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Cush Living Can Make Your Outdoor Oasis Dreams a Luxe, Hand-Made Reality

Getting to the Women-Owned Outdoor Living Company

BY // 09.28.21

Cush Living is a top Dallas destination for those looking to creating an outdoor dream oasis, from custom cushions and pillows to a punchy cabana and lounge area. Samantha Falkner (founder and CEO) and the brand‘s chief design officer Esther Parkhurst took the time to tackle our most pressing design questions about the great outdoors.

The outdoor fabric brands you love.

Samantha Falkner: With the pandemic, our business, like many others, has been hit hard. In the past, where Sunbrella was the industry go-to, it is now one of the most difficult outdoor fabrics to source. The good news is that we were forced to look at other fabric suppliers, and I’m so happy we did. Our fabric library is stronger than ever, and the best surprises are coming from smaller guys who have suddenly become industry heroes for performance fabrics. Our go-to fabrics consist of Perennials, Schumacher, Tempotest, and Bella-Dura. A good balance of value-priced fabrics is essential to ensure we accommodate every budget.

Poolside furniture
It’s time to transition your outdoor living space.

What clients are seeking.

Esther Parkhurst: Our customers have a distinct style and know what they are looking for, from Palm Beach chic to an East Coast Nantucket aesthetic, or classic and modern, grounded in all white.

Off-the-rack outdoor pillows and cushions vs. Cush Living.

SF: There’s only one thing any customer should beware of when buying outdoor products off the rack, and that’s quality. Not all outdoor fabrics are created equal, and if the price seems too good to be true, it probably is. I get so frustrated when I see big-box retailers selling “outdoor pillows” that are made from printed polyester. Just because it’s polyester doesn’t make it outdoor safe. The UV resistance is most likely in the 100-hour range (which equates to less than two weeks in direct sunlight) vs. Tempotest fabrics, which guarantee six years against fading, mold/mildew, and water resistance. Another quality concern is the fill or foam insert.

When people buy a patio set from Amazon for $599 and it includes the cushions, just know that those cushions are an afterthought. You’ll be lucky if the foam holds through the weekend before your tush sinks right down to the frame.

Design books on your must-buy list.

EP: Jungalow: Decorate Wild by Justina Blakeney, Pacific Natural at Home by Jenni Kayne and Vincent Van Duysen, The New Southern Style by Alyssa Rosenheck, Wild Creations by Hilton Carter.

Most requested design service.

SF: Fabric selection, which can be the hardest part of the process, because there are literally thousands of choices. Tell us your goal, give us a budget, and we can help.

Outdoor seating area
courtesy of Cush Living.

Outdoor design direction.

EP: People expanding their life outdoors has become important and necessary. I don’t consider this a trend but a lifestyle evolution, and that’s what’s exciting. People want to be outside and connect with nature, but in an elevated way. It’s about creating spaces that are as comfortable as those inside your home.

Cush Living is most known for…

SF: What separates us from other brands is that our products are transitional and versatile. For example, our Quattro design concept for replacement cushions: With a flip and turn, you have up to four looks in a single set. Performance fabrics are meant to last for many years, so why limit yourself to a single look?

Outdoor furniture
A perfect area to enjoy a conversation with another.

The client and the creative process.

SF: Our focus is specific to our client’s vision, style, and personal brand. We encourage clients to share images of things they love, whether it’s a vase they inherited or a quiet nook where they escape to read on the weekends. It’s important that we understand the client’s design goals, then it’s our job to ensure a seamless transition from the outdoor space to indoor space.

Samantha Faulkner and Esther Parkhurst | Cush Living 214.557.8978 | www.cush-living.com