12 Gorgeous Bedrooms + Common Questions Answered

freaking-out-over-your-paint-colors

 

Dear Laurel,

I’ve noticed that you don’t have a lot of posts about bedrooms. Is there a reason for that? Could you do a post and give some ideas for what you think are the elements that make for the most gorgeous bedrooms?

There are so many choices out there in terms of beds, linens, window coverings.

 

But here are other questions I have in my quest to create the best bedroom I can.

 

  • Should I do wall-to-wall carpeting (over a hardwood floor). Or, is it better to do an area rug?
  • Are dust ruffles passé? Oops. I guess we call them bed-skirts now.
  • What about the nightstands? Must they always match? And if not, what are the rules regarding that?
  • How do you avoid the matchy-matchy look with nightstands, dressers, bed, etc.?
  • What are the best bedroom colors?
  • OH, and lighting. Ack! Anything to know there?
  • I guess I’m being greedy if I asked if you could go over linens and bed-making?

 

Please help and I’d love to also see some examples of your favorite gorgeous bedrooms.

 

Thanks so much,

Beddie Rume

 

*******

 

Hi Everyone,

Gee? Anything else? haha.

Of course, over-the-top Beddie is an amalgam of many readers who’ve asked these questions regarding how to create a beautiful bedroom.

 

In a lot of ways, I think that most things we do in a living room can be translated into a bedroom.

 

That is, everything but the bed.

So, while I don’t talk nearly as much about bedrooms, the posts where I discuss window treatments, tables, art, rugs/carpets and lighting mostly apply to bedrooms, as well.

However, there are a few differences. So, let’s jump in and examine what I feel goes into creating the most gorgeous bedrooms. Plus, some common mistakes that folks make that can bring a bedroom design down.

 

Let’s begin with area rugs vs. wall-to-wall carpeting.

 

I feel pretty strongly that if there’s a hardwood floor in a bedroom that an area rug is preferable.

However.

 

After being in this business for over 30 years, I do know that a lot of people prefer wall-to-wall carpeting in their bedrooms.

 

I’m not going to argue with you in that regard. And, that’s because I like to save my arguments for the really important things in life. Like, should I have decaf or regular coffee. :]

 

Point being. I’m totally fine with you having wall-to-wall carpeting in your bedroom. lol

 

And, I do like wall-to-wall seagrass carpeting in bedrooms. Actually, I don’t mind you putting it in any room. I guess it’s the stylish woven texture that makes seagrass so appealing. However, I do realize that a lot of people want wall-to-wall carpeting in their bedrooms because of the softness of it. Seagrass is not soft. But, it makes a terrific callous remover!

 

Okay, then. Let’s say that you don’t have a real hardwood floor in your bedroom.

 

It’s a plywood subfloor and you have to have carpeting on top. You could do a sea grass rug and then layer it with a softer Oriental rug. Or, a flat weave rug, ala Mark D Sikes.

 

mark-d-sikes-white-bedroom

Mark D Sikes

 

This is most likely a jute natural fiber rug. And, I don’t know if it’s wall-to-wall, but it gives you an idea of what I’m talking about. For more rugs layered over seagrass, click here.

 

Dust Ruffles – aka: Bed Skirts. Do Gorgeous Bedrooms have them?

 

Yes, absolutely! In fact, if you only have a metal frame, sometimes called a “Harvard frame,” you have to have a bed skirt. That is unless you want to see the ugly metal frame holding up the box spring.

Below are some of my favorite bedrooms which show a bed with a bed skirt.

 

William T Baker architect - Suzanne Kasler -interior design transom window master bedroom

William T Baker architect – Suzanne Kasler interior design

Elegant, sophisticated bedroom. But all of Suzanne’s designs are!

 

veere-grenneybedroom-photo-david-olive

Veere grenney-photo-David Olive

 

This has to be one of the most charming small jewel-boxes of a bedroom ever!

 

Rose Uniacke charming bedroom

Rose Uniacke

For more of Rose Uniacke’s gorgeous work, please check out this post about who will decorate Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s new home.

 

There are some beautiful ready-made bedskirts in the bed and bath sales page. The ones from Pottery Barn come in both 14″ and 18″ drops and are on sale right now.

