Cushions are an easy and affordable way to give your home and outdoor area an instant update while adding comfort and colour. Yet getting the balance of colours, sizes and textures right can be more complicated than it seems. They may be called ‘scatter cushions’, but there’s a lot more to it than just tossing a random selection on a sofa, outdoor settee or bed and hoping for an Insta-worthy outcome. We’ve got tips on how to style your cushions like a stylist to make your rooms pop.
When it comes to curating your cushions, what’s the line between elegant and excessive? Having just one or two cushions may appear spartan on a big sofa, while a mountain of cushions can look messy and spill onto the floor when you sit down. Stylists say the ‘Goldilocks’ number is three to six cushions for a sofa or queen bed for that juuuust riiiiight amount of softness and style (of course, you could sneak in a few more on a large corner sofa or king-size bed). Keep the sizes uniform for a cohesive aesthetic or mix them up for a luscious layered look.
To create a natural cohesion in your room, select your cushions based on your existing décor, such as the aqua out of an artwork or leafy green to match your indoor plants. It needn’t be matchy-matchy, but tying in one or two elements of the surrounding colours will create a more united look in the room overall. A fun way to decide on your selection in the planning stage is with a digital mock-up tool such as Canva or even PowerPoint or work out the scheme on screen.
Again, take cues from the existing décor and use any motifs in the room in the patterns of your cushions, such as palm trees, florals or even something more eclectic. As long as there are elements (however subtle) that tie them together, they will look curated. Mix up your fabrics and textures to create a luscious look. There’s something so deliciously cosy about velvet, tassels, linen and shag beside natural timbers and indoor plants in the surrounding décor.
For a minimalist look, place larger cushions in solid colours in either corner of your sofa. Layer up with one, two or three smaller cushions over the top, having fun with assorted complementary colours and patterns within a similar theme or hue. Odd numbers offer a lovely relaxed look, while even numbers achieve a more uniform aesthetic. There are endless ways to arrange your cushions — here are a few ideas to get you inspired.