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By Julie Mihaly

(MONEY Magazine) – Shopping for a mattress is enough to make a person lose more than mere sleep. Maybe it's the slick salesmen babbling about coil counts, or the multipage warranties (yes, you should read the fine print) or the fact that haggling is expected--even at department stores and websites. Then there's the huge range in prices: If you have a $2,900 budget and want a queen-size innerspring bed, you could purchase the high-end hotel mattress beloved by seasoned travelers, along with the best linens a lot of money can buy. Or you could deck out aSn entire bedroom. Whatever makes you most comfortable. --JULIE MIHALY

Money $2,900 BUDGET

Luxury Hotel Mattress

Enough Westin guests asked how to buy the hotel chain's plush mattress-and-box-spring set that it's finally available to the public. Called the Heavenly Bed, this 825-coil mattress comes with a breathable pillow top for a medium-firm feel. 877-777-5418; WESTIN-HOTELSATHOME.COM $1,250

Sheets and Pillowcases

It's not just a high thread count that makes sheets luxe--fiber type matters too. And Bristol Bedding's 600-count linens are made of extra-long Egyptian cotton, which yields a stronger, softer fabric that will hold up to repeated washings and tends to pill less. Flat sheet, $215; fitted sheet, $180; pillowcases, $130. GRACIOUSTYLE.COM $525

Down Pillows and Comforter

Commit these terms to memory: "fill power" (feather density) and "cold geese," which describes the fuller-feathered birds that hail from the frigid climates of Hungary, Poland or Siberia. The Company Store's Ultimate pillows justify their $278 price1 with a wildly high 650 fill power, Hungarian goose down and a 300-thread-count cotton damask casing. As for Scandia Down's Versailles Lite Hungarian goose down comforter ($840), its baffle-box construction lets you add extra feathers for more oomph--as if 750 fill power wasn't already enough. THECOMPANYSTORE.COM and PIONEERLINENS.COM $1,118

NOTE: [1] For two pillows.


The best way to judge a bed is to lie down on it for 15 minutes. So call 800-MATTRES only after a rest test in one of the company's stores. Can't make it to the showroom? Ask about a "comfort exchange policy" that will allow you to try the mattress for a period of time.

White Bedspread

Linen Source offers top-of-the-line linens--like this preshrunk 100% cotton matelassé bedspread by Milano--at rock-bottom prices. Save by going with a full-size, not queen, spread, which also makes for a neater fit. LINENSOURCE.COM $99

Upholstered Silk Headboard

Clothing outlets like T.J. Maxx have been serving up fashion leftovers for years, and now the trend is coming home, thanks to discount sites like Overstock.com, where we unearthed this silk headboard. (Quantities are always limited.) OVERSTOCK.COM $160

Down Pillows

Want the luxury-hotel feel without springing for an entire bed? Pacific Pillows stocks the comforter used at the Ritz-Carlton and the Marriott Coast Down pillows shown here. The fill power is a whopping 550, and the cotton is 230 thread count. PACIFICPILLOWS.COM $150 for four

Mattress/Box Spring

Rest easy on Sealy's 14-gauge, 736-coil Posturpedic Dignitary mattress set, which has a two-inch foam layer topped with breathable padding. 800-MATTRES, MATTRESS.COM $760

Quilt and Shams

Put your money where the pattern is with Pottery Barn's Leland bedding. POTTERYBARN.COM $217

400-Count Sheets and Pillowcases

Talk about the softer side of Sears: Who knew that the dowdy department store carried 400-thread-count Egyptian cotton linens for so little cold, hard cash? SEARS.COM $130

White 100% Cotton Bedskirt

A white bedskirt from Rachel Ashwell's tony Shabby Chic line costs $105 more than this Simply Shabby version she designed for Target. TARGET.COM $45

Stain-Resistant Rug

Get the look of a natural-fiber carpet plus the stain-repelling power of plastic with this surprisingly cozy hose-it-down polypropylene rug from Frontgate. FRONTGATE.COM $199

Unfinished End Table

Unfinished furniture has shaken its dorm-room rep, with styles ranging from mission to Shaker. The source for our $110 Phillips Collection table will even ship for free. All it took to transform the piece was $20 worth of spray paint. 1UNFINISHEDFURNITURE.COM $130

Vintage Glass Lamp

Wake up and smell the eBay, where we found a pair of lamps for $26 (shown with Ikea's $4 Lingaro shade). Remember: Don't bid too early or you'll drive up the price. EBAY.COM $30

Overstuffed Armchair

Two washable slipcovers ($138) make the clean look of Ikea's Barkaby chair ($250) easy to keep clean. IKEA.COM $388

See-Through Nesting Tables

This plexi trio doesn't hog visual space and adds modernity to a traditional setting. The source: CB2, Crate & Barrel's more affordable cousin. (Also try Pottery Barn's offshoots, West Elm and PBTeen.) CB2.COM $199

Throw Pillows

Exquisite silk and wool pillows are to a room what an expensive handbag is to an affordable outfit--they elevate everything around them. PILLOWSANDTHROWS.COM $305

Vase, Bowl and Tray

Jonathan Adler decorated the Parker Palm Springs Hotel, site of Brad and Angelina's first reported tryst. Lucky for us little people, he's also busy with Happy Home, an affordable line of housewares. Vase, $20 for three; bowl, $20 for four; tray, $28. HOMECLICK.COM $68