Introduction to Pillows and Pillow Shams
Pillows used in interior design are made to perform the function of adding softness, color, or pattern to a room. They enhance the overall design and create a mood of comfort. The pillow originated as a padded fabric sack which was used to lay ones head on while sleeping, or to prop or pad body parts while resting. Because this is a function associated with comfort, the role of the pillow in interior design has evolved from something purely functional into a decorative and mood creating feature. Although decorative, these items are still a working part of daily life and therefore, when designing the decorative pillow it is good to keep in mind this dual purpose. If too fussy, they may lose some of their appeal over time with use.
The business rule differentiating the decorative pillow from the pillow sham is that a pillow is a decorative fabric casing which is stuffed and sewn closed. A pillow sham will be a decorative fabric casing which has a separate non-decorative pillow inserted inside it, and is made with some type of a constructed closure which allows it to be opened and the insert removed. A pillow sham can be removed for ease of cleaning or to replace the pillow insert should it deteriorate over time with use.
According to this rule, when a pillow is ordered, a decorative or non-decorative non-removable cover is provided. When a pillow sham is ordered, the decorative cover will be removable and an inner, non-decorative pillow insert will be provided, or a pillow sham can be ordered with no insert and the consumer can provide one of their own choosing.
To learn more about designing and specifying Pillows and Pillow Shams, refer to chapter 13 in the book Elements of Soft Treatments
Pillow and Pillow Shams are divided up into sub-categories which consist of: