Saturday, July 14, 2012

Summer Pillows

In my last post on our blue garden, many of you left wonderful plant suggestions. Thank you kindly!

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An easy way to freshen up a room for summer is by changing out the pillows. Whether custom or already made, pillows can perk up the decor or tone it down. With options available at various price points, it is something anyone can do.

During the warmer months, I like to bring out pillows that are fresh and lightweight. Because much of the seating furniture in our shop and home are upholstered in neutral fabrics, I can accessories with pillows in most any color or pattern.

Here are some of my favorite summer pillows:
I covered the fronts of these custom pillows in Summer Hill's "Brianna." The backs are in a plain greige linen. Notice the flange with pleated corners.
This self flanged lumbar pillow is in Robert Kime's "Susani" fabric.
I prefer pillows with a simple backing, and used a plain greige linen for the back of this one.
Here I used Baker's "Leaf Motif" in very soft 100% organic cotton. Didn't my workroom do a great job matching the pattern? And, notice the invisible dressmaker's zipper.
Peter Fasano's "Brompton" on these pillows, which I piped in a simple blue-gray cotton.
 At home two new stripes pillows for the armchairs. They are currently on sale at R. Hardware. The settee pillows were purchased 2 years ago, and they are holding up fading.
 The pair of tall variegated myrtles are growing nicely.
BTW, if you would like custom pillows and do not sew or have access to a workroom, try a drycleaner that offers alteration services. A seamstress or tailor should be able to sew pillow covers. Also, I like the well priced feather and down inserts from Crate and Barrel.


  1. I love all of the pillows you have shown here! The fabric material and patterns are beautiful. Love the linen backing of them. Great choices.

  2. Hello Mr Loi.
    We had mountains of cushions until last year when I rounded them all up had zips put in them all and we now only keep several pads per room but have a plentiful supply of stored designs to change throughout the year.
    I love those striped pillows outside and that urn, how I want that urn!

  3. Such beautiful pillows. I know this post is not about furniture but I couldn't help admiring the beautiful pieces in this post!

    Thanks for sharing with us your tips for getting custom pillow covers made. I agree that Crate & Barrel sells good quality pillow inserts for an affordable price, it's one of their best-kept secret, don't you think? I didn't know about it until recently. LOL.

    Enjoy your weekend, Loi!


  4. I think this is part of an elegant life - switching out pillows for the seasons!

    Thank you for the fabric information. I tend to get very overwhelmed when evaluating fabric options - so many out there - so I always make note of fabrics that I like when I see them.

    Enjoy your weekend-

  5. I thought the first two were my favorites. until I saw the second one that you featured. you have a wonderful eye. donna

  6. I love the first chartreuse/apple green fabric. Very summery. Thank you for sharing the fabrics' makers and names too. That's really helpful information.

  7. I'm looking for pillows, so your post is timely. Really love the RH pillows on your porch, but what really caught my eye is your gorgeous Anduze pot!
    Hope you are having a fabulous summer.

  8. I am very greedy and want them all. The Robert Kime fabric is fabulous, and with a name like 'Susani' it could have been made for me personally.

  9. Only you could make such a delightful post out of pillows or cushions as we refer to them over here. Your taste in all things is exquisite, and I am so pleased that you found my blog so that I can indulge myself in yours.

  10. Hi Loi,
    They are all exquisite, I could live with any of them. You surely do have some very talented seamstresses there. I myself sew and know just how difficult it is the make a zip look that good!
    Have a great weekend and thanks for your lovely comment on my daughters graduation post :-)

  11. Nice photos, and I love the table in the 8th photo! Gorgeous!

  12. I still use my workroom in Pennsylvania to feed my pillow addiction, long distance. The pleated flange is new to me. I'll have to look into a few more pillows with that edge.

  13. Charming pillows! And thanks so much for the tip on C & B inserts - I have been looking everywhere for reasonably priced down inserts!!

  14. Hi Loi!

    Those custom pillows at the top are gorgeous. I share your love for a neutral look and I agree that changing up the weight and color of pillows is a great way to perk things up and change the feel of the room. The stripes for the outside furniture are fun and perfect for the summer!

    Enjoy your weekend!


  15. Beautiful pillows! and craftsmanship. I love your choices and the linen is exquisite. One can never have enough pillows, I always say! I hope you're having a lovely weekend.

