Pillow Talk



There is a scene in the Ben Stiller/Jennifer Aniston movie, Along Came Polly, where Ben Stiller’s character Reuben and Polly, played by Aniston, prepare to go to bed. Reuben, who has just broken up with a girlfriend, who loved pillows and had them placed beautifully on the bed, slowly removes each pillow and begins to put them in a trunk where they will be stored for the night. Polly, upon watching this ritual asks, “What are all these pillows for? You don’t sleep on them?” She wonders if they get put on the bed each morning and then stored at night, unused, what purpose they serve. While I have no statistics on this, I imagine that there is often one member of each partnership or coupling that can never have enough pillows and another who either despises them or has asked the very same question.




In my house, it’s me. The one who loves pillows. On any surface. The bed, the couch, a chair. I even like them on the floor for a relaxed lounge sitting area. Pillows suggest comfort, calm, relaxation. They give to any guest or member of the family an invitation to sit, relax, or rest. They say, “You are welcome to stay a while.” Pillows and other accessories can add depth, color, and contrast to a space. I especially enjoy mixing different sizes, textures, and colors. There are so many options to play with, at my house anyway, it’s hard to say no!

There is, however, a method to the madness and pillows can’t just be thrown about without consideration for their impact. Some swear by the 2-2-1 ratio: Two pillows of the same size and pattern on the outside, two of the same on the inside and one special pillow, a star so to speak in the middle. On a bed, you can use the same ratio but from back to front. Others like the 2-2-2 or the 2-2. Some find the pillow chop, the look of a karate chopped crease in the middle of the pillow, pleasing while others prefer to keep theirs square or flat. Some abandon any rules all together and place them in whatever way makes them feel good and the room look balanced.

In a space with a more controlled palette, a pillow can add a pop of color or texture. Pillows can be shown in differing patterns—stripes or florals, polka dots or faux fur creating a whimsical or calming effect. It’s a small chance to take rather than a huge risk and immediately draws the eye. At least that’s what I tell my husband.  In most relationships you have to pick your battles and in my house, I ALWAYS win the pillow fight!






























(c) Copyright 2015. Shawna Starkman Design Group.


Disclaimer:  All images on this blog are copyrighted by their respective owners.  I do not own any of the images posted unless otherwise stated.  If you see your work on my site without proper credit or you would like it removed, please contact me.  Thank you. 





Color Inspiration from the Universe!

There is no better designer than the universe!  Summer colors from the garden and the kitchen can inspire new bolder and brighter choices for the interior design of your space.  So the next time you are walking through the market or reaching to smell that beautiful,  luscious flower, allow yourself a moment to take in the beauty and the vibrance of nature and see where it can take you.

(Peonies – Sarah Zucker)

Fruits and vegetables are not only good for your body, they can be good for your decorators soul too.

I am all about neutrals and textures and juxtiposition and these herbs and mushrooms are gorgeous…….

but don’t forget to pop a little bit of color to add a smile to your face and personality to your space!



A couch, a chair, a bed, a table, some lamps, a rug, a painting, a print, a built in. Often, when people think of decorating, they overwhelm themselves with the search for these items, the items you put into each room. I am asking you to go one step further with me.

Outside the box.

Let’s consider the style, the mood, texture, line, lighting. Let’s dare to give you exactly what you want, to give you a space that’s all yours, a space that speaks to and for you. That’s what I hope to achieve with each client. There’s more to making a room a comfort zone, a house a home than pieces of furniture. Outside the box, one can dare to dream of the perfect haven, a cozy corner, a comfy boudoire, and I can make it real. The ideas are yours. I use my professional resources and contacts to bring it to life. Here’s to trying new things. I hope that this blog will give you insight into how I approach my work, form relationships, and get inspired from all kinds of things in every day life. When you allow yourself to think outside the box, you’d be surprised by what can happen! I am grateful to my wonderful clients in Cresskill, NJ for allowing me to help them create the perfect set for their lives. Please check out the article featuring the Shawna Starkman Design Group in the latest issue of Design NJ. CONTEMPORARY VERSAILLES

Everything in this design was custom.  One of my favorite projects was the BED POSTS in the Master Bedroom.

We had wood pieces hand turned and sprayed Cadillac Pearl White by Newday Woodwork in Glendale , NY.  We then had an amazing artist in Redhook , Brooklyn named  Kevin Scanlan hand blow 80 glass balls that are all completely unique.


We strung all the pieces on thin metal frames and secured them to the floor surrounding the custom upholstered bed by Martin Albert Interiors.


It is a project that is utterly unique to this client in this home.  That is something we LOVE to do.






New Blog, New Website, New Look

Welcome to our new blog! We are pleased to inform you that are new website is up and life. Your website, we will bring you the latest trends and information and from the interior design world. You can use our blog to help track trends or to decide when is the right time to make a change within your own home or office. We will also feature out of this world designed out of one awards across the globe. Additional tips will be posted by our in-house expert.