Written by Michelle Mastro
Where to put the bed in a bedroom can be tricky. This is especially true when the room is oddly shaped or smaller than average. Bedrooms are called bedrooms because they feature a bed after all! But should the bed take up the entire room? Some people like to place their beds in the middle of a room—fashioning the bed into an island of sorts—while others like to place their bed on the main wall of their room. What about rooms that don’t come with ample space and vaulted ceilings? Joanne Palmisano, interior designer and author of her new book Rock your Rental, has partnered with us to design the bedrooms in our 2019 Project House. She shares with us her advice for where to put the bed and optimize the most space for smaller rooms.
Every room is different. And bed size can run the gambit from twin to California king. But one thing remains constant. “Having enough space to move around the bed is important,” Joanne says. “For a queen or king size bed, make sure there’s room on both sides of the bed, with a minimum of two feet on both sides.” However, if you have a bedroom with two twin beds, Joanne suggests focusing on the space in between them. This will give the impression that the room is larger while allowing enough space for both occupants.
But it’s also important to consider the bedroom’s comfort level for sleeping, too. A common mistake, Joanne says, is placing the headboard beside the room’s door. “It’s always better not to be walking into the head of the bed when you enter a bedroom,” Joanne says. It makes the room feel crunched and minimizes the appearance of additional headspace.
Line it Up
Another trick for maximizing headspace is keeping the foot of the bed away from angled walls. “Some people may assume the opposite is true, that it is better to keep the footboard close to an angled wall, because you want to maximize headspace.” But to truly maximize headspace, Joanne suggests turning the headboard under the angle of the wall and using a thicker headboard. Make sure the headboard top meets the angle. This will make a vertical line and trick the eye into seeing a straight wall even though the bed might be next to a slanted angle. “Also, for smaller rooms with angled walls, I don’t use tall footboards,” Joanne says. While tall headboards set below angled walls make the walls seems straighter, tall footboards give the impression of too many walls. And the result can make the bedroom feel even smaller.
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