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Feather & Down - Construction & Fill Blends

Fill blend

All down products are filled with a mixture of feathers and down clusters. The precise blend is usually described as a percentage e.g. 95%. This percentage refers to the minimum amount of down cluster content in the product with the remaining percentage consisting of small feathers. Since 2004, labelling requirements in New Zealand require that the down content specified on a product only includes the down cluster content i.e. specifies the minimum amount of actual down cluster contained in the product.  All Fairydown feather and down products comply with these new labelling requirements and the down cluster content is clearly stated on all packaging and care and content labels.  Fill blend is the most important factor in choosing a duvet as the amount of down cluster content will determine the products relative warmth. Assuming all other factors are equal, a product with a higher down cluster content is warmer to sleep under than one with less down cluster.

Fill Weight

The relative warmth of a feather and down product is also influenced by its fill weight. Fill weight refers to the quantity of feather and down contained within the product and is usually displayed in grams (gms). Assuming all other factors are equal when comparing a product, the product with the greatest weight of down fill will be warmer to sleep under.


Fairydown uses cotton which is the preferred and most popular type of fabric used on feather and down products. As a natural fibre, cotton complements feather and down by allowing it to breathe which helps maintain a healthy sleeping environment.

Channel Construction

Vertical channels are sewn through the top and bottom layers of the duvet case. The feather and down filling is contained within each channel but is free to move up and down the channel. The main advantage of channel construction is that you can vary the warmth of the duvet by moving the filling up or down the channels. However as the filling tends to settle at the bottom of the duvet, it will need to be shaken and the filling redistributed up the channels more often than with other construction methods. In addition, there is less warmth at the stitch lines as the filling is unable to loft in these areas.

Boxed Construction

The top and bottom layers of the cotton casing are stitched right through together in a grid of square compartments. Each compartment is completely sealed so feather and down filling cannot move between the compartments. Boxed construction is the most common type of construction in feather and down product.

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Fairydown was founded in the Kaikorai Valley on the South Island of New Zealand in 1877. Fairydown has a strong connection to the New Zealand landscape, climate, and people.

Like the people of New Zealand, Fairydown has a pioneering spirit and proudly holds its head high on the global stage. Fairydown built its reputation for quality and durability by providing feather and down products that helped pioneering world explorers survive in the harshest cold climates on the planet, in places like the South Pole and mountains of Nepal.

Fairydown Heritage
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