• Deborah Bartlett | insideout Newcastle

Spruce up your couch with a cushion or two (and a throw thrown in!)


When the weather outside is cold, wet and dreary, cuddling up on the sofa is a thought that warms our hearts. Adding a few layers of cushions (and throws) to your living room is an inexpensive makeover and can help a messy area look cohesive and stylish. Just the place we want to be. Confused about where to start? Don’t be – it’s easy to make the right choices with a little advice from the experts at Insideout Newcastle!

Colour – Sit in your living room and look around at pieces that comprise your colour scheme. Choose 3 colours maximum. Primary, complimentary and a highlight. Grab a set of coloured pencils and colour a few squares together - making sure they are the same hue and colour as the items you have chosen to work with.

Use this to take shopping and try to stick to the decision you have made. If you’re not sure where to start, take inspiration from artwork, the sofa colour and other accessories around the room. If your room is full of different colours, choose the 3 you like most (the trick here is to stick to 3 only!). By anchoring the colours together on the sofa, the room look more cohesive.

If you have a neutral look and want to add colour you can be brave and use a few bright coloured cushions, get ideas from other pieces in the room such as artwork or a coloured vase to anchor the colours. The tiniest piece of colour will pop when you add your cushions.

Neutral cushions with texture are another way to make the layers more interesting. Give depth to the room by throwing in one or 2 brighter colours that are elsewhere to achieve a cohesive feel and inject your personality.

Pattern – Think small, medium and large. Geometric, stripes and florals. If you have different designs in different sizes and similar or complimentary colours they can look beautiful.

Adding some plain colours and textures will also present an interesting look and provide depth to your room. It will feel cosy and modern.

Adding contrasting piping to custom made cushions can give a subtle impact and look stylish. We love to design custom cushions to make a distinctive impact and focal point for the room. The options are endless.

Placement – Whatever you do, don’t turn your cushions in a diamond pattern – placing them squarely on the sofa, one behind another is a much better look. A quick karate chop will give a more lived-in, homely finish. Putting the same number of cushions with a matching pattern and colours on either side will give a more finished and styled look.

There aren’t any rules about placement - it really depends on what you like, and the fill and size of the cushions will also dictate placement.

Size and Fill – Splash out and buy feather fill for your cushions. A 50x50 feather filled cushion feels great and looks good on any sofa. A feather and fiberfill will give a firmer look if you prefer.

We feel cushions should not only look good but also be practical. A quality cotton or linen blend can be washed and look beautiful for many years. Using the same size can give a stylish cohesive effect or mix up the size and shapes if you want a more eclectic and cosy look.

How many is too many? You be the judge. There are no hard and fast rules, but by playing around with quantities, you will find what works best for your space. As a guide:

  • Single seater – usually 1 cushion (a 30x50 size can work well);

  • Two seaters – can take up to 4 cushions

  • Three seaters – up to 4 - 6 cushions

  • Four-seaters – up to 5 - 6 cushions

Keep in mind that an extra deep sofa can take more and remember to add no more than one throw per sofa (there is such a thing as too many throws!).

Some of us are cushion addicts and love to change things around from time to time. This adds life to a tired room, announces the seasons and makes a difference to how we feel when we enter the room. A small investment that makes a large impact!

Thanks to Insideout Newcastle we have two beautiful Greg Natale Cushions to be won this month (check out some of his beautiful designs above). To win – simply visit our Facebook Page at /IntouchMagazines. Post a pic of your bare couch and tag it with #CushionSpruceUp to win! Competition ends July 31st. Good Luck!

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