Pillow Talk

You wouldn’t believe what I went through to find these little darlings. I’ve been searching for months and it was not without some amusing misunderstandings along the way. John had no idea why I kept saying I was looking for pillows for the sofa and one for our bed.

Because I wasn’t very descriptive as in, “We need more color in those two parts of the house,” and we weren’t shopping for them together, he never had a clear idea of what I was looking for until recently.

Here in the UK, a pillow is something that goes on the bed and under your head at night. After seeing that the term “pillows” seemed confusing, I moved on to words like, “throw pillows and decorative pillows” which produced a few more strange looks before he said. “Oh, cushions, you want cushions!”

To which I replied, “Nooo … cushions are what we sit on, not put behind the small of our back for support or use to provide an accent color.” When I asked him if he knew about accent colors he said, “Accent colors … not really no.”

In the end it all worked out fine once he discovered what I wanted and why it was important to me. I say again important to me, because he didn’t see the need for them. I know I looked at hundreds of “cushions” online and spent months physically looking in various stores here and in the US when I happened to be someplace that sold them, but last week I finally decided that I would just have to make my own and asked John to take a trip to Truro which has a great fabric store.

Of course, it was the same thing … loads of choices and none of them right. It was only after I went into a little market area nearby that I narrowed my search and found the perfect and lovely pillows below. House of Rugs was the store where I snapped these up and put an end to a long hunt.

The sweetest part of it was when I took John into the store to show him the pillow, he took one look and said, “Right then, let’s get it.” He didn’t even pause at the price although I had a few minutes earlier which was 33 BPS or the equivalent of $51 for my American readers.

I was pretty surprised because even I thought they were a bit pricey, but we paid for the one we took with us, ordered a second one, and I walked out of there all giggly that I had found the perfect pillow.

I asked him later why he didn’t even hesitate over the cost as he’s usually fairly frugal and he said, “I could see they made you happy.”

What a sweetie, huh?

Now if I can just convince him that we need a new rug to go with the cushions … or maybe even a blue comfy chair for me … I have just the spot in mind.

I’m holding this up at a funny angle so you can see the colors I was trying to add to the room. The colors I wanted are in the artwork around the room with some right behind it in this photo. These are just two that have the blues and greens I was hoping to duplicate in my pillows.

Here’s a look when we just had the one cushion and later with both after we picked up the second one yesterday. I can imagine a blue chair off to the left side of the fireplace … can you?

The coffee table is not as bright white as it looks here and it usually has something on it such as flowers or a plant. John made it 42 years ago mostly from driftwood he picked up on the beach in Ireland. I like how it provides some lightness with so much dark furniture and the pillows help as well.

I pulled the oil painting above the sofa out of the attic when we were decorating the living room a couple of years ago and I’m thinking it may be time for a change to something else now.

It’s funny how you begin by thinking that adding a throw cushion or two will complete the picture and suddenly see that there’s more to do.

Suggestions anyone?

14 thoughts on “Pillow Talk

  1. Awesome pillows! Love them and they do accent the room just right. The only suggestions I have are two that you made in your post….maybe change the picture above the couch to something that also has the blues and greens in it and a rug that has one predominant color taken from the pillows (the green or taupe would be my choice). Great room! I really like the bright walls and the table that John made. Very unique.

  2. Great pillows. I never feel a room is “done” as it feels best when a room changes and evolves along with me. Very pretty!

  3. Decorating is a slippery slope. There is no such thing as adding only one or two new items to a room. Your last paragraph says it all. This applies to gardening and outdoor projects as well. I got a big chuckle out of this post.

  4. I like the artisan feel of the pillows plus they look elegant on that leather sofa. Your room feels like such a bright happy place already that it doesn’t seem like it needs much. That said, I love to brainstorm about interior design…

    I agree that a cozy chair by the fireplace would be a great touch. You could do a blue that has piping that picks up one of the other accent colors in the room. Blue with cream piping, or brown (if you want to tie it in with the sofa). The picture over the sofa is a cool dimension, but it is a little dark. It might be fun to have something in a similar panoramic width but made from your photographs. Get one of your pictures printed on canvas and mounted to put there. Just a thought.

