August 19th, 2010

I tried blue. Then gray. Waited a few days and settled on Behrs Ashes. Hmmmmm. Now, why did I want to do an accent wall?

It may have something to do with being consistently dissatisfied with the tiny main bedroom. Something deep inside needs it to be more snazzy or possibly wants to distract from those asymmetrical windows (which are a huge pain in the ass when it comes to placing headboards or furniture or anything really).

I think I like the color. It’s hard to judge since the bed linens are not working at all with it and I’m having a problem figuring out what to do with the bed frame. My suspicions are that beds are the hardest thing to put together well.

Here is a reminder of what the other side of the bedroom looks like and those burl wood tables will be nightstands.

I’ve been going through my tumblr archives trying to figure out what it is that I hope to achieve. Below are some shots that seemed to have a coherent aesthetic scheme running through them.

I’m feeling a little stuck and broke. I’ve been combing through all the affordable bed linens I can find on ye’ old interweb and nothing is approaching being acceptably perfect. Well, except for EVERYTHING made by Area. Area is incredibly lovely, but also very, very expensive. I know that the bedding answer seems sooo obvious, but we can’t do white. I would totally go for full on white bedding in an instant but The Boy has put a kibosh on any and all white bedding.

The bed will need to be lowered in order to have a room for a headboard and allow easier access for Iggy’s little short butt to jump up. Nothing affordable, short and amazing is popping up so it looks like we might have to DIY a platform bed as well as some sort of headboard. The closet door handle situation will also need to be addressed, which requires some more fancy DIY action. Bedside lighting has proven to be difficult issue over the past few years and I’ve been seriously considering an Akari table light to keep things casual.

Maybe many potted cactuses is the answer.ย  Maybe a visit from the money fairy is the real answer…I’m thinking this whole remodel business would be a lot easier with bags of money.

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  1. Lil on 08/19/2010:

    Ah, the money fairy – my favourite of all fairies – be sure to send her our way after she’s visited you! ps I really like your wall colour, nice choice.

  2. Niamhy on 08/19/2010:

    I’m in a smiliar funk when it comes to my bedroom. A funk that would be greatly helped by a money weilding fairy. But until the money sprite visitis Muji might be worth a look for affordable bed linens. they dont have those rich dark colours your after but they do a nice beige set that could work with a darker coverlet? Anyway hope it all comes together for you and within budget : )

  3. Fat Cat on 08/19/2010:

    I have a question : how wide is the room ? Would it be possible to move the bed to the wall with the ‘captain’ portrait (with the end towards your closet) ? And how possible is it to sacrifice the odd window on that same wall, and maybe board it up with some nice wooden planks like in the inspiration photo ? You would still be left with the two windows where your bed currently is… I guess one can dream…
    As for the ights, here is the Ikea alternative : (sorry the link is to the Belgian site, Ikea US is bugging…) – Ok, it does not have the sweet little legs, but it’s about ten times cheaper…

  4. Anna on 08/19/2010:

    In the same boat re: the bed. Have been searching high and low for a platform bed with rounded corners for our tiny bedroom. My shins can’t take the squared off corners in that little space…

  5. Tina on 08/19/2010:

    Money is everything. But lack of it also makes us people be more creative. Iยดm sure some great ideas will come to you soon. Ikea has lots of affordable bedlinen.
    Good luck to you!

  6. ModFruGal on 08/19/2010:

    Color is nice…Lurv the burl as nightstands..and I feel ya on the bed…same boat here. I too am frustrated with my bedroom situation with no affordable answers yet…so much to build, so little time…

  7. akemi on 08/19/2010:

    Grey + grey = snoozeville, and not in the way you intended. Have you considered Navy or Olive sheets?
    And a shellacked plywood headboard until you can afford a live edge one?
    Keep going, friend. Money is helpful, but ultimately not essential. Your work on a budget so far is f-ing fantastic.

  8. tx Sarah on 08/19/2010:

    How do you get your mother-in-law’s tongue to thrive so well? How big was it when you got it. I’ve managed to kill both of mine.

  9. Jean on 08/19/2010:

    The photo with the striped Mexican type blanket and pendant lights feels most congruent with your style and your room. Would the Boy permit white or light brown sheets with a deep, vivid blanket? For the bed, chop the legs down and use big square pillows instead of a headboard? The pillows work fine for us although we have a running tiff about the pillowcovers. Always something….

  10. jackie on 08/19/2010:

    Ahhh, bags of money…

    To Tina: bed linens from ikea? Are you kidding? That stuff is like sandpaper. It looks good in the photos but in real life it’s right up there with hospital grade, but worse.

    One little suggestion…
    possibly checking out Target and Marshall’s/T J Maxx for linens. Yeah, it’s hit or miss and they’re def not Area but one can sometimes score there with quality.

