What’s a sofa without a stylish cushion arrangement? Not only are cushions functional essentials, they’re also your sofa’s seasonal outfit changes – a way to dress up, dress down or style any sofa just as you’d like it. 

A new set of cushions can revive an older sofa, change up your style and even transform a whole sofa arrangement. Don’t underestimate the power of these sofa staples whichever way you style them.

1. Paired cushion arrangement

Place matching cushions side by side in the centre of the sofa with a proportional gap between them. Channel a sophisticated, cohesive look with matching or similar fabrics or draw attention to special cushions with a contrasting fabric.

2. Eclectic cushion arrangement

Ikat prints alongside paisleys and brocades mixed in with printed linens – this kind of arrangement is all about texture. 

When choosing fabrics, think of the scale of the patterns you plan to pair together. A large, medium and small scale print will produce an interesting and well-balanced cushion arrangement.

3. Balanced cushion arrangement

One of my signature arrangements for any project. Sometimes the standard approach is best. A balanced cushion arrangement is one of the most visually pleasing arrangements. Make yours interesting by playing with colour, pattern and texture. 

Lumber or bolster cushion styles are a simple way to create interest with this kind of arrangement.

4. Central cushion arrangement

Centralised cushion styling is an ideal choice for sofas which are too small to hold multiple arrangements or sofas which are too long for arrangements at either end.

The arrangement is also a natural fit for curved sofas which don’t have such structured ends. Try rounded designs to echo the lines of the sofa in a harmonious combination.

5. Separated trio arrangement

For a tailored look, think mirror image. Place the largest cushion at the back, angled in the crook of the sofa between the arm and the backrest, then place the medium in front of it (slightly offset away from the arm) and the smallest in front of that (again slightly offset towards the arm). Replicate the look in the opposite corner with the same cushions. Have the corresponding cushions match and the look will be neat and composed.

6. Alternating patterns arrangement

When working with patterns and plains, one of the most common and aesthetically balanced arrangements is an alternating one. Start with two fabrics which complement each other (perhaps a patterned and a plain in a similar colour way). Beginning at both ends of the sofa, layer one on top of the other towards the middle alternating between the two cushion styles. 

7. Different shapes arrangement

One of the more creative cushion styling arrangements and a way to get artistic is by treating it as you would a well-curated vignette or gallery wall. Nothing is off limits with this configuration so consider using differing shapes and offsetting them against each other in unique ways, playing on their geometric strengths. Throw in rectangular, circular and bolster cushion styles as well as the traditional square shapes for an exciting cushion cocktail.