It’s one thing to ‘make’ your bed and another to style it. Working out what colour or print bedding to use, how many cushions, and how to layer throws can seem like an art form. Well, we’re here to tell you it’s simpler than it looks!
While there are many ways you can style a bed and plenty of different ‘formulas’ you can stick to, these are the top tricks you can always use to style a bed like a pro.
Related article: 20 bedside styling ideas: How to style your bedside table
Related article: Hot Autumn bedding to suit any budget
Create a theme or colour palette
Like with any styling, it helps to have a plan — what mood or theme do you want to achieve?
This will inform your colour palette and ultimately the bedding, cushions and accessories you select.
Want to channel summer vibes? You might like to use some of this season’s it colours in orange or aqua.
Or would you prefer a soft and romantic palette? Blush pink and soft grey is a winning combo!
After a bit of crisp elegance? Can’t go past white on white and Steve Cordony recently shared his tips to nail this look.
Whatever you decide, consider mixing textures, prints or embellishments so the bedding isn’t all same-same and flat. We often draw inspiration for our bedding colour palette from artwork — this also creates a more cohesive bedroom look.
Get the highest quality bedding you can afford
We love a bargain as much as the next person but when it comes to bedding, we prefer not to skimp. Few things beat the feeling of getting into a luxe bed after a long day.
Now that you know the direction you want to take the bed styling, find bedding that meets the brief.
Most of the bedding pictured in this look is from Adairs which is one of our go-to places for stylish, quality bedding that’s also affordable.
If budget is a concern, consider opting for high quality sheets and more affordable accessories as feature cushions are something you’re likely to change more often and won’t affect a good night’s sleep.
How many cushions are too many?
Darren Palmer once said he’d never use more than 9 cushions on a bed but since then we have seen him praise some bed styling that used more.
For us, 9 is a good number as it allows for 2 x Euro cushions, 4 x standard cushions, and up to 3 x feature cushions.
Rather than doing the traditional look of stacking two Euros at the back of the bed, then standing or lying the standard cushions symmetrically and finishing with the feature cushions, we like to mix things up.
Check out this short video where we show a different way of placing your cushions for a bit more interest and depth.
There’s no golden rule or right or wrong number when it comes to cushion styling and it will change depending on how bold or busy your bedding is, the size of your bed and personal preferences, of course. We suggest standing back and if it doesn’t look right, edit one thing at a time. You might also need to change your feature cushions so check out the tips below.
Picking the right feature cushions
For many people, this is probably the most challenging part of bed styling.
What cushions to use to decorate the bed?
In our opinion, the best styled beds use a lot of contrast between the feature cushions.
Mix shapes: square, rectangle, smarty, knot… there are a lot more shapes readily available now.
Mix prints: don’t be afraid to mix spots with stripes or abstract patterns.
Mix textures: quilted, velvet, linen, leather… the list goes on.
Look for embellishments: small details like a button, exposed zip, piping edge or metallic accent can add that extra layer of sophistication to your bed styling.
If your pillows or feature cushions have polyester filling, switch these for feather pillows (you can find affordable versions in many stores including IKEA). This will help your cushions to stand upright and create a fuller, more luxe look — and to give your cushions a gentle ‘chop’.
Shop our favourite feature cushions
Dress the foot of your bed
Finish your winning bed look by adding a throw, fur, sheepskin or coverlet to the end of your bed. For an ultra cosy look, you might even like to layer a few.
- If you’re shy with colour, consider using neutral bedding and bringing in colour and interest using feature cushions and throws
- You don’t have to style the bed symmetrically, having some cushions stacked and other lying, or even reversing the colour order of cushions can add a fun twist
- If you’ve got time and really want a ‘perfect’ bed look, bust out the iron and give your sheets the once over
- Look at colour references between the bedding and other things happening in the space — can you pick up colours from an artwork or other decor?
Have these bed styling tips helped you? Or do you have more tips to add? Share them in the comments below!
Disclaimer: This post was originally published in October 2016 and has been updated with new images and tips. It contains some affiliate links. This means that when you click on a link and purchase something from that site, we may make a small commission at no extra cost to you.