Where Designers Would Spend and Save in a Bedroom
We asked three interior designers which elements they think are worth a little more investment for a good night’s sleep
With that in mind, we asked three interior designers for their opinions on where it’s worth splashing out in the bedroom, and where you can afford to be thrifty.
Professional advice from: Gemma Hill of Bayswater Interiors; Caroline Nicholls of Slightly Quirky; Natasha Burton of NB Interiors.
More in this series: Where Designers Would Spend and Save in a Kitchen l Where Designers Would Spend and Save in a Living Room
This one is a no-brainer. “The one thing I’d always invest in is your mattress,” Gemma Hill says. “You spend so much of your life in bed, and sleep is essential to good health, so this is one area you should try not to scrimp on. Once you close your eyes, other things in the bedroom don’t matter so much, but a mattress really does.”
Good mattresses can seem eye-wateringly expensive, but, as Gemma points out, “Many people will happily spend money on their car, for example, but not their beds, even though they spend more time in them.”
For couples who squabble over mattress firmness, she suggests, it might be worth investing in one with different zones. “For example, [you can buy mattresses that are] medium on one side and harder on the other to suit both parties,” she says.
The official advice is to change our mattress every eight years. However, “If you can’t afford a new mattress, then get a new topper, as this can help extend the life of your mattress,” Gemma advises.
Pocket-sprung mattresses will offer the greatest comfort, or look for memory foam options that mould to the shape of your body.
You might also enjoy The Secret to Choosing a Great Mattress.
A lovely padded headboard covered in velvet or patterned fabric can easily become the star of your bedroom – and make reading in bed much more comfy. And the good news is, it doesn’t have to cost much.
“Old headboards can easily be re-covered: just pay for the reupholstery and some really nice fabric – you generally don’t need a large quantity,” Caroline Nicholls says. “We re-covered the headboard and matching bolster cushions here with green velvet for a luxe look.”
You might also enjoy How to Make Your Headboard Work Harder.
Most of us would agree that storage is key in bedrooms, with ‘chairdrobes’, piles of shoes on the floor and overflowing chests of drawers never a good look.
Our experts recommend investing in a custom-fitted wardrobe, if you can afford it. “I think good storage also adds value to your house, as it’s something people are looking for when they come to buy,” Gemma says.
To clear clutter, “choose bespoke storage that makes use of every inch of space,” Caroline advises. “Have wardrobes designed to meet your individual requirements, such as accommodating long or short clothes or storing items such as belts, scarves, jewellery and shoes.”
Find reviews and browse past projects for interior designers in your area.
“These can often be bought cheaply secondhand and upcycled by painting them and adding new handles,” Caroline says. “It’s also a way to give old tables a new lease of life, so they’re not wasted.” The side table seen here was transformed in exactly this way.
“Your bedside table is really just a surface for a glass of water, a book or a lamp, so be creative,” Gemma adds. “You can easily repurpose something else. For example, if your style is rustic, offcuts of logs can work brilliantly as side tables.”
It might be tempting to go for those bargain polyester-mix duvet covers and sheets (especially if they’re pretty), but it’s a false economy to cut back on good sheets, blankets, duvet covers and duvets, say our experts.
“You can absolutely tell the difference between cheap and expensive bed sheets,” Natasha Burton says. “Opt for maximum luxury and indulge in some top-quality bedding.”
Natural materials such as cotton will keep you cool, feel nicer against your skin, and help you snooze soundly. Hunt for offers on sheets with high thread counts. Snap up pure wool blankets and invest in cosy duvets and pillows made from goose down or duck feathers (as long as you aren’t allergic).
If you prefer to avoid animal products, there are some great ‘vegan’ synthetic alternatives that mimic the comfort, luxury and warmth of down.
Natasha says that many common details in bedrooms – mirrors, lamps, cushions – can be picked up relatively cheaply, so save your money for the headline items. “As cushions are purely decorative, for example, I’d spend your money on bedding and keep the cost of accessories to a minimum,” she says.
“You can find some fab purse-friendly full-length mirrors that do just as good a job as more expensive ones. And if you aren’t spending a huge amount of time in your room with the lights on, you can source cheaper bedside lamps.”
What have you spent and saved on in your bedroom? Share your thoughts and photos in the Comments.