 

Nightstands, must they always match?

 

Well, as you can see in Rose Uniacke’s beautiful bedroom, no. However, if they don’t match, I feel, like here, that they have to be quite different but complimentary to each other.

 

Laurel Home Paint and Palette Collection - Benjamin Moore Golden Gate

For instance. This board from the Laurel Home Paint and Palette Collection features a bedroom with mis-matched night tables. One, as you can see, is a desk. Usually, I prefer them to be within an inch of each other in height. That is, unless the lamps are also different. I’ve never actually done either of those when designing a bedroom. I prefer that they match each other.

I prefer symmetry.

 

How to you get furniture to coordinate to create a gorgeous bedroom, instead of something predictable and ugly?

 

You mean like this?

 

Well, coordinating mismatched tables is an art. And, it also depends on the size of the bedroom and if there’s a big closet nearby or not.  But, below, I’m putting in some bedrooms where I think they did a beautiful job of the mix of furnishings. And as it relates to the linens, colors and window treatments.

 

Amy Studebaker stunning bedroom with white painted shiplap - best white paint colorAmy Studebaker

I love the mix of furnishings in this charming country bedroom.

 

gorgeous bedrooms - Photograpy: Amy Bartlam and Ryann Ford-master-bedroom_greek key pattern on duvet - designer Meredith Ellis

Wonderful design by Meredith Ellis via Traditional Home

Photograpy: Amy Bartlam and Ryann Ford

 

This is one of my favorite bedrooms – ever! You know, what always makes it for me is the Greek Key duvet cover!

 

House Beautiful_Nov2016_pale master bedroom by mark d. sikes

The bedroom above and the two below are all by Mark D Sikes. Each one IMO, is sublime.

 

Mark_D_Sikes_Pacific_Palisades_pale bedroom -interior design pro

Mark D Sikes

 

Mark_D_Sikes_Montecito_1 pink and white bedroom

Mark D Sikes

And what are the best bedroom paint colors?

 

Well, here’s a link to a fairly recent post on that very subject.

 

Another topic that Beddie didn’t ask is about four-poster beds and how to treat them.

 

Best Bedrooms - Darryl Carter - interior design - architecture - Donald Lococo - Photo Max Kim Bee

Darryl Carter – interior design – architecture – Donald Lococo – Photo: Max Kim Bee via Country Living

Well, as in Darryl Carter’s gorgeous bedroom and below, in Brooke Shield’s beautiful bedroom, you don’t have to do anything.

 

brooke-shields-blue-and-white-new-traditional-bedroom

Architectural Digest

I actually did this bed back 20 years ago for some wonderful clients. And we did not put anything on it either. That’s the right thing to do because the carvings on the bed are so wonderful.

 

william-mclure-bedroom - black walls

However, there are other four-poster beds on this post including the wrought one above in the old bedroom of young William McLure. He takes handsome to an all-new level.

To do any kind of bed hangings there must be at the very least be rails connecting the four posts. Usually, this system and there are many variations is called a tester, if you don’t already know that.

 

Lighting a bedroom

 

The worst mistake and I’ve probably mentioned it before is the single (usually boob flush mount) light planted on the ceiling in the middle of the room.

The light is harsh and cold in and of itself.

If you move into a home and it’s already there, you can keep it. There are some gorgeous flushmount and semi-flushmount light fixtures in the market place.

 

And sometimes it’s good if you need to quickly flick on the lights before entering the room.

 

But, I recommend putting that light on a dimmer.

The rest of the lighting is really can come from table lamps, sconces/swing arm lamps and maybe even a floor lamp.

And actually, the lighting for a bedroom could be a post in and of itself because this post is an over view of elements to make for a beautiful, stylish bedroom.

 

There is an older post about bed linens here and some of my favorite sources.

 

For items on sale and also some other favorite ideas for bedrooms please check out the bed and bath hot sales page.

 

By the way. Occasionally, I get a little dig about promoting items for sale.

