Master bedroom refresh inspiration

19 February 2021

How about something a little lighter for todays’ post? :) You may have noticed in my February goals that I’m shining the refresh spotlight on our master bedroom this month. I thought I’d share a little bit about where we are now and where we’re headed, just for fun!

Where we are now: err, here —

Complete with laundry mid-fold. Real life :)

As you can imagine, this room does A LOT. We sleep here, obviously, but it’s also a hub of family activity – it’s where our kids’ clothing is stored, where they get dressed in the morning, and where they pull on their jams at night. It’s also our workout area, where our stationary bike and weights live. It houses a nursing glider. And, for COVID times and the foreseeable future, it’s where John works day in and day out. While it’s a good-size room, again, that’s a LOT.

Despite its centrality in our lives, this space has not gotten much design love. Since moving in eight-ish years ago, we’ve hung the curtains from our apartment and a few things on the walls, hung our framed wedding vows, added a low dresser for me, upgraded to a king-size bed, and switched out our bedside tables.

Knowing that there’s not going to be a magical “after” in our future (there will, after all, still be an ergonomic desk chair and exercise bike in the picture, ha!), I’m hoping to lighten things up a bit. Here’s what I’m picturing:

And here are the steps I’m looking at:

1. Painting the walls. Inspired by Liz’s living room, we’re going with Benjamin Moore Brittany Blue. I painted a test swatch and on our walls it’s actually not that similar to either her photo in the top left or the Ben Moore swatch in the top right – I’d say it’s icier/clearer. It’s pretty, though! We will hire this out.

2. Replacing the curtains and hardware. Thinking something super simple and light like these ivory velvet ones or these linen ones (or might try these much less expensive ones on Rhi’s recommendation, if they come back in stock!) The hardware will also be simple.

3. Hanging a grid of family photos. Picturing 9 or so over the low dresser, in gold frames, probably all black and white to keep things unified. I thought it might be fun to try and tell the story of our family across the collection – we’ll see!

4. Buying a bed. For years and years, I’ve held out hope that we’d someday purchase the wooden bed of my dreams, but have finally admitted that at this stage in our life, with the financial goals we have, there’s no way I’m paying $3,000+ for the quality of king-size bed I’d like anytime soon.

After scouring Craigslist and Marketplace for years without success (kings just don’t pop up like fulls!), I’ve decided that an upholstered bed is where it’s at for us right now. I have my eyes on this one and am hoping to snag it soon with the help of some parental birthday money! I think it will look lovely against the blue walls and our existing bedding, and help the room overall look more “finished” and cozy.

I’d love to hear: in your home, has the master bedroom languished, or was it a priority to complete early on? Excited to share more as our plans get underway! (Probably slowly, ha!)

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February 19, 2021 6:37 am

Ohhhh I love this vision! That blue IS really pretty in your test swatch and will freshen up your space greatly. Also, I am really hoping those curtains come back in stock for you. They are SO good!

February 19, 2021 12:19 pm

I love this post :) We painted our walls similarly, Sea Salt. Also, at 35 and in our eleventh year of marriage, we just bought a matching bedroom set. Actually it’s really some of the first furniture we have ever bought ;) We’ve had a mixed bag of hand me downs from our family. I’ll have to find the link, but we went with a solid, Amish, cherry set, and everyday it makes me smile because it all matches (ha!) and it reminds me of what my grandparents had growing up. We wanted something we’d reasonably have for a very long time.

February 19, 2021 2:47 pm

We are lucky to have a huge master bedroom at the front of our Victorian house. We decorated it ourselves when we moved in 7 years ago but it sort of became a dumping ground particularly when our daughter was born in April last year. At the end of last year I completely purged it. Bin bags of stuff went to the charity shop! It’s made such a huge difference without spending a penny. I have room to work in there now and it’s my calm, happy place. The only money we spent was on having our family motto ‘we can do hard things’ made in wire to hang above our bed.

