Rebecca Deczynski

Esmé Stern

Published on August 29, 2019

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Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

Your bedroom is the first thing you see each morning and the last thing you see at night—so it pretty much goes without saying that the design should make you happy. This is where you go to rest, retreat, and reconnect. Maybe an all-white minimal look is what you need to be lulled off to sleep, or perhaps you’d prefer something with bolts of color and pattern (like Garance Doré‘s larger-than-life headboard and matching wall mural, above) to recharge your creative well. 

We dipped into our archives for the best bedroom ideas to give you all the inspiration you need to get started. After all, there are so many opportunities to channel your ultimate room beyond just your nightstand and bedspread. A bit of extra effort (wallpaper! plants! paint!) goes a long way to creating a space that feels special and very you.  

Go for Statement Wallpaper 

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Photography by Cody Guilfoyle

Photographer and artist Edith Young’s Royal Tenenbaums-inspired wallpaper makes her New York City bedroom a perfect combination of quirky and cozy. Note to all wallpaper enthusiasts: solid-hued accents, like the white shelving, help neutralize and ground the brighter pops of color. 

Try an Unexpected Color Combo

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Photography by Heidi’s Bridge

Designer Aelfie Oudghiri’s Bridgehampton cottage channels coastal-cool and proves any color combo is possible if you’re willing to take a risk. In the guest room, Oudghiri paired an electric plum rug with one of her bedspread designs featuring hints of coral and a similar purple hue. The surprisingly cohesive color scheme took on a vibrant life of its own. 

Layer Up

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Photography by Skye Parrot

To really add visual interest, layer rich materials like Susan and Ben Work did in their San Francisco bedroom. A furry throw, velvet pillows, and a brass nightstand and table lamp create a luxe, inviting corner to curl up in. 

Keep Things Minimalist 

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Photography by Laure Joliet

Clean, neutral palettes make your space feel airy and calming. Erin Fetherston’s peaceful Los Angeles bedroom is the definition of streamlined, with black, white, and cream acting as the main backdrop, while dark green plants and wood accents add touches of warmth. Sometimes, less really is more.

Set the Tone  

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Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

Monochrome is hard to get right without having things be too repetitive or boring. But Garance Doré’s master bedroom in Los Angeles artfully plays with texture (velvet headboard, layered bedding, cool objects and art) to make the deep indigo palette really sing. The result: a zen space where she can clear her head and recharge. 

Bring In Textured Details

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Photography by Veerle Evens

Marbleized-print curtains and patterned cabinetry add dimension to the London bedroom of designer Jo Sampson. We also love leaning a large artwork against a wall for a more casual approach to displaying your favorite pieces.

Create a Sanctuary 

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Photography by Meghan McNeer

It doesn’t get much better than waking up underneath a toile canopy. Take a style cue from the Firehouse Hotel in Los Angeles and mix graphic throw pillows with streamlined storage.

Master an Artful Mural

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Photography by Thayer

In a twist, the Napa Valley bedroom of Minted CEO and founder Mariam Naficy features a wall mural rather than an artwork to frame the bed (the decision was as much for safety—West Coast earthquakes—as aesthetics). No matter where you are, a dreamy watercolor instantly transforms the space into a restful hideaway.

Expand on the Usual Headboard

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Photo by Alexandra Ribar

The Malachite-print wallpaper in this Columbus, Ohio, bedroom keeps things interesting while doing double duty as both statement wall and dramatic headboard. Consider us captivated.

Don’t Forget That Novelty Pillow 

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photography by aaron bengochea

Custom terrazzo nightstands, an on-trend cane headboard, and an antennae-like double sconce—there are so many amazing details in Caitlin Mociun’s bedroom. Yet the first thing we noticed was her massive banana pillow. A playful accent with smile-inducing appeal always looks good. 

Rethink a Classic Color

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photography by laura sumrak

In this Charlotte, North Carolina, home the navy bedroom is a dramatic contrast to the rest of the light and airy space. A heather gray bedspread (as opposed to a bright white one) and deep emerald headboard prevent the palette from feeling too sailor-chic, even with a striped side table in the mix.

Spotlight a Cool Pattern

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Photography by LAURE JOLIET

The trick to making this stunning wallpaper feel cohesive with the rest of the room? Choosing a few key colors from the motif and investing in bedding and textiles in similar hues that play well together.

