When July rolls around, my husband and I are tossing and turning and kicking off the covers in all sorts of directions in an effort to stay cool and stay asleep during warmer nights. This has become all to important as neither he or I are sleeping as deeply lately. A big reason for this is that our bedding needs to be lighter and cooler. Every year when this happens, I secretly do a happy dance since this presents a solid reason to redo my bedding.
For this, thank the Danish for providing a perfect model. A few years ago, I was in Denmark during the summer and got the best sleep of my life. I attribute some of it to jet lag, and a lot of it to how the bed was made. There was a sheet, a very light blanket, and a coverlet on the bed. In Scandinavia, coverlets are the preferred choice for bed making all year round. Danes are wonderfully practical folk who make design choices based on ease, practicality and functionality. Coverlets fit so well within these conditions.
Just like the Danish, I prefer to use a coverlet either over sheeting or over a light weight blanket. This is such a freeing and flexible option as coverlets (being only one piece of fabric) are easy to arrange, fold, wash, and keep. They are easy to change. How fun to change the bed top either due to weather changes, time of year, or just because? Coverlets are a modern approach to making the bed in that they offer flexibility and ease. I swear that our bed can be made in about 30 seconds these days with our coverlet on the bed. Lifting and arranging a single piece of fabric over sheeting and a blanket is quick and pretty much a no brainer.
"Using coverlets is a modern approach to making the bed in that they offer flexibility and ease."
If you have a duvet, then they also can work like a coverlet. The duvet insert can be removed entirely and what you are left with is a bed covering akin to a coverlet or bedspread. For climates that require a little more warmth, a blanket can be added. You will have a flexible bedding arrangement that is both cool and in keeping with your existing bedding decor. No great style change is needed.
I don't know when my next trip to Scandinavia will be but in the meantime I can recreate the Danish bed for summer with a coverlet. For this story we used the Oline Coverlet in Slate, the Larson Coverlet with Pumpkin Edging and Anna Oatmeal Pillowcases.
We eat a lot of ice cream and berries in the summer time. When the sun is out somehow this combination makes the day. There is a five minute dessert that I often make for almost every reason. Like last week when my kids where out of school for the summer and we just had to mark the event with an earmark of the hot season. Or when my daughter gets her braces adjusted and its soft foods for two days. Or its a Tuesday and its hot, so let's eat.
The short version is vanilla ice cream gets drenched with a hot berry sauce which instantly melts the ice cream to a coldish-hot soup of total sugary and tangy pleasure. And all in about five minutes of effort. It's that good and that easy.
To make it, we put about half a cup of frozen berries (blueberry, strawberry, raspberry) in a saucepan covered on low heat. Then let it cook for 10 -15 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon of sugar or to taste. The sauce is done at this point and can be taken off heat to cool. Spoon over slightly softened vanilla ice cream. One trick to make this ever easier is to put the berries on the stove when we are eating. It's done perfectly when we are finished.
We served this bowl of delicious in little blue decorative bowls along with our Quince table clothe and napkins. Design wise, Quince was the obvious choice to pair with this dish. Red, white and blue in the table linens and in the dessert mix so well together. I like the mixing of pattern and how the white of the ice cream off sets the whole design. Quince manages to be both casual and formal at the same time. Loving this combo for the Fourth - it's a happy dessert that just makes me smile.