An ideal bedroom is not just a closed space with a futon in it. It is a room that is meant to do so much. You rest in it, have sex in it, weep in it after a break-up, watch you-tube videos in it and eat junk while wrapping yourself in the sheets. A bedroom is the most important part of the house! So it makes sense that one pays attention to it, taking care of how it is designed, arranged and also how it comes off to others apart from yourself.
Why better a bedroom’s design? Because a bedroom is a space that you relax in. It is meant for respite from the world; it is every person’s safe place where they can say, think and feel whatever they want, however they want. Besides, making your bedroom a more welcoming space makes it more conducive to proper rest, which can boost your performance at work, school or in your social circles. Nobody would want to pass on that, right?
There’s 3 major components of each bedroom. One is the bed, of course. The second is the area around the bed, like the curtains, the side table, the electrical socket and the alarm clock. The third are the ambient factors, such as the room’s temperature when you’re sleeping, the amount of light in the room and how silent or noisy it usually is. Taking care of these factors is all you need to do to design the perfect bedroom for yourself.
Also, contrary to the popular image of what it means to design the perfect magazine-worthy bedroom, you needn’t spend a small fortune on your bedroom. Most of the things you need to make the perfect resting place are pretty common to find at hardware stores, and they’re cheap too. You can invest as much or as little as you want; you’re designing your bedroom to rest well, not to have it photographed by a rag’s photographer.
Without further ado, I present to you the steps you need to follow to design the perfect bedroom for a better nightly rest.
Make the bed cozy
A cozy bed is sort of the whole point of having a nice bedroom. It is the central idea of the space, and so you need to decide on it first. If you’re designing a bed for a kid, maybe they’ll want a racecar bed or one that’s shaped like a castle. If it’s for someone who’s old, you’d probably want a lower bedframe. Then, depending upon personal choice, you can choose the number of pillows and buy bedsheets, foot rugs and decorations for the frame if you’d like. There is no one single way to go about this.
What you absolutely need to take care about is whether the stuff goes with your requirements or not. For most adults, a regular bed frame made of metal or wood works great. Get one based upon your height and the kind of mattress you plan on putting on this bed frame. If you’re not decided between the size of the mattress yet, get a regular bed frame but make sure it can have its top extended to accommodate bigger padding.
Get the perfect mattress
Mattresses are not just about the size they come in; there’s a lot that depends upon the make of the mattress itself. We don’t encourage people to chase brands, even though a bigger brand is often more likely to provide better after-sale services. More important than the brand is the material the mattress is made out of, the structure and build of the mattress and properties like how taut it is and how quickly it cools when you switch sides on the mattress.
There are memory foam mattresses that can give your body a better hug by curving appropriately around your curves. There are air mattresses that you can carry along with yourself to camping trips. There are latex mattresses, known for their hypoallergenic properties. And there are the traditional innerspring mattresses that have been around for generations now. A mattress should be firm enough to support your spine, yet fluffy enough to not make you feel like you’re sleeping on the pavement. The edges need to be well supported. You can find more about the traits of a good mattress in our exhaustive post here.
Use minimum lighting
You’re going to be sleeping in your bedroom; it is obvious you’ll need little lighting for some shut eye. But there needs to be enough lighting to see where you’re walking, or read a book in bed. Lamps prove the best for this purpose, since lampshades take away the sharpness to a large extent. Apart from that, there are people who are fond of using rice lights, or pipe lighting to decorate or accentuate their bedrooms. You can opt for that as well.
What you need to watch out for is that the lighting should not bother you while you’re trying to sleep. The best idea is to switch off all lamps and lights before going to bed. It is also the most obvious. But if you want to leave some lights on, you can always dull them if they bother you. For example, Christmas lights can be dulled by wrapping them in cellophane, or putting paints or polishes comfortable with heat on the faces of bulbs that face you. It can even make for some interesting effects.
Paint the place in soothing colors
If I had a penny for every time someone painted their bedroom in the brightest, burliest yellows and reds and then had their mornings ruined, I’d be a very rich man. Just because you have a favorite among all the colors doesn’t mean you should splash it on your bedroom walls. Colors that are too bright often light up the room with the early morning sun, and that is not the best sight to wake up too. Too much of the same color can also make you feel woozy in the morning, and that’s not the best note to begin your day with.
The trick with colors is to choose the most ordinary, nonthreatening ones, so your room can have a relaxing ambiance. Pastel shades are often appreciated in this regard. An added benefit is that your art and mantle pieces will not have to fight against the background to pop out. If pastel shades are not your thing, you can always go for dull colors like light pinks and subtle blues to keep the ambiance calm and friendly.
