I pull the duvet cover over the duvet. Then we each grab two corners, shake it out, and then carry it to the bed. I always sew a “tuck” section to the open part on the foot of the cover. We have used duvet overs for 35 years (real Dutchies) and never had problems with corners. Be sure the cover matches the size of the duvet. Maybe that is the trick.
    Linda@Wetcreek Blog

  • I do the same as Amy because I too have a down comforter for the winter (which my furnace of a hubby abhors!) and I like it clean so I buy covers with tapes sewn in (Company Store is great for this) and if the comforter doesn’t have them, I sew them on. So much easier, nothing hard to bump against when the cover gets skewed during the night and it looks nice.

  • When my husband’s company sent us to the Netherlands, they provided a furnished apartment. The bedroom had two twin beds pushed together without sheets. In the linen closet was something that looked like a matress pad, something that looked like a huge pillow case, and a down coverlet.

    I put the matress pads on each matress, then slipped each matress inside the huge pillow case. We covered ourselves with the down coverlet. I just couldn’t fathom how little old Dutch ladies could heft up a matress to put it in the big pillow case thing.

    We began to take Dutch lessons, and I mentioned it to our teacher. Boy did I feel dumb.
    Matress pad=fitted sheet (no top sheet)
    Giant pillow case=duvet cover
    Down coverlet=duvet

    The little old Dutch ladies were safe!

  • Just so you know, in looking for duvet clips online, I see they are available at Walmart, Target, Bed, Bath, and Beyond, and probably other places! Who knew?

  • Duvet Donuts work like a DREAM! Clips the duvet to the cover from the inside so they dont bumch and shift. The only drawback Ive seen with mine is they do stretch out somewhat (I had them going thru a big comforter and a duvet cover, which might be why) But for $10 for a 4 pack Im not going to really complain that much!

  • Go and live in England where the beds are smaller! Lol. I never had a problem till I moved to the States! I love all the space and big beds but its a workout getting those bloody duvet covers on…..but I could never use a comforter. Like you Jillee I love to wash so my Duvet cover has to be washed weekly..maybe white duvet coversand 2 Golden retrievers was not the best idea! Also can’t stand top sheets on my bed!
    Thanks, Jillee for a great website . I love tackling stains! Think I need a life!

  • I’ve always used the puppet method though I never knew that it was called that. I shake it out across the bed so you don’t really need to be that tall. I’ve never had a problem with shifting. My sister in law does the ‘birthing whale’ technique and reading this blog post today made me laugh so hard because we always thought she was the only one.

  • Well this came just in time. We used to live in a house with a 2 story foyer. I did the duvets over the railing along the balcony upstairs, sort of a modified puppet technique. I’d lay the duvet over the railing and grab the corners from the inside corners of the cover. It was easy to shake it out over the balcony.

    Then we moved.

    I’m really intrigued by Arienne Cohen’s method. That’s what I’m going to try next.

    BTW my duvet covers (mostly from LLBean) always come with ties in the inside corners. However, I don’t like to use them. I think they make the corners lumpy and hard. I have never had much trouble with the duvet bunching up inside, once I got it in flat in the first place.

  • Never have owned a duvet; I have made a cover for one though. This is what I did. I made it open on both ends & used 2 pieces complimenting fabrics. I placed buttons on the foot & head of the duvet & made button holes in top side of the cover for each end. Then I sewed the sides together. The duvet gets buttoned to the cover- top & bottom.
    Method for placing on the cover—Panty Hose Method???: Place arms inside the cover & scrunch to the end. Grab the Ends of the duvet and shake until filled. Button duvet to cover at each end.

  • Thank you for sharing all those good ideas; however, I have to admit the birthing whale method brought tears to my eyes from laughter. I appreciate you Jillee….

  • Definitely the sewn ribbons on the corners method. I am considering sewing some on the edge halfway down too, as I have noticed the comforter sometime “gaps” down while in use.

  • I have sewn ties in the corners of my duvet cover and on the down comforters, I turn the duvet cover inside out and lay it on the bed, lay the comforter on top and tie the 2 together, it is then easy to turn it right side in and put it on the bed….it really is worth the little time to sew in the ties….. love your blog :)

  • I have been wanting a duvet for some time, but never realized all that it entails…does anyone have suggestions on where to get a duvet at a resonable price? Also, those of you with duvets, how often do you wash the cover? :)

    • IKEA has great prices on duvets. Also Bed, Bath and Beyond has them and frequent sales and coupons. If you look for white sales in your area (usually in January) most stores carry them now.

  • I loved the burrito method. Makes me want to buy a new duvet, since I gave my old one to a nephew due to the hassle. Thanks for the videos.