  16. Hi Loi, beautiful fabric choices. I, too, am a fan of the pleated corner on the pillow flange. It used it on new linen pillows I did for our summer place. And, as usual, your furniture positively makes me ache.


  17. Hi! Love your flange:) I just ordered some Peter Fasano fabric for a project. Love them!! Have a great weekend!! xo, K

  18. This is a fabulous post, Loi! And very informative! I've often thought of using a dry cleaners for a lot of things! I also saw a workroom in the back of a nail salon in New Orleans that looked wonderful! You just never know! I love Peter Fasono's Brompton…I used it in my parents sunroom on their window treatments and it is still just as fabulous today as it was when we first did it! I have a very talented "friend" doing some work for us for new pillows and possibly some table linens for fall and I'm so excited about it! These were all such great suggestions! Thanks so much for your fabulous detailed photos!!! I still want to know all about your camera! It's incredible!

  19. Simply wonderful Loi - I love all the pillow fabrics but particularly the Susani (stunning) and also the Brompton! I am eager to get rid of my heavily patterned living room rug so I can do more patterned pillows. It seems to compete with everything...

    All these choices are lovely. Your workroom does such good work, but you do wonderful choosing....

    xo's Terri

  20. Hi Loi, they are all beautiful, fabrics and details! I love the idea of changing out pillows to freshen up, and you're inspiring me. Thanks for the info. Your porch is so pretty!!
    Have a great day!

  21. HI Loi - These pillows are lovely! My favorite is the "Brompton" fabric, but they are all wonderful!

    Have a great day,

  22. Hi, Loi - I especially like the cool green from those first photos, but all your choices convey a serenity that I'm guessing permeates all your interiors. Beautiful!

  23. Loi all of the pillows are fabulous; I adore the Robert Kime. Like everyone else I too am admiring your very special furnishings and accessories.

    you might like the Special New Giveaway on my site...

    Art by Karena

  24. Loi you selection of fabrics and styling of the pillows is so perfect. I love the soft colors and wonderfully,classic patterns that you use. Your porch looks so inviting and peaceful. Enjoy your Sunday,
    xo Kathysue

  25. I love all the fabrics for the pillows great choices--My favorites are the green ones and the yellowish ones that your workroom did do a great job matching!! Happy Sunday!!

  26. I love how something as simple as pillows can change the whole look and feel of a room. Your pillows are all lovely, and your patio looks like the perfect place to beat this summertime heat!


  27. Beautiful fabrics, love the simple 'leaf motif' pattern. I am currently looking for outdoor wall lanterns and really like yours. Do you know who makes them?

    1. Hi, Greenviewgirl -
      Those are by McLean Lighting. Model is Old Greensborough.
      Good luck!

  28. Loi, beautiful post! I love all the pillows, not sure which are my favorite. I especially like the details your workroom so beautifully mastered! I love your taste and enjoy every post! Your home is lovely, elegant and all things wonderful!

  29. Gorgeous Loi! I used to joke that decorating is a lot more than picking out the right throw pillows. Well, actually, that's not completely true and you've proved it!

  30. These are all beautiful pillows Loi. I'm lucky I have a whole studio full of pillows for changing things up but for the summer I like lighter colors. And I'm with you plain backs since most of the time you won't see them.

    I hope you're enjoying your Sunday!

  31. LOVE that first image with the Summer Hill 'Brianna' fabric - the entire composition with the chairs and sunburst mirror is absolutely gorgeous! The Bakers 'Leaf Motif' is also completely delicious - will definitely have to look out for both of these fabrics. Despite years in the fashion industry where seasonal wardrobe changes were the norm, I'm still getting the hang of changing my soft furnishings to suit Summer to Winter - it seems such a 'grown up' and 'sophisticated' thing to do. However, thanks to your ever inspiring blog posts, I think that the time has come for me to make as much effort in adjusting my interior 'seasonal wardrobe' as I do in my own - another design quirk for the long suffering Mr Sutton to roll his eyes at - ha ha - BRILLIANT!
    Paula xxxx

  32. Hi Loi,
    I have missed a few of your last posts, we have been swamped with cottage clients, but I promised myself I would take a few minutes to see what you have been up to! As usual, you do not dissapoint! Beautiful images and ideas for summer pillows, you are right, simple changes add so much!

