One of the best, most fun parts of renovating your home is picking out new fabrics and finishes, and the sitting room tends to be the room that allows for the most creativity.
However, your selections should be based on more than just look and feel; there are some other things you need to consider. Wear and tear may very well be your first thought, however, it can be daunting to research durability, sustainability, pilling classes, colourfastness, and other technical specifications.
To make things a little bit easier, we’ve created some guidelines on how to choose the right cushion – one that you’ll not only love, but that will also last.
1. Style & Design
Style is an important aspect of interior decor, and colour and design are probably the first things you’ve thought about. Whether you’re going for a bold statement or a more subtle look, there is a bit of a formula to choosing the right decorative pillows.
First, you want to choose colours that are of the same colour (two shades of blue, or three shades of green); or the same shade, tint or tone (not necessarily the same colour but have the same undertone of black, white or grey); or are complementary colours (orange with blue, red with green, yellow with purple). You can work neutrals into the mix as well because they act as a canvas. Neutral cushions paired with colourful prints or embroidery are beautiful way to add some visual interest and volume, and express personal style.
When using patterns you can either stick to a single one for a more simple, contemporary look or mix a few together for a bit of fun. Keep in mind, there is a bit of a method to mixing patterns and it requires finding a balance of sizes, shapes, and colours. A good rule of thumb is one simple print, one buy print, and one solid.
Though you may be buying throw cushions for the aesthetic they bring, its also useful to think about durability because over months and years of use they’ll be used just about ever day. Imagine what they’ll face – from wine spills by guests (or yourself) to cozy days, curled up with a good book. You want to choose a fabric that can stand the test of time, and thats easy to clean.
Linen is a favourite not only because its a luxurious fabric, but also for its resistance to wear and tear. Natural fabrics like this pill less than synthetic fabrics because they shed loose fibers. The Linen Edit is also naturally stain resistant, so when the inevitable happens you can do a quick spot clean and voila, all clean! However, you should do know how to safely clean linen before you throw it in the wash.
3. The Comfort Factor
Of course, comfort is an important factor for anyone. Its typically one of the most important factors when we buy furniture, but it can easily be overlooked when it comes to accessories. However, it doesn’t need to be because there are a whole lot of options available that are perfect to cozy up into.
It’s common for the insert to be sold separately from the cover itself, so you should think about the sort of filling you’d like. Down is both a common and a traditional filler. However, consumbrs have two common issues that don’t necessarily overlap. First, many people are opting for vegan products and down is sourced as a byproduct of the global food industry. Secondly, though many companies have come up with clever solutions, down is technically not hypoallergenic as it attracts dust mites. Organic cotton stuffing is a great choice.
As for the cushion cover, you’ve got a whole lot to choose from. However, natural fabrics are a great choice because they tend to be hypoallergenic and antimicrobial.
Sustainable products are more than just a growing trend – people are beginning to care more and more about where the products they buy and use are coming from. This is great news but also overdue because for the past decade or so, the annual bulk waste in the UK has been about 1.6 million tonnes of bulky waste is sent to the landfill. 19% of that is textile waste, and 42% is furniture – that’s 310,000 tonnes and 670,000 tonnes, respectively.
In terms of cushion and other textiles in the home, many people are turning to natural materials such as bamboo and linen, which is derived from the flax plant. These both grow at exceedingly fast rates, and require little intervention. In fact, some types of bamboo can grow almost a metre a day, and the flax plant is fully mature at 3 to 4 months. They are also biodegradable, so long as they’re not mixed with synthetic products.
There you have it; our top tips on how to choose the right cushion. Interior decor is about more than asthetic, and to get the most out of the cushions you purchase its helpful to think about these things. So, get looking for your perfect cushion, and keep these in mind. Your future self will thank you!