Pillow Talk: the artful placement of pillows vol I. beyond the fringe.

Real Estate Agent with HI Pro Realty LLC RB-21531 RS-76763

Arranged Pillows


Pillow Talk: the artful placement of pillows...

Pillows, like people, come in many shapes, sizes, colors, and textures. Some are firm and supportive, others just want to be seen and fawned upon; affirming that even the outrageous and impractical have a place in the world of design.

Pillows not only provide comfort, support, and a soft place to rest ones weary head, but these ubiquitous creatures give company to us in our most private spaces; laying about most exotically while expounding punches of color about the room. Sometimes these beasts are beaded and bear sequins, impossible fringe and tassels, that can strike fear in the hearts of men and passion in the minds of women.

When selecting pillows for a room, choose colors from the present interior to give depth and draw the eye through the space. Use a variety of materials, colors, textures, and sizes. I like to use at least five colors in my designs however, if you want a more subdued tranquil environment go with five shades of the same color. Pillows are relatively easy to make and offer and endless array of color combinations.


Stacked Pillows

Baubles, bangles, and black shiny beads...

When placing pillows, place larger ones in the back and graduate the sizes forward and save your detailed and beaded pillows for the front. As a personal guide line, I like to cover no more than 25% of anything with pillows. When arranging pillows on a sofa or bed, asymmetry is preferred by most designers and often times an odd number is used. Personally, I find symmetrical patterning to work fine as long as it's not predictable. I like to use an odd number of high detail pieces that rest upon textural and complementary colored pillows.

Don't be too forward with your fashion...

Remember to stick to the design style of the decor. If it's modern use geometric pattern, solid color, materials that reflect the modern movement. Fringe is not a modern device, however, it all depends on the dynamics of the design. Traditional and transitional styles feature brocade, embroidery, fringe, and an endless variety of tassels and adornments. Natural fibers such as silk, flax, sea grass, and bamboo are known for their texture and are popular in Asian, Pac Rim, and Eco Friendly design.

Lamp and Side Chair with pillows

Remember whose head will be resting...

Some designers say you can never have too many pillows and I say sure, if your decorating a harem. Too much of anything can be problematic not only when it comes to taste level, but practically and aesthetically speaking, as well.

Taking off and putting pillows back on a bed should be easy and simple; having to disassemble a mosaic before bed does not encourage peaceful sleep at night nor consistent bed making in the morning. If you have an occupied stage, nothing annoys sellers more than making them recreate your pillow palladium every morning before work. Keep it simple. Fringe, to many men is a golf term and for the most part they would like to keep it that way so go easy on the tassels, bells, and whistles when staging. 


Keep eye an out for Pillow Talk: The artful placement of pillows vol II. piling practicum

JDS Consulting-Staging Hawaii nei! Providing Real Estate Merchandising services including: Home Staging, Interior Decor, Turn Key, Landscaping, Remodeling, & Open House Hosting. Visit our Blog:Questions for Kimo: Decor Design & More - Kimo Stowell Copyright ©2009




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HI Pro Realty LLC - REALTORS®, PROPERTY MANAGERS® is a boutique brokerage firm offering responsive, dedicated, and professional Real Estate Sales and Management Services in Honolulu, Hawaii. 




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Hi Kimo,

Thanks for the tips....

Oct 08, 2008 12:53 PM #18
Laurie Calhoun
Gloria Home Staging, Inc. - Winter Springs, FL
Seminole County FL Home Stager

We really do seem to get an emotional tie to our favorite pillows. I have some that are almost like friends. Thanks for the the blog, Kimo. Your language is a treat to read. It brightened my evening!

Oct 08, 2008 01:05 PM #19
Everard Korthals
---Preferred Lifestyle Advisors--- - Lancaster, PA
Mountain Realty

Great tips for stagers and designers alike. Not familiar with your blog as of yet but i'll keep my eye open for your posts in the future. 

Oct 08, 2008 04:59 PM #20
Deb Brooks
Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas - Wichita Falls, TX

Kimo, great post! I love using pillows for throws and for contrast. I have a corner in my room that I didn't know how to fill and I ended up tossing three different pillows in the corner and it's as comfy as it can be...now, I admit one has beads and one has fringe but it's really "manly fringe" Ha!

This is a refreshing article and it makes me want to go shopping! Good to see you in the rain.

Later in the rain~Deb

Oct 08, 2008 05:31 PM #21
Antonio & Alexia Cardenas
Alameda County - San Leandro, CA. - San Leandro, CA
"The Realtors In Motion"

Kimo, thanks for the "pillow talk" not only will this help us realtors when advising owners who cannot afford stagging, but also to go home and start looking at our own houses to find out if we can improve our home nest. Good informative post.


Oct 08, 2008 05:41 PM #22
Terrylynn Fisher
Dudum Real Estate Group - BuyStageSell.com - Walnut Creek, CA
HAFA Certified, EcoBroker, CRS, CSP Realtor, Etc.

I'M with Connie, just ask the hubby to help make the bed, NO problem...but ask him to make the bed and he looks at you like a deer in headlights, "oh how will I ever get the pillows right?"  he is thinking.  "Just put them back exactly as I had them" she is thinking.  lol lol   Good post.

