Easy ideas and inspiration for DIY budget decorating with pillows. Includes mix and match advice, sources for inserts, and more.
*Author’s Note: this post was originally published in 2015. It’s been edited with current information and updated images.
Today we are talking about one of my favorite things: DIY budget decorating with pillows. Other than paint, there is nothing that can change the look of a room as easily as new pillows. You can change them seasonally or just for fun. It’s also a great way to experiment with color and texture. They are budget-friendly, so even if you make a design mistake you aren’t out a fortune…and I’ve made plenty of mistakes!
(All fabrics pictured above are no longer available. Affiliate links included. Click HERE for my disclosure statement.)
The first thing I want to mention is the importance of investing in good pillow inserts. I am a down/feather pillow lover, so that’s what I have in my home. I have sets in three sizes. 20 x 20, 18 x 18 and 12 x 16. The 20 x 20 size can be found at IKEA for $6.00. The other sizes can be found on sites like H & M and Pottery Barn. I will list some links at the end of the post.
DIY Budget Decorating with Pillows
I went back through the past year, and I’ll show you the different pillow combinations I used around our house. I have a neutral sofa but even if you don’t, you can still play around. The look above was just this past Christmas. The solid red pillow covers are from IKEA and were under $10.00.
For fall, I was able to pull from my core collection because I had darker golds and blues that I thought looked autumnal. Above on the chairs I did treat myself to new pillows from the Nordstrom sale! (Get a similar pillow HERE.) Almost always, my pillow arrangements are symmetrical. I think it’s calming and easy on the eye. Once in a while I do get brave and throw the symmetry out the window! Definitely do whatever makes you happy when you walk into a room.
Across the room on the chairs I added neutral pillows with lots of texture. When you are shopping for fabric or pillows, think a little bit outside the box. If you have mostly neutral colors in your home, the sky is the limit. If not, perhaps choose darker shades of the colors you already have.
I literally have pillows in every room of my house…except the kitchen. I treat my outdoor spaces just like indoor rooms. I have pillows on our front porch all year round. Craft stores like Hobby Lobby and Michael’s now carry a great selection of pillow covers that are downright affordable. Another amazing pillow cover source is H & M online.
Normally when I update a room or switch to seasonal decor, I mix pillow covers I made with purchased ones. I don’t worry about the colors matching exactly. As long as they are in the same color family, I’m OK with going darker, lighter or a different shade.
By keeping your pillow collection to just a few colors, it’s easy to move them around your house. The colors on my first floor revolve around varying shades of blue with many different neutrals. I can take pillows from one room and put them in another. A whole new look for no money.
A favorite trick of mine, well…really it’s Sarah Richardson’s trick, is to make reversible pillow covers. DIY budget decorating at its best. Two looks for the price of one. Rarely do I make a pillow cover for my own home with two matching sides. Getting a new and different look is as easy as flipping over a pillow.
The most important thing to remember, in my humble opinion, is to be brave. Don’t be afraid to try something different. Mix a plaid with a floral or a stripe with a check. If you don’t have any pillows at all, start small. Just get a couple and put them on your sofa. I bet you will fall in love.
Now it’s time to feature my lovely friends and their take on decorating with pillows. Stop by their blogs if you have time!