Jan 9, 2012

Pillow inspiration!

Pillows are a wonderful accessory for most rooms. They provide color, texture,and style. Try swapping the color, texture and location of pillows throughout the year for interest! If your color scheme is cohesive,  bedrooms the same color as the living areas, move pillows from room to room so you achieve a different look easily. Don't forget that you can also change pillows seasonally! Here are some ideas for how to use them and some options for size and shape. 

Pretty but a bit crowded for sitting - depends
upon your use!
1) DON'T use too many pillows. While there is no "rule" for how many to use, sitting on furniture overstuffed with pillows isn't comfortable; instead they often end up on the floor. Rather than line the back with rectangles or squares, try a center bolster or round ones in the corner. For a standard 8' sofa 3 to 4 pillows should be sufficient. It's the same for beds - if the pillows overwhelm the bed, it becomes a chore to decorate with them. Instead, select larger scale and interesting patterns and use fewer.

Appliques and contrast trim create interest.

2) DO consider changing the shape and color of the pillows from that of a base sofa cushion and fabric color. Coordinate rather than match fabrics so they serve as an accessory. For those that come with your pre-made sofa, change them up.  Add another fabric to the face of some and add welting, trim and other details for interest.

3) The right sized square pillow works for many applications. For example, 16" squares are good corner pillows for 6-7' sofas and 18" squares work for 8' or larger sofas. 26" x 26" is a good size for floor pillows and back pillows for queen and king sized beds.  For softness and the ability to re-shape, use a down or man-made down fill. 

Neckroll pillows are a great shape.
4) Try neck roll pillows on beds, sofas, and chairs. These are generally 6- 8" in diameter and up to 18" long. Bolsters are larger in scale - 10" in diameter and up to 24" wide - are great for beds. Scale the width to its use.

Kidney pillows are useful.

5) A well -placed kidney pillow can dress up a large dining or lounge chair and help make a deep seat more comfortable. The pillow should fit just inside the width of the seat and be as high as needed for comfort when sitting against the back of the furniture.

6) Add detail with contrast welting, a second fabric, and appliques. How about corner or center buttons? One decorative pillow has more impact than 3 plain ones.

7) Knife-edge pillows are fine but try adding flanges and welting for interest. If you can sew, try mixing fabrics on front and back, apply a center strip, or even create an envelope style.  When pillows serve as a decorative accessory, the added details are what make them work!
8) Experiment with mixing round and square shapes together. On large sofas I like to use square corner pillows with a smaller round in front, and a large bolster in the center which also serves as a back support.