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How to Know if Your Bedroom is a Don't

Photo: Mark Lund

It’s easy to overlook the bedroom: Guests don’t generally enter it, and you only really spend your nights there. But let’s look at that from another angle for a second. It’s the only place you really have to yourself, and it’s where you spend at least a third of your days. In other words, we think it’s a pretty important room. Here are some common trouble spots to look for:


Don’t overcrowd it! Especially in small rooms, this is key. Getting to your bed or closet shouldn’t have to feel like navigating a maze. Try putting the dresser in your closet to save space. The same goes for accessories: Don’t overdo them. Keep it simple, and you’ll get the rest and relaxation you so need.


Make sure the size of your furniture matches the size of your room. Overscaled furniture like a big four-poster bed only goes with a huge bedroom, while small furnishings are made for small bedrooms; in a bigger room, they’ll get lost. Make sure everything fits together too. Your nightstand should be the same height as your bed.


A single overhead light just won’t do in your bedroom. You need lighting on all levels -- an overhead light for common use, bedside and vanity lights for specific activities, and accent lights like art lights or wall sconces to give the room a gentler, softer look. Also, search for lighting that can be adjusted, both in brightness and direction.


Bright reds, yellows and oranges don’t belong in the bedroom; they’re simply too simulating for the place you spend your nights. You can always go for a more muted and pastel version of that orange or red you love, or opt for something more soothing like blue, green, brown or amber.


Not only is storage important for the same reason it is in any room -- to avoid clutter -- but it’s especially key in your bedroom, which is supposed to be a serene, relaxing retreat. There’s nothing serene or relaxing about piles of junk all over your room. Look for nightstands that can really serve as extra storage space, as well as a trunk or bench that doubles as seating and storage space at the end of your bed. You can also use big plastic containers under your bed for out-of-season clothing.

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