 

First of all. You don’t have to buy anything! I am NOT expecting you to. Not at all! However, some readers love the links to products I like and especially the items that are on sale. It’s impossible to please everyone. So, if you see something that doesn’t interest you, please don’t take it personally. Just keep going…

In either case, the hot sales widgets are also full of little bites of advice such as I saw this bed in person and it’s wonderful. Or, I ordered this lamp for myself and the base is creamier than it looks here. Stuff like that.

As for HOW to make a bed?

 

Ahhh… haha! You’re speaking to the wrong chica. While I know that some of you are expert-sheet-ironing-with-lilac-water-afficionados. Unfortunately, I was born without the sheet-ironing gene.  Sure, I can fake it if I have to. And, I can order the necessary components for my clients. But, living that way doesn’t come naturally to me. Just being honest.

 

However, the Matouk brand of bed linens has put together this wonderful diagram.

 

matouk-how-to-make-a-bed-diagram

1. euro sham
2. standard sham
3. standard case
4. boudoir sham
5. neckroll sham
6. flat sheet
7. coverlet
8. duvet cover
9. fitted sheet
10. bed skirt

 

one kings lane matouk linens

One Kings Lane has an extensive collection of exquisite bed linens by Matouk as shown above. You can also see in this post a display of them at the One Kings Lane store in SoHo, NYC.

 

If interested in see the collection, this link will take you directly there.

 

But only go there if that interests you. If it doesn’t interest you, then I forbid you to look. ;]

 

If you should happen to see something you like, All of the Matouk linens will take the promo code: OKL20CARD. And, you’ll get 20% off.

 

That is the promo code that I have nicknamed “Laurel’s Private Sale.” So named, because it’s not advertised. It came on the back of a catalog I received last summer. Apparently, it still works. It doesn’t work for everything. But it works for the entire One Kings Lane brand as well as others. AND, it works for everything in the vintage department.

20% off!

 

Some have mentioned that their promo code has maxed out.

 

If so, I have some suggestions. So, if you want help with that, please contact me through the contact link which you can access in the top menu bar.

 

So, while we’re on the topic of sales, I am duty-bound to tell you that early access to the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is underway.

You can find out here how to get early access above. Also, you’ll see some of my favorite items in home furnishings and women’s clothing and accessories.

In addition, there are some very nice linens, mattress covers, sleeping pillows, goose down comforters available. The best is that all are at Nordy’s deepest discounted prices of the year.

 

***

 

In addition to some great sources, I hope this post gave some good ideas for ways to create your own gorgeous bedrooms!  I’m sure I’ve left some things out, so if you have any questions or thoughts, please let us know in the comments.

xo,

 

 

5th edition rolodex-post-graphic - November 2018 - A unique shopping guide with hundreds of sources created by Laurel Bern

  • Pamela Bozanich - July 25, 2019 - 9:56 PM

    I have ordered sheets from Schweitzer Linen in NYC for many years and have always loved their products. Have you used them?ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 26, 2019 - 1:15 AM

      Hi Pamela,

      I haven’t. But, I understand that they sell a wonderful product.ReplyCancel

  • Meredith - July 21, 2019 - 3:01 PM

    I have heard this “excuse” before when recommending wall to wall seagrass…I think you are right, the places that tell you this just don’t want to bother with you or your business..
    frustrating, because this is an awesome look and very practical as well!ReplyCancel

  • Dan - July 17, 2019 - 10:34 PM

    Hi Laurel,
    I love the blog. And seagrass too. Because I have cement subflooring and the cost of hardwood is high, I considered wall to wall seagrass. While seagrass rugs are easy to find and very affordable, I found wall to wall is the opposite. The retailer was very discouraging and said it has to be glued down, the seams would be very obvious, and it’s as expensive as wool. Is this accurate or should I find another retailer? I don’t have many options in my small town. Maybe I should get a cheap flat wall to wall broadloom and put a seagrass rug over it.

