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How to Arrange Pillows

Rearranging your pillows is a great way to refresh your bedroom. We’ve laid out seven  fool-proof pillow arrangement formulas to update any bed, no matter the size.

The number of pillows needed for each look will depend on your bed size, but the basic concepts will be the same.

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The Single Stack

The Single Stack is exactly what it sounds like: pillows stacked on top of one another and next to each other. For a twin bed, a single stack of 2 pillows will look best. On a queen or king bed, 2 side-by-side stacks is optimal for a total of four pillows. 

- Styling tips: Use the same shade across all of your pillows to ensure a cohesive look, or create contrast between the layers using two complementary shades. If your pillowcases match the your sheets, update the bottom row of pillowcases in the new shade for added interest.

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The Hidden Stack

The Hidden Stack is almost the same as the single stack, but with an additional layer of pillows styled in front of the stacked row. This front layer can feature regular, decorative or euro pillows, depending on the size of your bed and your style preference. We recommend using decorative pillows for twin beds, and euros for kings. Full or queen size beds can use any size pillow. 

- Styling tips: Since the back pillows are hidden, use the same color pillowcases to create a uniform look. Then, select front pillows with contrasting colors or texture to help them stand out. 

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The Classic Double Layer

The Classic Double Layer uses 2 sets of pillows standing in front of each other. This arrangement creates more depth on your duvet or comforter. 

For king beds with king size pillows, use the euro pillows to create the front row—and consider updating with a decorative sham for more contrast.

- Styling tips: Use euro pillows in the back row to create even more depth. If you have patterned sheets, you can coordinate the front pillows to match, or update to a contrasting shade for a more bold aesthetic.

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The Decorated Double Layer

Why have just one decorative layer when you can have two? Use regular or euro pillows to create the first decorative layer in front of your sleeping pillows, and then place 1 lumbar pillow in front. 

For twin beds, you’ll need 1 regular pillow and 1 lumbar pillow. For all other bed sizes, you’ll need 2 standards and 1 lumbar. 

- Styling tips: The lumbar pillow can match your sheet set for a cohesive look or contrast for a more modern style. Try matching the sleeping pillows to your sheets, and use the decorative pillow layers for dimension and interest. For more depth, use euro pillows instead of standard.

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The Traditional Triple Layer

As the name describes, the Traditional Triple Layer requires 3 rows of pillows. The first row will feature 1-2 euro pillows standing straight in the back, while the second layers 1-2 standard pillows in decorative shams. The third row will finish the look with another layer of standard pillows at the front, and can be styled at a slight angle for a welcoming aesthetic.

- Styling tips: Match a row of pillows to your bed sheets, especially if your sheets are patterned. Alternate colors between the layers for balanced contrast, and use a textured pattern on the euro pillows to add even more dimension.

On king beds, use king size pillows for the first and second layers, and 3 euro pillows in the back.

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The Decorated Triple Layer

The Decorated Triple Layer is the same as the triple layer arrangement with an added lumbar or decorative pillow in the very front. 

- Styling tips: For the decorative pillows, choose a shade or pattern that stands out against the front pillows and sheets, and make sure they're the appropriate size for your bed. As with most pillow arrangements, use this element to add interest with a pattern or texture.

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The Maximalist Stacked Layers

Calling all maximalists: this one’s for you. For the ultimate layered look, start with 2 standard pillows—stacked or standing upright—in the very back row, followed by 2-3 euro pillows standing straight up in the next row. Then, create a row made up of 2 standard pillows or up to 4 decorative pillows. Finish this lavish arrangement with a decorative or lumbar pillow at the very front. This should leave you with 4 rows of pillows.

To achieve this look in a king bed or larger, you'll need 3 euro pillows and king size pillows rather than the typical standard size.

- Styling tips: With so many layers, contrast is the name of the game. You’ll need to add alternating colors, textures, or patterns to make each layer stand out. For a monochromatic look, styling a variety of textures will be your best bet. 

Additional Pillow Arrangement Considerations

In addition to your bed size, you’ll also want to take into account the following before you commit to a specific look: 

- Your headboard and its color. Whether you have a headboard or not will impact the overall look of your bed and pillow arrangement—without a headboard, you won’t be able to prop up the back layer of pillows unless your bed is against a wall. The color of your headboard will influence the shades and patterns of pillows you can select in order to achieve a complementary style and avoid any clashing design elements.

- How many pillows you’re willing to move. If you don’t mind removing your decorative pillows around at bedtime, you can opt for a more full arrangement. If you prefer a more low-maintenance setup, a simpler arrangement would be best.

- How many pillows you sleep with. If you already have a number of pillows no your bed, a fuller look might be relatively easy to achieve. If you don’t, you'll need more pillows to create the depth needed for a fuller arrangement. 

- Pillow sizes. Pillows come in multiple sizes, each with their own dimensions. The sizes you choose will determine how sleek or sumptuous your pillows, and overall bed, look.