Using this quieter time to get jobs done at home? There’s one room which might be bottom of our list of priorities, writes Carol O’Callaghan
Ah, bed. Our respite from exhaustion and stress, where we’ll spend about a third of our lives and not even remember most of it.
If the last three months had you reassessing your surroundings with a fresh eye, where decluttering is now done, and kitchen and living areas are painted and polished, chances are the bedroom has been overlooked.
Easily done, mind you, as we tend to see it through early morning and late-night haze of bleary-eyes.
But even with all the necessary bedroom furniture in place, if there’s something lacking and you can’t quite put your finger on it, it’s likely to be the final styling element which can be achieved with just three interior design tips – bed linen, headboard and pictures.
BETWEEN THE SHEETS
According to Sari Winckworth, owner of organic bed linen company, White & Green, “The most important thing when choosing bed linen is quality and that can be difficult to get, so I only ever buy what I know is the best cotton and if it is organic, even better.
“The wonderful thing about using white sheets is that you can change your colour scheme easily with your throw and cushions. In winter I like a thick knitted throw which is always ready to wrap around your shoulders when you sit up in bed. And then in the summer, a nice organic cotton herringbone throw adds a lovely dash of colour and texture.
“I like four pillows on a double bed which adds a luxurious feel and then a layer of texture on top like a waffle blanket. That gives you just a little more warmth and weight on the bed. Lastly, I like a throw to add some colour and maybe a textured or patterned cushion on top for the finishing touch.
By any chance is your bed bereft of a headboard? It’s the focal point of any bedroom but can be forgotten, especially if you’ve invested in a fabulously comfortable bed with the intention of buying the headboard later on but never quite get round to it. Interior designer and colour consultant Sinead Cassidy loves creating a headboard to finish off a bedroom.
“Luxury patterned fabrics can exude opulence and can be accentuated with deep buttoning or intrinsic panels. Alternatively, you can keep the fabric neutral and natural but create a sophisticated over-scaled headboard, maybe bringing it to the ceiling. Add embellishments such as studding and piping.
The good news is there are no limits to the designs and shapes you can create. Go for it as there are too many boring homogenised headboards badly made out there. Your room and bed deserve better.
“If you have a desire for a five-star bedroom,” she adds, “a bespoke fabulous headboard can fulfil this within your home. It is such an inviting backdrop. It adds a focal point to the room where all other design choices can follow.”
It’s unlikely you still have Spice Girls or Metallica posters hanging on the bedroom wall, but what exactly do you have and does it need an update? More than anything, this is where you can really show some personality. “Art should always be displayed somewhere you will see it most and where better than where you start and end your day,” says art consultant, Sheelah Moloney.
“Often the go-to choice is over the bed but there are some better alternatives to ensure you get the most enjoyment from your artwork. Opposite your bed so that you can view it from the comfort of a cloud of pillows or in your waking eyeline but which works only if you are a side sleeper. If you are lucky enough to be, you can make the painting one of the first things your eyes land on when you wake.
“Above a makeup table or the corner of the room where you prepare for the day ahead is another. This will invoke a great thought process and set you up for the day. On the entry or exit path of the room will ensure that even if you only glimpse it peripherally your brain will process the feeling the artwork elicits. If you don’t have wall space, no problem. Frame artwork in a chunky frame and pop it on your bedside table or atop a chest of drawers.”