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Brian Edward Millett

Where all things beautiful collide

Tomorrow’s the unofficial first day of summer, and although it’s rainy here in Seattle this weekend, I’m thinking of summer spaces, and in particular places for a nice nap.  Summer is also all about guests visiting, and I know I’ll have a full house before I know it!  What makes a perfect guest room?  Well, it can be pretty simple to create a space that’s both relaxing, and functional.  I’ve counted 8 elements that make up a great bedroom (not all of which are absolutely a must), for guests, or for your own place of slumber.  (1) the bed, (2) good quality bedding, (3) great task lighting, (4) a dresser and/or nightstand, (5) a soft rug for bare feet, (6) a spot to sit like a bench or chair, (7) some pretty objects and art, (8) and a welcoming gesture like fresh flowers or a basket of essential toiletries.  I’ve stumbled upon some summer perfect bedrooms lately, two of which are in the same home designed by Carrier and Co. in the latest issue of Architectural Digest, another by legendary decorator Albert Hadley, and the last features covet-worthy rope beds, and whitewashed wood walls.  Each of these spaces is a bit different in style, and no matter which one you like more, I’ve broken it down with suggestions on pieces to buy, and how to get the overall look.  Get inspired, take a nap, and then get shopping/decorating!

a summer guest room

a summer guest room

A Seaside Retreat

dresser from West Elm

dresser from West Elm

Simple whitewashed pieces and furniture made from natural fibers like seagrass and rope are key to this modern take on maritime decorating.

bed from Pottery Barn

bed from Pottery Barn

quilt from Serena & Lily

quilt from Serena & Lily

Colorful bedding like lightweight quilts simply tucked under are perfect for sleeping by the beach, real or imagined.

bench from Made Goods

bench from Made Goods

Add a colorful rope bench to the end of the bed to bring the rope element into the space in a different way, or a nautical rope knot lamp (below).

knot lamp from Pottery Barn

knot lamp from Pottery Barn

Parsons desk from West Elm

Parsons desk from West Elm

A clean lined desk between twin beds acts as a bedside table, but of course can function as a dressing table or desk as well.

stool from Made Goods

stool from Made Goods

Tuck a small stool under the desk instead of a traditional chair.  This can also move to act as a small bedside table.  Throw a colorful kilim or dhurrie down on the floor to enliven things (below).

kilim from Pottery Barn

kilim from Pottery Barn

blankets from West Elm

blankets from West Elm

I love a lightweight blanket instead of a bulkier duvet in the summertime.

headboard from Serena & Lily

headboard from Serena & Lily

A reed-covered headboard or wicker table are a couple more options to bring in a natural element.

nightstand from Made Goods

nightstand from Made Goods

guest room by Carrier and Co.

guest room by Carrier and Co.

In the Country

quilt from Pottery Barn

quilt from Pottery Barn

I wouldn’t suggest dressing the entire bed in quilted pieces, but one handed down through the generations, or a fun new one from an Etsy artisan or a favorite shop can be a bold statement at the end of a bed made with crisp white bedding.

bench from West Elm

bench from West Elm

An upholstered bench at the end of a bed is a great spot for guests to sit and put shoes on, and if there’s not room for a chair, it’s a perfect substitute.

bedding from Room & Board

bedding from Room & Board

dresser from Crate & Barrel

dresser from Crate & Barrel

Adding a crisply painted dresser to a room in a fun color doesn’t have to feel old-fashioned.  It’s all about how you mix it!

lamp from West Elm

lamp from West Elm

I love a tiny lamp on a stack of books when there’s just not enough space for a larger lamp.  To keep a room that’s leaning towards country still feeling modern, add abstract art to the walls in an over-scaled size.

art by John Robshaw for Room & Board

art by John Robshaw for Room & Board

bedroom by Albert Hadley

bedroom by Albert Hadley

Granny Chic

headboard from Ballard Designs

headboard from Ballard Designs

A tufted headboard, patterned wallpaper, and hotel inspired sheets are just some of the elements to get you the look of your Grandmother’s house, well not my Grandma, but someone’s!

sheets from Pottery Barn

sheets from Pottery Barn

Sconces on the wall, swing-arm or not, are a great space saver, and also bring a hotel vibe to the decorating equation.  Bring in a classic piece like a wing chair into the room as well, like Grandpa would sit in by the fire.  I love this smaller scaled one (below).

chair from Restoration Hardware

chair from Restoration Hardware

bedroom by Carrier and Co.

bedroom by Carrier and Co.

Traditional Meets Modern

bedding from Pottery Barn

bedding from Pottery Barn

Patterned bedhangings and a matching bed skirt don’t work for every space, but get the look with a pretty printed duvet and shams.  Keep the pattern sophisticated with crisp white (or another solid) sheets (below).

sheets from West Elm

sheets from West Elm

rug from Pottery Barn

rug from Pottery Barn

Add a more traditional element like a Persian or Oriental-style carpet to the floor to keep things soft, and bring in more pattern.  Reflective pieces like a silver leafed and mirror front dresser (below) feel modern, yet also hark back to an era like the 20’s and 30’s.  Top with a more modern lamp, and you’ll get the ideal mix.

dresser from Made Goods

dresser from Made Goods

settee from West Elm

settee from West Elm

A small settee is perfect at the end of a bed, or as part of a designated seating area if space allows.

 

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