But it’s not just the walls you need to paint properly. Take care of the colors of carpets and bed linen as well, since they’re likely to occupy a significant portion of the room’s space and hence might give you the same sort of trouble as walls. Also important is to take note of where you place the mirror. Place it somewhere it doesn’t catch the sun, or you might have the reflection glaring at you at unwelcome times.
Put in drapes and curtains
Everyone knows the importance of curtains, and yet nobody seems to have a clue about what to look for when buying them. Luckily, there is nothing too difficult about finding good curtains and drapes for the bedroom. You need only take care of the color and texture of the curtain, and whether or not it fades with time.
A curtain’s color in the bedroom should ideally gel with the walls, but many also choose to make it contrast with it. Bright shades are better avoided when choosing curtains, unless you want them to catch the sun and make the room brighter than any sleeping man would prefer. Dark shades help cut the amount of light entering the room in the morning. Curtains also save you from a lot of stray noise that can disturb your sleep. They reduce light pollution of the city that you see at night. One must remember to clean them periodically, however.
Invest in sound proofing
Many people are bothered by the loud honks, the sirens and the sound of passing trains, which are the hallmarks of a city life. They don’t think it affects their sleep, but it really does hamper sleep quality quite a bit. Even though you’re sleeping like a log, the loud noises outside might not be letting you relax fully, making you wake up without adequate rest. Even if your part of the city is relatively quiet, you can get a whole lot of disturbance from the neighbors. Sound proofing is really helpful if that concerns you.
If you cannot afford a commercial sound proofing service, there are a lot of remedies you can employ to quieten the room for your sleep. Shutting doors and windows is a no brainier. Curtains, drapes, carpets and similar soft material absorb sound and reduce its intensity. You can also use noise cancelling headphones. It is important to note that none of these methods make for a completely silent room. But you don’t need complete silence anyway, just little enough to be able to rest properly.
Get the temperature right
A big component of a bedroom’s ambiance is the temperature it stays in when you’re asleep. Though you can make it with no health lost through some pretty extreme temperatures, that is largely because your body can control your temperature to a suitable degree. It is different when you’re sleeping, though. If your body is busy fighting the elements at night, you won’t have a very restful sleep.
The temperature of the room should be comfortable enough for you to sleep in. There’s no exact range, and people prefer as low as 20 Degree Celsius to as much as 35 Degree Celsius to sleep peacefully in. Setting the temperature too high could make you sweat a lot and wake up abruptly due to a parched throat. Setting it too low could mean you spend the night shivering, or wake up with an ache in the morning. Plus, did you know sleeping in colder rooms is associated with higher chances of having nightmares?
Your body will thank you if you sleep at a suitable temperature. You can always modify the temperature using a thermostat. But if you’re out camping, or in a place that doesn’t have central heating, you can use radiaters, electric heaters, hot water bottles or ceiling/table fans to feel more at ease.
Clean your room
How is cleaning my room going to make me sleep better, I am often asked. There is little or no association one can ordinarily discern between the two. But trust me, there is. Clean rooms are naturally more appealing to the human mind, and are often associated with positive feelings such as comfort, trust and relaxation. That is certainly conducive to good sleep. But that’s not all.
Good rooms, quite intuitively, prevent the risk of hurting yourself, because you’re less likely to bump into something, or step on something that can cause you grief for quite some time at night. Discomfort often wakes up our minds with a jolt and it can be hard to go back to sleep. Even if you do, the quality of sleep still never matches that of an uninterrupted sleep.
There’s more. With dirty rooms and living spaces come bacteria, mites and pests like rats and ants. You really don’t want those foul odors, the little sqweaks at night, or the associated health risks. So pick up the plate after you eat and wash it in the sink instead of leaving it under the bed. Vacuum the place once a week. You could even go a bit further and get a nice blend of essential oils to add to water and mist the place with to get rid of any odors or unwelcome smells.
An air purifier could help
In my previous apartment, I was surrounded by pet loving families. I love pets. But they have too much hair flying in the air, or dirt they kick up that loves to irritate my breathing tracts. I found an air purifier of much use there. Even though I’ve moved to a better apartment now, I still have my trusty air purifier in my bedroom.
Don’t get me wrong. Exposure to germs is vital to keep your immune system fit and running ok. But there are far too many pollutants in the city air that are not the best when it comes to health. It is also a fact that they can prevent you from sleeping fine at night.
