Many homeowners dream of converting their loft to create extra living space, so the couple who bought this four-bedroom semi in London were delighted that the hard work had already been done for them. Their attic bedroom was practically ready to go – it was structurally sound and filled with light. The only problem was it was blank and ordinary, and not at all to their tastes. There was also a major lack of storage space.The pair tackled the problem room with colour. ‘It’s a lovely light space, so we knew it could take a strong shade,’ they say. ‘We went for the darkest green we could find and were slightly nervous when we painted an initial tester patch. We put wallpaper behind the bed to zone the space and went for the houses pattern to add some interest.’
As with many rented homes, the biggest problem the tenant faced when she moved in was its lack of character. ‘The walls were magnolia and there were cream carpets throughout’ she says. ‘On top of that, it’s a fairly new building, so there are no period features. Luckily, the landlord allowed me to paint the walls and put nails in, so I could start to make it feel homely and decorate it more to my taste.’For the first six months, the spare bedroom was used as a dumping ground, but the occupier knew she needed to make better use of the space. ‘Once I had cleaned the room out, I painted the walls white, which instantly made everything feel brighter and larger,’ she says.
When the owners moved here four years ago, the spare bedroom was low down on the priority list, but after years of apologising to guests for the furniture – which came from their previous home – they knew it was time to redo it.‘We wanted it to be welcoming, but also to have a look that worked with the rest of our bright, contemporary home,’ the couple explain. ‘With a limited budget, we decided to splurge on the main features, such as the fabulous copper bed, but save on accessories, some of which we reused from the old room.’ The pair also sold the existing furniture on social media to raise money.The project only took four days to complete, but despite that it wasn’t a rushed job. ‘It’s worth taking time to do your research,’ say the owners. ‘In the past, we would have rushed to get a room done and made the wrong choices in the process, but this time we thought about it for a long time before buying furniture. Having a clear vision at the start made it easier.’
1. Pick a toning floral
Add some flower power to your scheme with a statement wallpaper in a bold, floral print. This is a strong look, so be warned – you need to accessorise with caution. Match the background tones in the room to those on the wallpaper and use the purple of the flower as an accent shade. Try an all-white chateau-style bed paired with black bedside tables and table lamps.
Foreground your walls
Install wall-hung lighting
This chalet-style bedroom features an attractive symmetrical arrangement of two adjustable wall lights, making it easy to read without needing to keep the main room lights on. When not in use, the lights can be rearranged to return the bedroom to its calm, symmetrical and composed state.
Hang fairy lights.
The owners took on a house that had barely been touched which had a huge double garage at the side which they didn’t need. Being from Malaysia they always have lots of friends and relatives visiting and so needed a special bedroom with ensuite bathroom, for their guests to stay, sometimes for several weeks.
With a baby on the way, the owners of this listed Georgian house in Richmond knew they would have visitors queueing up. ‘Before the baby arrived, we wanted to create a calm and quiet guest bedroom away from the rest of the chaos,’ they say. ‘And we felt this space at the back of the house would be perfect.’Previously used as a study, the room had bookshelves everywhere. ‘We have enough shelving elsewhere and wanted an attractive room to offer guests, so the shelves had to go,’ say the couple.
We moved here from south London as we were keen on the schools, transport links and greenery, but there wasn’t much on the market at the time. With a toddler, a baby on the way and a buyer for our old house, we were getting a bit desperate,’ says the owners.
I had been looking at interior magazines, browsing online and popping into my local interior designer’s showroom for inspiration, says the owner. ‘Nothing seemed to make my heart leap. Then, hurrying through John Lewis one day, I was stopped dead in my tracks by a display in the entrance.’
Stack, slide and style your bedside tables
Modern bedside tables make versatile storage in master bedrooms or guest rooms. A single drawer is enough to hold bedside essentials or small toiletry items, so the space underneath acts as a mini book stack when traditional shelving is not an option. Reserve the top surface for a lamp, your current book and any other items you like to have immediately to hand.