Is your bedroom an afterthought? The last place you buy things for or decorate? Do you feel like it’s a place to stash stuff your not using – or worse yet fold the laundry? Have you put the bedroom, as last on the list? Then this is a great time of year to start thinking about how to create a little sanctuary for yourself in the bedroom.
I have been guilty of all of the above, even with a recent remodel. The bedroom was last of all the things to get chosen and I never really finished it, or bought the bed I want. The pillows and things in there are ones from other parts of the house that I’ve changed out. My bed is 25 years old and so tall I have a hard time getting into it as does my geriatric kitty!
One of my close friends feels the same about her bedroom and we have been putting our heads together while I try and help her make her space more inviting too. I’ve got bedroom ideas swirling around my head this week so I thought I’d share them.
Some inspiration to give boring bedrooms a more inviting feel..
My main gripe with my bedroom is that it’s bland, and a bit dark and not cozy to me. I want to want to go curl up in there and watch shows, read books and make it feel like a sanctuary. I’ve treated it like an afterthought and it looks like it. My friend also has the same feeling about her space. Hers needs a boost of coziness when she comes home from work and snuggles with her family and dog in there to watch shows and read.
There is no one way your bedroom should look. It helps if you can translate your personal style to your bedroom. It’s the one place you can really make personal. I saved these images through my Pinterest Boudoir board. These are full of layers, pretty color, rugs and pillows – all the elements of a magnetic bedroom.
The elements of an inviting and cozy bedroom.
Upholstered pieces – upholstery on headboards, beds, chairs or benches can go a long way in bringing a soft feel and look to a room. An upholstered headboard is one of the most affordable updates and widely available. (If you’re concerned about stains get your headboard in a Sunbrella or performance fabric.)
Rugs and more rugs. Look for rugs made of wool and that have some some fluff and soft feel under foot. You can also layer rugs or have another fluffy one by the side of the bed where you step out.
Layer your bed. Sheets and a duvet are a start, but I like a coverlet type of blanket like this from Crate & Barrel. I also have this soft blanket at the foot of the bed to wrap around me when reading on colder nights.
PIllows. You need good ones to sleep and then two to three more to fill the bed.
Throws are a great idea. I have my nicest ones in a basket by the bed.
Lighting is everything in this space. The last thing you want to do is use your overhead cap lights in the bedroom. Think spa, not hospital. It’s a bonus if you can have a pretty chandelier or flush mount light, but you still need lights on each nightstand to read by, preferably dimmable.
A chair or a chaise in a corner makes for a inviting spot to relax or read and just the vision of it creates a sense of retreat for your bedroom. Places to sit and read or a bench to put your shoes on are nice to have, fill the spaces and give a inviting look instead of empty corners. Just seeing a place to rest gives the feeling of a retreat in our minds.
Nightstands need not be matching and if you have room, can double as a bureau that can hold extra clothes. I always had my night clothes in my previous night stand. Consider it can be extra storage you may need.
Keep your night table pretty, not cluttered with things. If you’re a big ‘stuff’ person, consider drawers in yours and keep the top of your night stand calming and pretty with personal photos, books, a pretty tray for a water glass and dish as a catchall, and even a small vase with flowers.
Paint or wallpaper can create a mood. The bedroom is a great place to go with a romantic color or wallpaper that conveys a mood or feeling. I love being enveloped by a print and that can make the whole room feel like a small jewel box.
Don’t forget art. Choose art thoughtfully and something that has a lovely feeling, even romantic quality. Soft colors tend to look great in bedroom spaces.
Pretty drapes or window coverings make a huge difference. I went with white linen/cotton drapes for my bedroom sliders, but had a trim piece put on the edges to give it a bit more luxe look. Consider ribbon or trim for drapes and lightshades, to add a little more special to the space.
Consider a headboard when space is at a premium and you want change without a huge investment
To give a neutral bedroom a little boost, you can go with something like this Sunbrella Katherine headboard with a pretty shape by Ballard Design. It’s in a Sunbrella, which makes it nearly impervious to sun and stain. This Idol Frost tone is soft and can go with off whites and sea glass shades and other softer colors.
If you’re adventurous you can go with something more fun like this Sunbrella Ikat pattern Ally headboard. I love this.
Other options in the Ally Headboard are this Cornflower Print( sunbrella) left, and pretty Kavi Blue print.
All of Ballards headboards are made in North Carolina. There are many styles. If you want tufted there this Camden headboard in the Kylie fabric..
And this Sophie Headboard in Cleo, or this Ally Headboard in Sunbrella Salt Pique.
Upholstered complete beds are also on the affordable side and there are so many choices once you start looking. West Elm has the coolest option for a kids room in two sizes and many colors.
West Elm also has this Emmett Bed ready to ship around $1,000 and for a few more weeks, other fabrics too.
The same headboards I showed above are available in beds like the Giselle from Ballard which is a classic destined to look good for a long time. Here in Dotty Navy by Sunbrella. The styling possibilities are endless with a color like this.
