How do I keep multiple blankets fastened together?
September 20, 2020 3:00 AM   Subscribe

Looking for tried-and-true ideas on how to fasten multiple blankets together on a bed so they don't slip apart.

In the winter, I need to layer 3-4 blankets on my bed to stay warm. Problem is that they tend to slide down and bunch up in the middle of the night.

Has anyone found a good way to deal with this? I tried using regular-sized safety pins to fasten them together, but the blankets were heavy and pulled the pins apart (and tore my lighter sheets in the process). I've also looked into getting elastic bands at the corners of the bed to cinch them down, but that would restrict my movement too much.

Would large, more robust safety pins work without causing major damage to my sheets and blankets?

Assume that an electric blanket is not an option. Also, I avoid online shopping, including Amazon, so the solution would have to be available in a physical store, like BBB, Target, Joann, etc.

Thank you everyone!
posted by aquamvidam to Home & Garden (21 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Would your blankets fit inside a duvet cover?
posted by Too-Ticky at 3:09 AM on September 20, 2020 [6 favorites]

What are your blankets made out of? That might help determine what solutions will work well/won't destroy them.

Maybe you could put grommets in the corners of each blanket and then thread a string through all the grommets and tie it to hold them together. Or stitch some kind of ribbon (but maybe not literally ribbon since the slipperiness might make it come untied too easily) to the corners and tie the ribbons together.
posted by needs more cowbell at 3:31 AM on September 20, 2020 [1 favorite]

So I like about three blankets in winter and I am a tosser and turner.

One thing that helps me is using different materials that "grip" onto one another. Our base layer is a fluffy synthetic plush, the next is a cotton waffle blanket with a heavy duvet in a cover on top. The plush is tightly tucked in, and the fibre "grips" the texture of the waffle. The cotton cover (pure cotton) is non slippery and grips the waffle too. Tucking the plush tightly as far around as I can gives that more grippy layer a solid grounding, and I find that having that sort of furry material closest to the body helps retain heat better too. We also only use cotton sheets now - the difference between cotton and polyester in terms of slipperiness was really surprising.

We also started using a protective underlay under our bottom sheet when our kids were born, and I was also surprised how much that makes a difference in terms of warmth. It's like having another blanket underneath!
posted by Jilder at 3:42 AM on September 20, 2020 [4 favorites]

Excellent ideas everyone.

Thank you for the info on the materials - great thought! I do have blankets that match those descriptions, so I'll give that a shot.

Jilder, would you please explain the protective underlay?

I'd love any more suggestions others might have!
posted by aquamvidam at 4:01 AM on September 20, 2020

The first thing that came to mind was large binder clips, assuming the blankets are the same size.
posted by davcoo at 4:15 AM on September 20, 2020 [4 favorites]

I have the same problem and have been considering sewing on little fabric loops on the corners to run something through. Or, little fabric ties and just tying the layers together.
posted by eisforcool at 5:16 AM on September 20, 2020 [5 favorites]

This isn't a thing I've tried, but I'd be tempted to sew hook and loop (Velcro) patches along the edges.
posted by eotvos at 5:17 AM on September 20, 2020

I would probably sew the corners together, and maybe the middle of each side. The stitches can be a bit sloppy as long as they keep things together. All you'd need would be a sturdy needle and some thread.
posted by junques at 6:32 AM on September 20, 2020 [1 favorite]

When I use wool blankets, they kind of velcro together; flannel sheets, which I recommend, do the same, a bit. I tuck sheet and blankets in firmly at the foot of the bed, so I can pull them up if they need it. Your blankets may have a nap that causes them to slide. You could try kilt pins, which are giant safety pins, probably at a sewing/fabric shop. Or use heavy thread (embroidery floss would work) and sew them together in areas, like a tied quilt.
posted by theora55 at 6:37 AM on September 20, 2020 [6 favorites]

I wonder if those non-slip rubbery mesh liners that keep rugs from sliding around would work. You can get smaller rolls for shelf liner at the dollar store. Example Home Depot link. I don't think you'd have to buy a full size piece for each layer, maybe like a 3' x 4' piece in the middle?
posted by i_mean_come_on_now at 7:02 AM on September 20, 2020

I personally this challenge is really about the right, non-slippery blanket materials. But you could also just baste the layers together. Basting hardly damages fabric at all (fine dressmakers do it on things like wedding gowns) and yet it keeps fabrics acting as one piece.

Just use a heavy thread. Lay the blankets together as you wish and stitch a large-scale grid across and down the whole set. I would probably do like an 8" grid for a reasonable amount of stitching.

You could also do the edges so the basting stitches don't pull apart.

You're basically making a lo-fi, super fat quilt.
posted by Miko at 7:06 AM on September 20, 2020 [8 favorites]

Please tell everyone about duvet clips! Here's an article about them:

How to keep your comforter in place in a duvet cover Some brands of these might not accommodate three blankets with thick edges, but they are made to solve a variation on this problem.
posted by amtho at 7:16 AM on September 20, 2020 [3 favorites]

Just came in to check that someone had said duvet cover with clips ..or one with elastic /clips already sown into corners. A wool blanket in a duvet cover is an especially beautiful thing
posted by elgee at 7:34 AM on September 20, 2020 [2 favorites]

I tuck the bottom ends of all the blankets and sheets under the foot end of the mattress. Even though that only secures them along one side, it does a great job of keeping them all together.
posted by late afternoon dreaming hotel at 8:14 AM on September 20, 2020

I have three wool blankets on my bed and they stick to each other like glue. They’re essentially one thick blanket. So, I don’t know if you’re up for investing in a bunch of wool blankets, but that’s one solution.
posted by HotToddy at 9:10 AM on September 20, 2020 [2 favorites]

Um, Blanket pins? You used to be able to buy these wherever you bought sewing supplies. You could also look for kilt pins.
posted by Jane the Brown at 9:10 AM on September 20, 2020 [4 favorites]

I was thinking Velcro too, but since wool blankets especially are already very like the loop side of Velcro, you could get some adhesive backed Velcro, glue the hook sides together back to back, and simply place them between two blankets at various distributed points to keep.the blankets from moving with respect to each other.

Or you could go back to the original source and find some burdock seeds, which were the inspiration for Velcro, and scatter a few of those between blankets to stabilize them. I've seen burdock seeds referred to as "bachelor buttons' and think they deserve the appellation far more than cornflowers do.
posted by jamjam at 11:34 AM on September 20, 2020 [1 favorite]

So when I say protective underlay, I mean a waterproof mattress protector that has a bit of a thicker layer on it than you'd otherwise expect. A lot of waterproof protectors aren't much better than a rubber sheet, but we got this one that's basically quilted over the top of the rubber, so about a half inch thick layer of cotton. It's really soft as well as being water resistant, and it makes the whole bed quite a bit warmer.
posted by Jilder at 6:38 PM on September 20, 2020 [1 favorite]

Last winter I used a toddler-size five pound weighted blanket on top of all my covers to hold everything in place and it worked quite well.
posted by 41swans at 10:30 PM on September 20, 2020

Thank you for the great ideas, everyone! Duvet clips sound like exactly what I'm looking for. Failing those, I'll look for kilt pins.
posted by aquamvidam at 4:22 AM on September 21, 2020

My grandmother used to sew big snaps onto the corners of all her blankets for this express purpose. They make comically large ones.
posted by juniperesque at 8:38 AM on September 21, 2020 [2 favorites]

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