February 19, 2021 5:32 pm

The Aruba blackout curtains live up to the hype! I got them in 96 inch for some height and drama and drapey-ness but would love to maybe have them hemmed so they just kiss the floor (so I don’t see the less-cute-lining while they’re puddling). Also, if you care about blocking out light, not sure if you’ve heard of blackout curtain rods that curl around to the side, but it solves that annoying problem of light seeping around the sides of your curtains! We got some cheap rods from Target and love them!
P.S. Your kids’ bathroom literally came up in conversation with some friends recently and we all agreed you CRUSHED IT.

February 19, 2021 6:23 pm

We JUST refreshed our bedroom! The last room in the house to get updated, but it was worth the wait.

February 19, 2021 11:43 pm

Too funny, YES, our master bedroom has also somehow fallen to the bottom of the list until recently. It was all too easy to focus on the spaces we spent most of our daytime in (the living room and kitchen) and let our bedroom wait…but in the waiting it would often become an easy catch-all space for miscellany. That in turn made it less-than-appealing to spend time in, and ergo, a vicious cycle was born ;). I also think I just didn’t have a vision for it for awhile, in part because our new home literally became part of a lawsuit with our town a month after we closed (due to issues with the people who renovated it, unbeknownst to us when we bought it…it’s been a whole lotta drama until it finally wrapped up last month!). Since the lawsuit closed and the repairs wrapped up, I’ve felt renewed energy to returning to all kinds of home projects, which is a hopeful and encouraging sign! We just found a beautiful tufted ivory headboard at a local consignment shop and are talking about painting over the existing drab grey with a deep peacock blue (we like moody bedrooms!)…then adding a pretty duvet cover as the cherry on top :).

February 20, 2021 7:17 am

Haha yes our master bedroom is the last room in our house to update. It works just fine whether it is updated or not! Our guest room on the other hand is not functional as it currently exists so it is getting my love this year. I am saving up to put a queen bed in there so we can properly host guests…eventually.

February 20, 2021 8:59 am

Do you have a link to the set of 3 baskets?

February 22, 2021 8:19 pm

Excited to see the transformation of your “real life” bedroom. While ours looks put together, it feels…static. Like I figured it out at a moment in time, and it’s stayed that way for years. It looks nice, but it’s making me want to think about what I want it to feel like and what easy swaps could get us there.
Also if you’re looking at other blues I HIGHLY recommend BM Pale Smoke. It has gray undertones that move it away from baby blue. I have it at 50% color in our bedroom and bathroom and it’s my go-to blue.

February 24, 2021 8:10 pm

Ooooh, love your inspiration and can’t wait to see how this comes together! It’s funny–our master in our old house was the bottom of the priority list (I think because people didn’t really see it?), but in this house, it was just so darn ugly when we moved in, we could not WAIT to deal with it! As a result, I’d say it’s 85% done right now, and definitely the most finished space in the house. I am very excited for you to experience the transformation that comes with getting a real bed!!

February 25, 2021 10:37 am

Ooo this is so exciting! I love a good room refresh – there is something so attainable about small spruces vs. a total redesign! That light blue on the walls is gonna look so beautiful.

Katie B
February 25, 2021 7:57 pm

I’m also working on my master bedroom, slowly but surely! I love your inspiration and wanted to share two thoughts:

  1. Check out these velvet curtains on Amazon. I just purchased them in porcelain white for my living room and the quality is shockingly SO good!!
  2. I have been eying the bunny williams stacking baskets from Ballard for several years now. I was ready to pull the trigger on them for my son’s nursery (due in may!) but a friend talked me out of it because the quality isn’t great. I went to her house to check out the set she purchased and the wicker is really fragile and one of the handles even broke off when she used it to carry toys! Not sure if you’re actually considering buying, but I thought I’d share! I love the look and I also have the same easter basket for my daughter (I think you might have it too?) because the scalloped edges are just darling!

As always, love your posts, Emily!

Katie B
March 4, 2021 1:52 pm
Reply to  Em

Ohh great to know!! Maybe if I plan to use them for stationary toy storage I can justify – they are just so cute! :)