Tag Archives: bedroom

Fall Back In Style

I must be the only archaeologist on the planet who isn’t a morning person. While others are wide awake, trowels in hand at well before dawn, I am likely to sleep ‘til noon without some assistance.

Bedroom furniture by Greentea DesignImage: Greentea Design

An alarm is a necessity for me. Since my clock radio died a while back, I have been relying on my iPhone but this is a less than optimal solution, since I have a tendency to either knock it off my nightstand in the morning or leave it tucked under a pillow when I go to school.

Bird alarm clockbird alarm clock reverse sideImages: YLiving

Since I hate the jarring sound of an alarm, I would love the Bird Alarm Clock from Japanese-based IDEA International, which wakes one up with birdsong. The settings buttons and digital display are hidden on the back, so it looks more like a sculpture next to the bed.

rolling alarm clockImage: Nanda Home

I often turn off my alarm and go right back to sleep; apparently designer Gauri Nanda had the same problem when she was a graduate student at MIT.  Her award-winning solution was to design Clocky, the über-cute little alarm that jumps off the table and rolls away to ensure that sleepy-heads are up and at ‘em when they should be.

Tocky the rolling alarm clock by Nanda HomeImage: Nanda Home

Not content to rest on her laurels, Nanda introduced Tocky in 2010. This version waddles away and has the added ability to record personalized wake-up messages or up to two hours of MP3s.  Both models come in super-cute colours; I just hope they don’t make me go this far in the morning to turn off my alarm:

Soil Clock Alarm ClockImage: Marieke Staps

I am always on the lookout for green products, so I love this Soil Clock by Dutch designer Marieke Staps. In a display of science that goes beyond my comprehension, a chemical reaction creates enough electricity to run the clock. You don’t even need the plants, though they certainly add to the aesthetic appeal and, as the designer points out, they remind you that the soil must be wet for the clock to work. Sadly, I’m not sure my thumb is green enough to keep this one running.

Wake'n Bacon alarm clock via Design PublicImage: Design Public

Many of the alarm clocks that I found online are actually still in the design stage. My favourite of these is the Wake n’ Bacon, which cooks up pieces of everyone’s favourite pork product when it is time to wake up. Seriously, who doesn’t love the smell of bacon in the morning? I’m shocked that the business-savvy entrepreneurs on Shark Tank didn’t back this obvious winner.

Don’t forget to set your clocks back one hour before going to bed this Saturday for Daylight Savings Time and enjoy that extra hour of sleep!

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Bedroom Lighting: Mounted and Hung

Cloud Hanging Lamp. Image via Hive.

The bedroom is a our last bastion of solace. It is the intimate space where we let down our guard and make ourselves vulnerable. Lighting choices can certainly contribute to making it a space of peace, security, and bliss.

Inasmuch as we would like to have those those utterly fabulous floor lamps, a lot of bedrooms don’t really have room for them. There are many, many lovely table lamps too, but they can take quite a bit of space too on the side tables.

So we look to the higher places in the bedroom to ensconce some luminous beauties. Letting the light sources emanate from ceilings or walls are best for spaces of less breadth.

Hanging Lights

What I love most about these lights is that they’re like floating lucent sculptures, with their awesome shapes and curves.

Fandango lamp by Danny Fang

Fandango hanging lamp by Danny Fang. Image from Hive.

Varmluft lamp by Ikea

Image via Decoholic

Image via HGTV

Image via HGTV

Via Plan Forward

Wall-Mounted Lights

These can potentially serve as wall art in themselves. And the light they radiate usually paints gorgeous textures on an otherwise bare wall.

Wall-mounted lights by Giles Godwin-Brown. Image via Interior Design Photos.

By Giles Godwin-Brown. Image via Interior Design Photos.

Kite Wall Lamp. Image via Dornob.

Wall lamp by Olivia D'Aboville. Image via Hive.

