My Bedroom Planning Exercise

Please bear with me while I work through my bedroom :)  Writing about the this stuff helps me arrive at decisions & though I probably could have written this whole post and not hit "publish," at the end, I figured some people might want a little glimpse into my thought process.  (As all over the place as it is ;) ;)

We moved into our house in September and immediately started construction on it so we weren't able to actually move into our bedroom until around the holidays last year.  Because we were living through the construction and there was just so much mayhem around us, I kept the bedroom really empty.  Like, weirdly empty.  No bedside lamps (We used vintage-style globe lights in the tree in our courtyard garden to light the room at night and little book lights) no art, no accessories... just a bed and a dresser and two little tables flanking the bed.  Something about the bedroom in its "blank slate" state excited me and made me feel like there was so much potential.  It made the house and the whole experience feel new and exciting.

{Our bedroom before we moved in...}

I also like to go to bed at night and feel like there's not a lot of "stuff" around me.  The typical decorator thing to say is that "I work with color all day long and need a break" so I keep my bedroom white... but I'm not sure I if like a white bedroom because I'm a decorator or because, like most people, I'm busy and feel like I'm surrounded by so much STUFF all of the time that I like to keep my bedroom simple and spare so that it's a relaxing place to retreat to at night...  So I can look around and really not see anything at all except my garden.  And exhale.

We reworked our bedroom and replaced the wall that overlooked a small courtyard between our house and garage with a large sliding door:

{During construction...  a large metal wall blocking the driveway has been added to completely enclose our little garden and we have floors and walls now too}

We've been living without much in the bedroom for a while now but the book lights are finally starting to get a little old and I'm ready to have it feel a bit more "finished."   I have my furniture already but still need to really pull the room together.

But I'm having some issues!!   I am so on the fence about how much I want going on in there!!  I have a serious love for textiles and patterns and a little bit of Boho on one hand,  but on the other, I love a quiet mix of solid textures.  I've decided that I'm doing Fern Star in Sepia on the bed mixed with some Squid flower pillows ...

... And it's coming down to curtains and walls.  Up until a couple of days ago I would have said "no way" to anything going on my walls because I love the calm of my bedroom so much and really do want the focus to be on our garden, but I'm having trouble getting some of the pretty pictures I see all of the time with bedrooms completely wrapped in wallpaper out of my head.  They're so charming!!  Especially with angled ceilings:

{Gil Schafer's Guest Bedroom}

My bed is on a high wall (approx 16 feet high) and it's the perfect wall to really load up with art.  I have so many pieces I've collected over the years and the wall would hold so much, but it would completely de-Zen my room :/

{How gorgeous is this?!!!!  One of my favorite rooms ever...  by Nanette Brown}

This week, I'm pulling up the wool rug in the bedroom for the Summer because we're in and out to the garden so much that we're tracking water and little leaves in all of the time... cleaning the rug is becoming a pain. Again, this excites me because it's making my room emptier and less finished.  (What is up with this??!!!)

Anyway, it is TIME for me to buckle down and make some decisions.  (Gotta love my hubby who doesn't have an opinion on any of this btw!!)  So... final decisions for me to make are:

1.  I need to finalize my curtains, which I've always just envisioned would be simple ivory. Now, I'm reconsidering.  (I have a feeling everything will go ivory/ white as planned and that I need this little bit of last-minute second guessing before I go through with it.)  

2.  Walls... anything???  It's more in keeping with the rest of the house to leave them as painted ivory but those pictures are tempting me!!! :/  So is the idea of horizontal wood paneling painted ivory.  I just did this in  a client's home and loooooved it.

{loooooove!!! House Beautiful}

3.  Artwork... I'm leaning towards hanging some of my old black & white prints & lithographs on either side of the bed above our nightstands and leaving the rest of the wall empty.  I have a tapestry that I'd like to try to overdye and hang above our dresser on another wall if possible.  BUT the jam-packed wall of art appeals to me too!

{This has so much more going on that I feel like I want but I honestly feel like I could move right in it's so perfect!!!  I'm torn!!!  Image via House Beautiful}

In all design decisions, I find it helpful to think of the overall mood and feeling I want the space to have.  If I had to nail down what I'm after in my room I'd say:  Relaxed, calming, light, airy, natural, a little rustic, charming, modern in feeling yet made up of more traditional pieces, collected, a tad Boho, and a little cool/edgy (vs. pretty/ sweet if that makes sense.)

With that in mind... I'm leaning towards doing curtains in either an ivory or other light neutral that has some sort of a "raw" feeling texture... like a linen with a very loose weave or rough fibers.  Or maybe a natural-colored barely there sort of tribal pattern.... We'll see.

For the walls... I think I need to stick with painted for now.  I can always add more down the road.  But I am so tempted by the paneling.  My biggest reason for not doing it because I'm not sure how much more construction I can handle in my life right now.  (They're working on the upstairs family room loft right now and as much as I love the guys, I'm just feeling like I need to be done.)

