Carl Sandburg is famously quoted as saying you remember some bedrooms you have slept in. There are bedrooms you like to remember and others you would like to forget. How would other people describe your bedroom? The reason why bedroom furniture showrooms are able to sell is that they sell you the dream before they sell you the item. But before you get the dream bedroom, you need to focus on the best bedroom essentials to achieve the look and the dream.
Do you know which room in your home where you spend most of your time?
The average human being spends around 8 hours out of the 24-hour allocation for a day sleeping. This is a third of the hours in a day rounding off the figure to an approximate average of 230,000 hours in their lifetime. Since sleep takes place mainly in the bedroom, we are spending a third of lives in the bedroom.
This is why it crucial to have a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere in the bedroom. An uncomfortable, cluttered bedroom can cause poor sleep patterns and sleep disturbance according to a study by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. The following requirements go a long way to make your bedroom comfortable and organized. As a result, you have a relaxed atmosphere to retire to and a comfortable place to spend a third of your life.
Apart from focusing on the design of the bedroom, you also need to ensure you have the following furnishings to make sure you get a well-decorated room that will be your sanctuary.
1) A comfortable bed
What is a comfortable bed? This is defined as a bed that can take your weight, accommodate your girth and length and has a sturdy construction. There are six-bed designs that can make for a comfortable bed. These offer the optimum qualities of a bed that will result in healthy, restorative sleep.
a)Imperial touch design
This design recreates the luxurious beds of the era of royalty. It is low lying and features a lot of upholstery on the headboard, the sides and the edges of the bed. It also has intricate designs carved into the wooden parts of the bed frame. An imperial design is typically drenched in gold or silver display on the frame to exude opulence and sophistication.
b) Classic design
The classic design is your typical bed with a conventional style that features a headboard and the rest of the body of the bed is highly elevated off the floor. You can play around with the headboard of the bed to have an artistic design. Some people opt to keep the headboard shorter and have a painting above their heads instead.
This is the most popular bed design because of its traditional wooden frame design and affordability. It typically has no upholstery anywhere else except on the headboard if need be. It is not the fanciest bed but it offers stability and can be dressed to become extremely comfortable.
c) Romantic round bed design
The romantic round bed features a lot of upholstery and has a modern twist with the round body and rounded headboard. This is a very elegant bed with a heavy and stable base all throughout so you can sleep anywhere on it with the same level of comfort. The base is mainly made of springs and high-density foam that doesn’t budge with extended use.
d) Wrought iron design
Wrought iron is as strong and stable as the bed can come. This is a very minimalist design bed that offers you years and years of use without showing any signs of wear and tear. You can incorporate interesting designs on the headboard or keep it simple with a shed design. The wrought iron design introduces a clean feminine look with simple elegance.
e) Canopy design
This bed design has a wooden frame much like the classic bed design but it has been given additional wooden beams to enable it to accommodate the canopy effect. The frame is made up of bare wood but the canopies can be intricately designed to improve the aesthetic of the bed. You can also include the carving on the rims because this doesn’t interfere with the stability of the bed.
f) Modern design
The modern design interestingly utilizes irregular shapes, asymmetrical features and curves to achieve the same stability. The architects utilize designs that stretch from the ceiling to the floor so that the bed is stable on a sturdy platform.
Any of the above beds will provide the type of comfort you need in the bedroom. They are interesting advancements in technology that have enhanced the construction of each.
2) High-quality sheets
When it comes to choosing the best high-quality sheets, there are four things to consider: the thread count, material, fit and weave. With regard to the thread count the higher the better. Egyptian cotton offers premium comfort with a thread count of 300 to 400. Supima cotton is a close second with 200 to 400 thread count and so is percale with 250 to 400. Sateen has the highest thread count ranging between 300 and 600 and linen the lowest with 100 to 200. Some comparisons between sateen and Egyptian cotton conclude that the latter is more comfortable despite having a lower thread count. However, bamboo also gives sateen competition with a thread count of 300 and above.
Some materials can’t be judged by thread count so they are judged by weight. These include silk, flannel, jersey, and microfiber. When it comes to silk consider a weight between 14 and 19 pounds and for flannel anything labeled over five ounces or 170 grams per square meter is excellent. Microfiber weight should be between 90 and 120 grams per square meter. Finally, the jersey material should over ten ounces per yard.
This is the order of the best high-quality sheets:
Egyptian cotton: has long fibers and if completely organic. The cotton grows in Egypt and because it is all-natural it can be used in all seasons. It’s considered one of the most breathable materials and it’s also very durable. They wear out very well.
Silk: is costly but offers a luxurious feel to the skin and is completely hypoallergenic. It wicks moisture in the summer and keeps you warm and cozy in the colder months. This material is very durable and they fit very well.
Supima cotton: is a blend of cotton and some synthetic materials and sometimes other natural materials as well. The material is wrinkle resistant and even more durable than natural like Egyptian cotton.
Percale: This is closely woven material and it has a very neat finish. It’s firm and not glossy. You will notice it feels very firm against the skin.
