#SelfCare starts at home. And there is no room more important for some much-deserved TLC than the bedroom. And yet somehow, design mistakes stockpile here like errant laundry on that one chair. We asked in-the-know designers for the eyesores in the bedroom that drive them particularly bonkers. And yes, size matters—at least when it comes to bedroom furniture. Here’s what to know and what to avoid.
If you think smaller rooms call for smaller rugs, think again: It’s actually all about the proportions—and the bedroom is one place where people often get it wrong. “Sometimes we will see clients purchase a rug that’s too small and just covers the bottom half of the bed—major cringe,” says Erin Coren of Curated Nest. “An ideal rug should go up to the front of the nightstand and cover both sides of the bed.” (Confused? See our guide to rug sizing here.)
The same goes for pillows—too small is just sad. “It bothers me when the bolster is too tiny,” laments designer Stephanie Sabbe. “They look like they stole the pillow from their baby’s crib!”
No room design should be a one-and-done deal. “Bedroom sets are soooo passé and most definitely lack imagination and style,” says Dennese Guadeloupe Rojas of Interiors by Design. “Dressers, armoires and nightstands do not have to match.” Plus, she points out, being more creative in your selection allows you to find more functional pieces: “Instead, select stylish, more spacious nightstands with larger surfaces for lamps and bedside accessories,” Rojas advises.
“One of my biggest pet peeves in a bedroom is a headboard that gets lost behind the bedding,” says Leslie May. “The headboard can be such a showstopper in the bedroom, but only if you can see it!” So what’s the right size? Says May, “most of the headboards I use are custom made and go at least 60” up from the floor.”
“It irks me when you are laying in bed and you can see the lightbulb sticking out from underneath the lampshade on your bedside table lamp,” says Brittany Bromley. “Custom lampshades are included in all of our decor proposals!”
The wrong reading lights
Another light no-no? “Spotlights masquerading as ‘reading lights’ above each side of the bed have to go,” proclaims Kristi Nelson of KMNelson Design. “Unless you’re putting on a show, quit with the stage spotlight and get lamps, wall sconces, or similar set at a comfortable reading height on each side of the bed with a dimmer,” she advises. “They are more visually interesting and are appropriate task lights.”
When it comes to the bed, it’s all about looking put-together (in other words, yes—make your bed!) and one way to mess this up is botch the sizing on your mattress. “It’s always a mistake when clients purchase oversized mattresses and the frame and or bed skirts are disproportional in size,” says Cullman & Kravis’s Alyssa Urban. “The mattress overtakes everything in the room!” Plus, she points out, “some end up so tall, you need to run and jump to get on them.”
Another bed mistake? “It totally irks me when people have old lifeless sheets and inserts in their duvet cover and pillows,” says Cara Woodhouse. “They look deflated, worn out and to be honest just gross! When you have a fresh, fluffy, and beautiful bed it makes all the difference.”
It’s a careful balance of pretty and practical when it comes to decorative pillows: “A bed with too many decorative pillows is a pain to make and remake every morning,” points out Mimi Meacham of Marian Louise Designs. Her advice? “Stick to three layers of pillows, max. Start with sleeping pillows, then larger Euros and a long bolster to finish it off.”
Bad ceiling fixtures
“A ceiling fan with a light should be illegal,” proclaims Mary Patton. Trust us, it’s well worth it to swap out this all-too-common eyesore for something prettier. “Ideally, the only overhead light should be a chandelier on a dimmer and the rest should be lamps,” Patton advises. “Soft lighting is key.”
Too much in too little space
Sure, you want pretty pieces in your bedroom, but there’s a limit, says Sara Barney of Bandd Design: “Cramming too many pieces of furniture and decor in the room is a big mistake. Yes, storage is important in a bedroom, but the main purpose of the space is to relax and catch some Zzzs. So clear up the clutter, open that baby up, and I promise you’ll feel much more zen.”
A too-spare space
…that said, “there’s a fine line between serene and sterile,” posits Andrea Schumacher. “A bedroom should be inviting and cozy. One of my favorite tricks that creates interest without adding any unnecessary clutter is sheathing the walls in a show-stopping wallcovering—like Kravet’s paper that looks like slices of agate, or Fromental’s toile embroidered silk wallpaper where koi fish seem to meander around lily pads. It’s so soothing, but never a snooze.”
“Don’t place a large mirror where it’s visible from the bed, as it’s bad Feng Shui,” advises Amy Lefarink of Interior Impressions. “Reflections in the mirror make your subconscious mind think there are other people in the room and it can disturb your sleep!”
Bad art placement
Be smart when hanging your art, too: “A mistake we see all the time is when artwork is hung too high above the bed, floating in space, which breaks its crucial connection to surrounding furniture,” reveals Ashley Mutch of Feather Hill Interiors. Her general rule? “It depends on the individual piece and space, but 4 inches from the top of the bed is ideal.”
Follow House Beautiful on Instagram.
This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io