There are some very affordable options at Pier 1, but I really like the height and shape of their Shabby Chic Jubilee bed. It comes in three colors and in a nice linen looking fabric. You could make this look less ‘shabby’ with some simple linen sheets and pillows. I think the look and shape are beautiful.
At Pottery Barn, I like this Elliot headboard – or bed which has an enveloping look with folded in sides. Here it’s shown in a basketweave performance fabric in Ash and comes in different heights. Don’t forget to consider your height if you plan to lean against the bed when reading at night. All the Pottery Barn upholstered beds and headboards here.
This is a classic good looking upholstered style from Wayfair..
Once you have a bed, you need to add cozy with color and texture, especially if you opt for a neutral color bed like above. Check out the texture added to this room with the pillows, throw, nubby rug and feature wall.
Helping my friend we started pulling together some room looks based on her wall color, Sherwin Williams Silver Spoon. We found the Giselle upholstered bed, in the Faygo print, and she loves the Grace nightstand in the blue grey. I want her to also have nice reading lamps like this pretty Greer Lamp from Ballard and I like the Adelaide rug to ground the bed, even though the room is carpeted, and to give it another layer of cozy and pull the colors together…
I thought the Connelly Bench and the Pottery Barn pillow look good in this mix.
In a second version for her, we addressed possible wear on things from her darling doodle who loves hanging with the fam in the bedroom. For that reason we thought she could also go with the darker Pique Denim in the same bed and the washed wood version of the same side table. With those two I like this rug, this ceramic lamp and a Ballard X Bench in Indigo Sunbrella..and for fun I tossed in the Terra Pom Pom Pillow.
There are a lot of options! She is still deciding.
Meanwhile, I’m still trying to noodle my own bedroom space. I’m considering an upholstered bed from Ballard like my friend, but with this shape and in a neutral color like below, if I wallpaper. For wallpaper, I love this by Farrow & Ball shown below. I know I want some cozy textures from throws, rugs (maybe one extra fluffy one when you step off the bed.) I also adore this Dayna Upholstered bench, this Larkin rug is beautiful, and this lamp from OKA which is a British home site I am obsessed with.
What do you think of what I have so far?
Do you have an upholstered bed or headboard? What do you love or hate about it? Do you like color and personality in a bedroom or more serenity? Love to hear your thoughts.
Also beginning this weekend, I start a new regular weekend collaboration with some wonderful bloggers, so please pop by the blog this Saturday for the first of my weekly favorites! I’m super excited and I hope you’ll enjoy it.
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LA CONTESSA says
FUNNY THE BEDROOM IS THE LAST PLACE I HAVE THOUGHT AS WELL………I have my MOTHERS COFFEE table in there under the window and a chest of drawers that should GO!Our bedroom is quite small and we sleep in a DOUBLE bed!NO room for a bigger bed……..I like to have space underneath for wrapping paper and storage!SO some of these beds would not work for me BUT WHO KNEW THEY DID THEM IN SUNBRELLA FABRIC?!!NOT ME!MY Mother had the headboard with the tuffs or buttons and they do get dusty!Hard to clean I guess a vacuum every month on each TUFF would do miracles!
I READ IN BED THE ITALIAN DOESNOT.SO I need something to lean against………..VELVET would be NICE!
FOOD FOR THOUGHT HERE KIM!
YOU HAVE DONE IT AGAIN!!
I just love the bedroom and you two are the sweetest couple. Obviously the double bed works! Yes don’t you love they can all be bought in Sunbrella and performance fabrics? What a huge help those are! Thanks about the tufts. I had not even given that a thought. Definitely will skip those and go with simpler. Elizabeth you may need an upholstered headboard! I could see one with some fabulous fabric in your room. 😀
Such a thorough interesting post Kim. I have an upholstered bed that we’ve had for 10 years and still love it to this day. One suggestion is to have a pillow that you can lean on and to not use the bed itself only because over time it might get an oil spot from our heads. Euro pillows are great for reading in bed. Ours is framed in wood which I love. I think your plan looks very comfy and very YOU!
Kathy you have answered my one question, as I was wondering if people have issues with that! The pillow idea is a good one. A Euro pillow is what I lean on to read too and I will be mindful of that. I’m so glad you like it. xo
Hi Kim – great post. Yes I think the primary bedroom is often overlooked since more attention is usually given to the public areas. I decided when we moved to our current home to take the plunge and buy the furniture I had been wanting for a very long time from RH. Best decision and I love the whitewashed wood and soft tones. I added special pieces over time like the anthro mirror and bench for the foot of the bed along with special lighting. It is our sanctuary. We also opted for no electronics or tv which helped a lot with keeping the serenity vibe.
Michele, So nice to hear you got to choose your dream pieces and they sound lovely. Then adding special other accents over time is the nicest way to have it be a very personal space. Love that!