  33. Hi there Loi,,
    Loving those Brompton pillows. Particularly the photo of them on the settee with the cocktail table. So special request thinking of that photo, do you have any advice on mixing deep wood tones and griege or limed finishes? So I have to tell you that I am pregnant and will be turning our guest room into a nursery. The daybed already there is greywash but everything baby that I can find here in Japan is cherry or mahogany! Hope you guys are well and enjoying the fruits of summer. I just loved your last post with the profusion of blues in your garden! If you need anything from Japan, just let me know.


  34. I do love how a simple change, ie: pillow swap, can change the whole feel of a room. It's so easy when you live with soft neutrals. Your fabric choices are yummy. Thanks for the dry cleaners tip. Consider it filed away. :)

  35. Another beautiful post, Loi. I especially love the Brianna and the Suzani... And the furniture they are on is equally fabulous. Thanks for the tip on the pillow inserts.

  36. What beautiful fabrics and so beautifully made. You have made me want to rethink my pillows now! x Sharon

  37. Dear Loi,
    I love the subtle colors and patterns as well as the craftsmanship of these beautiful pillows. They remind me of my grandmother's pillows in Serbia. She made them out of old burlap bags (left over from seeds. etc,) filled them with soft goose down (from her own geese) and placed them on long benches in her huge veranda.
    Thanks for reminding me of those long ago summers.
    Hugs to you,

  38. Loi-
    You are just too talented for words! I love every pillow here, and you do have an amazing workroom! I am a perfectionist about patters connecting, and this pillow is perfect. I also love the colors you have uses. So refreshing.
    Hope that all is well with you:).
    Happy Monday.

  39. Loi,
    One of the reasons I love the Swedish look with all the pale paint hues is the ability to add just one color on an item or two -- pillows - fresh flowers - paintings - and the whole room becomes different instantly. I try to switch colors out with the four seasons and a few switches for special occasions like Easter or a special party. Robin's egg blue, then orchid, then aqua or turquoise for summer and for winter silk magenta pillows. I also like that these colors are not permanent. I can have a different look in minutes.
    Loved seeing your white garden then blue one. The attention to detail is fabulous.
    I have only one request - on future posts, can you also talk about the furniture pieces that are in the photos such as this post about pillows. Any Swedish furniture discussion just makes my day.
    So glad to see you are participating in the blogging world and sharing all things 2die4.


    1. Hi, Summer - Totally agree! Will do....thank you for the suggestion. Hope all is well....Cheers, L

  40. Loi, Love the muted colors of your updated pillows...just might have to head to Restoration! The cleaners tip is a great one. I've done that with good results.
    Those beautiful shutters really caught my eye...and the tall myrtles....I see a trip to my favorite garden store in the near future! Thank you for the inspiration as always,

  41. Hi Loi!
    Perfect summer updates for sofas and chairs. Most of these appear to be linen, which I especially enjoy in the summer months.

    Thanks for the tip on the Crate & Barrel inserts!
    Happy Monday!!

    xo Elizabeth

  42. I have known your blog by silvia...
    really beautiful! congratulations for all your work!
    un saluto dall'Italia

  43. Your pillows are all lovely, Loi. The pleat detail adds so much. Happy Monday!

  44. Loi, love the pillows and the pleat details. The fabric selection is wonderful, especially Robert Kimes Susani fabric.

  45. Oh how I love your taste...gorgeous furniture with just the right pillows!! Adore the first image...

  46. Tessuti dai colori raffinati e gradevoli...
    Loi, scegli ogni dettaglio con eleganza e tanto buon gusto!
    Ciao e lieta giornata!

  47. I'm always changing my pillows. Two boys and a dog takes it's tole pretty fast. Luckily I can make them myself so we're not breaking the bank and I'm not yelling at them to take care of the pillows. Yours are all beautiful!

  48. Another pillow pusher...glad to know I am not alone! My girl does those incredible invisible zippers also....they make me "giddy"....

