Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Small Bedroom Interior Decor Can Be Gorgeous!

Bedroom interior decor hasn’t changed much over the past decade or so, or even longer. And if you have a small bedroom, you might be sticking with old traditional advice. Stop it. Stop it, right now. 

We’ve all heard it. Scale down on furnishings. Don’t use heavy fabrics. Avoid dark colors. And the classic, shove everything against the wall to maximize floor space. I think that all of this evolved out of the best intentions. When you’re working with a small space, you don’t want to feel like you’re in a cave. 

But I propose that you take everything that you know about small bedroom interior decor, tie it up in a neat little bundle, fashion a pretty bow, and then throw it out the window. To misquote Billy Joel, we love you, little bedrooms, just the way you are. :-)

Instead of looking at a tiny space as a deficiency in your haven, why not embrace it?  That doesn’t mean accentuating the smallness of the space. It just means forgetting about outdated ideas that say little bedrooms can never be as nice as you’d like. Bah, and also humbug on that. 

Here are some of my favorite ideas for transforming a blah diminutive bedroom into a space that you really, honestly, truly love. We’ll start at the walls and work our way in. 

Bedroom Interior Color Matters

White is always fresh, and there’s nothing wrong with it. But the sanitary, blue-toned white can feel awfully hospitalish. It makes me feel edgy, and definitely not relaxed. There’s so much more that you can do with white to soften it. Check out this white palette, which I created from a classic white-on-white bedroom image. And there are about a million more shades than this. You can get the clean look of white without any of the edginess. 

But you don’t have to stick with white. Forget about the fact that the square footage is small. Think about which colors you’d love, and just run with it. It’s true that darker walls can make any room feel smaller. So if you’re devoted to avoiding that, pick a color and move to a lighter shade in the same family. Easy peasy.  

Do you love the warm colors of autumn?

Or maybe a soothing neutral palette?

You really can use any colors that you like. 

Click here to learn how you can create your own color palette from any photo.

There’s nothing wrong with a tiny bedroom saturated in bold color, either. It will make the room look a bit smaller, but it can also look incredibly special, like a little jewel box. And if you don’t want to hose down the room in purples and golds and reds, you can always stick with paler walls and go all out with soft furnishings such as your bedlinens, draperies, pillows and rugs. 

Or, go opposite with dark walls and light neutral soft furnishings. I’m in love with the mushroomy gray on these walls. This is such a soothing bedroom. I’d love to nap there! 

Check Out the Ceiling

When was the last time that you noticed your bedroom ceiling? If it was probably when you changed a light bulb, you’re like most folks. But when you use the ceiling as a design element, you give the room a lot more personality. More important, you draw the eye up. Up is good. 

Beadboard ceilings are classic, and I happen to love them. And glossy paint gives it that much more dimension. If the pale cottage look is a bit too sweet for your taste, you can stain the wood or leave it natural and seal it. It doesn’t have to be white to draw the eye up. 

But what’s really got my attention these days are decorative ceiling treatments. OMG, check out the pic at this link! Yes, it’s a large room. But imagine this detail on a smaller scale on your bedroom ceiling. 


When you use the ceiling as another bedroom interior decor element, you get more mileage out of your space. And you also give the eye something else to focus on besides mini proportions. 

Don’t Let Your Furniture Suffocate the Walls

If your furnishings touch the walls, you probably have the opposite effect from what you really want. It seems like a space-maximizing trick, but instead it makes the room look cramped.  

Space behind furnishings won’t make the room look smaller. The shadows between furnishings and the walls gives the room a sense of depth. Without shadows, everything looks flat and dull. 


Your headboard might need to fit close, but you can still leave an inch or so. As for everything else, let the furniture and the walls breathe. 

Try to Incorporate a Chair

If you’re battling for space with a small bedroom interior, the last thing on your list of must-haves is probably a chair. But a bedroom chair boosts its comfort level about a million percent. It also looks awesome.

It doesn’t have to be a huge chair. A small one in what my mother calls “lady-size” is ideal. Plush is good, and it’s also a great spot to read. But it doesn’t have to be a tufted chair. Even a small wooden chair with a cushion on the seat makes the room look well appointed. 

If a chair won’t work, what about a bench? You can situate one at the foot of the bed, under a window, or along any awkward wall. Seating is good.

Think Vertical for Bedroom Interior Storage

Take a look at your bedroom and notice how much wall space isn’t being used. It’s probably a lot, at least if you don’t count any of the artwork that you might have.  You can claim any of it for storage, and it’s easier than you might think. 

A bookcase like the one in this photo can fit between the wall studs. It doesn't have to project out as much as this one does. If it recesses into the wall, it takes up virtually no floor space. Situated on the left and right of the bed, you can bump out the lower portion of the book case to make built-in nightstands. 

A typical wall has about 4 - 6 inches of empty space depth between the studs, and the studs in most homes are about 12 - 16 inches apart. The location of the studs might not be ideal for centering your bed between. But if you choose a wider section, you’ll have room to center the bed and trim molding can make the whole area cohesive. 

The only place where I don’t recommend between-stud cupboards is on an exterior wall. You’d have to ditch the insulation, and that’s just a bad idea on an outer wall. But any interior walls are perfect. Just remember that there are wires inside most walls, so your contractor might have to re-route some of them. It’s not really a big deal for a professional.

Tiny, diminutive, itty-bitty, little bedrooms can be enormous on style and function. You can’t change the square footage. And tricks of the eye only go so far. So instead of ignoring a small bedroom and not even trying to make it great, or worse — using mini-furniture in the hopes of making it appear larger, just roll with it. 

A small bedroom can also be flat-out gorgeous! 


Saturday, August 1, 2015

Pick my Folk Victorian House Paint Color! The Winner is...

My house is gonna be red.

Red, red, red.

Scarlet, oxblood, currant.

Garnet, wine, or maybe even tomato.

I'm just not sure which red, at least not just yet. I am sure that the Mr. will have an opinion. Just as soon as I tell him which color I've chosen, that is.

It wasn't an easy decision to come to. There's white, which is universally tidy and clean. And that was what I thought I'd land on when this whole process began. White is also much cheaper than red, since contractor-grade is readily available in white. And then there's the slate blue, which I do like a lot.

But, no. There's a reason why red keeps turning my head. And so, there you have it.

I love all of these houses for different reasons. The one at the top is a personal favorite because it doesn't scream red. It more suggests it, with a bit of mellow brown mixed in.

I think I like this one so much because it looks so happy. White trim, and happy little white picket fence.

This house appeals to be because it's more subtle. I would probably go with a more red-red than this (It almost looks coral on my screen), but I really like the taupey-gray trim.

Now, this is a house!  It's definitely bold. But the Mr. would love it. He has three favorite colors: red, black and gray. As you can imagine, that severely limits my ability to paint or otherwise decorate inside or out without making him do the frowny face. I'm not sure that I could live with this much black trim. I do, however, think that when he sees these choices, this one will be his pick.

This one, I like because it's also more mellow. The putty-colored trim softens the red and makes it not quite so bold. At least that's my take.

But now, if I had to choose a favorite, this one might actually be it. This looks nothing like my house. But there's something about the play of red paint and natural cedar that makes my little heart flutter. My house was originally all cedar. And it's still under the old Masonite someplace. Seeing this combination makes me wonder whether I could pull off a similar combination here.

I still don't know when I'll be able to paint. I would love to start tomorrow! But alas, it has to wait. At least a little while longer. But one thing is for sure. It's definitely gonna be red.

What do you think? Do you have a favorite among these reds?