Atlantic Shopping / Buying Guides / Bed buying guide

On average, we spend up to a third of our lives in bed. Choosing the right bed could mean more sleep, and a better night’s sleep, so it’s important to get it right. We know this can be tricky, so we’ve put together this comprehensive buying guide to help you to make the right decision.

Choosing the Right Size Bed

Beds come in lots of different shapes and sizes. From 3ft singles to 6ft super kings, low modern designs to taller traditional models, and those with or without a decorative headboard. With this in mind, it can be tricky to select the right size for you. Take a look at the diagram below to find out more about the measurements you’ll find on our individual product pages. Then, to choose the right size for your space, just ask yourself the following questions.

Diagram Showing Different Measurements on a Bed

Who's going to be using it?

If you’re going to be sharing your bed with a partner, it’s important that there’s enough room for both of you to sleep comfortably in it. Make sure it’s at least 10-15cm bigger, lengthwise, than the tallest person who’s going to be using it. To make sure it’s wide enough, lie side-by-side with your arms behind your head. If your elbows don’t touch, it’s big enough! Finally, to make sure that you’re both happy with the style, size and level of support, it’s best to make the decision together.

How much space do you have?

Before you select your bed, consider the room that you’ll be putting it in. If you already have furniture in the room, make sure you’ll have space for your new bed as well. Allow adequate room for both the headboard and footboard, and don’t go for a design with a tall headboard if you’re going to tuck it into an alcove. A clever trick is to use newspaper to lay out the floor space that it will take up. Check that you’ll still be able to open wardrobe doors and drawers with plenty of room to access them. Finally, make sure that you’ll be able to get your chosen bed into your house. This is especially important if you have a steep stairway or tight hallway.

Do you need storage under your bed?

As well as width and length, think about the height of your bed. Most include the ‘under bed clearance’ measurement on the individual listing page, which is handy if you want to fit extra storage underneath.

Do you already have a mattress?

If you already have a mattress, make sure you choose the right size bed. This may sound obvious, but measurements can differ between companies, so one king size may not be the same as another. It’s best to check the dimensions before you make your purchase just to be on the safe side.

Bed Sizes Explained

All beds are classified according to the size of mattress that will fit inside them. With singles, small doubles, king sizes and super king sizes to choose from, it can be confusing to know which is best for you. The good news is, lots of our products are available in a number of sizes, so once you’ve found a style you like, you’ll be able to choose the size that’s right for you.

Please note: The dimensions below are approximate- please check the individual listing page for exact dimensions.

Single (3ft)

These are the smallest models that we do. While they’re ideal for children’s rooms, they’re often used in guest rooms, where two can be pushed together if a couple comes to stay.

Small Double (4ft)

Small doubles are 6 inches smaller, lengthways, than a standard double. They’re ideal for couples, singles who may want a little extra space, or guest bedrooms. Small doubles can also be used in smaller rooms, leaving you more space for other furniture.

Double (4ft 6")

Also known as a “full sized bed”, doubles are the most common choice. Chosen by singles and couples alike, they’re a standard across many households.

Diagram Comparing Single, Small Double and Double Beds

King Size (5ft)

With a huge 5ft in space, king size beds offer enough room for anyone. As well as being wider, they are actually 3 inches longer than doubles, so make sure you have the room both ways before purchasing one.

Super King Size (6ft)

Often chosen by couples who require a little more space during the night, super king sizes offer the ultimate in luxury.

Diagram Comparing King Size and Super King Size Beds
Choosing the Right Style of Bed

As well as choosing the best size for you, you’ll need to select a style to match your décor. Your bed will probably be the largest item in your room, so go for a style that works in harmony with the overall look.

Ottoman & Storage Beds

Ideal solutions for those short on space, ottoman and storage beds allow you to store items like sheets, blankets or seasonal clothing inside of them, freeing up extra space in your room. While ottoman models require you to lift the mattress to reveal the storage space, other types of storage beds can feature drawers or cupboards underneath.

Sleigh Style Beds

Dating all the way back to the 19th century, sleigh beds have a luxurious, traditional look. With headboards that curve outwards like the front of a sleigh, they’re grander than other designs. It’s worth bearing in mind that they can take up more space than modern models.

Victorian Style Bed

As the name suggests, the Victorians made these beds popular. Generally made from metal, they feature ornate detailing on the headboard and footboard.

Children's Beds

Our fun beds for children come in standard single size, so your little ones won’t outgrow them too quickly.

Luxurious Beige Padded Bed in Bedroom
Choosing the Right Material and Colour

Our beds come in a range of materials and colours, from simple, rustic wooden models to luxurious real leather designs. The material and colour can have a huge impact on the overall style of your bed, so it’s important to consider your choice carefully.


From traditional Victorian designs to simple modern models, lots of styles of bed feature metal frames. Lightweight and durable, metal frames can be beautifully ornate, as it can be formed into any shape conceivable. Plus, metal frames with a satin finish give you a choice of colours to suit your décor.


Offering a more rustic, traditional look, wooden frames have been popular for many years, thanks to their simple, natural style and unbeatable durability.

Faux Leather & Genuine Leather

Both faux and genuine leather frames are beautifully stylish. While faux leather represents a cost-effective choice, some favour real leather for its luxurious finish, feel and smell. What’s more, you can choose from plain, quilted or buttoned to suit your style.

Fabric & Velvet

Fabric frames have a number of great benefits. Not only do they look stylish, but they also often feature padded headboards to support you as you sit upright. Plus, they’re available in a number of colours, allowing you to pick one to suit your taste. Alternatively, our velvet models offer a truly decadent look, in a stylish variety of colours and textures.

Image Comparing Different Materials Used In Bed Design
Choosing the Right Support Type

Although design is important, your bed is first and foremost a place to get a good night’s sleep, so it’s crucial that you select a model that offers the right level of support for you. The slats on our beds come in two styles- sprung slats, or solid slats, each with its own benefits.

Sprung Slatted Base

The majority of our beds are sold with a ‘sprung slatted base’. This means that the wooden slats are slightly curved, which makes them more flexible. When your weight shifts on your mattress, the slats adapt, effectively supporting you in any position. Not only comfortable, sprung slats can actually help to extend the life of your mattress.

Solid Slatted Base

We also stock models with solid wooden slats. These have less give, and are perfect for those who prefer a firmer base.

Diagram Comparing Sprung Slats and Solid Slats for Bed
Additional Features

Finally, most beds come with additional details, like headboards, feet and finials. You can learn what these are below.

With or Without Feet

You’ll need to decide whether you’d like a design with or without feet. This will probably depend on the height you’d like your bed to be, and whether or not you’d like to store things underneath it. It will also depend on the style that you choose, as more modern designs often stand lower to the ground, without feet or with very small feet.

Headboard Detail

Some models, particularly those upholstered in leather, fabric or velvet, feature additional detailing on the headboard and footboard. These can include buttons, diamantes and quilting.


Finials are the decorative toppers on bedposts, ornate details found on many Victorian-style models. Either plain spheres or more lavish designs, they make an eye-catching detail, whilst softening the blunt edges of the posts.

White Quilted Fabric Bed with Striped Bedcover

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