How to choose cushions

Lovely eclectic boho chic styled room with blue and mustard cushions and funky ornaments


Cushions can add personality and inject new life into your home. Use this useful guide to help you make the right choice for your space.


How to choose cushions for your sofa

  1. Identify your colour palette.
  2. Decide on the number of cushions to add.
  3. Choose the right mix of size and shape.
  4. Play with textures and material.
  5. Arrange them well.


Step 1: Identify your colour palette

When selecting cushions for your space, the trick is to draw on existing accent colours you wish to highlight; that is, colours that are complementary to your artwork, soft furnishings, furniture pieces or accessories.

If you look at the scene below, you’ll notice that these throw cushions have been selected based on the existing colours and patterns evident in the print on the wall and the existing accessories in the room. The result is a very coordinated and stylish look.


Mid century modern styled scene with red and green sofa cushions arranged on a beige couch with a chunky knit throw blanket.

This room features our Phoenix Pop Collection


Step 2: Decide on the number of cushions to add

When deciding on the right number in your search for lounge cushions, think generous, abundant and luxurious! Decide on the style you intend for your room and let that inform whether or not to go for an odd or even number of cushions.

For a more traditional look, stick with an even number of cushions to give the room more symmetry. Odd numbers tend to be more artful and best suited for modern or eclectic styles. Try a single cushion for a one seater sofa and five cushions for a three seater sofa.

Remember not to overcrowd your furnishings – or in contrast, be too underwhelming. Selecting the right number is all about balance.


Neutral sofa with two two one cushions arrangement

This room features our Kafka Collection


Step 3: Choose the right mix of size and shape

Sticking to the same shapes and sizes can look a bit clinical and boring. If you are looking to add depth and visual interest, then variation will give your space the lift it needs.

A simple way to achieve a coordinated look would be to choose a couple of larger 55cm x 55cm block coloured squares that contrast with the colour of your sofa, then add a few stylish outliers — patterned and slightly smaller, say 45cm x 45cm.

Complete the look with a small 30cm x 50cm rectangular cushion in the centre that references the colour of your upholstery or a colour from one of the cushions. Consider a large oversized cushion as a gorgeous floor cushions to complete the look.


Grey sofa with purple and yellow cushion arrangement


Step 4: Play with textures and material

Colour and size aren’t the only interest that cushions can offer to your design scheme. Adding distinguishing textures and fabrics can emphasise other material in the room and amp up its quality.

Use contrast to help set the tone. For example, try a plain velvet finish against a leather or cotton-covered sofa to add just the right touch of elegance. Faux fur cushions give your room a soft layered appeal and an extra cozy atmosphere when paired with a fur throw.

Combining material and textures to complement existing furnishings can add instant warmth and a harmonious blend to your decor.


Sofa scene with 5 cushions layered on a cream sofa

This room features our Aarhus Collection.


Step 5: Arrange them well

There are no hard and fast rules about how to display cushions but there are a few basic concepts for arrangements you can use to get the most from your collection. Remember that arrangement is all about layering.

Try using odd numbers of cushions — starting with your large cushions at the back and working the smaller ones to the front. For large sofas, try two on each side and one or two in the middle so that each part of the sofa has a colour pop.

The key is to keep experimenting with arrangements until you find what you like. Once you have your look covered, all that’s left to do is sit back, relax and enjoy the comfort of your new cushions!


Corner lounge with blue and olive velvet cushions

This room features our Woodstock Collection


Choosing the right inserts for your cushions

Just as important as choosing the right cushions is making sure they have the right cushion inserts.

Size matters

When it comes to a cushion insert, size definitely matters. If you’d like a standard fit for your cushions, choose an insert that is specific to the cushion covers size. For a more plump and rounded look, you can use a cushion insert that is slightly larger than your cushion cover. The larger size accounts for the three-dimensional shape and size of the cushions.

The right materials

Next to the size and shape of your sofa cushions, you also want to consider the material the inserts are made of. One of the more popular choices for an insert is polyester. A polyester insert is lightweight and easy to clean which makes them perfect for kids cushions.

Down and feather inserts are more luxurious and therefore, more expensive. However, they allow you to achieve a softer and more comfortable feel for your cushions, but they can also be difficult to clean and can become lumpy as time passes.

Quality also matters

Next to the size and materials you choose for your cushions, you will also find that quality is a big factor as well. No matter the size or the type of insert you choose, you need to find inserts that are of high quality so they will last.

A cushion needs to be sturdy and able to contend with being used on a daily basis. If the methods used in its construction and the materials aren’t up to par, then the cushions will not last as long as they should.


Main livin groom scene with large wall art that showcases soft velvet cushions


Cushion covers

Now that you have chosen your cushions, it is time to look into how to keep them looking their best. Cushion covers can be used to keep your pillows much cleaner. They are also easy to remove and wash so you can keep your cushions looking their best at all times.

Since cushion covers also come in a variety of different colours, textures, patterns, and designs, you can choose several to use throughout the year. This way, you can change them out with each holiday without having to buy and store more and more cushions each year.

When choosing your cushion covers, look around the room for inspiration. Get to know your colour palette and decide if you want to incorporate different patterns, solid cushion colours, or even other complementary colours.


Pre-styled cushion collections

We have provided a lot of information here regarding how to choose cushions. But what if your could make this process even easier? Instead of choosing individual cushions, why not choose from a pre-styled cushion collection to take all the guesswork out of the process?

We sell ready-made cushion collections that have been handpicked to suit each other, so you don’t have to spend time coordinating them yourselves if you don’t want to.

You can choose outdoor cushions and indoor cushion sets that include a set of 3 and up to 9 cushions that come in a variety of different colours and styles. With our vast selection, you will find it is easy to choose one that fits your personal style. From Boho Chic to Urban Modern and everything in between, there is something for everyone.


Happy styling!

Simply Cushions Team