Dressing your bedside is one of those things that feels like small fry. It’s easy to forget but is actually sort of a big deal. Whether you’re a lucky sod who gets their full eight hours, a co-sleeping zombie wiling away the wee hours down the Instagram rabbit hole or something in between we tend to spend a good bit of time in bed.
So it’s makes sense to take some time and plan it out like you would any larger living space. I would suggest that before you even pick a piece of furniture, you check off the following three rules that I think are key to establishing an ideal bedside set-up.
1 ] Keep It Functional
You’ve finally made it horizontal. Your tired legs are unwinding, you’ve found that ultimate spot on your pillow and the end of the day is in sight. The last thing you’re going to want to do is get back up again for some night-time essential you’ve forgotten. Everything you need should be within your grasp. Whatever your ritual, incorporate it into the bedside design. Keep your hand cream…well, handy. Use a tray to store those loose pennies or keep your jewellery together at the end of the night.
2 ] Keep It Clean
Treat your bedside like any other vignette around your home. Call it feng shui or just good housekeeping but it’s important to maintain a tidy table. It just feels better. If you have a tray into which you tend to empty your pockets, make a point of regularly clearing it out. Dust your displays and clear away those empty beer bottles or G & T glasses every morning.
3 ] Personality Is Key
This is your opportunity to show a little more of your personality and within your most private space. Books you love, family pictures, your favourite art. Your decor should speak to you and lift your spirit. Putting even a little of yourself into a space goes a long way to achieve this.
If you’re happy to break away from the matchy matchy vibe, using the same basic template on each side but altering it slightly to suit you as individuals is an easy way to personalise an area that is just for you.
Aka the Indecisive Decorator. If you flit between style trends and struggle to choose your Scandi from your Californian cool, this set-up is for you. Hovering somewhere in between, an industrial style table blends effortlessly into its surroundings while a collection of mixed metal accessories, tonal books and indoor grasses set a relaxed vibe. Throw a couple of palm trees into the mix, some bohemian textiles and your eclectic paradise will be complete.
The Ornate Upcycler
My merchandiser background is responsible for a lot of things. The knack of folding perfectly rectangular t-shirts at lightning speed, a Terminator-like attention to detail and the ability to make something out of very little. Which makes for a solid upcycle. A bit of spray paint and vinyl paper goes a long way to make a sleek side table fit for a bohemian queen.
If in doubt, brass and marble is always a winning combination. Any large hardware store will stock everything you need and revamping two tables should cost you less than £20 in supplies.
The Budget Boho
If your budget is on the low to zero side then this is the bedside hack for you. Easy and cheap. Step one: Find a chair. Step two: Stick it by your bed.
The nattier the better. Check your local thrift store, check your local skip, ask a generous friend or family member. Mine was in the garden when we bought our home seven years ago and after letting it rot for a little while longer, I decided it was just the right level of wrong and brought it inside.
Chairs are a versatile option when used as display. Just don’t let it become a Chair of Doom. You know the ones I mean. The one with every outfit you’ve worn that week stacked to high heaven along with the household laundry.
The Hoarder Next Door
Also suited to the Lazy Morning Larrys among us. Before there was Pinterest, before there was Readly and long before we were all chilling with Netflix there were magazines. Glorious, glossy volumes full of inspirational editorials. I’ve seen it called a dying art and in this digital age of accessibility, it’s easy to see how. But yet I’m still buying them. And I’m still keeping them. In racks, on shelves and in towering piles dotted around the house.
Now you can turn your obsession into artful collections. Neat little stacks organised by title or genre, colour co-ordinated or simply an assortments of your old favourites. Easy pickings and the perfect accompaniment to a lazy morning coffee in bed.
This right here is a First Class, Fast-Pass ticket aboard the self-love train. I mean, how much more can you celebrate yourself than whacking a portrait of your own face next to your sleepy head.
Consider it staking an official claim to your side of the bed. Or if you have a willing partner why not do the double and make it a mini-series? A classic portrait, an artistic silhouette or a moody black & white photograph. Snapshots of a moment in time. Now that doesn’t sound so bad.
The Green Goddess
And finally, one those of you with the Jungalow in their bones. Who can’t relax unless there’s a cactus or String of Pearls within arm’s reach.
The key here is to keep layering up that leafiness until you have the desired effect. Use it to give a basic, scandi space a bohemian edge or go full throttle and throw in some floral linens, accenting with your favourite printed pieces on an exposed clothing rail.
If you are a natural plant mother this is a budget friendly option for the bedside. But if, of course, you’re like me and are green-fingered at heart but hopeless in reality this could get escalate quickly. Rather than ending up in an inevitable and expensive cycle of replacing your dearly departed house plants, you may need to take a different approach.
Focus on waxy-leafed plants and foraged foliage along with a subtle a mix of artificial greenery like the ones in my recent gift guide. If in doubt, fake it ’til you make it.
So which space is your favourite? What are your own bedroom goals? No, not that sort!
Find me over on Instagram and let me know your top tips for styling your bedroom spaces.