    Thank you!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 18, 2019 - 2:30 AM

      Hi Dan,

      Eyes rolling. Okay. Seagrass is available as broadloom and it comes in a roll that’s 13 feet wide. And, it is NOT as expensive as wool. That’s total BS. It’s no more than 1/4 the price of wool and some wools, it’s like 1/20th! But, yes it does need to be glued down. It sounds to me like they don’t want to do the job.ReplyCancel

  • Diane Amick - July 16, 2019 - 11:05 AM

    My not too large walk-in closet has a set of shelves directly opposite the door. 3 lower for me, 3 upper for my husband. My shelves have 3 size baskets on them for scarves, workout wear, undies, bras, socks, etc. when I wear something lightly and plan to wear it again-usually the next day- I just fold loosely and set on one of the larger baskets on the shelves. Close the closet door and it’s all out of sight.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 16, 2019 - 11:13 PM

      Sounds good! Thanks for sharing your airing out method Diane!ReplyCancel

  • Evia - July 15, 2019 - 5:53 PM

    Hi Laurel, I’m your new reader from Florence. I’m wondering about very uncommon things to my italian eye such as rugs layered over seagrass. Why not hardwood? Or a rug on hardwood floor or parquet floor? Why rug on rug? I mean is there any technical reason for that or it’s just an American aesthetic choice?ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 15, 2019 - 11:24 PM

      Hi Evia,

      Oh, how cool! I so want to go back to Italy one day! So, everything you said is valid. One can have a plain seagrass rug, or a different type of rug, alone on a hardwood or a tile floor. OR, the layered look.

      One reason for doing the layered look is if your area rug is too small for the room. Let’s say you move houses or your inherit a rug and it’s 6′ x 9′ and your living room is 15 x 25. The 6 x 9 rug is going to look too dinky. So, to solve the problem, a larger seagrass rug can go under the 6×9. It’s also a very stylish look, I think. Here’s a post I did about it a while back.ReplyCancel

  • Catherine - July 15, 2019 - 11:54 AM

    I absolutely need a bed skirt because it goes with my “intentionally untucked” bedlinens. That’s essential to my sleeping and bed-making lifestyle. I need a Leg Of Freedom at night, and tucking is incompatible with my relaxed morning routine of sleeping until the last possible second before scrambling frantically to get out the door. Also the dog hides under there and it’s so cute when his head pokes out from under the bed skirt. I made the bed skirt myself and it’s just three panels duct taped to the box spring under the mattress. Voi. La.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 15, 2019 - 11:19 PM

      Hey, that works for me! I’m a scrambler too. It used to drive my wasband nuts! Can’t say I blame him. lolReplyCancel

  • Morgana - July 15, 2019 - 10:45 AM

    Julie Spencer,
    To solve the “not dirty enough”, I put 4 large coat hooks on each end of the master closet. I’ve done this in several houses and it works for the slider closets as well as the walk in. It’s self disciplining because you can put 4 pairs of jeans, 2 shirts and a sweatshirt or two and then it’s laundry time.
    Laurel, I love the new enclosed fan lights for the Master bedroom.
    They add air movement for the hot sleepers and don’t have that ominous “blades hanging over bed” feeling.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 15, 2019 - 11:16 PM

      Thanks so much Morgana! Another great idea. Love the hooks.ReplyCancel

  • laura - July 15, 2019 - 8:22 AM

    Hi Julie and Laurel!

    I have a five hook rack on the wall just behind the bedroom door to hang worn-once items on so that they can air out. It is not visible from the entrance as it is behind the door. No floor space is taken up. a hook on the back of the door would be similar.ReplyCancel

  • Julie Spencer - July 14, 2019 - 10:13 PM

    Hi Laurel,

    I love reading your blogs, they are great fun and give me a bit of a peek into other people’s nests. I love looking at the rooms and enjoy trying to figure out the many layers of decorating. Here is my problem? Editing, I have too much stuff. I find it is difficult to stop adding things. I reach a point where it looks cluttered then wonder how to edit and gently worn clothes is a huge problem! I bought both myself and my husband giant oversized baskets to put the clothes that we only wore for a short time, but don’t want to mix with the clothes that are put away as we plan on wearing them again shortly. I thought this was a great idea, but it’s not working….I still have the overflow and now I have giant baskets cluttering things up. How is this managed? Is everyone else doing tons of laundry or putting things back in drawers after one wearing? Thought I’d ask you, as you typically have a way of thinking that puts my head back on right! I need clarity!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 15, 2019 - 1:00 AM

