Battling the Bedroom Don’ts

Why I do this?  Last time I did, it took my husband two weeks to cajole me out of my fetal position in the laundry room corner.  Why do I torture my fragile ego with magazine articles that ultimately make me feel domestically inadequate?  The latest?  “Bedroom Design Don’ts: Ten typical mistakes people make when designing a bedroom”.  No more. From now on, I’m talking back to the “experts” who obviously don’t have kids, triple bladdered dogs or carpool duties.  (My responses are in parenthesis.)

1. Don’t Go Color Crazy (In this house, I don’t need something as complicated as Color to make me crazy.)

2. Don’t Overlook the Ceiling. Do you see a bland, blank surface as you lie in bed gazing up at the ceiling? (No, I see a ceiling fan in desperate need of dusting and two burned out light bulbs.)  If so, you’re not alone. Everyone ignores the ceiling (for good reason).  Instead, make it a celebrated space! (The only “celebrated space” in my house is one in which my kids can’t find me.) A gauzy canopy and a glamorous chandelier on the ceiling provide a treat for the eyes as you lay in bed. (So would a poster of a sparkling clean minivan interior but that’ll never happen.)

3. Don’t Choose Out-of-Scale Furniture. (I “choose” whatever my parents and in-laws handed down to me.)

4. Don’t Skimp on Storage. When you picture a private sanctuary, do you envision piles of newspapers and overstuffed drawers?  (No I picture a private beachside cabana on a remote island with a butler named Sven who, by day is a masseuse and by night, gourmet chef and wine steward) Clutter equals stress, so the bedroom should be clutter-free. (Are snoring husbands considered clutter?)

5. Don’t Overcrowd It. (Again, the snoring husband question….)

6. Don’t Forget a Cozy Sitting Spot. A sumptuous sitting area helps turn the bedroom into a private escape. (And by “sumptuous” you mean a pile of unfolded laundry and Socks Without Partners on the bachelor barcolounger in the corner?)

7. Don’t Leave Yourself in the Dark. Use accent lighting, in the form of wall sconces, torchieres or art lights, to add drama, wash the room in soft illumination and lend a cozy, welcoming vibe. (The last thing I need in my house is more drama.)

8. Don’t Forget to Indulge in Luxurious Linens. The bedroom, more than any other space in your home, should be a tactile wonderland. (My dogs appreciate the tactile pile of unfolded towels and Socks Without Partners in the beam of sunlight on the floor.)

9. Don’t Shortchange Windows. Heavy, opaque curtains let you block out sunlight for luxurious weekend sleep-ins.  (What is this “Sleep-in” thing of which you speak?)

10. Don’t Bring the Everyday Into the Bedroom. Check your cell phone and PDA at the bedroom door. Consider losing the TV.  (I lost it already-the kids “borrowed” it 2 years ago.)

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  • Claire

    Karen, your articles are always a hit, but I particularly like ones like this that include comments in parentheses and references to socks without partners!

  • cmacri

    My husband and I spent a lot of years with clutter and threadbare, or hand-me-down linens. But then we decided that our room needed to be bit of a sanctuary. We shopped together for some luxurious linens, got a yellow bulb for one of the lamps, hit the Yankee Candle store, etc. Suffice to say, there’s a lot less snoring, with resulting better attitudes and less stress overall in the rest of the house. I know your article is toungue-in-cheek, but don’t fall into the trap of being too practical. Marriage deserves a little pampering in the bedroom; if you must be practical, just think of it as an investment.

  • jmtfh

    Hey Karen, Wondering where those “other” socks ran off to and left their partners?

    At 3:00 a.m. while on a cleaning frenzy the other night (only time I can find to get ‘er done) I saw a whole bevvy of unmatched socks dance off into the night with…nonE other than…the missing covers to my Tupperware!!!


  • HAAAAAAAA! Fun stuff, guys!!! And cmacri: you are right 🙂