Pillow talk (or why men hate cushions)

My fiancé enjoyed his last therapeutic guest rant post so much, he’s back for more!

This isn’t a blog about men versus women. Or interiors addicts versus non interiors addicts. Or gay versus straight. This is simply a blog about practicality and function. About being able to use your abode for what it was always intended – living. Which brings me to a rather controversial topic: cushions.


Let me be tactful. Cushions… no. When you use cushions… no. Cushion usage… no. You know what, screw it – people, no matter who you are, what you do or what you like, you don’t need 20 damn cushions on your two-seater sofa! Or your king size bed! Or your… in fact, it doesn’t really matter, you just don’t need stacks of pillows.

I get the fact that some cushions are pretty. The aesthetics of a good pillow add to a room. That’s cool, I’m down with that, I bet Jay-Z has some pretty cool pillows. Maybe JT does too, he likes a good suit and tie after all. But any more than three on your sofa, or your bed, or anywhere else really, and I think you may be missing the point of what that piece of furniture was all about.

You see, a sofa is for sitting. A bed is for lying on. The floor is for walking on. A car is for driving. I think you get my point. You can’t do any of those things properly when you are being suffocated by cushions, no matter how pretty they are – even if they are pretty enough to justify leaving your partner for.

A case in point if you will indulge me. After a long day of work rattling on about the media and advertising industry (it’s what I get paid for), I come home with the sole intention of flopping in front of the TV to watch Air Crash Investigations. Nothing like some exceptional flying skills (or lack thereof sometimes) to ease away the pains of the day. But wait, as I go to take my seat in front of the TV, I unceremoniously slide down onto the floor in an uncontrolled flop until I am resting uncomfortably under the coffee table. Why? Because cushions, when in groups, become dangerous. Did you know the collective for cushions is actually ‘gang’ or ‘battalion’*.

*Fact may not be factual.

Let’s now move our discussion to the bedroom… not in that way. Keep it clean. There is nothing like the feeling of tucking yourself into some clean sheets on top of a comfortable mattress. But after you have taken 10 minutes to dismantle the pile of ornamental cushions off the bed and stack them properly on the floor or in a container, chances are you’re a little less relaxed than you were before the initial thought of hitting the hay snuck into your brain. Then there is the task of re-doing the cushions when you awake in the morning. “Nothing like a strong coffee, the newspaper and some cushion stacking,” said nobody, ever.

I have but one question for those of you who do this. Who is looking at your bedroom that often with such a critical eye that you feel the need to decorate your bed with a swarm of pillows? If you’re waking up to the sight of Neale Whitaker, Shayna Blaze and Darren Palmer judging you, then you’re doing it wrong… and perhaps not locking your doors securely enough at night. I once saw Darren Palmer roaming the streets looking for rooms to judge. True story*.

*Story may not actually be true.

Call me lazy, call me unstylish, call me annoyingly practical. But overuse of cushions is a disease that is quickly taking over Australia and creating mass panic. Let’s kill it off now!

Note from Jen: I feel compelled to share this clip from UK sitcom Coupling (I’ve shared it before) which sums up men and women’s attitudes to cushions just perfectly. Bloody hilarious!


  1. says

    I feel that I must weigh in here. We have a lot of cushions in our house. A lot. They drive my husband mad too for the simply reason that he does not know how to use them. If you just sit on them without adjusting them behind your back they will be uncomfortable and they will also squash the cushion and make it look yuk.

    Unlike you Damien, my husband is not allowed to complain about them since cushions, in our house bring in a good income and help pay for the roof over our heads and the sofa under the cushions.

    Perhaps you need to choose some cushions of your own Damien, so you have ownership over them and feel included in the cushion decisions in the house?

    • Damian says

      Cath, thanks for your feedback. Unfortunately I was traumatised as a child when a battalion of cushions led a surprise attack on me while I was watching TV. I’ve never recovered from that situation. I have suspicions that Darren Palmer was somehow involved, but I can’t prove this.

      On a side note (and one not filled with lies), Jen has curbed her enthusiasm for mass cushions, which is great for me.

  2. says

    Agree with Cath above. I let hubby-to-be pick cushions for his ‘man den’. He decided he wanted only one. It was a start I suppose! He also never adjusts the collection on our lounge behind his back to make it comfortable. Just sits on them, says they are uncomfortable and then gets up leaving the cushions in a squashed mess. Which then leads me to spend loads of time plumping and fluffing them back to their original state. Hmmm…Damian might have a point…. 😉

    • Damian says

      Hold on… did I just… almost convert someone? Is that a pig flying by my office window? Mmmm, bacon. Huh…

      Thanks Kate!

  3. Jourdan Parker says

    Hi Damian,

    I share the same addiction to cushions. But like you, my partner hates them. Well maybe doesn’t hate them, but certainly is over my obsession with them.
    I am quite particular too, and dislike people actually resting on them or heaven forbid, actually sit on them. I can’t stand them being all out of shape.
    I have uploaded a very unflattering picture of my cushions stacked beside the couches on instagram. Ask Jen to show you. This is how they are most nights.
    Jourdan : )

  4. Bel says

    Ah I have to weigh in here. I HATE, HATE, HATE cushions too. They are annoying and as you mention a waste of space/time. Plus they get dusty and that means more stuff to keep clean. I like to keep my interiors minimal and functional with good artwork on the walls – no cushions!

  5. Helen McA says

    I have to say I like a good cushion. I indulge in some cushion perving in magazine and on interiors blogs and Instagram. But in our whole house we have fewer than 10 cushions. I have recently upgraded our living room quota from 2 to 3 cushions.
    Furthermore I like my cushions to be comfortable and durable – they are subjected to dogs and a child. They must, however, look luxurious – with awesome fabrics and finishes. They must be so fabulous that I do not have to update them with the trends all the time.
    I am probable breaking all the cushion rules.

  6. says

    DAMO You’re lazy, unstylish and annoyingly practical.
    i have RARELY roamed the street looking for judging opportunities and for the record i barely make my bed. ever.

  7. Robyn says

    Cushions are works of art. I use them everywhere I can. The origins of the cushion and their survival is proof that mankind cannot live without them. There is only 1 cushion rule – Use them. What is wrong with you guys?????