  11. jackie on 08/19/2010:

    ooh, just thought of this-
    what about a hack to a convertable futon sofa as a platform for your mattress(nix the box spring)? Sourced on Craig’s list or a cheapo college futon store maybe?
    I use one for my bed it’s low, works well and was cheap. Easy to move too. Those slats work in a multitude of ways…

  12. Bdeckba on 08/19/2010:

    I love your house. That being said, the color in your bedroom is kinda bo-ring. It doesn’t really make an impact, at least not on my computer monitor, which could be skewed in its opinion. And the burl tables are really nice however they seem too big for the space next to the bed. Sometimes you have to change something you love to get a clear view. That happens to me all the time, I end up moving a beloved piece out of the picture and then it all comes together. Just some thoughts from nobody. Oh wait, is my name showing?

  13. modernhaus on 08/19/2010:

    Headboard idea: How about you take chunks of wood, spackle and fill them, sand them endlessly, and paint them black?
    Whatever you do, please dont use those sad Psych Ward leather mattress thingies hanging from the wall in that one picture.
    Now on to my real (but still useless) feedback: In most of the pics you posted the light walls aren’t boring because the floors are dark. I still think you need something dark (wall, floor, or bed) to anchor the room and provide contrast. Maybe navy just had too many preppy connotations…what about charcoal gray?

  14. THE BRICK HOUSE on 08/19/2010:

    I was totally going to do that! I was going to roam the neighborhood and find fallen tree branches, glue them together, then sand them down till they resemble a sheet of plywood. After that I would spackle everything put them through a planer and then take them to an automotive shop and have them sprayed black.

    Dark bedding is the key. Maybe in army green?

  15. heather on 08/19/2010:

    I wish you bags and bags of beautiful money.
    I love the olive drab idea for bedding. And a Nakashima-esque headboard – I’m sure you could make one. A friend of mine did and it came out amazing. You’re certainly talented enough.

  16. Amy @ seven grey sweaters on 08/19/2010:

    Oh man, I’ve been around this block a few times. (Right now, in fact.) The only thing that’s ever worked is the nail the bedding first, and pick the paint color last.

    Area bedding is awesome. I have a quilted linen coverlet that’s one of my favorite things in the world. And it doesn’t show pet hair.

    Is it feasible to lower your bed by chucking out the box spring? That’s what we did. It’s still comfy.

  17. vanessa on 08/19/2010:

    I’m a random person who enjoys all things diy- which means I enjoy your blog. I thought I’d pipe in about the bed. I don’t know if you’ve seen yet, but she has plans, instructions, and materials lists for diy-furniture. She has one for a low modern frame and headboard that I’m sure you could rig into a platform bed.

  18. neuro on 08/19/2010:

    Damn I love that wall color.

    I’ve been super happy with Garnet Hill sheets. Kind of dorky website/catalog but they last and last.

    The Portland Ace will sell you one of those Pendleton blankets.

  19. THE BRICK HOUSE on 08/19/2010:

    We will probably ditch the box spring. We don’t have one in the guest bedroom and it works fine.

    I may have changed my mind about a few things. I need some time to go out shopping to check stuff out.

    TX S- I don’t know! I abuse it so bad and it keeps living.

  20. jd on 08/20/2010:

    i’d ditch the box spring for a slat base. could you move the bed to the opposite wall, the one with no windows or closet maybe more room for a headboard? what about painting the whole room?

    gray sheets – affordable and organic…

    i agree with FAT CAT, i was just at IKEA and took pause in front of the Vร„TE lamp…
    not bad for $10.

    TX SARAH, i also pretty much ignore my mother-in-law’s tongue (i.e. the plant) and it looks fine. it takes very little water.

    you talk about putting THE BRICK HOUSE on the market when you are done renovating, do you think you will attempt to sell it furnished? if not, maybe save the stress for the black front door -which looks great- and save the headboard for the next house? …i know, i am no fun at all.

  21. Anna @ D16 on 08/20/2010:

    Bags of money will not help. I assure you.

    For some reason, getting beds and bedrooms RIGHT is, like, impossible. I don’t know why, but this problem plagues me, too.

  22. Lisa on 08/20/2010:

    No no no no no! There’s so much beauty in how you do things on the cheap and DIY. Honestly, your house is the biggest source of inspiration I have come across. And your bedroom knocks the pants off those other photos that you posted for inspiration. Keep doing what you do. You’ve got such a knack for design. The perfect combination of simple and loaded with character. Also: Ohhhhhh the burls. LOVE the burls.

  23. Lisa on 08/20/2010:

    Oh and white linens suck.

  24. Fiona on 08/20/2010:

    Looks like I’m out-voted. Love, love, love it just the way it is. Greys, browns, bit of gold. The Captain painting is totally making sense now. We got the Ikea Malm bed in oak as a compromise budget solution (my husband wanted a king-size which was too difficult to thrift) but now that it’s here I love it.

  25. dantimdad on 08/20/2010:

    Does Area manage to sell anything? Good Lord! The linens for out king bed would almost cost as much as the bed itself. How absurd! I need a good source for linens myself.

