Dodge these pitfalls to ensure your bedroom is calm rather than chaotic
Houzz Contributor. I’m a London-based journalist with years of experience writing… More
Our bedrooms are where we should be able to switch off at the end of a long day, but this isn’t always the case. Turn yours back into a relaxing haven that’s conducive to drifting off into peaceful slumber by avoiding these design no-nos.
See also Are You Making These 7 Design Mistakes in Your Hall?
Mistake 1: Scrimping on storage
A cluttered bedroom isn’t conducive to sleep, so it’s best to keep the space tidy and organised. One way to create a streamlined space is to invest in easy-access closed or hidden storage so everything can be tucked away out of sight.
Make use of all areas, including under the bed; buy storage boxes on wheels you can slide in and out. Alternatively, employ a local carpenter who can really maximise the space with some bespoke joinery. This smart wall of cupboards looks discreet behind the bedhead, and features a dedicated shoe closet.
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Mistake 2: Avoiding colour at all costs
What constitutes a restful bedroom scheme is different for different people – and for you personally it may not mean sticking to beige and white. So, don’t feel you should go for the standard ‘calm’ colours if that’s not your style, as it will only make you feel miserable.
Instead, consider creating a cocoon-like effect using rich shades, maximalist patterns and opulent throws. In this snug space, the cobalt and green wallpaper helps create the vibe of an exotic retreat that you’ll look forward to visiting each evening.
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Mistake 3: Not prioritising comfort
It goes without saying that comfort is key if you want a relaxing bedroom. For example, it pays to buy the best mattress you can afford, and follow the recommendation of experts by changing it every eight years.
Also consider your pillows. Research the filling that works best for you, whether that’s feathers, down, synthetic fibres or memory foam – all have their pros and cons. Replace pillows regularly, ideally every two years.
Don’t forget the headboard, either – it’s something many of us don’t consider. A padded design can make a big difference, especially if you’re someone who loves to read in bed. Most bed shops sell upholstered headboards off-the-peg, or you could look for companies online that make them bespoke for the exact dimensions and fabric of your dreams. For a cost-effective solution, take a look at online tutorials on how to make one out of MDF, fabric and foam.
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Mistake 4: Forgetting about flooring
Floors sometimes get neglected in bedroom schemes, but they can make a huge difference to the overall mood. Carpet is always a popular choice, especially if you like to sink your toes into something soft on cold mornings.
If you’re not keen on carpet, however, wood is also a great bedroom option. This beautiful parquet flooring adds a warm, tranquil finish, and if you miss the cosiness of carpet, simply add a couple of small rugs by your bedside.
Mistake 5: Failing to block the light
If you’re sensitive to light and find it easily disturbs your snoozing, then it’s a smart idea to invest in blackout linings for curtains or blinds. Most window covering companies will add these for a relatively modest sum that’s well worth it.
However, bear in mind light can still creep in around the edges of blackout blinds and curtains, so make sure they fully cover the window. In this room, the rail extends beyond the glazing and the curtains drop from the ceiling, which helps to conceal any intruding chinks of outdoor light.
Mistake 6: Overfilling your bedside table
Be honest, what’s on your bedside table right now? A solitary glass of water, or 14 books, mugs, earplugs, a lamp, your glasses, your phone and about 50 other random things?
Take some time to pare back and reorganise. Put your books back on the shelf and make your table a mug-free zone. You’ll feel better, and your bedroom will feel calmer.
Then consider investing in a bedside table with a drawer or shelf, like this one, to keep some of your belongings off the surface.
Mistake 7: Cluttering a small space with furniture
Bedrooms can very quickly start to feel overcrowded, especially when they’re on the small side. Once you slot in a bed, bedside tables, a wardrobe and chest of drawers, there may not be a whole lot of floor space left over.
To avoid that cramped feeling and create the illusion of more space, choose a bed with a minimal design, like this one, and go for furniture with sleek lines, rather than bulky pieces. Also avoid squashy armchairs in small rooms and instead choose a wood-framed chair, like this midcentury-style model.
Mistake 8: Not planning lighting
Well-planned lighting in the bedroom can make a huge difference to how calm and restful the space feels. Too bright and dazzling and it will keep you awake; too low or dim and you won’t be able to read in bed.
Plan multiple sources of light to create a soft, layered effect. Make sure bulb strengths aren’t too harsh, and, if possible, ask an electrician to wire in switches that both parties in a double bed can easily access to avoid those ‘lights out’ bedtime squabbles.
What helps make your bedroom feel more restful? Share your ideas in the Comments section.