Feather and Down

FILL: Down or Feather?

The secret is to achieve insulation with a minimum of weight. This places importance on the quality and type of filling.

The filling consists of either down and/or feather. Feathers are hard and heavy, and are used for flying and swimming. Down is soft and three dimensional. Used to hold air at high altitudes and low temperatures with a minimum of weight. Down acts as an insulator, trapping air in its soft fibres.

It is these qualities that make down and feather mixtures so ideal; from the delicate softness of pure down to the firmer weight of increasing feather content. The end result is a range of products that can breathe, resist compression, hold warmth and absorb moisture – thus controlling temperature and giving you a better night’s sleep.

The quality of down is measured by international standards. The Japanese standard (JISL1903) and Australian standard (AS2479) are the highest industry standards. Novadown uses the Australian standard (AS2479) as a minimum.

FILL: Goose or Duck?

Down is sourced from either Geese or Duck. Goosedown is larger, yet lighter than duckdown making it the down of preference. Novadown is selective in sourcing down and feather for their full product range. The European Collection utilises goosedown from Hungary. Grown from mature, free range geese farmed especially for their down and chosen for its larger plume creating high loft and filling power.


Fill power is an internationally recognised way of determining the best volume to weight ratio. It is based on the volume (in 3 ) filled by 1-oz of down. In other words, it measures the quality and performance of the down and should be one of the first things to look at when choosing a quilt or pillow. A higher fill power indicates larger, stronger clusters of down and excellent insulation. These dense clusters have longer fibres, allowing them to hold their shape even when they are supporting your body. Within the Novadown range our highest fill power of 700 is provided by 95% Hungarian goosedown, from the village of Kárafalva in Eastern Hungary.