Image via Decoholic

Image via Hahoy

Double-duty Lights

It’s wonderful how lighting can be integrated into furniture, such as these Night Light Tables.

Image via Design Milk.

These lights would surely let your place of slumber draw out all those positive feelings, so that you emerge from it refreshed, energized, and ready to take on the demands of the world outside.

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A Blanket To Cuddle Up With

Cozy throws collectionImage via Coral Marshmallow

Oooh, I don’t about where you are but here in Toronto, it cooled down here and fast!  After a searing and record-breaking summer, the mercury drop seemed instantaneous with the autumn equinox.  It’s taken some getting used to, I must admit.

I’m trying to embrace the coming cooler months, and now is the perfect time to cozy up the home, especially the bedroom, as I mentally and physically prepare for the annual semi-hibernation.  At least fall and winter are good seasons for bedding: luxurious throws, cozy quilts, the amazing textures of microfleece and Egyptian cotton sheets, and of course big puffy duvets in beautifully patterned covers.  A soft blanket to cuddle up with on a cold day is one of life’s simple pleasures, bringing us back to the cuddle blankets, plush toys and parental hugs of childhood.

luxe faux fur throwsFaux Fur Throws from Restoration Hardware.  A very grown up version of our special blanket from childhood to be sure, but certainly as comforting.

bed with faux fur throwFaux fur throw done sexy.  Image via A Touch of Luxe

So why not celebrate the changing seasons with some new sheets and blankets.  We spend enough time in bed (or at least here’s hoping!), why not shell out on something beautiful, cozy and comfortable?  Here are some designs that caught my eye this season:

Anthropologie’s Georgina Bedding

Anthropologie’s home line, especially bed linens always wins for luxurious femininity.  This plum colour is rich and warm, but not over powering in the room built for sleep and relaxation.  And I love the over the top ruffles.

Garment dyed textured linen collectionRestoration Hardware bed linens

For something just as sumptious but with a stronger, more masculine feel, Restoration Hardware has a stunning line of bed linens that are handmade in small batches by a California studio.

Calvin Klein beddingCalvin Klein Oxadized Paisley bedding

west elm bedding

West Elm bedding

Both Calvin Klein Home and West Elm have beautiful bedding lines as well, especially if you’re looking for something stylish but understated.  I love Calkin Klein’s line for the Asian inspired colour scheme and patterns.  It feels like a perfect touch for a zen retreat.  West Elm’s line captures Americana with a twist for me.  Lovely!

Here’s hoping you get a day to sleep in, curled up under your favourite blanket, new or old! Happy Monday!

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The Ultimate Guest Room

(AKA how to make sure your guests outstay their welcome)

image via bhg

We’ve always lived far away from family, which means we often have house guests at this time of year. While it’s always wonderful to get everyone together, in a small apartment it is no easy task trying to make everyone feel at home and making sure there are enough places to sleep.  Seeing as many of you are probably also opening your homes to family and friends in the coming months I thought I would put together a guide on how to create the ultimate guest experience with a few thoughtful touches.


Lets’ start with lighting, which can make or break a room. A table or floor lamp will cast a soft glow that will help create a relaxing and comfortable environment. If you want to add a bit more drama to your guest room you could install a chandelier in the centre of the ceiling, but for a more subtle dramatic flair fairy lights can add some twinkle at an affordable price.

image via Bella Notte Linens

Go Lux

Go lux on the bedding and furniture in the guest room. The temptation may be to use any old sheets you have in the closet, but for a hotel-like experience break out the good stuff when company comes to stay.  After a long day of visiting there is nothing better than getting a good night’s rest.

image via 4 men 1 lady

Take a cue from hotels

Even if you can’t offer your guests their own bathroom you can make a basket with towels and fancy soaps to add a nice touch of hospitality. I like the idea of arranging items on a tray and leaving them on the bed like in the picture above.  Adding a personal note of welcome would be a very sweet thing to do as well.

image via Parkdale Ave.

