Needing to fill a large bedroom is a good problem to have. A room that’s mostly dedicated to sleeping and reading Liane Moriarty novels doesn’t need much furniture, but if you’re blessed with bonus floor space, a big boudoir can quickly feel chasmal.
It’s also tempting to fill your palatial bedroom with too much furniture, turning it into a showroom or dusty museum exhibition. The trick is to find the pieces you need that suit the scale of the room. Bigger is better! And it’s important to delineate, or divide, the space into zones for different purposes. Then, you’ll need to choose the right colours, fabrics, lighting, rugs…
Here are 10 expert decorating ideas to help your large bedroom feel more cosy and cocoon-like.
1. Scale-up your furniture and decor
Think big. To do a large bedroom justice, you need large pieces of furniture, says Kathryn Borglund, Interior Designer and Stylist at House of Hanalei.
“With larger bedrooms, I scale up the bed, nightstands and table lamps,” explains Kathryn. “There is also the opportunity to incorporate additional furniture, such as a bed-end bench, which frames a bedroom beautifully; it allows you to introduce another pattern or texture into the scheme, too.”
A king or super-king sized bed is a must in a bedroom with a big layout, paired with a taller bedhead — such as one that’s 1400-millimetres-high — says Joy Simonsen, Senior Interior Designer at Coco Republic. “Wide and large bedside tables with storage will also fill the wall area; top them with table lamps to create more height.”
2. Create zones within your large bedroom
“Use a sofa, chaise lounge or pair of chairs to create a separate sitting area for TV watching or reading,” suggests Joy. “This may entail reducing the bed size from a king to a queen in order to utilise more floor space as needed. To ensure flow around the bed and any additional furniture, the space between needs to be as wide as a doorway.”
If your room is square, dedicate a cosy corner of the room for relaxing, with a large armchair and ottoman, plus a side table and floor lamp.
3. Carve out a study nook or makeup station
Make your bedroom work harder, by incorporating a makeup station or office nook into your layout. “I would make the study nook adaptable so you can switch off when not working,” suggests Kathryn.
“A movable wall or door that can shut the space off is a smart way of having the best of both worlds. You can also hide work clutter away easily, so the room doesn’t feel messy and you can pick up where you left off when you return to your desk.”
4. Pop an upholstered ottoman at the end of the bed
If your master bedroom can’t accommodate a relaxation zone with occasional chairs, consider an end-of-bed upholstered bench or ottoman — with or without storage — advises Joy.
“This could be a single piece or perhaps two separate ottoman benches, which can be used elsewhere in the house where additional seating is needed, such as the living room.”
5. Layer your lighting with lamps
Ambiance in a bedroom is so important, says Joy, and this can be achieved by decorating with different types of lighting.
“Dimmable down lights, wall sconces and table lamps, for example,” Joy explains. “Floor lamps and table lamps add soft mood lighting in a bedroom, which helps you to relax and unwind after a busy day.”
6. Hang a statement pendant or chandelier
For a large master bedroom where the bed is the focus, a statement pendant or chandelier hanging from the centre of the ceiling works well, particularly for a classic or Hamptons-style interior, says Joy.
“Pendant lighting on either side of the bed, centred over bedside tables, would help to create symmetry in the room,” she suggests.
7. Paint your large bedroom using restful colours
“Choose colours that are soothing and restful, such as blues and greens or any of the beautiful tones taken from nature,” says Joy. “Steer clear of loud and bright colours, such as red and orange, since these evoke emotional energy and can enhance stress and anxiety.”
To create a cosy, intimate atmosphere in an oversized bedroom, choose colours that add depth and warmth to the room, suggests Shirley Platcher, Colour Manager for British Paints. “Deep dark colours like British Paints Kara Sea, which is a deep blue, or greys like British Paints Rhino Grey or Portal Grey can make a large room appear intimate and cosy. Deep purples can also add a touch of moodiness to the room.”
Echoing Joy’s advice, Shirley agrees that you can’t go wrong with muted greens, such as British Paints Planet Care. “This creates a sense of calm and adds a relaxed feel to the space,” says Shirley.
8. Hang heavier curtains and anchor zones with rugs
If you have a large bedroom, you’re lucky. You can decorate with sheer curtains or denser curtains — or both. If you actually want to make your bedroom seem smaller and cosier, the heavier the drape the better.
9. Add a four-poster bed to a large bed
Once de rigueur in royal/presidential suites, modern-day four-poster beds are more modest and accessible to all. They can also make your bedroom layout seem less cavernous.
“If your bedroom has high ceilings, a four-poster bed looks incredible and creates a big impact in a space,” says Kathryn. “It’s always on my wish list as you don’t see four-poster beds too often in Australia. The dramatic effect of the height instantly makes the bed feel intimate.”
Check the ceiling height first, advises Joy. The taller, the better. “If poles are too close to the ceiling this could make the room feel smaller,” Joy explains.
10. Load up the bed with fluffy linen
Start with crisp, white linen bed sheets, a marshmallowy quilt and a ribbed jacquard quilt cover. This creates a soft, effortless look that can be paired with almost anything, advises Kathryn.
“To add an extra layer of cosiness, I introduce texture and pattern using cushions and throws. I love to use the Linen Euro Pillow Cases from Dri-Glo; Euro cushions also work a treat with a four-poster bed,” she says.
As a rule, for a minimal aesthetic on a king bed, Kathryn uses four sleep pillows and two display cushions, potentially with a throw. For a more luxurious coastal look, she layers two sleep pillows with two Euros and four decorative cushions.