Oh, Kim. I’m guilty of all of the above. After we did our renovation all my energy went into the main rooms of the house and our bedroom an afterthought. We did buy new furniture and a rug … and Roman shades … but there is no art. Nada. The walls are empty. The room isn’t large and we are lucky to have a bench at the foot of the bed (helps the doggies jump up). I wish we had room for a chair or small sitting area. It’s not to be. But those empty walls. I’m stymied. I love both choices you’ve outlined for your friend. The colors in both speak to me. Such a calm and inviting vibe. I hope you’ll share what she decides. I love upholstered headboards, ours is velvet from RH. Our guest room is an upholstered headboard from Pottery Barn. Upholstery adds to the coziness factor for sure. The pieces you’re considering for your bedroom are definitely cozy and serene. The rug is amazing … and I adore the lamp. Looking forward to see how it comes together. xo
Juliet I know finding the right art and accents for the bedroom is not easy, and so many people just don’t! I loved your headboard and forgot RH is another great source I did not mention. I so want that cozy vibe the upholstered headboards give. We stayed in a house in Hawaii and all the rooms had them and they’re so cute too. They have the design punch as well as comfort going for them. I hope to share what both my friend and I end up choosing! xo
Lisa Lilienthal says
Am updating mine right now and found an incredibly affordable upholstered option from the new Gap Home line. I don’t have it installed yet – hope to do it this weekend. Love the links and images they are very inspiring. Have you seen the barefoot dreams waffle blanket? I’m the rare one who doesn’t love their typical fluffy texture. I find them so hot.
Hi Lisa! I have not heard of the Gap Home line, so I will have to go check it out. Please share when you install too. I am interested in seeing it. I do have the Barefoot Dream Waffle Blanket and it’s not as heavy as they other blankets and maybe why I like it. It’s super soft and has been wearing beautiful. I take it with me traveling as it’s not too big. Kind of like a personal blankie of sorts..
Love this post, Kim!! I’m with Elizabeth, tufting is pretty, but it will get dusty, something to keep in mind. Your potential choices for your room were so soothing, especially loved the F&B wallpaper!! Thanks for sharing!! xo
Tracy thank you! Appreciate the input! Never even thought about the dust issue. So glad you all commented. I’m glad you like the wallpaper. I thought it was kind of pretty and different. xx
Hi from Cabo! , My bedroom actually is my quiet retreat, although the rest of my house feels pretty calm too. When I moved into the house 21 years ago, the toile pattern was still available from the house I downsized from. It’s beige with a red design but understated on my window coverings and on one chair (from my childhood). I also have a lovely chaise that seats 2 easily. All this in my house built in 1929 but I added on and got a super primary bed, bath and walk-in closet.
Come see me when you feel like cruising down the coast! Would love that, Kim.
Wren, Your house sounds wonderful. I am a huge fan of toile and I also have a childhood chair. I would love to see your 1929 California home sometime! I do think the renovating the primary bath and bedroom is so worth it and what we did also…I guess I should have talked about that part. Well another post. Love chaises too. Hope you’re enjoying Cabo. xo
Another great post Kim … and it definitely gave me pause for thought as I find my bedroom cosy but it doesn’t have any upholstery or rugs. I do love the headboards you’ve shown here ( especially the Ikat one) and I have considered a small sofa or chaise.
Light wood, furniture, oak flooring and white Egyptian cotton bedding. White Roman blinds with off white embroidery… ( white walls too! )
I had to look to see what Euro pillows are and yes I have a few of those … white covers again, some Egyptian cotton and some seersucker cotton.
I have a really great topper on top of the mattress, having loved the same one at a hotel in Ghent, Belgium!
I have thought about a rug or rugs but quite honestly I love the feeling of the wood under my feet!
Before you think it’s totally pristine … I do tend to stash things in there too! Lol
I’m looking forward to seeing how your friends bedroom works out … and from previous pictures I’ve seen I really love your bed!!
I like all the headboards! How to choose? I need to replace my bed frame, when we moved to a king mattress my iron four poster went to my daughter. I’m thinking of the Alie or the Sophie upholstered headboards in blue or blue and white fabric. I have all the other elements taken care of, lined linen drapes, layered rugs, mis matched but complementary side tables, good reading lamps two chairs with fur throws, a bench at the foot of the bed and the choice of many duvet covers, shams and cushions to mix and match for whatever strikes my mood! Bedding and linens have always been a weakness with me! Also I use candles and a diffuser for a lavender scented retreat!The room is too dark for plants but the view is all redwood trees so that will have to do!
Nice work on finding all these great examples of cozy looking beds and bedrooms. Your friend is lucky to have your help with this!
Mary Ann Pickett says
This is so helpful, Kim. We are going to need furniture for our bedroom in the Florida house. The bedroom is huge so we will do a king this time. I am pinning everything and then heading over with your Ballard link. And I LOVE the soothing wallpaper!!!
Mary Ann Pickett says
PS. I bought the Ballard Camden headboard 20 years ago and now Alie has it at her house!