Guest bedroom design is at the top of my interior design list because you really can go for it. I own two gorgeous little city central holiday lets in the center of Brighton which gives me loads of guest rooms to get creative with. Proper little boltholes they’re a stones throw from the beach and slap bang in the center of the South lanes. They’re super popular with people after a fun city break so I wanted to design them with some verve!
Now, my view on small bedroom design is it’s an opportunity to go that little bit more daring than you’d be temped to do in your own space. What often makes people chicken out of doing bold guest bedroom designs in their own home is the worry about tiring of it- so they play safe (this is the number one bedroom design crime!). The guest room- well that’s where you can really experiment!
This bedroom is very small, roughly 3m x 3.5m so there’s not much space left after you’ve put the bed in there. There is also not much natural sun light as the window is not only north facing but has a huge flint wall outside too. Even so, I decided to go dark and luxurious with the wall colour, and yep you’ve guessed it- all the way around the room. Small rooms can look disjointed if you don’t wrap then round in colour.
However due to the cosy proportions the room felt a little ordinary to me. If you don’t have sun filled windows, lashings of period details or oodles of floor space on your side, you need to ramp up the interest in other areas. So I used my collection of wallpaper samples to make a large patchwork of wallpaper pattern across one wall. To make this work, you need to think of a coherent family of colours or tones, so all the disparate patterns will hang together. I also opted for bold prints only so there was a general theme. This way geometrics and florals can sit happily side by side and I love mixing up the designs to make something unique. Then keep the rest of the furnishings plain. You’ll notice there are plain block colour bed linen, headboard and cushions so they don’t fight with the feature wall. That’s the attention grabber in this room.
Because of the lack of natural light I opted for shutters, which can be pulled all the way, back from the window to maximise the amount of light into the room. They are also good at blocking out sound at night, as the street outside can be noisy which is something to consider if you live in a city centre or next to a busy road. They work a treat!
Now as always, I was on a tight budget with this bedroom design project, which called for some nifty shopping. Biggest bargain has to be the headboard. It’s actually the foot of an old French bed that we found in an antique store. As the owner hadn’t got the head, he sold it to me for £40. I bought some remnant lemon yellow velvet from a discount fabric warehouse (which has sadly closed down but eBay is great for this sort of thing) and had it covered by my trusty local upholsterer. Then cushions and the throw were high street steals, in the sale, from Habitat as were the side tables. Total heart-over-head were the French antique wall sconces from my local favourite The Three Angels. At £200 for the pair they were a total splurge but like a great pair of earrings they finish off the outfit! And a great investment as I feel they are a classic design I’ll never tire of. Just like the eyecatching painting. That’s by my best friend and colour inspiration Sophie Abbott. Check out her work (by clicking on her highlighted name) and you’ll see why I find her so inspiring.
10 Tips to take away for small bedroom design: