Our bedrooms are our inner sanctuary and very private spaces. It’s not often that you get to see inside someone else’s bedroom and quite rightly so. I love to think about a primary bedroom as an intensely private space that you share with your partner and perhaps children.
You should feel quite liberated when designing your bedroom, as the only person you need to keep happy here is you. But as always, it’s good to get some tips from the pro’s, so here’s what some great interior designers want you to know about designing your bedroom.
Julia Von Werz
Photos by Tom Manion
It is very important to me to create a calm and relaxing atmosphere, a sanctum where you can relax and leave all the stress of the world behind you and dip into your own little kingdom. To create this atmosphere you really need to get to know the person you are designing for. For example: with this specific client, it was clear we needed clear lines and a colours; no chintz or frills. Green is their favourite colour, so we mixed different shades and then added contrast with elements like orange lamps on the bedside tables. To round off the feeling of sanctuary, we reactivated an old wood fire place and brought the original verdant marble surround to shine again. The clients love the sky and water, so we found beautiful and very abstract cloud pictures: it’s the first thing the clients see when they wake up.
A bedroom should be a sanctuary, use symmetry where possible to settle the eye and create a feeling of calm. We always recommend going as large as possible with your bedside tables as it makes the space feel generous and of course provides valuable storage. Even if you favour more dramatic colours elsewhere in your home we tend to design schemes in bedrooms that are a toned down version of other pallet as it highlights this room as a haven of relaxation, do use a mixture of textures, we often use velvet in a bedroom as it adds a feeling of luxury.
- Bed, make sure this is as big as you can possibly fit into the space but make sure you allow room to walk around it at night in the dark.
- Make sure the linen you buy is the best you can afford – don’t worry too much about thread count go for feel
- Make sure you have a chair somewhere in the room to chuck your clothes onto.
- Make sure your bedside table is large enough for a lamp, if you have a feature lamp then use a directional bendy light for reading.
- Cupboards make sure they work for you in their layout not in the design of the person’s before.
- Carpet make sure you have something soft and warm when you get out of bed at night.
We have selected this bedroom suite as a great example of how a luxury look and feel can be achieved through combining a number of bespoke elements with off the shelf pieces in a medium sized space, where the client is able to sleep, dress and work through carefully zoning the space through a number of key items. Lighting is the first key design element – combining recessed ceiling lighting with contemporary spotlights and decorative lower level table lamps creates a multi-layered and luxurious base from which the wider scheme can come to life. Combining elegant floor length silk curtains with plain sheer blinds creates a double layered effect offering both privacy and luxury. There is no overkill on detail here – less can sometimes be more with fabrics, allowing the furniture to do the talking. Whilst the four poster bed in this room is the main focal point in the sleep zone, it succeeds in not dominating due to its pale colour tone and minimalist design – which is helpful in a smaller bedroom suite such as this in allowing a sense of flow and space, whilst leaving space for a desk area for work and a relaxing chaise long by the window. In terms of colour, the brief for this room was to create luxurious but calming sleep space, and so we opted for ‘less is more’ in terms of colour and design detail, combining whites and beiges with pops of green and gold really help achieve this understated but luxury balance.
Follow these tips for a thought about and elegant bedroom space!
Every bedroom has it’s own character and I take my initial inspiration by the architecture. Secondly I always insist on a very good cabinet maker. Storage is key and a great deal of thought needs to go into what is required. Equally important is your light source. Reading lights are paramount. I like a spotlight on an arm that I can direct (John Cullen Cama LED) combined with bedside table lights. Let’s not forget The Bed! If you are buying a new bed I suggest you go to several bed suppliers to find the one you love, don’t go on suggestions.
To design a great bedroom is one of the biggest challenges in our profession. While other rooms in a house are more public, we tend to give them more attention. Bedrooms are often left last but they truly deserve special treatment.
We spend one third of our life in bed so it is important that the bedroom design is most carefully considered. Our senses are most alert in the bedroom, where we have the least disruption from the outside world so what we see and feel there is more enhanced than elsewhere in the house.
For a designer when it comes to bedrooms, the better we know and understand the client, the more satisfying the result would be.