Small-Room Solutions: Bedroom

With a little paint, restful bedding, and debonair window treatments, even the most awkward room can blossom into a haven of relaxation.


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detail of headboard
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Make Your Bed

    Space Saver: Stick to one bold piece of furniture to fill the room with character.

    Fashion your own graphic headboard with playful and chic stencils. To duplicate this look, cut a curvy headboard from medium density fiberboard (MDF) and paint a base coat. When it's dry, use a stencil roller to apply a trendy damask design in a cool contrasting color. Continue the theme by stenciling your design on accent pillows, too.

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Cozy and Elegant

    Space Saver: Use a canopy to draw the eye up and create the illusion of a high ceiling.

    Frame a headboard with a canopy to draw the eye up to the ceiling. A simple swag of fabric loosely draped over two swing-arm curtain rods positioned just below the ceiling gives this cozy cottage room a romantic and elegant finish.

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Small Wonder

    Space Saver: Make low ceilings feel higher with color.

    Hide the seam line where the wall meets the low, sloped ceiling in an attic bedroom. This simple and sleek headboard tricks the eye into thinking the ceiling is straighter and higher than it really is. To replicate this custom look, cut a piece of medium density fiberboard (MDF) to the height of your ceiling, then apply primer and several coats of paint. And for extra clutter-busting storage efficiency, try using a small chest or dresser as a bedside table.

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Front and Center

    Space Saver: Use windows as the focal point, centering furniture in front of them.

    Conventional decorating wisdom says to position a bed against a wall, not in front of a window where it might block light and views. But in a small room, options are limited, and it's often better to create a strong focal point with a bed than to awkwardly push it to one side. A bank of bay windows creates a natural nook for this bed, and the pretty window treatments give the illusion of a canopy.

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Romantic Getaway

    Space Saver: Use neutral colors on the walls and on the bed to make a space feel larger.

    Crisp white bedding paired with luscious folds of gauzy netting takes this master suite from ordinary to exotic. Two mismatched bamboo side tables amplify the mood while providing practical storage in breezy, see-through style.

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Head of the Bed

    Space Saver: Create a focal point to distract from the small space.

    In this petite bedroom, a oversized headboard commands attention without being overbearing. This tall, tufted headboard, upholstered in a neutral tone, provides a resting place for the eye amidst a bold wallpaper and vibrant drapes.

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Raise the Roof

    Space Saver: Choose sleek furniture that won't take up too much visual space.

    Create a strong focal point and the illusion of grandeur with a four-poster. The thin lines of this metal bed frame add lofty ambience without weighing down the room.

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Stunning Stripes

    Space Saver: Use vertical stripes to draw the eye toward the ceiling and make the room seem instantly larger.

    Drawing the eye upward is an age-old trick for making a small room feel larger. Vertical striped wallpaper does the job in this bedroom. You can also make a ceiling seem higher by hanging curtains above the top of the window frame.

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Perfect Paneling

    Space Savers: Dress up the walls.

    Walls done in beaded board bring texture, visual height, and country cottage flair to the petite bedroom. Tall lamps bedside also help draw the eye upward.

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Paint an Accent Wall

    Space Saver: Create the illusion of depth.

    Paint a single wall a dark color to create the illusion of depth. Crisp white walls and trim add a striking contrast to this bedroom's chocolate wall. The headboard's geometric pattern ties the two wall colors together, and the yellow accents add a pop of color.

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Reflective Qualities

    Space Savers: Use an oversize mirror to make the room appear larger.

    A tall mirror casually propped against a wall adds dimension to a small room by reflecting natural light and the glow from lamps.

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Storage-Packed Headboards

    Space Saver: Eliminate the need for extra furniture by putting the walls to work.

    Built-ins above and next to the bed are great for small spaces. Store books and alarm clocks on shelves without taking up precious floor space. These displays also create instant artwork.

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Underbed Storage

    Space Saver: Use the space under the bed.

    Take advantage of the floor space under the bed to store linens, clothes, and shoes. Fill lidded baskets and slide them under the bed. Prevent scratched floors or snagged carpets by adding stick-on furniture sliders from a hardware store or home center to the bottoms of the baskets.

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