Oct 08, 2008 06:49 PM #23
Rich Ferretti
Rich Ferretti Real Estate - Charlotte, NC
ABR QSC Realtor/Broker, Charlotte NC Real Estate a

I'm always amazed when I view homes and see how many pillows that are used.

Thanks for sharing


Charlotte NC

Oct 08, 2008 08:46 PM #24
Michelle Finnamore
Toronto GTA, Alliston, Newmarket - Vaughan, ON
Preparing your property for sale

Aloha Kimo,  I always wondered at people that have way too many pillows on a bed. Who wants to recreate that look each morning. Now that I Stage for a living, I use a maximum of 6 on a king size bed. Too impractical for homeowners to keep up otherwise.

I am a fan of one lofty sleeping pillow laid flat on the bed with one exquisite accent cushion placed atop the sleeping pillow. Simple, tranquil and easy to maintain.

Interesting post. :)



Oct 09, 2008 12:14 AM #25
Jane Page Thompson
Aiken Properties - Aiken, SC

Kimo, I am so excited, I think I am living in a harem!  How exotic and a good point that maybe i have to many pillows just sitting around.

Oct 09, 2008 12:19 AM #26
Diane Bell, Hilton Head Real Estate, Bluffton
Charter 1 Real Estate, Hilton Head, Bluffton, SC - Hilton Head Island, SC


Enjoyed your post so much----I don't think anyone has ever written about pillows here.  Great job.

Oct 09, 2008 12:41 AM #27
Diane Bell, Hilton Head Real Estate, Bluffton
Charter 1 Real Estate, Hilton Head, Bluffton, SC - Hilton Head Island, SC


Enjoyed your post so much----I don't think anyone has ever written about pillows here.  Great job.

Oct 09, 2008 12:42 AM #28
Connie Tebyani
Platinum Home Staging, Inc. : RESA-Pro - Calabasas, CA
Platinum Home Staging, Los Angeles and Ventura County

I can't help but notice, Kimo, that all of your pillows in your Stagings are free of tassles and fringe. Is there a deep stemmed fear that promoted this post? lol-just kidding

Oct 09, 2008 02:20 AM #29
Dan Magstadt
Paramount Residential Mortgage Group, Inc - Lake City, FL

This is great information! It's definitely something I'll keep around for reference in the future!





Oct 09, 2008 02:21 AM #30
Kathleen Garvey
Cherry Creek Properties - Denver - Denver, CO
Denver's Neighborhood Expert - Listings & Sales

Ho`omaika`i! ... on your AR feature Kimo!  I too love pillows and am particular about a few of the things I prefer when it goes beyond the color.  Too many doo-dads can be off-putting and one too many trendy pillows kills the trend.  Great article!  Regards-Kathleen G

Oct 09, 2008 04:06 AM #31
Linda Jandura
Raleigh Cary Realty - Apex, NC
Realtor, North Carolina Buyer & Seller Specialist

Thanks for the advice. I had heard that pillows and silk plants were "out" as far as decorating, Glad that at least pillow are safe.  I love my king size bed with all the pillows. My husband doesn't mind, except that I won't let him use my favorite one to sleep on!

Oct 09, 2008 04:37 AM #32
Jo Soss
HOMEFRONT Realty - Kettle Falls, WA
HOMEFRONT Realty @ LAKE Roosevelt - Stevens County

How cool! A post about pillows!! I love pillows and love your tutorial here! The photo of the pillows are my favorite colors! I am off to browse your blog for a post on towels another passion :)

Oct 09, 2008 05:13 AM #33
Keller Williams Realty - Austin, TX
Over 2,000 homes sold…..

Great for you.  Wish I have the vision, but I trust that of stagers and have them stage every home I have as my time is more important in selling homes.  Best of luck.............

Oct 09, 2008 12:49 PM #34
Cindy Bryant
Redesign Etc. Home Staging - Houston, TX
"Houston Home Staging Pros"

Love pillows, they can add so much to a room for many reasons.  I just had to toss a couple of mine after being in a staged occupied.  I left them in a formal room, thinking they wouldn't be used, sure enough they were toast when I picked up everything.  I knew better!

Oct 09, 2008 03:10 PM #35
Maureen Bray Portland OR Home Stager ~ Room Solutions Staging
Room Solutions Staging, Portland OR - Portland, OR
"Staging that Sells Portland Homes"

Kimo ~ you are the King of Pillows, for sure!  Your knowledge of pillows is impressive and I agree that keeping up a "Palladium of pillows" is a huge chore and too much to expect from a client!  Thanks for a fun and entertaining post.

Oct 09, 2008 05:46 PM #36
Kathy Riggle
Houston Home Staging

Hi Kimo-

Ah- the attraction of pillows for the perfect room accessory.  When shopping with my daughter, she has my permission to drag me away from the pillows & I return the favor by dragging her away from the purses.

One homeowner was so "pillow challenged" that I gave him a photo of the finished bed so that he could recreate it.

Oct 12, 2008 07:17 AM #37
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Kimo Stowell

REALTOR Associate® RS-76763 - Honolulu Hawai'i
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