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Creating the Tranquil Bedroom

A tranquil bedroom. We love the idea of it. We love the promise of it. We love the reality of it. But, really, how many of us actually have it? We’re guessing not too many. But, why? What gets in the way of creating the ever-elusive tranquil bedroom? For most of us, “life” does. We take our bedrooms for granted, often leaving the master bedroom last on our “to decorate list.” The consequence of our neglect is often a room that has the typical bedroom-like furnishings, but completely fails to deliver the haven-like qualities we deserve.

“Since everyone’s taste varies, the perfect tranquil bedroom will also vary in style and character,” says Grand Rapids, Mich., interior designer Valerie Schmieder, principal of Val Design, Inc. “The key is to pay attention to all your senses.” On the other hand, interior designer Lisa Adams of Adams Design, Inc. in Washington, D.C., regards a tranquil bedroom as being a setting for healing. “I tell my clients that a bedroom ought to be a place where, if you’re ill, you can get well. It puts the concept of tranquility in a meaningful perspective.”

So with the idea of a sensory-rich, good-for-you getaway in mind, we break down the top elements that can turn an otherwise chaotic bedroom into a tranquil retreat.

Tranquil-Bedroom Colors that Calm: For bedrooms, colors that are considered more passive, or neutral, help create a more calming effect. However, beyond the actual color itself is how it’s used. According to Schmieder, “The tone and the mix of colors, as well as adjacency of color, are more important than the color itself. Blue is considered to be a restful color. However, if you use a bold, intense periwinkle blue and contrast it with bright orange, you’ve now created an energetic color scheme.”

Dreamy Bedding: From the quality of your mattress to the fluffiness of your pillows, if it’s on your bed,  it’s important. “When you turn the lights off, bedding is the one thing that matters most,” Adams says. Not a fan of comforters, she prefers duvets. “Personally, I don’t like comforters they’re harder to care for. Duvets, though, are ideal and easy to care for.”


The Right Light: Ideally, a well-lit bedroom has ambiance lighting as well as task lighting the latter being particularly true if you like to read in bed. “It’s very important to have dimming controls on task lighting,” Adams says, “especially if you’re sharing the space with someone.” Equally important are window treatments. For light sleepers, blackout curtains are must-haves. They not only ensure a bedroom is virtually free of unwanted outside light, they’re also energy-efficient.

Sound Advice: It may seem obvious, but there is a difference between “sound” and “noise.” Some are happy being lulled to sleep by the humming of a ceiling fan. Others need complete and utter silence in order to rest. That’s when sound-dampening curtains can be a huge benefit. Schmieder agrees: “Adding fabric to your windows reduces the noise bouncing around the room.” She also adds, “If you have hardwood floors, rugs can help soften and absorb sound as well.”

Furniture Influences: Just like furniture placement defines a space, the kind of furniture in a bedroom affects your ability to relax. “You need to have furniture that makes you happy and promotes your idea of tranquility,” Adams says. This means that any style bedroom can be made to be tranquil, whether it’s sleek and modern or full-on country chic. The point is to have furniture that you love, suits your needs and enhances the way you live. A final must-have? Seating. “Whether it’s a bench at the foot of your bed or a posh slipper chair, every good bedroom will have a place to sit.”


The Big Picture: Ultimately, your tranquil bedroom will be defined by you. “Your bedroom is your personal refuge from the world,” Schmieder says. “It should make you feel comfortable, secure and relaxed.” Just keep in mind that from wall color to lighting, your choices should reflect your needs as well as your wants. Because in the end, balancing those two things is what will make the difference between just a room you sleep in and a real good, feel-good bedroom.


Product List:

Via Spiga Queen Wall Bed

Via Spiga Dresser

Suite 303 Queen Duvet Set – White and Tan // Linen Shoppé

Suite 303 Euro Sham – White and Tan // Linen Shoppé

Dimpled Vases //

Elegance Vase // Bedroom Expressions

Brooklyn 3 Pc. Queen Sleigh Bed // Bedroom Expressions

Delano Meadow 6 Pc. Full/Queen Duvet Set // Linen Shoppé

Crochet Standard Sham // Bedroom Expressions

Marseille 3 Pc. Queen Sleigh Bed // Bedroom Expressions

Ruffles 3 Pc. Full/Queen Duvet Set // Linen Shoppé

Classic Full/Queen Duvet Set // Linen Shoppé

Damask Dog Bed // Bedroom Expressions

Casual Elegance Queen Duvet Set // Linen Shoppé

Bye, Bye Birdie Lamp // Oak Express

Studio Chair Pack // Sofa Mart

Encore Wall Bed + Dresser + Mirror + Chest // Bedroom Expressions

Sanibel Lamp // Bedroom Expressions

Cream and Black Pillow // Bedroom Expressions

Madagascar Queen Storage Bed // Bedroom Expressions


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