An air purifier comes for a reasonable price, and many just need to be plugged in. Left to their own devices, they bring down the amount of pollutants in the air by quite a bit. They’re a great idea for newborn kids and the elderly with predispositions to breathing trouble.
Try using some white noise to sleep
Sometimes, even though everything is perfect with the room, something just doesn’t let you fall asleep. White noise is pretty helpful in such times. It not just lets you fall asleep, but people claim they get better quality of sleep when they go to bed listening to it.
You can find a lot of white noise tracks on YouTube or other free media sites. You can put them on on your deck, or use earphones or headphones to listen to them when you’re trying to sleep. If the generic white noise thing isn’t your cup of tea, there’s always nature tracks to try out. My favorite is the sound of rain.
Want a third option? Well, there’s this song that was created scientifically to calm people, and it has been noted to work on a startling number of people. In fact, it is advised to be avoided when you’re driving. Here’s the video. Put on your headphones and sit back.
A bedroom need not just be a place to go to sleep in, you know? You should be allowed to go and paint in it, or snack in it, or dress up in it. A room is comfortable when it gives you reason to be in it. A dressing corner, a canvas and some paint and a few potted plants can all do wonders to a bedroom and make it more attractive and warm to your weary eyes. There’s decoration ideas you can employ too, like hanging dream-catchers, putting some origami pieces on a thread and hanging them at corners, or just putting in a stand alone lamp. Artwork on the walls is a good idea too. As long as you stay clear of clutter, you should be OK. And it’s fun to accessories too!
Boy, that’s a long list! For something that appears to be so simple, designing your own bedroom sure is a lot of work. But it sure is rewarding. I really recommend people design their own bedrooms because it makes the space that much more intimate, and that goes a long way in making you comfortable in it.
In case you didn’t go through the entire thing, or lost track of the previous steps by venturing ahead, we have a short summary for you below. In case you need help with any of the points, you can refer to the write up for it above. So, let’s get started.
Summing up bedroom design for beginners:
Designing your own bedroom makes your private space that much more intimate, like we discussed. So, we began with several points you could use to bring the bed, the surroundings and the ambiance in harmony with your needs. The first was to make the bed cozy, which means you get a proper bed-frame that is suitable to your height or sprawl space needs. Then, you get a good mattress, which is the second order of business. There are several types of mattresses as we have discussed several times on this blog, each with their own unique properties. You can buy one for a neat price almost anywhere. Third, it is important to use minimum lighting when you’re sleeping. Switching off lamps and bulbs is a no brainier, but you can go further and close the curtains to keep out external light pollution. Painting the place in soothing colors was fourth, since we don’t want to be jolted awake by the morning sun reflecting off the bright yellow walls straight into our eyes.
It is unhealthy and makes the room feel hotter than it is. Next, you put in drapes and curtains to shut out the noise and light from outside, as well as to enhance the look inside and make things appear softer. Invest in sound proofing at the sixth step, and you will not be bothered by dogs barking at twilight, neighbors partying like it’s the end of the world or cars passing by with speakers blasting. Beginning with ambient factors, fixing the temperature of the room stands at seven. Your body temperature usually goes down when you’re resting, and if the temperature outside is not suitable for proper functioning of the body, your body will not be fully at rest. Plus, you’ll probably wake up with a parched throat if the temperature is too hot, or have an ache somewhere if it was too cold. Cleaning your room regularly is the next order of business.
You don’t want to step on something sharp on your way to get a glass of water. Cleaning the bedroom also makes sure there are less opportunities for bacteria and microbes to thrive, or for mice to pay you a visit. Air purifiers help further keep the air sanitary, and cut down dust, pollen and microbes in the air to help you sleep better. They are highly recommended for newborns and the elderly. Tenth, we recommended using some white noise to fall asleep, in case you have trouble. There’s other options besides the TV-snow voice, like nature sounds or a track we shared with you (scroll up and put your headphones on). And finally, our last advise was to decorate your bedroom to make it more welcoming, and to use the space for more than just sleeping. You can paint, read, watch movies or meditate in the bedroom. All of it makes the space more accessible and warm to the mind, which can make you feel comfortable when you’re trying to sleep.
So folks, keep your smartphones in a corner and get busy bettering your sleeping space. It’s going to be very rewarding when you sleep better and wake up to a more cheerful, welcoming room. I’ll love to read your thoughts in the comments below.