Cushions...Your Questions Answered

Cushions...Your Questions Answered

Hi Gretchen at DMR, 

It’s Jane.  John and I are putting the final touches on the bedroom and living room we’ve just finished renovating, and I need to ask you about cushions …. they do my head in … and it’s so hard to decide. 

Can you help me with some insights please? Like …

What shape? Even or odd numbers … (symmetrical or not?).

What texture should I go for?

What colour?   Seems simple enough, but should I do accent colours, contrast my décor, match something in the room, pull a colour from my art or quilt cover design to “complete my look”?

What if I don’t even like a heap of cushions, especially on the bed?  They end up tossed on the floor, Missy Moo Moo (remember our dog?) makes a comfy nest amongst them, and John trips over them all when he gets up to pee in the night?

I’ve narrowed things down a bit but, h e l p … what pattern? There are geometrics,  florals and swirls (in every possible genre), and just when I think texture is straight forward, do I look for metallic, faux fur, arctic fur, velvet, tufts n tassels, upholstered, knitted, linen, embroidered ….. ?

I went to a beautiful shop yesterday and was confronted with the proverbial wall of spectacular cushions.  I felt completely overwhelmed.  Especially when a lovely assistant showed me a range I hadn’t even considered (apparently, they’re must haves if you want to be on trend).

Gretchen, in the moment I completely lost my vision and compromised.  Worse, I felt really dumb when I took them all home to “have a play” (that’s what she told me to do) and I forgot the designer rules about placement and scale.

Also, that damn throw I bought to match and add texture will just not look like it did in the magazine.

Somehow the harder I try the worse it looks.

If you can get back to me with the official “rules” about cushions I’d be so happy.  It’d be great to know what to do.

John and Missy Moo say hi … can’t for you to visit us in NZ again.


Jane xoxoxo




Relaxed Vibe … if you like a relaxed, casual look and want to immerse yourself in a squishy, cosy and “schlumpy” (not a technical term!) bed or sofa, my best advice is to choose feather inserts and do a combination of linen, wool, faux fur, cotton and layer up sister.

Formal, Structured …. Go for firmer inserts and have the combination of textures in cotton, metallic and velvet etc and stand tall and proud.

SIZES:  Mix up size and scale … big at the back and layer down

COLOUR:  Pick what you love.  Cushions don’t need to match each other or something specific in the room (unless you want them to!).

Click here to browse our range

Best advice: Link.  Just like us, cushions and accessories need to link to something … feel connected. So let’s say you like a particular floral, link with a colour but stick to the same botanical theme.

If you like a particular colour, it looks amazing linking it in different patterns, sizes and textures.

Another example, if you just adore linen,  go all linen (the link) and mix up neutral tones with one favourite accent colour. My current obsession is linen neutrals with a mustard accent (cushions and throws).  It looks glamourous, grounded and super inviting.

TEXTURE: no stress, mix them up to suit your style and taste, or keep it the same … totally up to you

ABSOLUTE BEST ADVICE EVER: Begin with one inspo piece that you just love love love.  (I apply this philosophy to every single decorating mission whether it’s a room, sofa,  side table,  windowsill, wall montage, everything)

Build on that one inspo piece by linking (not matching) in design, colour or texture.

This is the one rule …

You KNOW when you’ve nailed it!


Oh and that throw you’re wrestling with.  Just grab it in the middle (with one hand), give it a jiggle downwards and literally throw it (onto the armrest, on the edge of the sofa cascading to the floor, end of your bed, middle of your bed, half into a basket, onto an ottoman, somewhere where your dog can own it…..)

Cushions on the Bed:  My tip … do what works for you.  It will look amazing!

I’ll let you in on a secret … when I’m styling for a client, we always factor in where you look into the bedroom from.  Do you (and everyone you’re cohabitating with, as well as visitors) see the room from the front entrance or hallway, or living room? If so, be confident and give the bedroom a little “je ne sais quoi”.


Reclaim the Joy of Being Home, and

… have fun xx

Posted by Gretchen

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