Creating a soothing, light-filled bedroom might seem easier said than done (especially when you’re starting with a blank slate). But when you incorporate the right furnishings, tranquil colors – and some brightening design features – it’s totally attainable. And I’m showing you exactly how I did it – and how you can bring the same look into your space.
Sure, a bedroom obviously needs to function for sleeping. But I think a bedroom should also be a soothing spot to unwind at the end of the day – or even enjoy throughout the day. That’s why I’m always looking for ways to fill a space with natural light. It not only makes a room look and feel better, but it also has the power to put you in a relaxed headspace (something we could all use in this non-stop, hectic world).
So when it came to designing this bedroom, I knew keeping things light and bright was essential. And I’m breaking down exactly how it all came together, from the major improvements to the subtle design tricks you should take note of.
Keep scrolling to see the dramatic before and afters – and see how you can create a light and bright bedroom in your own home.
BEFORE & AFTER
If you’re a regular reader, this room probably looks quite familiar to you. That’s because this bedroom is actually part of our new office! While we’re still putting the finishing touches on the office (stay tuned), we wanted to take advantage of this blank space and turn it into a lovely, light bedroom. (We plan to use the office to shoot lots of unique content, so consider this a sneak peek of what you can expect a lot more of!)
While this won’t remain a permanent bedroom, the design choices made during the process of renovating certainly work perfectly for creating a light-filled boudoir. And light was certainly on thing lacking in the original room. So we started by removing the sliding glass doors, expanding the room, and adding new windows from Marvin. This made a major impact on the amount of natural light, but since the home backs up to a hillside, and is surrounded by mature trees, these windows are blocked by shadows for much of the day. So to bring in even more light (and we mean really flood the room) we decided to look up, and install a Velux No Leak Fresh Air Solar Powered Skylight. It not only brings in so much even light throughout the day, but it’s also dual-paned glass for energy efficiency and completely solar-powered – a sustainable solution for a city that’s sunny almost year-round. Plus, with a built-in light filtering and blackout shade (that can be controlled by remote or smartphone app) we never have to worry about that sun getting too hot.
In addition to the new sources of light, we also chose materials that would further brighten the space. A warm white paint (Snowbelt from Sherwin Williams) would bounce light throughout the room, while oak flooring from Mohawk provided some subtle contrast and a fresh, modern feel. And while they may not have brightened up the room, reclaimed beams from Ross Allen provide some much-needed architectural interest (and act as an attractive solution for covering up structural beams).
Keep scrolling to see my 4 tips to brighten up your bedroom (with no construction required, promise!)
1. Start With A Rug
The best place to begin when you want to go bright in your bedroom? Underfoot. You can set the tone for the entire space by selecting a rug in a lighter shade. For this bedroom design, we chose a subtle stripe in a light tan that had just enough interest – and softness. Plus going with a lighter color for a rug means you can layer on some darker colors to bring in a bit of contrast, without making it feel too heavy or dark.
Check out our rug guide to make sure you’re choosing the right size for your bedroom!
2. Bring In A Clean-Lined Bed
It wouldn’t be a bedroom without that all-important piece of furniture. And when choosing a bed, going black may seem contradictory to creating a space that’s light and bright. But what makes this piece work is that it’s balanced by a lighter shade on the headboard, and also has loads of texture– courtesy of the cane panels. Plus clean lines and simple legs don’t create a lot of “visual weight” or immediately draw your eye. So whether you opt for an upholstered, wood, or metal bed frame, keep it simple and balanced – and your bedroom will be too.
Not sure how to properly pair your bedroom furniture? We’ve compiled 12 foolproof bedroom pairings HERE.
Shop Our Light & Bright Bedroom
3. Add Interest With Furnishings & Lighting
A soothing bedroom space doesn’t have to be totally monotone – or lacking in character. You can still add plenty of interest through unique items, like sculptural lamps, a cool bud vase, or striking nightstands, that will make a bedroom feel a bit more uniquely yours. Even the darker tones of these black nightstands don’t actually make the bedroom any less bright. When paired with lighter tones (in this space, the rug, and walls) they actually add interest and help tie in the black casing of the windows.
Want even more ways to make your bedroom the perfect place to unwind? Check out Bobby’s 4 Tips For Creating A Self-Care Sanctuary In Your Bedroom.
4. Be Sure To Soften Things Up
Last but not least, you’ll want to secure lots of soft bedding, blankets, and pillows to finish off your light-filled oasis. In this space, we opted for neutral shades of white, ivory, and earth tones to reinforce that bright and airy feeling. Mixing up textures, like a linen duvet cover with a chunky woven blanket and velvet pillow, will also create a more compelling and cozy bed (that you will def want to curl up in).
Not sure what bedding is ideal for you? Don’t miss The Easy Quiz To Help You Find The Right Bedding.
Hello, I am new to your site. I can loose a lot of, wishful, time here. After years of design magazines showing 6 different patters /colors in one room, I have enjoyed the clean/simple lines of the 2 bedrooms I recently viewed here. My only critics, though I like the wall paper, too much in one room, maybe 2 walls. Stark white room (light sensitive) in the other,again, maybe 2 walls. Your simple/clean use of pattern/colors would fit my, wish list to a tee! Thank You!!
As I live in a low income apartment I am not permitted to change the wall color/window coverings, etc. The building is early 70s, and screams for a make over!! Thank You.!!raf
I am of late, playing the lottery. Should I hit one of the,very nice prizes and can afford to move, You would be the 2nd phone call, 1st would be my Daughter! Thanks again!
I know wallpaper can be a bit much for some people, but our clients happened to love it, so we just went for it. Happy to hear I would be your 2nd call! I hope you hit the jackpot! Thanks for your comment, Roberta. xx -B
Hi Bobby… love your decorating ! Love you on queer eye show! God Bless….
Thank you Regina! xx -B