How to Arrange Bedroom Furniture for the Ultimate Sleeping Space

Learn how to arrange a bedroom to suit your morning-to-night needs and take some design cues from these primary, guest, and children's bedroom layout ideas.

At some point in recent history, bedrooms became multipurpose spaces: They're playrooms for our kiddos, a go-to location for work-from-home nooks, and the ideal TV hangout spot, since everyone knows beds are cozier than couches. We expect our bedrooms to be packed with practical storage, while also (somehow) feeling restful. If bedrooms were our employees, they'd be demanding a raise, because we've driven them far outside their job description.

Whether your space is large or small, figuring out how to arrange bedroom furniture to accommodate all of these roles can feel like a tricky puzzle with too many factors to consider. But with the help of home experts and smart design strategies, we've come up with 12 layouts for primary, guest, and children's bedrooms that maximize space and promote comfort.

bedroom metal post bed
Laura Moss

1. Feng Shui Bedroom

Although feng shui is achieved through furniture arrangement, it's mostly something you feel. You'll sense the harmony right away—and in a sleeping space, this mood shift begins with your bed: Place your frame in the "command position," with a wall or sturdy headboard behind it, room to crawl in on either side, and a view of the door, without directly facing it. Establish visual balance with symmetrical accessories: pairs of nightstands, lamps, and pillows.

work desk with gold accents in bedroom
David A. Land

2. Small Bedroom

If your sleeping quarters are tight, look up for an easy solution. "Small living means utilizing vertical spaces," says home therapist Anita Yokota. Her go-to moves: installing attractive, catch-all wall hooks and hanging plants and lights from the ceiling to free up the tops of dressers and nightstands. Pick furniture that does double-duty, like a headboard with shelves, a bed with drawers underneath, or bookshelves in lieu of nightstands. If your bedroom is also an office, "swap in a petite desk on one side of the bed," suggests designer Emilie Munroe. "It's chic and functional."

master bedroom with blue tufted headboard bed
Jonny Valiant

3. Large Bedroom

For large bedroom furniture arrangements, think in zones. "Figure out the bed first, then how you want to experience the rest of the spaces," advises designer Linda Hayslett. Don't limit yourself to a reading nook or seating area. Why not create a home office, a yoga spot, or a crafts corner? "It comes down to your goals and lifestyle. Design for that," Yokota says. Each zone should be an island with its own accessories like rugs and lights. "Otherwise they'll feel like an afterthought," Munroe cautions. A consistent color palette will unite the spaces.

bedroom tufted headboard
Brie Williams

4. Bedroom with Furniture in Front of a Window

How you arrange bedroom furniture is often dictated by the room's layout. If the best spot for your bed is on a wall with windows, as in the bedroom of designer Beth Barden (shown above), create "architecture" behind it: Think columns of curtains and a substantial headboard that makes the bed, not the window, the focal point. The right one will act as a beautiful barrier to the outside world, yet let in natural light.

bedroom fur rug blue bedspread
Edmund Barr

5. Asymmetrical Bedroom

There's no rule stating your bed must be centered on the wall. A bedroom arrangement with furniture concentrated on one side of the space can open up the traffic flow and leave more room for personalization. Here, the asymmetrical layout lends an expansive feel to a small bedroom, creating visual room for bold touches, like the patterned headboard, tasseled curtains, and layered area rugs. Symmetrical details, such as the pair of yellow lamps and nightstands, keep this arrangement from looking imbalanced.

bedroom with green throw pillows and window
Brie Williams

6. Repurposed Bedroom

Give your bedroom collected character by mingling existing pieces with beloved antiques and formal furnishings. In this richly appointed bedroom, a gilded frame shimmers above a plush velvet headboard, and a parlor chair invites kicking back. A vintage dining table stands in as a nightstand, while an antique trunk doubles as a footboard bench. The takeaway? Pull antique furniture or accessories from more public living areas, and slot them into spots usually reserved for traditional bedroom furniture. So long as they fulfill a purpose and please your eye, the arrangement will work.

rustic bedroom with bench
Werner Straube 

7. Bedroom with Extra Seating

Create a restful retreat with a bedroom furniture arrangement that includes comfy chairs and benches. Your options are abundant: Tuck a chair and floor lamp into a corner to carve out a spot for reading, or move a cushioned bench to the end of a bed as a place to put on and take off your shoes. Arrange a pair of skirted chairs near a window so you can bask in the afternoon light, and cover a footboard bench in a complementary fabric for a coordinated look. Don't add a chair for the sake of filling space, though—only incorporate seating you'll actually use.

Twin canopy beds in bedroom
Richard Leo Johnson

8. Bedroom with Awkward Layout

Windows, doorways, closets—these standard bedroom features can disrupt the flow of the space, creating an unnatural layout that makes furniture arrangement a challenge. But with a few creative tweaks, you can overcome awkward configurations, as in this bedroom with multiple windows and limited wall space. These clever homeowners stretched a small space's footprint by centering two single beds in front of a pair of windows, with one nightstand serving both beds. The open design of these modern headboards ensures natural light can stream in, while the bamboo ladders balance the towering height of the beds.

Traditional style bedroom in gray
Werner Straube

9. Balanced Bedroom with Varied Lighting

Don't overlook the lighting. Think of lamps, chandeliers, and sconces as the jewelry that lets your furniture shine. If you have the space, place a tabletop on either side of the bed, along with a source of light, whether wall-mounted sconces or a pair of lamps. No need to limit yourself to the expected set of nightstands: In this serene space, the homeowners flanked their upholstered bed with a small dresser and a desk that doubles as a computer station and variety table, maximizing functionality and storage. A chandelier illuminates the entire space overhead and helps center the room.

Bunk beds in nautical themed bedroom
Jean Allsopp

10. Bedroom with Multiple Beds

Close quarters demand a smart bedroom furniture arrangement. In this carefree, beachy bedroom, bunk beds stack up to accommodate two sleepers in a small space. Wall-mount cage lights on one end and TVs on the other transform these beds into multipurpose lounge areas, ideal for reading, napping, or streaming. Baskets beneath the lower bunk offer easily-accessible storage, where clothes and gear can be stowed out of the way of traffic paths, which is critical in tight spaces that serve kids or guests.

Master bedroom with pool outside of double doors
Michael Garland

11. Relaxing Bedroom

Take advantage of neglected wall space beneath windows to create a spot for relaxation (or conversation). Installing a banquette, outfitted with comfy cushions and pillows, will supply both seating and storage, while balancing what would be an empty corner with the tall headboard adjacent to it. Doors that open to the outside make this side of the room a natural spot for hanging out; a plush area rug that takes its color cue from other textiles in the room helps define the space.

rustic bedroom with cowhide rug
Greg Scheidemann

12. Double-Duty Bedroom

With thoughtful planning, bedroom furniture arrangements can accommodate sleeping and playing. Imagine library shelves lined with well-thumbed books or armoires stocked with scrapbooking supplies. This homeowner equipped her bedroom for creative pursuits by setting up easels and art supplies near the windows and moving the bed to the opposite side of the room. A console table, art pieces, and empty frames fill the gap, linking the sleeping area and sunlit studio.

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