Your Bedroom As A Sacred Space
The bedroom is the most important room in the house, according to feng shui philosophy and I agree wholeheartedly. It's the room we spend the most time in; it's where our bodies heal and recharge and where we are at our most vulnerable. The bedroom is the space where we reconnect with ourself - it's very personal, even sacred, in a sense. Famed designer, Dorothy Draper once said, "Of all the rooms in the house your bedroom is yours." It is a reflection of you, so it deserves our full attention in making it perfectly beautiful and relaxing.
It All Begins With The Bed
You can skimp on the furniture and accessories, but not on your mattress - it's where we spend a third of our life! So start with buying the best mattress you can afford; one that provides support for your spine and comfort. And don't forget the mattress topper for protection and luxury. If you have a great mattress and little else, you've made your sleep health a top priority and are headed in the right direction, so congratulations!
After your mattress, selecting the right sheets, and comforter, duvet, or quilt would be next in order. I cannot tell you how many comforter sets, quilts, and coverlets I've bought in my lifetime in search of one that feels right at night, so I would advise not to rush the process. Are you a hot sleeper or do you get cold at night? Are you one, like me, that cannot stand something heavy your feet? A duvet is an excellent solution to both questions - you can learn how to choose the right one here. If you choose a duvet, you won't need a top sheet, as you can wash the duvet cover as often as needed. My husband likes a top sheet, but I don't. I toss and turn a lot and I don't need something extra to become entangled with at night, whereas he can literally sleep on a ledge and never fall.
Regarding sheets and thread count, I used to believe the higher the thread count, the better, but I learned here about thread count and what those digits really mean. Also, how tc's are measured and games manufacturers play. It's a worthy read.
Styling Your Bed
I am obsessed right now with photos of beds styled with that "come-hither" look, like, you're going to want to jump right in it the minute you see it. I'm trying to create this look for my own bed for sleep inspiration. See above. You'll need one fluffy component and one flat component for this look - a duvet or comforter and a blanket draped over the top, plus four sleeping pillows and two decorative pillows in slightly different sizes. Those four sleeping pillows are ones that are practical, btw - the two in the back are for propping yourself up as you read in bed - they are needed and make good sense. I only have one decorative pillow and that's enough. I don't like unnecessary things on my bed that I need to take off at night. Again, I just want to get in my bed right away. A single lumbar pillow like this is a great alternative to a bunch of decorative pillows and they come in so many lengths, colors, and fabrics to choose from.
Lastly, to make your bed look inviting, fold the duvet or comforter over so that it clears the sleeping pillows, but not the decorative pillows. The decorative pillows should sit right on top of the duvet or comforter, giving it a more layered look. The blanket at the foot of the bed should be long enough so that it spills over both sides. It should be different in texture and color of your duvet, comforter, or quilt so it gives the bed that layered comfy look.
Tip: If you have a king bed, king size pillows are needed. Standard pillows will look lost.
Choosing Your Furniture & Accessories
Interior designers will tell you that you need two nightstands, preferably not matching, on both sides of the bed. Sometimes that's not possible, though. My master bedroom has a window that is off-center and built-in drawers and a desk and there is simply no room for nightstands on either side. I needed an extra chest of drawers and the only, and I mean only, place for it is on the side of the bed. So, I have one nightstand and the chest of drawers flanking each side and it works in terms of functionality, so I'm good with it. Sometimes you have a awkward space to work with and you have to break those design rules. Feng shui philosophy says a bed should not be place in front of a window, that it should be placed in a power position facing the door. Mine faces the door, but it is also partially in front of a window. Again, I'm good with that because it is the only way it works.
Accessories, .....ah. I really don't like that word because it conjures up images of useless things you buy to make your room look pretty. Your bedroom is a personal space, so I'm a firm believer that everything in your bedroom should have meaning and say something about who you are. It's ok if we don't agree, I am a purist in that sense and really trying to weed out the unnecessary buying of "things."
Going back to feng shui philosophy, you should not have electronics, plants, books, or abstract art or art with people in them and certain colors are not advisable - I did remove the tv and that was the best decision I ever made, but I haven't been able to incorporate all feng shui principles. I believe in all of them and they make perfect sense, but some won't work. Maybe in another home in another time, though. Sigh.You can read more about creating the your bedroom according to Feng Shui principles here.
Lighting and Window Treatments
Designers like to say that lighting is the jewelry of the room - it's the finishing touch that gives the room sparkle. Interesting light fixtures are an opportunity to add character and quality to your room. Unique light fixtures will set a room apart and will have an essential effect on the aesthetics of the space. It can also affect our moods and senses of well being. Two to three sources of light are needed in order to make an ordinary space seem almost magical. To learn more on design rules of lighting, go here.
There are several questions to consider when selecting window treatments in order to get it right. Do they need to block light, create privacy, or just look pretty? What about layering more than one option? There is so much to consider in order to get it right that I would strongly advise to educate yourself as much as possible. Curtains (or "drapes," which are often lined, pleated, and more formal—and also, not to mention, more expensive), hung right can really elevate a room and conversely, if hung wrong can detract from a room. Fortunately, the best post ever regarding hanging curtains can be read here. Seriously, you will learn everything you need to know and feel SUPER HUMAN after reading it.
Final Thoughts & Thanks
Creating the bedroom you want should always be a joyful process. Keep in mind that beautiful spaces are not created in a day or a week - they require a lot thought and study. So, take time and enjoy designing your bedroom so that it will reflect your - or you and your partner's - personality and style.
Last note: My mother taught me how to make a bed and insisted that my sisters and I do it every day. I cannot express how grateful I am to her for teaching me that. Making your bed every day can actually change your life, according to Retired U.S. Navy Admiral Seal William H. McCraven. He believes that picking up this daily practice can have a bigger impact than you might think. In a commencement at the University of Texas, McCraven, who authored the book, "Make Your Bed: Little Things Can Change Your Life .... And Maybe The World." told students that the importance of making your bed every day was one of the most powerful lessons he learned during his time as a Navy SEAL. You can view the video of his commencement speech here. It's short, and I promise, it will not disappoint.
I hope you enjoyed this post and I would LOVE to hear your feedback and thoughts about your own bedroom.