Personalize Your Gallery Wall

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Photography by Cody Guilfoyle

Just when we thought we’d seen every type of gallery wall, the seascape-inspired master bedroom from Laura Grabe’s beachy Connecticut home popped up. For similar impact, hang your frames from floor all the way to ceiling. Grabe also had her children paint over a few of the vintage paintings, for a truly personal touch.

Transform the Room with Plants 

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Photography by JARED SOARES

If there’s one thing we learned from Hilton Carter‘s cotton mill-turned-plant-heaven-loft, it’s that there is no such thing as having too much greenery—especially in the bedroom (all that fresh air while you’re sleeping has to be good for you!). Every surface—the floor, the ceiling, the window ledge—is an opportunity to branch out. 

Find Your Power Palette

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Photography by Jessica Antola

Gravitating towards neutral paint colors to keep things calm and streamlined in the bedroom is understandable. But allow the bold sunset-hued space of DJ and artist Mia Moretti to serve as inspiration for going with a less expected palette. We feel instantly energized.

Punch Up Pastels With Primary Hues

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Photography by Jessica Antol

Just like a classic red lip, adding a bolt of lipstick red (or another primary shade) can completely transform an otherwise muted bedroom. Soft pastels and neutrals vibrate when paired with a daring accent color. Too much design drama? Incorporate brighter shades in smaller patterns, like Angela Chrusciaki Blehm did with the bedding and artwork.  

Embrace the Understated

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Photography by CODY GUILFOYLE

Consider this bedroom an exercise in modern simplicity at its best. Skip the superfluous accents and opt for a setup that includes just the essentials: white sheets, blonde wood nightstand, and a basket to store only the necessities.

Get Creative with Your Headboard

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Photography by cody guilfoyle

A French-tufted mattress in olive green velvet stands in as a headboard, adding rich texture and a cozy vibe to the subdued bedroom.

Channel a Moody Moonscape

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Photography by martyn thompson

Deep blues and soft greys rule in the bedroom of textile designer and photographer Martyn Thompson, who displays his far-out fabrics on the wall, lampshades, and bedding for a cosmic cocoon effect that’s truly dreamy. 

Mix and Match

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Photography by PATRICK CLINE

There is no rule for sticking to one decorative style in your bedroom. Play with a few elements, such as pattern (stripes and maximalist florals, for example) and color scheme (hello, red and mint), to create a one-of-a-kind space.

Put the Focus on the Ceiling

Aurora James Brother Vellies Brown and White BedroomPin It
Photography by JENNY GAGE AND TOM BETTERTON

Hang lush greenery over your bed in lieu of a traditional pendant light and wake up to what feels like sleeping in a jungle nook. 

Paint It Black

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Photography by NICOLE FRANZEN

White isn’t the only neutral backdrop. Everything pairs well with a black room (think: fuchsia bedspread and matching artwork). Plus, you’re sure to sleep well in a darker room. 

Add Vibrant Florals 

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If permanent pops of color aren’t your thing (or you get bored easily), try rotating a vase of fresh florals next to your bed in a rainbow of hues. Filling the room with fragrant blooms is an instant mood-booster, too.

Opt for Low-Profile Lighting

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Photography by Molly Culver

Swap that clunky table lamp for a wall-mounted sconce that’s minimal in size but not in impact, so small space-dwellers don’t have to choose.

Use Art as a Headboard

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Photography by Aaron Bengochea

Hanging a large art work above your pillows frames the bed and creates a nice personal touch that can be switched up seasonally, unlike the usual headboard.  

Set Your Space Aglow

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Photography by Aaron Bengochea

Give your bedroom the megawatt treatment with a neon sign, like this electric pink design spotted at Timothy Goodman’s NYC studio apartment. The personalized text is an ode to his love for jazz music.  

Commit to a Favorite Color

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photography by Jeff Anzulewicz

This small bedroom’s unapologetic use of color, on everything from the bed frame to the curtains, actually distracts from the space’s limited dimensions and has an expansive effect.

Include a Little Shimmer

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Photography by Kapito Muller

Tight on space? Mirrored furniture gives the illusion of a larger bedroom. Choose a reflective nightstand or armoire to maximize a small layout (and who doesn’t want a touch of glam?). 

See more bedroom inspiration:
5 Headboard Alternatives You Can DIY This Weekend
We Asked 3 Designers Exactly How to Lay Out a Master Bedroom
I Tried West Elm’s New Bedding Rental Program—Here’s What Happened

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