  49. Loi, It must be "pillow" week! Love your choices! I have realized that they can make a room! And...I also have learned, the hard way, they really need to be full, not wimpy! Thanks for following Patty's Epiphanies, I appreciate your support. Patty

  50. Hi Loi,
    I really liked your pillows because the patterns were so subdued yet still had a pattern. Do your guests have issues with your pillows and have to move them about? I love the way my pillows look but tell guest to feel free to rearrange them. As soon as they are out the door, I put the pillows right back in order. It pleases me to see them looking "right." Just wondered if others had this little issue or am I just too anal.

  51. I love your pillows and your amazing eye for detail!

  52. So pretty-simple, yet defined and dramatic in their presentation. Love the outdoor stripes.

    My Mom always changed out curtains, pillows, and rugs with the seasons-and I like to do that as well.
    My friends see it as a lot of work, but to me, it's what helps one live with the seasons better.
    Good thing I know how to sew!

  53. Loi!!! You are my guru... I'm so honored you came to my blog! Everything about your store, home and taste is hands down my favorite! Can't wait to divulge through your gorgeous blog! Best wishes to you!
    The pillows are stunning!


  54. But how do you get decorator fabric without having to go through a decorator??? The pillows are gorgeous!

    1. Great question. Some showrooms are to the trade only, while others are available to retail and trade. Anyone can buy at Baker. Also, anyone can order decorator fabrics (from books) at Calico Corners....fabrics from Robert Allen, Ralph Lauren, Charlotte Moss, etc. With the internet, it is more accessible now.

  55. Loi

    Simple flange with pleated favorite as well...really hard to beat...I have used that summerhill fabric and love the robert kime suzani. I was just thinking a post about pillows was in beat me to it!

  56. Gorgeous Summer pillows...we're on a similar wave link right now...just blogged about pillows for At Home in Arkansas. Have a great weekend. Mona

  57. Your pillows are over-the-top delicious! Love the flanged corners and invisible zipper--oh yes, and the lushious fabrics. Loi, we've gotta get you a TV show. America needs you! xx Linda

  58. Hi Loi,
    These are stunning. I especially love the lumbar cushion in the Robert Kime's "Susani" fabric..and the STUNNING chair it's on!
    Thank you, as always, for great inspiration.
    Jess x

  59. Una felice domenica a te...ciao

  60. beautiful with exquisite details.

  61. Loi,

    My favorite design item pillows and pillow covers...they really can raise the vibrations in a room. The pillowsin this post are wonderful, lots of variety, colors, and sizes to bring everything together. Just the perfect touch and so simple to add and change throughout the year. This is the perfect time to hunt and gather some summer pillows as fall items are starting to show up. Tip: If your storage space is limited purchase a your fall pillow cover size a little bigger and you can place the summer pillow...cover and all...into the bigger slightly bigger cover and you have a perfect relaxed look for two seasons.

    When my clients find a single pillow they "had to have" I have remade it into two pillows. I take it apart, add a solid or coordinating backing fabric or (take apart another matching color pillow), trim, invisible zipper and life is good!

    Another great fabric with many uses including backing fabric for pillows is painter's canvas drop cloths. You can purchase them at your local hardware store or Home Depot, wash once and after it's gone through the dryer is very managable. Love the color and texture, lots of yardage and durable too. Oh I could go on about the wonderful design ideas and discoveries i've made with pillows and pillow covers.

    What a great post Loi!


  62. Hey Loi, sorry I haven't been a while but now I have TWO beautiful posts to read!!! All your cushions are FAB! Particularly love the one in the picture after the 'Susani' one - could you let me know the name of this fabric please - it's divine! Also, your workroom really did an amazing job on matching the pattern - flawless! and love the invisible zip. I'm only starting to get 'in to' fabrics recently and have never paid much attention to the details before - the finish on your cushions is exquisite - it really is all in the detail isn't it?


  63. p.s. I agree with the above comment - we REALLY do have to get you your own TV show! and not just in the US, we'll have to put it out globally so we can enjoy it over here in Europe too!! It would be a HUGE HIT!!!!!! Your star is only on the rise my friend!!


  64. Hello loi!

    Thanks for following me! I'm very happy, his
    Amiade is very special!
    I follow you, too, because now you have a new friend!
    Most have not found the option of following in his blog!
    You're in my favorites, back when
    Greetings from Brazil.


Many thanks for your visit! If you have a question, please leave a comment and I will do my best to answer. Loi