      Hi Julie,

      You know, I have had that same question for decades. I’ll put jeans back in the drawer, but tops, usually not. Oftentimes, I just drape them over the laundry basket that sits inside my closet. But, if anyone else reading this has an answer, that would be good. I suppose a separate drawer(s) and/or hanging space for clothes that can be worn again but aren’t as clean as the clothes not worn, that would be appreciated.ReplyCancel

  • Deb - July 14, 2019 - 7:23 PM

    That bedroom done by Meredith Ellis is my absolute favorite bedroom of all time. I have spent a lot of time looking for the duvet cover, that as you said, makes the room. Do you know who makes it and where it is sold? I think it might be custom bedding done with sewing braid on white fabric and then adding a second layer to turn it into a duvet. What do your expert eyes tell you?ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 15, 2019 - 12:56 AM

      Hi Deb,

      I don’t recognize the duvet cover or know how it was done. I wish I did!ReplyCancel

  • Danielle - July 14, 2019 - 7:23 PM

    Laurel, thanks for another terrific post.

    I, too, love the symmetry of matching nightstands, but our room is asymmetrical. I have a beautiful Lexington natural cherry Shaker four-poster bed, with matching bedside chest on one side. The other side is much narrower- by several feet! What would you put in that smaller space? You mentioned that the tables should be complimentary, could you expound on that a bit? I had my eye on a natural cherry antique Sheraton table, it’s slightly more ornate but the overall lines are very Shaker-like, with those straight, spindly legs. But perhaps that’s not massive enough compared to the chest?

    And what about the art & lighting? The lamps will be a matched pair, but the art might need to be different due to the space. Any advice you could offer to help the space look more balanced would be appreciated!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 15, 2019 - 12:55 AM

      Hi Danielle,

      Without seeing the room, it’s impossible to say. And also, just because the room is asymmetrical doesn’t mean that there aren’t other options you haven’t considered. I’m sorry. A lot of people ask for advice based on their description, but it’s only giving me pieces of a puzzle to try and figure out what you’re talking about and what the situation is.ReplyCancel

  • nancy keyes - July 14, 2019 - 5:43 PM

    Beautiful bedrooms, Laurel! I have had a few of them on my Pinterest. William McLure’s bedroom is the room that put him on my radar. And love Mark Sikes black room. I have never had matching night tables, but always use matching lamps. It the tables are a little different in height I will put one on a book or two. XOXOReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 14, 2019 - 6:40 PM

      Hi Nancy,

      That’s a great tip about putting a book or two under the lamp on the lower table.ReplyCancel

  • Lisa D. - July 14, 2019 - 1:26 PM

    I love that small sleeping chamber by Veere Grenney. (Is that the designer’s name?) What a wonderful transformation of a small space. It has such a calm, cozy feeling, without resorting to being cutesy.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 14, 2019 - 6:38 PM

      Hi Lisa,

      Yes, that’s the designer’s name. I agree. Wonderfully executed in every way.ReplyCancel

  • Rosemary - July 14, 2019 - 1:03 PM

    These bedrooms are all lovely. May I add my 2 cents? I think bedrooms should be soft and romantic-this doesn’t mean frilly but rather restful and conducive to rest and canoodling. I would start with a soft color on the walls: white, ivory, blue, grey, sage green, pale pink or, for the more daring, a very dark den-like color-lichen, charcoal grey or navy.

    The bed is the star, it’s the focal point of the room and just the sight of it should make you want to curl up and drift off. If the ceiling height permits, a four poster or canopied bed is a wonderful choice. Otherwise, I like an upholstered headboard, an antique brass bed, or a lovely French hand carved bed. I’ve sourced lovely antique linens on EBay with hand monogramming and hand made lace, both something of a lost art. Even just a pair of antique shams with needle lace combined with modern linens- the best quality that your circumstances will allow would add a vintage touch. To me, there’s nothing quite so inviting as a bed dressed in all white.

