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You have to start with the bread: It is, after all, your foundation. Then you can get creative with whatever kind of filling you want—fresh mozzarella or grilled eggplant, perhaps—and once that’s done, the finishing touch is simple: another slice of sourdough. This is how to make a sandwich. But it is also how you can make a bed.

The ingredients are different, but the formula stays the same. Match whatever’s at the top of your bed—headboard or pillows—with a quilt or throw blanket at the foot, and voilà! Symmetry that always looks good, regardless of the linens in the middle, and barely requires any styling expertise.

This isn’t to say this is the only way to make a bed, but it is a pretty foolproof plan when you’re itching to upgrade your standard duvet-and-sheets situation. When in doubt, just whip up a panini or a hoagie or a sub—whatever you prefer. These combos are proof.

The Reverse Grilled Cheese

There’s something especially soothing about a matching ochre headboard and quilt. The only thing that makes this minimalist setup even better is its coordinating #StickOfButter sheets. 

The Seaside Snack

Photography by Cody Guilfoyle

When it’s framed by a gallery wall this striking, there’s no need to overcomplicate your bed. An indigo-dyed extra-long lumbar pillow and throw anchor it—no need for their patterns to be an exact match.

The Strawberry Surprise

Photography by Cody Guilfoyle

Who needs a headboard when you have this many amazing throw pillows? A coordinating bed runner pulls it together. Consider this a lesson that allover color doesn’t have to be perfectly monochromatic, too.

The Whole Grain

Feel free to mix and match textures with your bed “breads,” too: Here, a striped lumbar pillow and chunky knitted blanket make a powerful duo in the same cream tones. 

The Greige Special

Photography by Amy Bartlam; Design by Katie Hodges Design

If you want to break out of your all-white-everything habit just a little, consider a different neutral. A sleek headboard and matching throw in this smokier but still subtle hue warm up a minimalist room.

The Dash of Dragon Fruit

Photography by Aaron Bengochea

There’s plenty going on in this bedroom, but pops of magenta and blue wrap it up nicely. A dash of those hues in both the throw pillows and checkered quilt create a fun-house-mirror effect. 

The Blue Bookends 

Simplicity speaks volumes in this colorful space, which pairs a clean-lined blue bed frame with a blanket that’s just a shade darker. The tangerine throw pillows zest things up just enough.

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