Sateen: is made from spun threads and not filament. The yarn is woven by passing the weft yarn over warp yarn through a satin weave structure.
Bamboo: the plant is made into pulp which is dried and woven. The resulting material is soft and smooth on the skin. It’s a hypoallergenic material while also being anti-microbial. Bamboo sheets are thermo-regulating with long threads that feel plush.
Linen: is an all-natural material offering excellent breathability and moisture-wicking. Linen strands which are made from flax fibers don’t weave close and tight. That’s why it stays breathable and comfortable.
Flannel: is made from wool, cotton and other synthetic materials. It is extremely soft and very closely knit. It’s an excellent choice for the cold months but it can get very warm during the hot months.
Microfiber: This is a combination of synthetic materials like polyester and nylon. It is very thin and water-resistant. They feel smooth on the skin like silk and they are also very durable.
Jersey: is a knit as opposed to being woven making it very stretchy and comfortable. It feels like a t-shirt material that just wraps around you with maximum breathability.
Here is a quick secret: the higher the thread count is not always a mark of quality. Some materials are not well suited to having high thread counts which is why Egyptian cotton can beat sateen in terms of quality and comfort. And in some cases when a thread count is over 600 it has been engineered in some way.
3) The right mattress
There are 5 main types of mattresses that you should consider for a comfortable bedroom. A mattress is essential in keeping your body in the right sleeping form regardless of your sleeping style.
This is the best mattress because it conforms to your body as you sleep. It’s suited to side sleepers because it provides support at the shoulder and hip. The mattress actually partially surrounds your body and it doesn’t sag with extended use and age.
The innerspring mattress has metal springs fitted on the inside to provide support to your body. The more the number of springs the more stable the mattress. These are comfortable for back and tummy sleepers as their weight is evenly distributed on the spring base.
These mattresses are popular because they dissipate the heat from your body keeping you cool. They are actually foam mattresses with an additional layer of gel for this purpose.
The pillow top is also a memory foam mattress with an additional layer of cushy upholstery. These mattresses give you that sinking feeling that people equate to sleeping on a cloud.
The latex mattress utilizes late instead of memory foam. They are made with completely natural materials making them hypoallergenic and excellent for people with allergies. Plus, this type material offers different levels of firmness.
4) Plush pillows
A pillow is an investment in healthy sleep. The type of pillow you get is dependent on your sleeping style as well as your preferred pillow firmness and filling. Back sleepers need a soft, plush pillow because their neck and heads require minimal support. A dense pillow will extend your head too much forward.
Side sleepers need medium firmness to provide support to the neck and alignment of the head with the body. It will also provide support for the shoulder. A low-density pillow is a good fit for stomach sleepers as it offers very minimal support for the neck and head. They allow the body to remain aligned with the head. There are four levels of pillow firmness: soft, medium soft, firm and very firm.
why your pillow size?
The pillow size has a big impact on the quality of sleep one experiences. There are three pillow sizes to choose from: standard, queen and king. The standard pillow is 20 inches by 26 inches, the queen is 20 inches by 30 inches and the king is 20 inches by 36 inches. It’s important to choose the right pillows for your bed size. For example, two king-size pillows are a perfect fit for a king bed’s 72 inches width because they are each 36 inches in length.
Finally, consider the filling in the pillow. Pillows with memory foam are popular because like the memory foam mattress they contour to your head and neck. This provides custom support and relieves pressure points effectively. Another popular alternative is down which is the soft feathers from geese and ducks.
The feathers have a lot more give compared to memory foam so your neck and head just sinks into the pillow. There is also the option of down-alternative that has the same effect only the filling is synthetic. This is a great alternative to real down filling because it’s hypoallergenic. Other filling options can be cotton and polyester which are affordable although the cotton filling flattens out over time. The polyester will hold the shape for longer but it isn’t as breathable as cotton filling.
5) Cozy duvets/quilts
Quilts are associated with traditional artistic bed coverings with different patterns patched together. It features three parts including the top later, center batting, and the bottom fabric. The top is thin and the batting is not too heavy making them ideal for use in warm months. The duvet, on the other hand, is a heavier bedding topper that is filled with a down or a down alternative. The type of filling determines how warm the duvet will be. They are excellent alternatives to blankets.
How to pick the right duvet?
In both options look for labeling like 100% pure down, all down or pure down. But if you are allergic to pure down you can choose hypoallergenic down alternative duvets.
Also, look for the fill power on the packaging. For lightweight use choose a fill power of 400 and below. Any duvet with a fill power of 400 to 600 is excellent for use all throughout the year. In the cold opt for a fill power of 600 to 800 and if you are a cold sleeper struggling with the winter chill choose a fill power of above 800. The higher the fill power the lower the weight of the duvet.
It’s important to look at the finish of the duvet/quilt as well. Duvets that don’t have extra stitching become lumpy with time as the filling shifts around instead of staying evenly spread. The warm duvets have baffle stitching because they feature small baffles of fabric that hold the down in place while retaining high loft. You also have the quilt stitching finish which looks like the baffle stitching but without the fabric baffles.
