Category Archives: Bedroom Design

Things We Like: Bathroom Design Evolution

Post by Stephanie Noble.

With the real estate market picking up in my area, we may have the chance to sell the condo that I bought thirteen years ago when I was a singleton. I chose my place based on three factors:

  1. It was affordable. The real estate market was so hot here that everything in my price range sold the day it was put on the market.

  2. It was far away from my previous neighborhood. It was also far away from an ex-boyfriend that I needed to move away from in order to move on from.

  3. It reminded me of the sea. I had recently vacationed at a beach house and fell in love with the high ceilings, the natural light and the open feeling of a modern house.

Up to this point in my life, I had always considered my style to lean towards the romantic, antiquey vibe of Victorian architecture with a Southern Gothic twist located in quirky neighborhoods. So why did I end up buying a modern, high ceilinged two bedroom in a beige suburb? The easy answer is to refer to the first item on the list above. But upon further reflection there is a deeper answer. My tastes changed. They grew up. They evolved.

Our current home has seen four major stages of decorating that can be illustrated by the four colors that the second bathroom has been:

Bright Yellow was my roommate’s choice. I painted it her favorite color for Christmas one year. It was brighter than it looks on the screen. She loved it and it completely suited her sunny personality.

The light blue was my spinster aunt stage when I created my idea of a perfect office/library/guest room with peaceful blues and whites. It may have been the most feminine space I have ever designed.

The hunter green was my new husband’s choice to make a room in our home his. It was the first space we ever created together and ended up looking more mountain lodge than either of us particularly cared for very much. It was his British idea of what Colorado design should look like.

The final teal is the color of the bathroom’s present incarnation as an underwater themed bathroom for our toddler son. It was designed by his fourteen year old cousin as a summer project last year. When it’s clean it’s gorgeous! Most of the time, it has half dry washcloths and the previous night’s dirt covered clothes in a pile.

One room, four styles over the course of thirteen years. Each of them exactly right for the time and purpose it served. It may be time to dust off the design quizzes again to decide how our tastes have morphed as we started searching for a long term family home.

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Things We Like: Creating An Inspired Color Palette For Your Bedroom With Adobe Kuler

Post by Kyle St. Romain.

In the past, I’ve talked about some of the best bedroom colors to pick for your bedroom. In a nutshell, there are a few basic colors that tend to work better in a bedroom than others: neutrals, earth tones, and blues. While color preferences vary widely, and there an infinite shades of colors within those broad groupings, the goal of designing your bedroom is almost always the same — to create a tranquil environment that helps put your mind and body at ease. Think about it: fire-engine-red walls may look cool, but it the color is loud and energetic. Some even associate the color red with anger. Is that the kind of energy you want to create in your bedroom? Perhaps, though most will agree that such energetic colors are best used in other areas of your home.

Selecting a color palette that works can be difficult, especially if you’re new at it. I know that I often let my wandering mind get the best of me, and have trouble settling on a limited set of colors. Fortunately, technology has come to the rescue providing us with some helpful resources to ensure you get it right the first time. One such tool that has been a tremendous help for me is Adobe Kuler.

Kuler, a free app for the iPhone by Adobe, helps you select a great color palette almost effortlessly. The app works by using the camera on your iPhone. Simply point the camera at your favorite piece of art or a set of objects that you like, and the app automatically generates a simple color scheme based on that picture for you. It’s actually quite impressive.

Best of all, you can save your themes and use them as a reference when you’re out selecting wall paper, paint, bedding, window treatments, or decorative objects for your bedroom. The application is equally useful for graphic designers who need to come up with color palettes for websites and print work.

For more info, or to use the desktop version of the app, head over to the Kuler website. You can also explore color themes that other users have created.

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Things We Like: Digital Shades

Post by Kyle St. Romain.
From time to time, I come across very cool technologies coming to the world of interior design. In the past, I’ve introduced you to Smart Lighting systems, which together give you control over the lighting of your home. There are other products out there that give you wireless control over the HVAC system of your home too. Ever fascinated with advances in home automation, I wanted to share one of my more recent discoveries: the future of modern window treatments, the digital shade.

Essentially, a digital shade is a film that you can apply to existing windows, much like traditional window tint. Digital shades, however, allow you to control the amount of light that passes through the window itself. Digital shades, like the ones being developed by SONTE, use an innovative film that reacts to changes electrical current. When a charge is passed through the film, the transparency of the film (and the window it’s affixed to) is reduced giving you instant privacy. It’s easier to understand the effect by watching this video.

Digital shades not only offer you privacy in your bedroom, bathroom, home office, or home theater, they also help control the interior temperature of your home by controlling the amount of sunlight that comes into your home, blocking UV rays, and reflecting infrared. A triple threat! No longer will you have to worry about forgetting to close your blinds during the hot summer months (or actually having to walk over to the window to do it), as these WiFi enabled digital shades can give you instant control over your windows with the swipe of a finger on your mobile device.

You can read more about SONTE’s digital shades here.

What do you think about digital shades? Would you install them in your home? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

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Bedroom Design: Trundle Beds

Post by Stephanie Noble.

