Let’s talk about your bed for a minute. It’s likely your largest piece of bedroom furniture, and it’s where you spend 1/3 of your life. Your bed is also the visual centerpiece of your bedroom. The bedding and decorative elements you choose for your bed say a lot about you. If you’re looking for ways to elevate your bedroom décor, start by focusing on the bed itself. And one of the best ways to elevate the décor of your bed is with pillow shams.

What’s a sham, you ask? It’s like a pillowcase, but more interesting. A sham is a decorative pillow covering that transforms a normal pillow into a signature ornamental accent.

Sham-covered pillows have been around since the 1700s, typically arranged around or on top of sleeping pillows to give the bedroom a stylish finish. If you ever visit a 5-star hotel bedroom, one of the first things you’ll notice is the way the bed is elegantly layered with a waterfall of tasteful shams.

Uses for Shams in Your Bedroom

So, can you actually sleep on a sham? There’s no rule against it, but that’s not really what shams were designed to do. Shams tend to be thicker and more textured than normal pillowcases and are better suited for pillow decoration than for lying your head on to sleep. When it’s time for bed, many people just choose to remove the shams until it’s time to make the bed again in the morning. Others choose to place the shams as a padded buffer between their sleeping pillow and the headboard. Shams can also be useful for helping to prop you up when you’re reading or just chilling on your bed.

People often choose shams that match their duvet cover or comforter, but one nice thing about shams is the number of options they give you for decorating. For example, you can opt for shams made with different fabric like relaxed linen or velvet to contrast with the texture of your other bedding. You can also use shams to add a nice pop of color to your bedding ensemble. And shams aren’t limited to just your bed, either. Shams make nice accents on other pieces of bedroom furniture, too.

 

Shams Beyond the Bedroom

Shams are obviously well-suited for decorating beds, but don’t limit yourself to just that; think outside of the bedroom! As decorative pillows, shams are versatile in their application and can be creatively arranged in other places, too. You can place shams on sofas, benches, or chairs in the living room, den, hall entryway, sunroom, bathroom. Shams can also be layered on a rug, or used to cozy up a reading nook. In other words, shams make great accent pieces all over your home!

Choosing the right sham can set any living space apart, and also make it softer and more welcoming. For other tips and ideas on how to reinvent your bedroom (or other rooms) with shams and decorative pillows, check out these blog posts from noted interior designer and sleep expert Jennifer Adams:

How to Make Your Bedroom Feel Like a Boutique Hotel

Create Your Own Bedroom Sitting Area

Explore Jennifer Adams for Luxury Shams, Bedding, & More!

Jennifer Adams has spent decades helping people like you. She’s passionate about providing the tools to help you create your best sleep experience ever, and she’s also passionate about helping your home feel like a cozy, personal sanctuary that expresses your unique personality and tastes. When you visit Jennifer Adams you’ll find lots of great tips, along with a great selection of luxury bedding sets, pillows, shams, throw pillows, layered bedding, home décor items, and more!

 

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