How to Decide Between Throw Pillows and Pillow Covers

How you decide between throw pillows and pillow covers boils down to pricing and storage availability! Who doesn’t love throw pillows, am I right?! They’re a quick and fun way to transform a space! Pillows add color, contrast, and texture. So the question I have is this, are you a pillow cover lover or a throw pillow hoarder? Let me explain, do you prefer to buy pillow inserts and just replace the pillow covers? Or would you much rather purchase new throw pillows where the insert and cover cannot be separated?

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decorative throw pillows on the floors

Maybe I’ve been hiding under a rock but up until recently, I wasn’t aware that simply purchasing pillow covers was even an option. When I wanted to switch up my pillow color or style, I bought new throw pillows. These, of course, were the ones without zippers. Therefore, I’m proudly going to own it and admit that I was once a throw pillow hoarder. I had a pillow closet and I would rotate throw pillows based on the season. However, now that I’m aware of my options, I have to say I’m a huge fan of simply replacing the pillow covers!

decorative throw pillows on a couch

Anyone who knows me, knows I’m a planner, an organizer, and a firm believer in lists. That being said, the decision to switch to pillow covers was made after weighing the pros and cons of both options.

decorative throw pillows on a blanket
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The Pros of Throw Pillows

The best thing about purchasing throw pillows is their availability. On any given day, you could drive to your nearest Target, Home Goods, or any other home decor store and grab some new pillows. If you’re someone like me who appreciates instant gratification, then this might be the option for you. In addition to being easily accessible, these pillows are also pretty darn affordable. For instance, depending on the specific size, you can purchase a throw pillow from Target for as little as $15. At that price point, I wouldn’t be upset if these pillows got ruined by my girls, Hubby or house guests.

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The Cons of Throw Pillows

On the downside, throw pillows can take up a lot of space, hence my previous pillow closet. If your home already doesn’t include adequate storage, then finding places for your extra pillows will require some creativity and resourcefulness. Suddenly your living room couch and bedrooms have an unhealthy amount of throw pillows! Or maybe your closets or kitchen cupboards. No judgment on my part because I’ve seen it and I may or may not have done some of these things! Also, a throw pillow without a zipper could pose a challenge if it got dirty. They’re usually not machine washable and you’ll likely have to spot clean and hope that does the trick.

The Pros of Pillow Covers

Pillow covers require much less space, making storage easy peasy. Instead of having a pillow closet, I now have a pillow drawer and that’s an amazing feeling. Dirty pillow covers can also be easily removed and spot cleaned or hand washed, making them more salvageable. If they are beyond redemption, they can be traded out for new covers, leaving your pillow inserts unharmed. Pillow covers come in many great styles and fabrics that I haven’t seen available with regular throw pillows. Mud cloth, for example, is an extremely popular pillow cover fabric that offers great texture and cool geometric patterns and designs!

The Cons of Pillow Covers

Purchasing pillow covers can get pricy. The size, fabric, and particular brand will definitely affect how much you pay. I’m not the most patient person and unfortunately, I haven’t had much success in finding pillow covers in stores. The ones I’ve seen and loved have all been online. Since pillow covers are not as readily available as throw pillows, instant gratification isn’t so easily achieved. Depending on where you purchase your pillow covers, shipping time will vary and so will the return policy. Switching to pillow covers will also require some initial setup, i.e. purchasing pillow inserts which will vary in price depending on the size and pillow filling.

My Verdict

Putting pen to paper and creating my pros and cons lists for both pillow options has truly allowed me to make the best decision that suits our home and lifestyle. I love the designs and styles available to me with pillow covers. There is also the space-saving factor that I’m a huge fan of! and Although I have to purchase them online, so far, I’ve only purchased from Amazon which allows me 2-day shipping as a prime member.

I also make it a habit to purchase pillow covers in sets, as much as possible, because it usually works out being a better cost value.

I strongly dislike paying full price for things and I’m sure many of you can agree with me on this one. That being said, I’m okay waiting for items to go on sale before making a purchase. For example, many of the pillow covers I’ve recently purchased were the Woven Nook brand and it was just my luck that Amazon was offering 15% off all their pillow covers! If you’ve been trying to decide between throw pillows and pillow covers, I hope you find value in my personal perspective.

Some of my favorite neutral throw pillows!

If you’re looking for more home decor ideas, then you may enjoy these related blog posts:

Spring Kitchen Refresh || Office Bookcase Styling

Console Table Styling || Home Office Fall Refresh

Comment below and let me know your preference, throw pillows or pillow covers? Where are some of your favorite stores or websites to purchase pillows? Until next time friends!

Aminah Chung


8 Replies to “How to Decide Between Throw Pillows and Pillow Covers”

  1. “Suddenly your living room couch and bedrooms have an unhealthy amount of throw pillows”

    #Guilty! 🤣

    I need to come to terms with throw pillow covers, they make so much more sense. That instant gratification just gets me every time I walk into Home Goods. The texture, the fluffy ness, the colors – I just love the opened ended options in front of me when I wonder those isles.

    I’m pretty sure I don’t have anymore closet space, so I really need to come to terms with just covers!

    • For all the reasons you mentioned Renee, I can understand why you chose throw pillows! I just grew tired of the pillow piles and really had no more space for them. Just to test the waters, I suggest maybe purchasing a 2-4 pack of pillow inserts and a 2-4 pack of pillow covers. The Woven Nook collection on Amazon is pretty fantastic! Most of the pillow covers featured here are that brand and I’ve been thrilled with them. Plus, they’re currently 15% off so not a bad time to switch things up!

  2. I do prefer pillow covers, but I still purchase the ones with the zipper. I will say that some pillows do not have the best inserts though. Great post. So informative!

  3. Thanks for this reassurance. I always like to purchase pillow covers because they’re not too bulky to store. I love this post. Big fan and I will check out the link❤️.

  4. Aminah I am loving this blog. I have ordered those pillow covers because they are gorgeous. I love every detail that you use to describe the importance of purchasing covers instead of buying pillows and how cost effective and space saving it can be. Thanks for sharing my friend.

    • Oh Malisa I’m so happy to hear that! I hope you’ll like them as much as I do! Thanks for taking the time to read my little blog and for supporting me!

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