Whereas the baffle stitching and quilt stitching feature a checkerboard pattern, the channel construction has channels running across the duvet. This is allows the down to shift so that if you have a partner who prefers less warmth you can shift more down to your side. Lastly there is the gusset construction which has walls on the edge of the duvet to give it more loft. They are the coziest duvets but they also cost more.
6) Ample lighting
Lamps are important for creating the right ambiance in the bedroom not to mention that they illuminate the space. They can make the space cozier and you can play around with them to create the mood you want. The best way to light your room is by layering the lights in the room.
Ambient light is for providing general lighting to the room and you can use a chandelier, ceiling lights or pendant lights for this purpose. It is not bright focused light but sufficient enough to give you ample visibility in the room.
Task light for more focused activities like applying makeup or reading. It can be a table lamp or a low hanging pendant light that is bright enough for you to focus on your task. Utilized properly they can be used as ambient light as well. For the lights in the bedroom consider having a dimmer to make the lights multipurpose is a good idea. You can have one light and a dimmer that transitions it from a task light to ambient light according to your needs.
Another layer of lights in the bedroom are the accent lights. These are lights that focus on a particular item like artwork.
Make sure you know your preferred level of brightness (lumens) before buying bulbs for the bedroom in order to determine the type of dimmer to buy.
Finally, consider buying lighting colors that are conducive to the bedroom. Many people are opting for LED lights because they offer the whole color temperature gamut. But you can also invest in halogen bulbs which have a soft glow. Make sure you have plenty of natural light as well. Layered lights can include candles, table lamps and natural light working together.
7) Best colors
When it comes to the bedroom muted colors work best but that doesn’t mean you have to be boxed in to work with what we like to call calm colors. You can have color accents to compliment the calmer colors and adds some vibrance into space. Alternatively, use colorful wallpaper strips on one wall.
The best colors for the bedroom remain soothing neutrals like taupe, ivory, gray and white or pastels like lavender, soft blues, yellow, green and pink. All these colors are sophisticated and they work well with the colors of the beddings.
If you would like to introduce expressive colors try one wall in the room while leaving the rest with the calmer colors. However, keep the colors light in order to give the room an air of space and brightness.
Dark colors tend to make space look smaller.
8) Layered rugs
Layered rugs give the bedroom a comfortable feel and make it warm and cozy on cold nights. Nothing beats walking out of the shower and onto a soft rug in your bedroom. Create a landing spot just next to the bed where your feet touch immediately you get off the bed. This can be done n top of another rug or on the bare floor. It is okay to layer pattern over pattern or cover the entire bedroom floor with rugs.
You can also embrace animal print rugs which can be the focal point in the bedroom or invest in the plush, tasseled Turkish rugs that are vibrant and warm.
9) Good curtains
When placing curtains in the bedroom make sure the rod is highly placed as possible to give the impression of a high ceiling. This creates the illusion of space. You can choose to use patterned or plain curtains but if you opt for patterned fabric make sure you don’t have other patterns in the room.
Instead, use a plain fabric that will bring cohesiveness to the elements in the room. If you have a minimal pattern in the room considers a patterned curtain fabric to introduce vibrancy into space.
Consider doubling up the fabric to give you full curtains and volume. This makes the bedroom look luxurious and invitingly cozy.
10) Storage units
A well organized and designed bedroom should have storage space for your clothes and other personal items. However, some spaces come without closets so you have invested in a portable one. You can make an average-sized closet depending on your space or a huge one. Just make sure it doesn’t swallow all the space up because that beats the purpose of de-cluttering the bedroom space. If you are building a closet, build it based on the amount of space you need.
Once in place all similar clothes together like shirts, t-shirts, and pants among others. Consider a design with top and bottom hanging space. This makes sure the closet remains neat and with a lot of visible room all the time. If you can install some lights inside the closet in order to illuminate your clothes when you are choosing them. It’s a good idea to have additional storage for foldable clothes and shoes. Plus, if you get the storage units nicely done they act as statement furniture pieces in the bedroom.
11) Beautiful artwork
Now that your storage is in place, your bed is comfortable and inviting and your lighting is just perfect, don’t forget to hang up a beautiful piece of artwork to up the ante. In the bedroom setting an abstract piece of art is always a good fit. It introduces a funky look to what would otherwise be considered a very calm room. Landscapes and portraits belong in the sitting room where they can be admired and spark conversation. Abstract art that features soothing colors and shapes is more of a personal reflection piece of art that belongs in your personal sanctuary.
Make sure the piece is large scale and the frames are minimalistic as well. A simple frame will enhance the artwork and not compete with it.
A well-done bedroom is a place of refuge when the world has beat you down. We all need a place to regroup, have a nice cry, and sometimes just lie on the floor and lose all semblance of decorum. Make your bedroom a haven for yourself and it will continue to reward your effort at the end of every day.