The great pillow fight: how many pillows should you have on your bed?

Is eight too many? Amelia Murray, from Wallace Cotton, would call this a "maximum impact" set up - ideal for king beds. ...
Jane Ussher

Is eight too many? Amelia Murray, from Wallace Cotton, would call this a "maximum impact" set up - ideal for king beds. Two Euro pillows at the back, two sleepers, two oxfords, and a couple of decorative ones in the front.

Some people swear by a single pillow. Others insist they need eight. 

Pillow fights are common among Kiwi bed-sharers - often taking a nasty turn when someone trips over pillows abandoned by the bed at night.   

Richard Brunton, art director of NZ House & Garden, says he often hears of bed-sharers arguing over the perfect pillow number, and thinks it's a classic "form vs function" debate that no-one can ever win.     

Five pillows seems to be the perfect compromise for happy bedsharing.

Five pillows seems to be the perfect compromise for happy bedsharing.

He thinks five pillows is the right number.  

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Almost as minimal as you can get, two plain pillows on the bed.

Almost as minimal as you can get, two plain pillows on the bed.

"Two pillows is too few: it just looks sparse and uninviting. Aesthetically, it could be nice to have more, but the more you have the more fuss there is, and the more time you have to spend making and unmaking your bed. Five is the perfect compromise."



Amelia Murray, from Wallace Cotton, also thinks five is a good number. Every bed should have at least four pillows, she says, "and it would probably be good to add one more little one so that there isn't a gap in the middle."  Brunton also notes that odd numbers are nicer to look at than even ones.  

Sleep experts say that for a good night's sleep we probably just need one pillow, to remove the angle between shoulder and head. Murray, who has eight pillows on her own bed, reckons that settling for just one or two means you're missing out on the chance to bring texture, colour and comfort into your bedroom with a pile of lovely pillows.

So how many is too many? Murray: "No more than eight. That's just excessive. When it gets to a point where you have nowhere to put them when you sleep, you know that you've gone overboard".

Finding a place to put the pillows when sleeping is the crux of most pillow fights. On the floor is not the best solution says Murray, as they can become a trip hazard in the night.

Murray says putting them on the side of the bed you aren't sleeping on (if you're single) or on an occasional chair or table is a good solution.

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 - Stuff

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