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Blog

E-decorating : Michelle's Bedroom

Maggie

The fabulous Michelle (the When I Grow Up Coach for creative career types, like moi) has a typical New York problem: her bedroom is kind of small. With a big bed, big dresser, and other "stuff" in the room, it was starting to feel less like the relaxing and rejuvenating place that she and her hubby need, and more like a storage area. Not only does the couple need to sleep and dress there, but it also doubles as work space when self-employed Michelle takes work calls when hubby is home. She wanted to carve out some space for work where she could see their amazing view of NYC from the window. She also has collected a lot of art that needed framing, and though they used words like "relaxing" in their initial interview with me, I knew that this creative couple would thrive with a more colorful palette.

Now I realize it's probably not a "small" bedroom by New York standards, but they were running out of room fast!

Here's what stayed: Bed, duvet, rainbow polka dot rug, vintage nightstand (one only), curtains. Here's what goes: Dresser (in favor of a new, smaller footprint one), the bookshelf, the laundry bin (to be replaced).

Michelle mentioned that the bed felt like it was on the wrong side of the room, and I totally agreed! It's an easy tip for anyone - especially in a long room like this one, it helps to draw the eye to the most pleasing focal point; in this case, the window. The open feel of having a clear path from the bed to the window will create more visual space. We'll also create a NEW focal point with a DIY headboard in an amazing print, which will now be visible as you enter the room. The awkwardly long dresser will go, and be replaced with something that takes up less floor space - literally AND visually by perching on little legs instead of resting on the floor. A thrifted chair in front of the window will face into the room most of the time, but be easily turned around so Michelle can gaze out the window on long work calls. The vintage nightstand will be by the chair to hold a notebook or drink, while a new (thrifted) pair of nightstands will be purchased at a more appropriate height for the bed. The bed itself, besides getting a new headboard, will look 100 times more crisp and clean with a white bedskirt. Michelle's art prints will be framed in mismatched thrifted and discount frames and clustered in a gallery arrangement opposite the bed. One small print will hang above the bed.

Here's the design board I prepared for them:

Since we had a lot of existing textiles to begin with (brown curtains, a busy black and white duvet, and multi-colored rug), the fabric I chose for the headboard was chosen initially for color - the oranges and blues wouldn't clash with the brown or the black. It was a bonus that the circle pattern referenced the circular pattern in the duvet (see in the "before" pictures) and the dots called the rug's polka dots to mind. It is, I think, the perfect fabric for the space. And later if Michelle decides to simplify the duvet or swap out the rug or curtains, the headboard will still look great on its own.

I had a lot of fun working on this low-budget creative apartment in the city! I can't wait to see the after pictures!