A few weeks ago, I was settling into the couch after putting our almost two year old to bed. I was listening for the squeak of the mattress as the little man did his nightly trampoline routine that he did to wind down at the end of the night. He would generally jump for a few minutes while talking to himself, then go to sleep. I waited for the jumping, but it never came.

Instead, I heard a knock from his door, “Mamma, Daddy, Mamma, Daddy?” Our wee one had jumped out of the protection of his crib straight into the toddler sleep transition.

I went into his room, put him back into his crib and asked him to show me how he got out. He said, “One” and put his first leg over the railing. “Two” brought both legs over and my baby was suddenly dangling over the side of his crib. “Three” he jumped down and yelled “Hurray.”

His latest milestone was not greeted with the same enthusiasm that his previous accomplishments have been met with, so he kept yelling “Hurray” until I finally agreed with him with a hollow, “Yeah.”

We borrowed his cousin’s big boy bed and assembled it. I’m now going to share the parenting secret that nobody filled us in on. “Toddler sleep transition is so much worse than new born sleep deprivation.” Two years ago there was a schedule to the waking up, it was dependable and once the little man was full he’d go back to sleep.

Our toddler wakes up and thinks because he can get out of bed and wander that it must be time to get up and get started with the day.

The past month has seen us readjusting how we live to teach him how to sleep again. Currently, we alternate nights of responsibility so we know that even if we only get four hours of sleep one night, we’ll get a full night the next. That helps, but it’s still hard to go back to being mentally fuzzy most of the time.

When the call comes for parental attention, the responsible parent take the comforter off the bed in our room, throws it down on the floor in our son’s room and then sleep on the floor for the rest of the night with the boy. It’s like camping every other night. A joy at two, aching joints for the over forty crowd.

We decided that the whole camping out thing is getting old and have started looking for a trundle bed. It would be helpful not only during this time of transition, but also when he wants to have friends stay over later on. Everything in a small living space has to pull its multiple duty weight.

I was looking at the Charles P. Rogers website to get some ideas.

Here is my favorite.


I like the Chambord because it looks sturdy and would transition well from toddler to kid. It would also work later on in a library/guest room if we ever live in a bigger space. It also looks a lot more comfy than a comforter on the floor.

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Things We Like: “Brick’d-Out” Bedroom Design

Post by Kyle St. Romain.

In the past, exposed interior brick was traditionally associated with more masculine spaces; reserved for offices, bachelor pads, and “man-caves.” Today, however, designers and homeowners are finding that brick is a great touch for any room, including spaces with a more feminine feel. Combined with the popularity of loft condos and other repurposed living spaces, exposed brick has quickly cemented its place among a short-list of “must-have” design features for many homeowners.

Whether you’re living in an old warehouse with exposed brick walls, or want to build a brick wall inside a new room (either real brick or a faux finish), the use of brick in your bedroom provides an organic, industrial chic feel to your design that you can’t achieve otherwise.

Perhaps the coolest thing about using brick as an interior design element is that you can use it to compliment any number of looks. Whether you’re going for an industrial, vintage, rustic, modern, contemporary, eclectic, or bohemian look in your bedroom, brick can look right at home in all of the above. With brick, anything is possible; you only need a little bit of creativity.

If you’re considering incorporating brick into your bedroom’s design, below are some helpful tips and considerations to keep in mind so you can brick-your-bedroom with style.

Exposed Brick vs. Finished Brick

The first decision to make when incorporating brick into your bedroom’s design is whether to leave it exposed (as it is) or finish it (usually with paint).

Exposed brick tends to work best in a modern, rustic, or traditional space. The rich earth tones and the rough texture work well with a number of design styles, and can be enhanced with proper accents. Finished brick, on the other hand, is usually used in more refined spaces. Finished brick walls are often painted, either in a solid color of light white wash to allow some of the natural color to still show through. Finished brick may provide better insulation and less maintenance, but comes at the cost of losing out on some of the natural charm inherent with brick.

Ultimately, the choice of whether to go with exposed or finished brick walls is a personal one and depends on the overall design of your space.

Faux Brick vs. Real Brick

While nothing replaces a real brick wall, there are a number of faux finishes that come very close. Many of these real brick alternatives are installed as a sort of veneer, using panels covered with slices of real brick to perfect the look. Even upon close inspection (save drilling into the wall), it can be very hard to tell whether you have an actual brick wall or a faux finish.

The type of building you live in, cost, and the amount of maintenance you’re willing to put up with are also contributing factors to whether you chose to go with real or faux brick finish in your design.

General Considerations

Many buildings have brick walls that were built during the original construction of the building. As such, they may be old and in disrepair. If you’re planning to use old brick, it’s worthwhile to have a professional come out and inspect the brick and recommend whether you should undergo a restoration or whether it’s even worthwhile. Bad brick can be a nightmare to live with, littering your place with dusty crumbles whilst leaking air through gaps in the mortar.

Incorporating brick into the design of your bedroom can be as involved of a decision or as simple of a one, particularly if you live in a space that already has exposed brick walls. If you’re looking for some design inspiration, there are a number of brick bedroom galleries online for your viewing pleasure. Houzz has an excellent brick bedroom gallery, and you can find additional galleries on shelterness, DigsDigs, and Home Design Lover.

Have you lived with brick walls? Do you wish you could? Let us know what you think about incorporating brick walls into your bedroom design in the comments below.

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