  • I may or may not have done the “Birthing Whale” technique a time or two… The funny part is hoping that no one walks into the room while you’re all the way inside a king sized duvet cover!

    Thanks for all the tips! I am always looking for a better method to get ours on! To fix the whole “not being 10 feet tall” issues, I would shake the comforter over the railing of the stairs so it would hang down the stair well… It was still quite a large item to hold up there!

    Thanks again!

  • I used duvet clips from Bed, Bath, and Beyond. They function a lot like the binder clip trick, though I think they “lock” closed better. I may try some binder clips on the duvet in my spare bedroom though!

  • With 3 cats who sleep on the bed with us (well, they sleep–we toss and turn trying to move them out of the way), I need to wash the duvet cover weekly. In the summer, I use it alone as just a double-thick sheet layer rather than a light blanket. In the winter, half the time I wrangle the duvet inside, and the other half of the time I just lay it on top of the duvet. But now with these handy-dandy tips, I’ll get it all put together properly every week! Thanks, Jillee. You’re awesome.

  • Totally agree with Tracey! I have a comforter and a quilt for my king size bed, and we use blankets on the rest of the beds. Works for us. :)

    I, too, think it would be simple to attach velcro or ties in the corners of the duvet and covers to keep them together. I’m a little surprised at the safety pins bending inside there. I use safety pins to keep my sheets in place on my bed, but they bend because they’re always being tugged at by the sheets trying to move (as I slide off a bed that’s too high for me!). Maybe I should try ties! Inside the duvet shouldn’t be that much tugging going on.

    I love the final method best, that one’s surely the most fun for everyone involved, including the cats!! :D

    I actually didn’t realize what a duvet was until I read this post! I’ll stick with my comforter, quilt, and blankets as needed. :) Same difference.

  • Ha! Ha! This is why I do not, & never will own a duvet or a duvet cover. Too much work!
    If I did though, I’d go for #1, the hand puppet method. It’s the same way I do similar, but smaller, items.

  • I have been using duvet covers since I was little. In Germany that’s pretty standard actually. After I moved to the US, I brought my duvets and covers with me and buy new covers when I go home to visit. I have always used the hand puppet method and never had a problem with the corners staying in its place. With age my back has been giving out and now I have my husband hold the corners while I quickly pull the covers over the duvet. Takes seconds, lol :) Thank you for your wonderful blog Jillee, please keep up the amazing work :)

  • I took some fairly strong old ribbon (white ones so they dont stain), cut them to about 8 inches and sew them into the corners. I bought some from Garnet Hill that already had them and I thought that cant be too hard to do. Simple and it works!

  • I’m still pretty new to your site/blog, which I LOVE!
    I just read your comment about LIKING to do laundry and I about flipped! I thought I was the only person in the world who got those strange looks of sympathy (like I was one nugget shy of a happy meal) when I told people that I actually LIKED to do laundry (and iron)! Its good to know im not the only person at the laundry anonymous meeting! I love your blog, the information you share is invaluable! Keep up the good work!

  • I have sewn cotton tape onto each corner of my duvet ( and some have a piece halfway along the longest side). Inside the duvet cover, I have done the same thing. It then becomes easy to place the duvet on top of the inside out cover, tie all matching tapes and then turn to right side. Duvet will never bunch up. The few minutes it takes to sew the tape on to new covers is well worth the effort.

  • We flip inside out, attach duvet clips (buy them from Homesense) and then flip right side out, give a shake and do up buttons or zip close.

    Duvet clips for each corner and in the middle, all the way. Love duvet clips.

    Thanks Jillee!!!

  • I have been using safety pins on the corners and that is not good enough…they are bending out of shape. So I keep meaning to buy large diaper pins *if such a thing exists anymore. I keep forgetting to do it especially now that it is summer and I don’t need to use it. But happily this article has brought them to mind again.

    • I do the exact same thing WITHGODDESS, except with Diaper Pins (availabe at Walmart and Dollar stores). Once you have those 2 top duvet corners firmly pinned into the corners of the cover, you don’t have to worry about letting go and being “10 ft Tall” to shae it down. You can even leave the pins in if you put them on the side that you turn down. Now get out there and get those Diaper Pins! LOL!

  • Sew in ties, buttons or snaps on all 4 corners to hold duvet together. My king size duvet from Macy’s (hotel collection brand) came with ties in the corners. It’s amazing!

    • I do what Amy does. I sewed bias binding (about a 12 inch piece. you tack it down at the mid point of the piece to each corner of your duvet). Then do the matching thing to the duvet cover. I turn the cover inside out and tie the bottom corners to the bottom corners of the duvet, then bring the cover over the duvet and do the same with the top corners.

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