How To: Pillow Styling

Today’s post is a how-to, and I’m really looking forward to writing more posts like this one! As many of you know, I offer my services as an Interior Stylist, so I love helping people decorate their homes! However, sometimes people just have a question or two and I’m happy to answer those, free of charge  One of the most common topics I get asked about is pillow styling! “How do I decorate with pillows on my couch? My bed? My chair?” Etc., etc. Well, it’s all here, so keep reading!

Now, there are dozens of methods and ideas out there for how pillow styling “should” be done. Everyone has their own preference, but I’m sharing mine. You can certainly peruse Pinterest and find other arrangements you like, but this is the way I typically decorate with pillows in my own home and in my clients’ homes as well.

When I’m decorating with pillows, I aim to do these three things:

1. Pick a color scheme—a mix of neutrals and pops of color.

2. Use a mixture of patterns, solids, and textures or words (I don’t recommend more than one pillow with words)

3. Use at least one pillow of a different shape

In my living room, I try to stay fairly neutral with most of the pillows I use, that way I can add more pops of color throughout the rest of the room and not worry about having to match the pillows. I love these IKEA buffalo check pillow covers because they serve as both a neutral and a pattern. The green pillows are my “pop of color” and the deep shade is perfect for Fall! Tip: If I’m looking for basic, solid-colored pillows, I go to Walmart and dig through their clearance bin. These were $5 each! Now, for a front-and-center pillow, I almost always go with a lumbar pillow that either has lots of texture (tassels, pom-poms, faux-fur, stitching, etc.) or words on it. The rectangle shape adds variety among the other square pillows, and having texture or words adds interest and dimension! Notice that I also included a textured blanket in the middle of the couch to add some dimension, since my pillows are lacking in texture this time!

Now, for the bed, I’ve shown a couple different styles—one that’s more simplistic and one that’s more dramatic. I alternate between the two styles. It just depends on how I’m feeling when I make my bed each day, and whatever pillows I don’t end up using, I just put under the bed. On some days when I want a really minimal look, I just throw on the tassel pillow in front of my gray quilted pillows and call it a day. We have a slate blue accent wall in our master bedroom, and I love using mustard-yellow as an accent color, so that was the color scheme I chose for my pillows as well. With the exception of the front-and-center tassel pillow, notice that all the other pillows on the bed are actually solids, but because of the variety of texture and accents (buttons on the mustard-yellow one, and ruffles on the dark-gray rectangular one), there’s enough interest and dimension going on that I can still get away with it 

For an accent chair, I recommend using just one large pillow, square-shaped, at least 20×20 in. You can decide how much texture and/or color to use based on the chair. If the chair is neutral, go with a pillow that has more texture, color, or words on it. If the chair is patterned, choose a solid-colored pillow. It’s totally fine if it’s minimally textured (i.e. tassels on each corner, or a button in the middle), or if it has words on it.

So, with all of that said, hopefully you feel inspired and have a framework to reference when decorating your own space with pillows! If there’s a how-to that YOU would love to see, leave a comment on this post! As always, remember that I offer even the most basic of styling services, and I’d be happy to assist you in decorating your home. You can read more about my services HERE, or email me at to put together a custom package just for you and your needs 


Thanks for reading!