Turn your bedroom into a personal sanctuary with some top decorating ideas.
“Blessings on him who invented sleep, the mantle that covers all human thoughts.” — Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (Spanish writer, 1547–1616)
Bedrooms serve a very specific purpose: to provide a comfortable place for restful slumber. When decorating your bedroom, obviously your first priority is to ensure a good night’s rest. Owning the best-quality bed, mattress, pillows and linens you can afford will help you achieve a restful night, as will creating a clutter-free, dustfree environment with good airflow.
Beyond the basics
Once you have a good bed your job is complete, right? If you’re only looking at the most functional basics then yes, but we’re talking about decorating here, not just functioning. Your bedroom is a special place in that it’s one of the most private rooms in the house. It is offlimits to guests and is the place where you are most relaxed and intimate. Given this, it makes sense that your bedroom be a sanctuary of comfort, a special place decorated indulgently so you can enjoy your evening retreat. When decorating your bedroom, the little details add ambience and enjoyment to the space. But use your space wisely — too many knick-knacks and you’ll create energy-sapping clutter. Remember that when you’re working with areas such as the top of bedside tables, you only have a small space, so less really is more.
Take colour cues from your bedlinen, wall paint and furnishings when choosing accessories for the bedroom to ensure the entire room will be harmoniously decorated. This doesn’t mean everything needs to match perfectly, but look for unifying elements, such as a collection of lidded baskets that complement your furniture or a gorgeous vintage fabric cushion that features at least one colour used in the rest of your décor. Choose a theme, be it floral, cottage, neutrals, rustic or something else altogether, and carry that through all your decorating.
Pair functional and beautiful elements when choosing accessories for the bedroom. A good bedside lamp is a must, and if you like to read in bed you will want to ensure it lets off enough light to read by. A clock by the bed is useful, but it doesn’t have to be a boring digital model — look for a pretty clock that makes a statement. A small lidded box or basket is useful to stow away little items such as jewellery or watches and can be part of the décor as well as beautiful. These serve a purpose and add atmosphere.
Don’t forget about other furniture besides the bed. Depending on how much space you have and what you need to store, you may want to add bedside tables, a dressing table, a chest of drawers, a small bookshelf or a storage chest. Don’t just look at furniture packages that match your bed, select furniture that meets your needs. And remember not to go over the top; cluttering a bedroom space can inhibit restful slumber.
Get pretty and personal
Your bedroom is a personal space, so include things that have personal significance to you. A collection of family photos on the wall or dressing table is a nice touch, and a small grouping of scented candles looks pretty while providing ambience.
You use cut flowers in your decorating in public rooms in the house, so what’s to stop you from using them in the bedroom, too? Just because other people won’t see them doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take the time to have flowers in a private room — just for you. Keep a favourite vase or jug on your bedside table or dresser to remind you to fill it. You don’t need to wait for special occasions to do so, choose simple blooms from the garden or add a supermarket bouquet to your shopping trolley on a regular basis to lift your mood. If you prefer a more permanent solution, a small house plant by the bed is an excellent choice — it not only looks great, but indoor plants clean the air as well.
Don’t forget wall art — this can add character without taking up valuable space on furniture. A grouping of pictures, such as botanical prints or the aforementioned family photos can be a nice feature. A mirror adds the illusion of space and light to the bedroom and serves as a checkpoint before you walk out the door each day.
Your bedroom is so much more than just a place to sleep — the addition of gorgeous accessories can transform it into a restful zone where you can truly relax.
It’s no surprise that air quality has a direct relationship with sleep quality. In the 1980s, NASA researchers established that common house plants have the ability to reduce the levels of volatile organic compounds (vocs) such as formaldehyde, xylene and toluene, present in furniture, paints and carpets. Studies by NASA and at the University of Technology in Sydney have discovered that microorganisms living in the soil near the roots remove vocs from the air. Using house plants to reduce the levels of toxic chemicals in your homes is simple and effective and some of the best plants for the job include English Ivy, Peace Lily, philodendrons, dracaenas, gerbera daisies, chrysanthemums and weeping fig.