My friend Lindsey had a very "college-esque" bedroom and was ready for it to grow up. She didn't have a headboard or a very large budget, but we worked with it to bring her room from drab and boring to beautiful.
We started by rearranging some of the furniture and some of her old stuff got the heave-ho. For instance, she wasn't using her tiny desk and it had become a pile and clutter magnet. She was tired of the white lamp. Clutter got the boot.
While putting together a plan, I knew I wanted to add some sort of headboard. Even a DIY upholstered headboard was beyond our budget, so I thought we could use the illusion of a headboard by hanging curtains behind the bed. It would add a visual framework to define the bed area. Lindsey already had some great artwork, including those four paintings (done by chimps!). She also wanted to add new bedding and a place to enjoy her large book collection. I wanted to add some throw pillows and curtains. Here are a few more befores:
We hit the stores one afternoon, primarily Target, Ross, and Michael's craft store. Lindsey wanted to spend about $300. We ended the day with new bedding and throw pillows, frames for pictures, a new lamp and shade, a catch-all for keys and jewelry, and a curtain rod. We also had a solution for the headboard: after pricing out curtains (we'd need at least about two pairs to cover the width), we ended up finding a fabric shower curtain at Target that was wide enough and in our new-found color scheme. It helped make our decision between the blue and purple silk quilt we picked up. I sewed some tabs on the back so we could hang it on a regular old curtain rod. We also picked up about two yards of a purple ikat fabric to cover an existing bulletin board and make a toss pillow.
After our big trip and install, Lindsey found a chair on craigslist and we hunted down some curtains on ebay... we'd seen ones we liked but they were way over our budget in retail stores. She also snagged some West Elm shams online. Those three purchases probably brought us to a total of about $400 for the room, but Lindsey was able to spread that over two months. And now that everything has arrived, I can finally share the after pictures!
Here are some more shots of the final result:
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All pictures by Maggie Morgan.