  5. love the colors, the blue chair for sure. maybe you could lower the painting and build a grouping above it for color and interest.

  6. OTR girl as taken the words out of my mouth – your pics, if you like that width, which I Do, maybe a triptych, or one panorama broken up into a three units placed closely together but not touching. it will lift the modern element of the room and make the walnut burr piece (did i see it correctly?) stand out more.
    I like the blue better than pink, to balance the good dollop of rich red already in the carpet. The crewel embroidery of course has antique colours, being around since Elizabethan (ha ha, that’s funny!) days. The blue in the pillow might well be a tint of the blue in your carpet in which case it will go well together.

    You two are such fans of the sea, and since you can see the garden outside, it seems fitting to bring aspects of being on the beach, sea roaring and hissing in the distance, into your home.
    BTW, don’t say I encouraged you (qui, MOI??) but any good designer/drapes shop will have crewel type upholstery patterns / examples of fabric that could be used in..oh..curtains maybe? No no no of course I didn’t say curtains. (I’m teasing you, I don’t mean to imply you need any curtains). That fabric shop in truro which I have been itching to try once down there btw, might be able to help you if you don’t find one closer.

  7. oh dear i wish i could type better…anyway..right now your room ‘reads’ red. You also have a load of creamy/ivory accents – the swivel chair and the driftwood table, plus the white parts of the rug.

    The beach scene will also pick those up if you chose pic/s that have that kind of colour in it as well as the blue, and make it look more airy overall too. You can experiment – print out your photo above as large as you can, and ‘audition’ cut outs of your photos in place of the current picture over the sofa I was thinking canvas wrap photos btw not framed, and I’m not usually a very modern girl, but I think they’d go very well. Going through an airy, glass walls, see-the-sea phase at the moment in my mental dream home…but your home should be a reflection of you both, not other people like me.

  8. Thanks everyone for your comments, compliments, and suggestions and also your enthusiasm for the cushions/pillows. I love decorating with what’s at hand most of the time, but mixing two homes can make that a bit more challenging especially when you vary on taste.

    We’re definitely changing the dark oil painting above the sofa and I had been thinking about the possibility of a triptych, or one panorama broken up into a three units like Mariellen and OTRgirl suggested. I had not considered that the painting might look better if grouped with some others as Gayle mentioned and that might work too. Neither of us are emotionally tied to the painting so I’m thinking it will be moving to a new location in the house or attic.

    I think I’ve found a reasonably priced blue chair that shouldn’t dominate the spot I have in mind for it. It looked comfy enough, but there aren’t enough online reviews to help me decide. John likes it as well so if anyone lives close to an IKEA (ours is two hours away) maybe you could stop by and test it out for me. We can have one delivered, but I need to know if it’s a good reading/TV watching chair first so can you pretend you’re holding a book if you live close enough to try one out for me. I like the look of some of their furniture especially when mixed with non IKEA decor, but I don’t always find it comfortable. ( the link below has a photo)


    Armchair, Idemo blue

  9. Love the colors in the pillows! I actually have a sheet set in my bedroom with almost the same pattern and colors. The antique blues, reds and greens are a long time favorite of mine.

  10. Ektorps are pretty common – might be worth putting the word out and seeing if any one in the pub has one and will let you try it out over a cup of tea. Otherwise I’d make a day out and go try it out – you never know if it will suit you or not…

  11. Very late to this party…

    Two thoughts (in general) — the white walls and very dark colors make the room very contrast-y. Would you consider painting the walls even a soft green? (Has to be the right green — pick the lighter one in the cushion thread) which will work because green/red are opposites on the color wheel. Maybe paint the table as well, even a deeper crisper beige…the room could use more/softer colors than deep red and white. LOVE the crewel — just saw a wingback chair covered in crewel that we might buy from a consignment shop.

    I’d also consider adding curtains to add some pattern and color to the room, not for function as much as decoration.

    Fun to see your place!

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