History of the Feather Bed

Feather Beds originated in northern Europe, and were luxury items for the wealthy. Filled with goose down, they provided an incredibly soft sleeping experience.

In the middle ages, people would sleep on hay. Sometimes the hay would be stuffed into sacks to keep the poky-parts of the straw from jabbing into you. But those with money found a better solution. Instead of hay, they filled a large sack with goose feathers, which were very soft. That bag was then laid on top of the bed frame and the people climbed on top.

The downside of the one-sack method was that over time the feathered tended to bunch up in the corners. Soon, baffles were sewn to block the quilt up into smaller squares, to keep the feathers from wandering far.

Because feather beds were so expensive, they were often given as dowries for a bride to bring to her new home, given by the bride's parents. The feather bed would be shown proudly as an item of wealth, and treasured for generations.

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