Reading Material

A great selection of books and magazines on the bedside table provide entertainment and decoration all in one. Scan your bookshelves or magazine rack and just pull out a few titles you think your guests might enjoy. Just be prepared to lend your books out if your guest only makes it to chapter five before it’s time to go.

image via designholeonline

Sleeps one, two, three, and more

If you often have more than one guest at a time, like say the whole family coming at once, there are some tricks to give the illusion of privacy even if people will be sharing a room. I think the curtains above are a brilliant idea if you have an attic space or a long room. It kind of reminds me of sleeping cars on a train.

image via Lonny

Keep it Playful

Don’t feel like you need to keep the guest bedroom too hotel-like. Feel free to add some quirky touches, incorporate some cool design, or add a piece of furniture that you just love but just doesn’t go anywhere else. I’m just about over the whole chalkboard wall trend, but I have to admit I’m loving it in the above example.  You could draw a picture over the bed or some simple words of welcome, although this Zoolander quote is pretty awesome.

I have to admit I sometimes struggle with the whole hostess thing. Both my mother and mother-in-law are amazing at it. It all comes down to preparedness and a little bit of effort.  Do you have any tricks for making guests feel at home?

Happy Friday everyone!

Favourite Spaces for Kids

Magic Tree House by Kidtropolis

Design for kids has come a long way. Moms and Dads are putting big money and time into their children’s rooms, and it seems like all the design magazines and blogs are constantly showcasing amazing bedrooms and playrooms that rival an attraction at Disneyland. Why are these spaces so special? Maybe because when designing a kid’s room there is no need to reign in our creativity. It’s the one area of the house where you can let your imagination get carried away; the wilder, more original and fun a room is the stronger the chances that a little one will love it. Here are a few of my all-time favourite kids’ spaces, beginning with the incredible tree-fort playroom pictured above.

via Whimsical World of Laura Bird

Whimsical Boy’s Room

The ferris wheel toy storage is the star attraction in this subtly circus-themed boy’s room. What a great way to add some fun to cleaning up your toys.  Loving the mix of stripes and primaries, and that platform bed/bench combo gives it some industrial edge.

Image via Apartment Therapy

A Bold Nursery

I’m a big fan of bold and bright nurseries. I’m so glad colour palettes for babies have moved beyond pastel blue and pink, and there are so many more design options for modern parents. I’d be hard pressed to pick a favourite aspect of this room, but the art wall and the zebra print rug are definitely top contenders.

Image via House and Home

Splish Splash

I don’t remember dedicated kid’s bathrooms being a big thing when I was growing up. However, now that I have a child of my own I can see the appeal of having a family friendly bath, where you can address issues like sink height and bath toy storage. What I especially like about this bath is that it’s both completely kid and grown-up  friendly at the same time.

Photograph by Steven Visneau via Design Mom

A Place to Play

Kids come with a lot of toys. Finding an organized spot for everything is almost impossible, so in the playroom you may as well embrace the chaos of it all. This playroom is full of colour, creativity, and a pink drum set! I can only imagine it would be oodles of fun to play in here. Oh, to be six years old again.

Via House Beautiful

Boy Den

I don’t know many teen boys who are going to consent to letting anyone besides themselves decorate their room, and I’m pretty sure they would also avoid the term “decorate”. If you do find yourself designing a room for a teenage boy, painting the walls black and framing some cool posters is a good place to start. This room has cool and relaxed figured out completely.

Pirate Ship Bedroom by Kuhl Design Build via Design Milk

Ahoy Mate!

My jaw literally dropped the first time I saw this pirate ship bedroom. Talk about being the luckiest kid in the world. On the other side of the room there is a dungeon for locking up mutinous shipmates. Some might say this is a little extreme, or question what happens when the kid grows up and doesn’t want a giant boat in their bedroom any longer? I say childhood is fleeting so why not embrace the magic while it lasts.

Happy Friday everyone!

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