Expecting your bedroom to look Pinterest-worthy everyday is not realistic, but even the blandest bedroom can look more expensive with the help of simple bedroom ideas. You’ll be amazed by how much a small change, like hanging a picture on the wall, can transform a so-so sleep space into something that feels stylish and inviting.
The first step to elevating the look and feel of your bedroom is to run a critical eye over the room and identify all of the areas that don’t look so great. Is it a cluttered wardrobe? Is it a tangle of phone charging cords on top of the bedside table? Is it the sad chair in the corner of the room, barely visible beneath that pile of clothing (you know the one, the one occupying the liminal space between not quite clean enough to go back in the wardrobe, yet not quite dirty enough to go in the wash)? Perhaps it’s mis-matched bedding, or a doona that is slightly too small for the mattress. Maybe it’s a cheap bed frame or even an empty corner that’s not being used to its full potential.
Then it’s just a matter of rectifying these problems. Luckily, all of these gripes have one thing in common: they can be addressed with straightforward styling tweaks that also happen to be budget-friendly. Here are 10 simple decorating ideas that will instantly elevate your bedroom.
1. Conceal clutter
Getting rid of visual clutter will have the biggest impact on your bedroom, and the best part is, it won’t cost you a cent. In fact, if you sell unwanted items such as clothing and furniture, it could even make you money. Invest in pieces of furniture that have in-built storage, and take advantage of underutilised storage potential (think: under-the-bed storage boxes and wall shelves or hooks). Phone charging cords are also a common source of clutter, but can be easily managed by drilling a hole in the back of a bedside drawer, or cable management accessories. Replace a collection of empty water bottles with a stylish carafe that does double duty as decor.
2. Organise clothing
Disorganised clothing can quickly cheapen the look of even the most stylish bedroom. If piles of clothing regularly take over your room, it’s a sign that something isn’t working. Declutter your wardrobe by ditching items that no longer fit or that you no longer wear. Then, create a system for the clothes that you’ve worn but that aren’t quite dirty – a stylish woven basket, an over-the-door rail or even a timber clothing rack are some solutions that may work for you.
3. Select (and stick to) a design vision
Think about how you want your bedroom to look and try not to deviate from the plan. You can find inspiration on Pinterest by pinning all of the bedroom images that catch your eye. Or you can find inspiration in an existing style, such as Hamptons, coastal, Scandi, minimalist or country style.
4. Tonal bedding
Decorating with colour well is difficult, even for experienced interior designers. To achieve an expensive look without taking a crash course in colour theory, invest in tonal bedding. White on white is a foolproof option, but other great options include white with warm neutrals (think white and oatmeal), or bedding that layers a few different shades of warm green. When you stick to a tonal colour palette, your sheets will look expensive (even if they’re not!)
5. Bed skirt or valance
A cheap bed frame can quickly derail your beautiful bedroom aspirations. If buying a whole new bed frame isn’t a possibility, consider concealing it instead. A bed skirt or valance that matches your bedding will make your bed look like it was professionally styled.
6. Order the quilt a size up
Aside from preventing bedtime blanket battles, ordering a quilt that is slightly larger than the mattress size will create a plush, professionally styled look. For example, if you have a queen bed, order a king-sized quilt. If you have a king-sized bed, order an extra-large king-sized quilt – and so on. Nothing looks worse than a quilt that is too small for the bed – it ends up making the whole room look stingy and sad. The idea is to create layers that drape luxuriously over the edges of the bed.
Nothing creates a cosy and calming atmosphere in a bedroom quite like sheer curtains swaying gently in the breeze. Professionally-installed curtains can cost a fortune, but it is possible to achieve a similar look on a budget.
If you are going the DIY route, make sure to select curtains that are wider than the window you’re dressing (you want the fabric to look draped and flowy when they’re fully closed, not stretched to the limit), invest in S-bend or concealed tab curtains where possible (they just look more expensive than eyelet curtains) and hang the curtain rod or track about 10cm above the top of the window (it will make the ceiling look higher).
8. Replace light covers
Another simple change you can make to a bedroom is to replace the light covers. Swap out stock standard flush mount dome lights for a stylish shade. It’s easy to find DIY batten fix ceiling lights from about $50 which makes this an affordable and effective bedroom update.
9. Wall art
Let your bedroom reflect your personality by hanging art you love on the walls. You want your bedroom to feel calming, so select artwork that evokes peace and tranquility. Landscapes, still life paintings and botanical prints are excellent for this. You don’t need to cover every inch of wall space in art (gallery walls tend to bring a lot of energy and busy-ness into a space) so start with just 1-3 pieces of art.
10. Style the awkward corner
Don’t let a perfectly good corner go to waste. Add a bookshelf, an indoor plant, a side table and a comfy armchair and you’ve got yourself a reading nook! Other ways to use an underutilised corner of your bedroom include: music corner, yoga station or a dressing table.