10 Easy Ways to Refresh Your Bedroom

If your bedroom’s a snooze, take a look at these high-impact, no-reno decoration ideas

Joanna Linberg
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Hang Fabric above the Bed

Boost a bedroom’s color palette by hanging a textile above the bed. This works especially well for low beds or beds without a headboard because it creates a focal point and gives the bed some oomph. Try a thin cotton-weave rug, a silk scarf, a few yards of a favorite fabric, or an heirloom blanket that’s too pretty to use. Attach loops for hanging sturdy pieces but consider framing anything delicate or that needs preservation.

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Replace Doors with Curtains

Soften the edges of the bedroom by removing interior doors to the closet or master bathroom and hanging curtains in their place. Matching the curtains to the wall color is super-sophisticated and will make the room seem larger. Choose a finish that matches one already in your bedroom or bathroom, like the matte black hardware shown here.

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Partially Repaint

If your bedroom has little or no noteworthy architecture, add a little with paint. Brush a bold color halfway (or up to two-thirds) up the wall. Boom: instant character. This is also a good baby step if you’ve always wanted to paint a room a strong, dark color.

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Cheat on Wallpaper

Traditional wallpaper adds so much to a room—pattern, color, texture, and depth—but it’s pricey and a bit of a pain to install (and to remove, if you ever tire of it). But removable wallpaper gives you all the benefits with none of those downsides. We like the totally modern (read: not at all cheesy) designs at Chasing Paper.

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Go Bold on Furniture

Before buying a new bedroom set, revive what you have with paint. Even one piece in a bright color, like this dresser, sets a new tone for the whole room. To make this DIY seem like a pro job, experiment with a worn paint finish (find tutorials online) or use milk paint, which has a softer, chalky result.

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Fake Your Way to Built-Ins

The cozy practicality of built-in cabinetry can be yours without pulling out a saw and hammer. Simply flank your bed with bookcases or shelving units. A few keys to a true look-alike situation: Use shelves that are on the deeper end (you might have to combine stackable storage cubes if you can’t find a bookcase deep enough). The larger dimensions get closer to the architectural presence of a custom scenario. And try to replicate built-ins across the whole wall using boxy benches or credenzas.

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Change the Bedding

The bed is the largest piece in the bedroom, so when you switch up your bedding for a new set, the decoration of the whole room is transformed. Natural linen works in virtually every scenario and is easy to layer color and pattern on top of, if that’s your style. Parachute and Rough Linen are two great California-based sources.

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Make an Easy Canopy

When was the last time you saw a canopy bed? Probably on a relaxing vacation at a dreamy hotel. Bring those serene vibes home with an easy DIY version: Screw a one-sided curtain rod into the wall near the ceiling, centering it above the headboard. Screw two large hooks at equal heights above and on either side of the headboard. Tie a large rope (or ribbon) to the hooks, then hang a length of fabric over the rod and thread each end through the loops.

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Hang Curtains behind the Bed

Sometimes there’s no option but to place the bed in front of a window. Turn that layout into an opulent decorating moment by hanging curtains along the entire width of the wall, providing a lush, dimensional background for the bed. (This looks great even if you don’t have a window to hide.) Match the curtains to the room’s wall color for a seamless look.

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Look to Lighting

Bedrooms don’t require task lighting, so they’re the perfect place to put dramatic, decorative pieces. Try exchanging the overhead light for a chandelier or swapping table lamps for wall sconces or even hanging pendants. No matter what option you choose, use a low-wattage bulb or put lights on dimmers so it’s easy to wind down at the end of the day.