    A comfortable chair or chaise with a good reading lamp and a small side table for a cup of tea is nice if space permits

    I find the tablescapes in most of these photos look a bit contrived and impractical as a consequence. Many of us like to read in bed before drifting off and must have their cell phones charging nearby in case of an emergency late night call. I like a bottle of water on my nightstand as well. If the bedroom has a TV, it’s nice to have nightstand with a drawer for the remote. And why is there never a box of tissues on the nightstand in any of these photos?ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 14, 2019 - 6:37 PM

      Hi Rosemary,

      Some very good ideas there! Yeah, a box of tissues is to much like real life. lolReplyCancel

  • Cynthia Lambert - July 14, 2019 - 12:29 PM

    Industrial and “welcoming warm” don’t go together. It’s an oxymoron. The most warm and welcoming looks are traditional.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - July 14, 2019 - 11:04 AM

    Hi Laurel – lovely post. FYI the link for more rugs layered over seagrass is not linked it seems? Would love to see it.ReplyCancel

  • Madonna - July 14, 2019 - 10:59 AM

    Hey Laurel, what’s the name of the thingy in the Daryl Carter-designed room that allows the curtain and blind to tuck up behind the crown molding? I don’t know the name, but me likey!

    Also, I’ve never envied any of the Hollywood people their talent, fame or money, but I found myself roiling with jealousy when I found out Reese Witherspoon had hired Mark D. Sikes as her designer. Any chance you could get photos? I’m trying to imagine Mr. Sikes combining his impeccable taste with Southern sensibilities, and my mouth is watering.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 14, 2019 - 6:31 PM

      Hi Madonna,

      I’m not sure of the proper name either. Maybe a cornice soffit or pelmet?ReplyCancel

  • Lisa Cole - July 14, 2019 - 10:41 AM

    I love your blog and look forward to your weekly posts, especially as I have been furnishing my dream weekend house for the past two years. My bedroom beef is this: why do bedding manufacturers combine full and queen size bedding (full/queen)? I have a vintage full size bed, and most bedding sold in this manner drags on the floor. Any suggestions of brands that make true full size bedding?ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 14, 2019 - 10:58 AM

      Hi Lisa,

      I have a full-sized bed and haven’t come across that problem. And, my bed doesn’t sit up very high either. Full/Queen should be for things like duvets/comforters, blankets and quilts. Everything else should be sized-specifically for either full or queen. There is only about 5″ between the width of a full and a queen-sized mattress, so that’s why manufacturers don’t bother to create a separate size for the aforementioned items. Or, at least I haven’t noticed that they have. Maybe some do.ReplyCancel

  • Mary E - July 14, 2019 - 8:51 AM

    Hi Laurel,
    Thanks for all the tips & tricks.
    I have had the same metal bed frame (Harvard bed) for the last 40+ years. When I wanted to give myself a new bedroom several years ago I noticed a lot of the new beds on the market don’t require box springs & sit much lower. I ended up keeping my existing bed frame & just making an upholstered headboard & matching bedskirt.
    I needed that bedskirt to hide all my rotational pillows under my bed! 😂ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 14, 2019 - 10:41 AM

      Hi Mary,

      Well, the mattresses have gotten thicker, right? That might be one reason why. My bed is about 25″ high and I like that height.ReplyCancel

  • Sue - July 14, 2019 - 8:16 AM

    I’m interested in industrial style bedrooms creating a welcoming warm bedroom look any suggestionsReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 14, 2019 - 10:38 AM

      Hi Sue,

      I’m not sure what an industrial style bedroom is. But, my suggestion is to go on pinterest and put that query into the search box. And then create a board with looks that you like.ReplyCancel

  • susie - July 14, 2019 - 7:59 AM

    I love a four-poster bed. But I don’t have the room for anything elaborate or high since it would then hit the ceiling fan. Call me the devil’s advocate, but these beds are gorgeous but how do you physically make the bed in some of these cases. In my condo I have just a matress on a frame and then a decorative wall thing that gives the appearance of a headboard. But the bed is really easy to make up.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - July 14, 2019 - 10:36 AM

      Hi Susie,

      You mean the tiny bedroom with the built-in bed like it’s in a rail car? Beats me. Maybe he has a staff? I’m wondering how the photographer got the shot!ReplyCancel