The bedroom conundrum.

14 Apr

A few weeks ago, I showed you our gorgeous apartment. I neglected to include our bedroom in any of those photos, though. Why?

Mostly because we had a decorating budget when we moved in, and it went towards things like our first dining room table (yay!), a new couch (our old one wouldn’t fit up the stairs) and a bookshelf. Because really, hundreds of books stacked against a wall might look creative, but when you have a dog who runs the cat around for fun, they wouldn’t be stacked for long.

Since summer is coming up and we’re fairly certain we’ll be allowed to stay for only an extra $25-$35/month we’ve decided to tackle the bedroom and make it a better place to live once and for all. My issues with it are as follows:

1) It’s about 10×10, with a teeny closet and only one window.

2) Said window looks out onto a brick wall.

3) The paint color we chose to cover the dark brown (!) that was there when we moved in looked like a blush peach under the incandescent tester box at Lowe’s, but in our really, really, REALLY dimly lit room, it looks very pink.

Don’t believe me?

That photo was taken just before noon, when the sun is best in here, with all the lightbulbs on, adjusted white balance, an almost wide-open aperture, and a low shutter speed.

When we moved in, we were coming from a cushy 13×15 room with a normal-sized closet and room to walk around the bed. Being, well, us, we got all excited about the prospect of a new bed, and fell in love with this chunky wood bedframe from West Elm:


It looked gorgeous in the wide-open store, but it’s not so gorgeous when you stub your toe on that corner every single morning because you’re severely near-sighted and can’t clear the itty bitty corner where there’s maybe a foot of space between the radiator and the edge of the bed. Not that I know this from experience, or anything.

So what are we going to do about this?

Well, first and foremost: daylight bulbs. I know it’s not the same as sunlight, and I actually used to hate them. But I really hate how yellow incandescents are in there. I think the yellow tint is fine when you have real daylight to balance it out, but it just doesn’t work in an almost completely dark room.

And then, we’re putting a little money in it. If we’re going to live here for at least two more years, I think it’s worth it!

Chunky bed, goodbye. Hello canopy:


Plain white duvet that we’re too lazy to dress up when the room looks kind of crappy? You’ve been replaced. I don’t have a picture of the actual quilt, because I found it forgotten in the clearance corner of the store from who knows how many months (and markdowns, score!) ago. But my inspiration was this sheet set from Anthropologie:

Also, it needs to be said that we are not DIY people. Never has this been more obvious than when we tried to stain those $20 raw wood Ikea nightstands. We basically gave up on them, and have been using these pathetic excuses for nightstands for almost a year. They’re also really small, with sorry excuses for drawers. So, we’re looking forward to replacing them with a nightstand from Urban Outfitters and a dresser from Ikea:

and to top it off, we’re painting. This is going to be the toughest, because we don’t want a repeat of the shade looking good on the swatch, but not on the walls. We’ll paint little samples, of course, but would love any tips on finding the right shade off the bat. I’m also really terrible with finding inspiration colors and then not being able to match them to swatches well. So here is what we’re going for:



Side note: how freaking cute is that dog? Sunday would look just as cute in that room.

So, this transformation will take awhile to save up for and complete, but I’m looking forward to the process! I would love any tips from you renovation and design goddesses (I’m talking to you, Kelsey, AmandaKristin, and Nicole!)


12 Responses to “The bedroom conundrum.”

  1. Colleen C April 14, 2011 at 12:22 pm #

    I love the canopy bed. It’s my dream to have one some day. My husband thinks it’s too girly. Boo!

  2. Krysten April 14, 2011 at 12:29 pm #

    Our bedroom is the last place we plan on decorating because it’s the room that no one really sees. However it’s a bummer that it’s just kind of thrown together! I can’t wait to make it our room.

  3. Amanda April 14, 2011 at 12:43 pm #

    What a dim room! You are totally on the right track of wanting to brighten that space up a little bit. I think a little paint and lightbulb work will do the trick. One of my friends, Jess @ Living the Swell Life, painted her son’s room Robin’s Nest by benjamin moore, which is a similar color to the inspiration ones you have here. Hope that helps and Happy Remodeling to you! 🙂

  4. Blueberries For Me April 14, 2011 at 1:04 pm #

    We have a bout of foot of space on either side of our king bed. Oh well – free bed and a cheap apartment, that’s what you get!

  5. Jessica April 14, 2011 at 1:08 pm #

    That wall color is going to look awesome and definitely will brighten the room up.

    I’m loving that canopy bed! I really need a change from our giant cherry wood sleigh bed. The damn thing us GINORMOUS.

  6. Steph April 14, 2011 at 1:09 pm #

    Updating and redecorating is always fun! I love all of your choices thus far.. especially the room color! I’m a nut for anything turquoise/teal.

  7. loftyappetite April 14, 2011 at 1:26 pm #

    I love these inspirations. Be sure to show us your before and afters when you finish this project!! Are these some of your pinterest inspirations? I think I commented before saying that I was still figuring out Pinterest when you mentioned it. And if you’ve seen my post today, it’s official, I’m obsessed! What’s your username? Or add me, it would be fun to share our home decor inspirations since we are both working on home projects!

  8. Abby April 14, 2011 at 2:52 pm #

    I swooned when I saw that canopy bed — I love it!

  9. Amanda April 14, 2011 at 3:29 pm #

    I love all the inspiration! That bed is to die for!!! Last time we picked out paint at Home Depot they had a really awesome thing where you could test what the color might look like in different lighting – you just held the swatch under the light. It obviously won’t tell you exactly how it will look in your room, but that helped us narrow it down a LOT. We used it on the gray for our living room, and the color ended up being absolutely perfect! Good luck finding one that you love! 🙂

  10. Erin April 14, 2011 at 9:01 pm #

    Such great ideas… I can’t wait to see the final result! We currently have a BRIGHT yellow guest bedroom, that was supposed to look way different when we looked at it at Home Depot. Isn’t that so annoying, after all the work that goes into painting?

  11. Kira@hernewleaf April 15, 2011 at 12:42 am #

    That wall color looks very similar to the color we have in our living/dining room (ours is maybe a tiny bit paler). It’s called Adriatic Mist by Behr (from Home Depot) and I love it! I can’t wait to see it! Maybe check out House of Turquoise ( for more color inspiration.

  12. Marissa April 20, 2011 at 3:03 pm #

    Love all the furniture inspiration pcs. We {Mr and me} are so not DIY people either. I so envious of all the DIY’ers out there. They make it look so easy and beautiful. Gosh I have always wanted a canopy bed!

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