Create a romantic haven
A bedroom can be so much more than just a place to sleep. With the right lighting, colours, and textures, you can turn your bedroom into a romantic sanctuary.
Redesigning your bedroom may be the secret to spicing up your love life. “People often neglect their bedrooms in favour of decorating the public spaces of the house,” says interior designer Laura Stein. But creating a romantic haven is just as important as a well-designed kitchen or stylish living room.
Keep it simple
Incorporate simple design elements such as textured wallpaper, soft lighting, and plush pillows to transform your bedroom into a tranquil oasis for you and your partner to share your affection.
While soft pastels are often called romantic colours, Stein says it’s important to strike a balance between masculine and feminine. “We tend to associate romance with femininity, but the guys have to be comfortable in there too,” she says.
Stein recommends purple tones that can be layered to strike a balance between masculine or feminine. Darker purples can be very masculine and create a dramatic look, while soft lavenders that are more feminine create a calming, relaxing mood.
Harsh overhead lighting can quickly kill the mood. While scattering organic soy candles around the room can instantly create a romantic ambience, Stein says layering existing light sources can transform the feel of the room and is more practical.
Place your overhead light fixtures on dimmers and incorporate table lamps for task lighting and sconces for soft mood lighting.
“Sconces don’t generally give off tons of light [to] task lighting, but they’re great for giving that little bit of ambience,” says Stein. Placing lights on dimmers helps to control the level of light in the room and allows you to create mood lighting instantly out of lamps and overhead fixtures. Table lamps with three-level light bulbs are very practical, as they provide bright light for reading and can be toned down to produce a romantic glow next to your bed.
If walls could talk
Wrap your room in organic patterned or textured wallpaper to create an intimate space.
Textured wall treatments such as grass cloth or soft wallpaper patterns such as botanicals or subtle geometric patterns in soft colours are preferred over bold patterns. “Don’t use anything loud or something you would use as a feature wall but wouldn’t want everywhere,” says Stein, as these patterns can overwhelm the room and make it seem claustrophobic rather than romantic.
Walls aren’t the only area to add texture. “Layering textures creates a sense of warmth and intimacy,” says Stein.
A soft area rug adds coziness and depth, while decorative pillows and organic cotton or wool throws add warmth and texture.
Make the bed the focal point
The bed should be placed opposite the door, so you can see it as soon as you walk into the room.
An upholstered headboard can help to soften the room and add elegance and sophistication. “It’s also more comfortable to lean back against,” says Stein, and makes you want to stay in the room longer. Highlight a beautiful headboard by adding two sconces on either side.
Making the bed more comfortable adds to the romantic ambience. A feather bed that goes over your mattress acts like a pillow and creates an extra layer of comfort.
Layering pillows by placing euro shams at the back followed by standard shams, and then adding decorative pillows in front, creates a pretty vignette that’s attractive to the eye while also adding a layer of comfort.
Drapery is an easy way to add softness to your bedroom.
Try hanging drapery panels—even just to frame your window—to add more ambience. “Even if you have blinds for blocking out the light, installing panels helps to layer in some texture and pattern that goes a long way toward softening a room and making it feel more comfortable and relaxing,” says Stein.
Strike a balance
Avoid decorating a room too masculine or too feminine. Achieving a balance means both partners will feel comfortable and romantic in the space.
“Whenever I do anything that’s really feminine with pinks or florals, I’ll tone it down by bringing in some browns or greys,” says Stein. Soft pastel colours can be offset by darker wood or rich jewel tones.
8 tips for better slumber
Can’t sleep? Your bedroom design can be getting in the way of a good night’s sleep. Help promote relaxation by making your private space special.
1. Invest in a feather bed
A feather bed, slipped over the mattress and under your sheets can transform even a hard mattress into a soft cloud.
2. Experiment with duvet weights
While some find it comforting to sleep under a heavy duvet, others may feel suffocated. Shop around to find the duvet weight that works for you.
3. Adjust the temperature
Being too hot or too cold can affect the quality of your slumber. Experiment with your thermostat until you get it just right.
4. Cover the windows
If you don’t have blackout blinds, layering a valance above the windows with heavy drapery can help keep the light out. “[The] really closes off all the cracks around the window so no light can seep through,” says Stein.
5. Soundproof your bedroom
If your bedroom is near the family room, or if you have noisy teenagers in the house, adding upholstered panels to the wall can help to keep out sound and make your bedroom a tranquil space where your mind and body can relax.
6. Opt for an organic mattress
Sleeping on a synthetic mattress can feel like wearing a polyester shirt. Organic mattresses breathe better and prevent you from overheating. “When your mattress breathes, you get airflow all around your body and it’s much more comfortable,” says Stein.
Clutter can cause stress, making it difficult for you to fall asleep. Create a peaceful oasis by making sure you have enough storage furniture and keeping your room tidy.
8. Create pleasant odours
A German study found smells can influence the quality of sleep. Move the laundry hamper away from the bed and sweeten your dreams by adding potpourri or soothing oils such as lavender to your nightstand.