Down Comforter Styles
There are many styles of down comforter construction. We'll talk about some of the most popular.
Quilted or Sewn Through Comforters: Many Comforters and Quilts are quilted or "sewn through". This is also the simplest and least expensive method of down comforter construction. Although the actual approach may differ from manufacturer to manufacturer, the down is basically blown into the ticking, and then the ticking is sewn through in a quilted pattern, locking the down into place. Pros: Less expensive. Cons: Cold spots on the seams. The down is still prone to shifting as well.
European: This method uses "tunnels" running the length of the comforter. These tunnels can be sewn through, or separated by a "baffle". A baffle is a width of material sewn to the inside of the top and the bottom of the ticking, creating a dimensional chamber, like a box. This is a great way to allow the down to reach it's fullest loft. Pros: Less expensive, down can be easily shifted. Why is this an advantage? You can move the down from the top to the bottom of the comforter, for instance, if your feet are cold but your shoulders are warm. Cons: The down can be easily shifted.
Closed Baffled Box-Cross Quilted: This method is a hybrid of the Quilted, European and Baffle Box styles. After the down is blown into the chambers created by the baffles running length-wise down the comforter, the comforter is then "cross quilted" or sewn through, locking the down into each chamber. Pros: Less expensive. Cons: Cold spots on the seams, and prone to shifting.
Baffled Box: This method uses chambers created by baffles. The size of these chambers can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. With this method of construction there is a small opening in each baffle which allows the manufacturer to blow down into each chamber. The very best manufacturers use a "sealed baffled box" construction (true sealed baffled box construction very hard to find). Pros: No cold spots. Down stays in place. Cons: More expensive.