And for the art...  I'm going to play with what I've got and see what I can come up with on either side of the bed.  If it feels like it's not enough, I'll add more.

I'm off for the day but I'll keep you posted!!!  Thanks for coming along with me & if you didn't (Mom!! ;) ;)  I understand.

If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.


emily said...

love following your progress! my 2 cents (for what is worth) is to keep it simple.

i love these textured curtains from house of mann.

they say boho & simple but edgy to me.

especially since i know you enjoy the view!

can't wait to see what you do!

Elizabeth@ Pine Cones and Acorns said...

I am looking forward to seeing your room. I do love the wall of art, it is fabulous.

Not too fond of the wallpaperd room, no zen there.

Have a fabulous week!

Unknown said...

I think you will stick with mostly ivory. But it's fun to think of all the possibilities :). I love fern star! I used it for curtains in my living and dining and it looks sooooo lovely. I need to send you a pic.

KNM said...

I would definitely do art above the bed and bedside tables and would do a full wall. You're only going to see it when you are wandering around the room because once you climb into bed and relax, it will be out of sight but will make you really happy until then.

Holly Irwin Fine Art said...

Can't wait to see your finished bedroom! I love your style!!

Nuala Raftery said...

Thank you for sharing your ideas with us. I have the opposite approach to my bedrooms. They are nests for me and I love to be surrounded by art, photographs and books. My tiny cottage bedroom is white with a photograph of the portrait of my husband my niece gave me after he died (the original is in my city sitting room) and lots of antique bird prints. In my city bedroom I'm going to redecorate with a Sanderson Classic wallpaper, Swallows, in lime green.I have a collection of antique fashion prints on the walls. I love beautiful bedding and love to change the mood of a room by changing the colours and patterns of my duvets and sheets.I love your blog and can't wait to see it every day. Thank you for giving us so much pleasure.

wilma said...

Simple simple simple! Love the wood paneling though- and the worker are already there.....

Jess Thompson said...

Not sure on the wallpaper as it takes away that calming and peaceful vibe, although definitely a creative idea. Love the feel of that last photo with the fireplace! So cozy. Also, love the fact that you have garden access through your sliding glass door--must be stunning and romantic at night. ;)

Whatever you decide on will be beautiful-- you have amazing talent.

Sheri said...

This was a fun read. I am the same way when I make decisions on my house. I love so many things it is hard to come up with the final decision, but then that is the beauty of redecorating later :)
I love the last picture SO much!! To me doing something along that line meets all of your requirements.

kayce hughes said...

I love all of your ideas and can't wait to see what you come up with!

Rachael said...

I think your plan of building as you go sounds best. I recently introduced some pattern into my bedroom for the first time: some simple floral printed curtains that actually remind me a lot of a fabric you would have created, and I am in the process of making a lumbar pillow in a bright floral ikat fabric I've had but just never known what to do with. To counterbalance some of the new color and pattern, I repainted my nightstand a soft cream. My walls are white with a dark taupe trim. Anyway, I personally love the idea of soft, serene, pale, with some infusions of color and personality. Follow your decorating heart! I think the wall of frames would be too much. I don't think I'd want to sleep underneath it every night, although it does make for a lovely photograph.

Jenny said...

Rose Tarlow has such pretty sheers with simple patterns. Maybe one of those would work for your drapes. Whatever you choose, it will be gorgeous!

Cuttysark said...

I love your Home interior design ideas. You are good. Thanks for sharing. said...

I'm pretty sure that whatever you choose it will be beautiful. I haven't seen any work of yours that I don't love. And since nothing you do has to be permanent, go with your urges and see what happens!

Rajrang said...

Wow! Its Really Amazing!I like you Wall Hanging Pattern.

Beautiful Room.

vignette design said...

I love the idea of all white and ivory, but please reconsider the paneling. I think it would be the wow factor for the room, adding that slightly rustic, edgy, raw, not so sweet look. If I could, I would panel every thing! Putting that slider in was genius. It is going to be a wonderful retreat!

sb said...

Love all of your ideas and completely relate to having lots of ideas and not knowing exactly which one to choose. I think I would go for the horizontal paneling. Even if it was just the wall behind the bed. It would be modern and rustic and add amazing texture! Your style is inspiring and impeccable.
Loved this post!!

Vero said...

I like the last picture and I think you can hang a lot of artwork on your walls and play with your line of fabrics. You are an awesome decorator and can pull a great look. I m not so sure about the wallpaper or the paneling. My vote is more for artwork and fabrics. Have fun and I can't wait to see what you do

Outllook said...

Wow! What an amazing house it is! I really love such designed & open houses.
Home Builder Poconos

onlinephduk said...

I would agree to that! I mean when designing, the mood usually plays a great part. The color combination and arrangement is greatly affected with the mood and interests. Plus, you shouldn’t be afraid to try, experiment, play with the designs and risk your resources, particularly money! Just kidding! Ciao!

Zeed -Professional Doctorate