The City Magazine Since 1975

Restyle Your Bedroom

Restyle Your Bedroom
October 2009

Sweet Dreams

The bedroom is often the last spot to get its redecorating due. Its place out of the public eye is partly to blame, plus, there’s the fear factor—of change, of disruption, of budget-busting purchases. But why not spend a weekend getting your private quarters up to par? Read on for five easy steps to a hassle-free makeover. After all, when your bedroom is in order, you’re more likely to sleep better, unwind better, and, dare we say, dream better.

1. Examine Your Space

Grab a pen and paper and make some notes. Separate your likes from your dislikes, including wall color, fabrics, and furniture. Note colors and pieces that work, and elements that must go (i.e. dated wallpaper, a worn set of pillows). Create a game plan for any substantial work needed like removing paper or repainting. This will give you a starting point to determine how and where to focus your resources.

2. Find Your Fabrics

If the fabrics are a source of discontent, tackle them first, and focus especially on streamlining bedding and window treatments. Scour magazines and blogs for looks you love and shop for inspiring fabric swatches, throw pillows, or store-bought window panels to guide your new palette. Bedding: Can’t swing a whole new set of linens? Spring for a new coverlet in white or a pleasing neutral ($50-$150). Spread it across your bed, then fold a favorite quilt or blanket at the foot for a clean look. Follow suit with new, high-quality shams and a bed skirt. Window Treatments: Invest time or money, but not both. In other words, don’t spend $300 in raw fabric and countless hours measuring, cutting, and sewing if you can fork over $50 more for those ready-made panels you covet. In the end, decide if it’s cash or idle hours you can part with, then do the research to get the look you want.








Pretty Palettes:

Fall for one of these dreamy color pairings If fabric stumps you as a starting point in your search for the perfect palette, begin with paint colors instead. These came from Sherwin Williams, but your neighborhood paint store can match them in the brand of your choice.

3. Update Your Furniture

Rare is the piece of furniture that a coat or two of paint won’t set right. Out of love with your bedroom suite? Repaint your mahogany dresser and switch out the hardware for an updated look. If a splash of glam is what you seek, opt for a paint finish with a high sheen. To accent your revamped digs, consider adding a new piece to the mix, like a mod reading chair.









4. Light It Up

Lighting is a great way to warm things up. If your room is heavy on pattern, seek solid or clear glass choices; for simple, neutral rooms, find a chandelier or lamps rich with detail or color. You can find good, inexpensive table lamps at the big-box stores on the cheap (less than $40 apiece), but for best bedtime reading, install a pair of swing-arm wall lights.












5. Accessorize

Throw Pillows:

Craft or collect in a couple of different shapes and textures for maximum impact. Area Rug: Choose from durable wools (unlikely to mold or mildew—key in our climate); washable, inexpensive cottons; and versatile natural fiber rugs, among others. Framed Art: Your quickest, most inexpensive route to a collection? Scour area junk shops for a favorite genre (1940s botanicals, magazine covers from the ’50s, ’70s rock ’n’ roll images, etc.).



Fact or Fiction?


Making over my room will be costly. TRUTH: Think “restyle,” not “redecorate.” Editing clutter, simple color updates on walls or furniture, new curtains, and hardware replacements will go a long way toward a new look. MYTH: Throw pillows are the simplest, most inexpensive route to give my space a fresh face. TRUTH: That depends. If the pillows in question are upwards of $100 apiece, spring for a to-die-for duvet cover before blowing your budget on adornment-only pillows. MYTH: Altering curtains, bedding, and other aspects of the bedroom will mess with my sleep habits. TRUTH: A good bedroom makeover should improve your quality of sleep. Assess everything from mattress quality to natural light, which is essential to maintaining regular sleep patterns. A soothing atmosphere, void of clutter, is important too, so get rid of work- or stress-related items.

Shortcut to Style

If you need a quick and easy route to that “done” look, here are three simple ways to get there fast 1. Window treatments: Place window treatments high on your maximum-impact list. Without them, a room tends to look a little forlorn and forgotten. 2. Lighting: A pair of table lamps or reading lights anchor the bed as a focal point and add a sense of symmetry. 3. Area Rug: This establishes the room’s center and unifies your layout. Check out the sizeable selections of sea grass, sisal, jute, and cotton rugs at Celadon and GDC Home.