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Local interior designer Susanne Schmidt met up with Ibicasa recently to talk about the importance of cushions and throws in any decorating scheme. Of all of the soft furnishings for the home, cushions are arguably the most versatile. They can be made in almost any fabric and are available in a whole array of shapes, sizes and fillings. From basic scatter cushions right through to large bolsters, there is a complete range of options available to suit every requirement and to complement every look.
Cushions bring a dash of colour and style to your decor
Even the most simple cushion can be turned into an elegant addition to your decor. Using a colour or fabric that creates a counterpoint to the overall decor can be the highlight of the room. This dash of colour or texture instantly adds a more stylish and professional look. Similarly, a very neat and attractive mitred border cushion can also transform the decor. If you are going for a feeling that is pretty and feminine, then frilled cushions are an excellent choice, as are ribbon-tied cushions, where part is covered in a contrasting fabric. The classic Oxford cushion, which has a plain flat flange around the edge rather than ruffles, gives a more mature feeling whilst still creating a sultry soft ambience.
Bolster cushions provide an ideal arm rest or head rest for sofas or beds. They can be decorated with tassels or buttons, and the filling can be either hard foam for good back support or soft feathers for optimum cosiness. Of course, cushions are not only for sofas, armchairs and beds. A beautifully tailored flat cushion with ties will transform a hard wooden dining chair or bar stool into something that is both aesthetically pleasing and comfortable to sit on. Round box cushions are also great for stools or round chairs and the larger versions (like a small pouffe) are wonderful for sitting comfortably on the floor. Cushions also add comfort and style to outdoor decor. Benches, daybeds, sun loungers and terrace chairs can all be given a new lease on life by adorning them with attractive cushions that are waterproof and washable.
Throws combine casual elegance with practical comforts
Throws are the perfect accessory to mix and match with cushions. They can be the exact same colour as the cushions, or you can choose a completely different shade which complements the colour scheme while adding depth, texture and patterns. In addition to being a decorative addition to sofas, chairs and beds, throws also have many practical functions. They are usually made from wool, soft synthetics, velvet or fur, and are great to snuggle under and keep warm in a chilly room. They also provide an extra layer of warmth on the bed during cold nights. In addition, throws are a clever way of covering up outdated or damaged furniture - especially if cats or dogs have free run in your home... not to mention children...
It is fair to say that cushions are an integral part of any decorating scheme, and putting together a collection of cushions is truly one of the most creative aspects of soft furnishing. They can inspire your entire decorating scheme by enlivening otherwise neutral colour schemes with contrasting textures, colours, softness and patterns. When carefully chosen they complement all other aspects of the space to make it relaxing, cosy and visually appealing. Coordinating cushions with lamps and other lighting effects can enhance the atmosphere and elegance of any room. Similarly, matching cushions with a selection of good quality colour-coordinated candles is guaranteed to create a laid-back and dreamy chill-out vibe. All in all, a clever combination of cushions and throws will add warmth, style and comfort to your home.