The sham in pillow sham simply means false, a pillow sham is a decorative false pillow that completes the look of your bed. Pillow shams give an impression that you have specially purchased a decorative pillow instead of covering up your old, standard pillows. The difference between a pillow case and pillow sham is while a sham is decorative that coordinates well with your beddings, a pillow case is more of a protection for your pillows from dirt and dust and easier to clean and wash rather than washing the entire pillow.

Pillow shams can be bought by itself but most are free when you but your own beddings. They can be of the same fabric and material as your comforter or it can be in contrasting colours that goes well with your entire bed. Though technically it is still a pillow, pillow shams are not usually slept directly on, instead they are placed on the side when one is sleeping.  When making your bed, pillows covered in pillow sham are often placed in front of other pillows in pillowcases. A usual pillow sham has an opening in the back where a pillow can be inserted and usually have decorative patchworks or laces sewn around it. The cloth used to make pillow shams is always rich and beautiful as there sole purpose is to look gorgeous and to complete a bed.

A pillow sham that goes with your bed enhances the look and feel of your entire bed. Most pillow shams come with elaborate beadwork and patch work while most come with intricate embroidery designs. It also keeps your pillows clean. It comes in different shapes and sizes, therefor playing around it possible.

When purchasing a pillow shams, the totality of the entire bedroom should be considered; the style, the colour schemes and even the owner of the room. The style of the room will dictate what kind of fabric and how decorative a pillow sham will be. Preference might also be affected when age and status are factored in; like are you married or single, young or old, elegant or shabby.

Another thing to consider is the level of formality. A working woman might prefer an elegant look of satin and embroidery, while an elderly woman might like more patchwork, crocheted and simple laces. A male teenager will most likely consider dark colours with decorations while a teenage girl pink and fluffy with laces on the trim.

Remember that there are many kinds of pillow shams; crocheted, painted, laced, ruffled-edge, embroidered, quilted. Colourful and rich fabrics such as satin, matelassé, seersucker and velvet are usually the top choices. Some beds have many large pillows and choosing a good mixture and patterns can enliven the entire bedroom. And your guests will surely feel at home with nice floral prints.

Choosing pillow sham should be enjoyable and never hard. There are so many designs to play with, let your imagination go wild. Pillow shams are doesn’t cost that much so buying more than one is always a good idea.