  26. my little apartment on 08/20/2010:

    I’m about to be in the same boat, but am heading in a different style. I think I wanna go full upholstered headboard, but I have a tiny room to deal with. good luck to us both.

    anyway, I’m sure you’ve seen this, but thought it was a clever hack that might inspire you to do a clever hack of your own?

    just kindof loved the use of army blankets and raw wood.

    also, John Robshaw can be both too boho and expensive, but for shams and sheets, I really love his simpler stuff. lots of greys, browns, golds, etc. I plan on using it in my bedroom and you can find it on discount site, ebay, etc.

    good luck, dude.

  27. Emily on 08/20/2010:

    First of all…love, love, love your blog.

    So my ideas on your bedroom. I love the warm grey (understated and clean) but what if you did something like this?
    …on the wall behind the bed.


    I really love the raised patterned effect. There’s nothing like adding more texture to add a lil somethin’ extra Just ideas! As always, good luck. ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. Summer on 08/20/2010:

    But if you had bags of money, the creative challenge wouldn’t be there. What if you did window treatments along the entire wall so that the windows wouldn’t look asymmetrical? Sort of like the image where it looks as though there are blinds along the entire wall. It would allow privacy as well…but no headboard. Drapes may not be your thing, but a bank of them covering the whole wall made of drop cloth would be inexpensive and hide the windows. Lovely inspiration photos…perfect for your home.

  29. Alex on 08/20/2010:

    That color is nice, I like the room with the sofa an in-front of the bed…check out the sofa I just got… it is fantastico ๐Ÿ˜‰

  30. Sammy on 08/20/2010:

    Try this for size from downunder
    Exchange rate’s good ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. Jill on 08/21/2010:

    Love the wall color, love the idea of army green linens too. Maybe with a navy wool blanket? Just a thought — have you ever tried angling the bed in the corner WITH the windows, using them as kind of a headboard? I wonder if that configuration might work, or at least change things up!

    Love the idea of cactuses, too. You could probably even hide plant stands back behind the bed in that corner and use the window sills / stands as a vertical succulent garden. Or figure out how to DIY hanging plant pods like the ones over at Sprout.

    Can’t wait to see what you do!

  32. Christina on 08/21/2010:

    Have you thought of repurposing vintage tablecloths for bedcovers? Probably wouldn’t work for the darker, sophisticated look you are going for but might work until that money fairy shows up.

  33. jeannette on 08/21/2010:

    your tale of the front door really touched me. it’s a thousand times better as wavy gravy than that perfect surface money could by you. i love your enterprise, and it makes me think about resurrection.
    get this book. you and your man will love it.

  34. Michelle on 08/21/2010:

    Screw the money fairy. It can’t buy you style or imagination both of which you have for free! You’ll come up with something unique just like you have with everything else (well in the few months since I’ve been a follower ;o))

  35. Becky on 08/21/2010:

    Hey, that’s a Judd bed! Sweet.

    I don’t know, I kind of like the way it is right now. Sorry, totally useless!

  36. that grey wall looks perfect.

    how about buying white (new or vintage/antique) linen and dyeing it grey in the washing machine? i recently read a blog post by someone who did, and the grey linen looked awesome. of course i can’t, for the life of me, remember where…

    p.s.: found you via german glamour magazine, who have you listed as “blog of the month”. small world.

  37. Julia - rock that horse on 08/22/2010:

    I like your bedroom and bedlinen, I’m just not sure about the brown blanket and frankly: that lamp…no!?
    But remodelling with a money fairy is too easy, no a challange for creative people like you. You can always dye your bedlinen in any colour yourself.

  38. travis on 08/22/2010:

    I want to second using a futon frame as a bedframe. Get a queen size without side arms. It doesn’t show, you don’t need a box spring and it can be very cheap, especially a used one. Also someone mentioned needing a frame with rounded corners, and most futons fit that bill.

    About bedding, Area bedding can often be found on eBay. I’m not that into Area myself but I went on Dwell kick a few years back and found a good deal of both brands there. Also TJ Maxx, etc. I’ve gotten Frette linens there on clearance for about 5% of the original cost (seriously).

    While the money fairy would be nice, the ingenuity fairy pays higher dividends in the long run.

  39. jeannette on 08/23/2010:

    do you know about welsh blankets? they may be too rustic for your house but i’ve been lusting for one forever.

  40. erin@designcrisis on 08/23/2010:

    I really like the room with the knotty pine planking behind the bed. Since your room is small, maybe screw the headboard and just do some sort of textured wall treatment? The Ace bedroom slatted screen thingie is pretty sweet, too.

  41. susan on 08/23/2010:

    I seem to recall an earlier post where you mentioned a leather headboard. Have you seen this post at “the steampunk home”?

    There’s a link in the post about doing something like those tiles yourself and I see no reason why you couldn’t also translate that to a headboard.

    Whatever you end up doing, I’m sure it will be terrific. Everything else in your house is ๐Ÿ™‚

  42. Lynn on 08/24/2010:

    do you know about ?

    If not, it may be time you learn.

  43. remp3 on 08/27/2010:

    too many comments to fully scroll back on right away, and I’m sure you’ve thought of this, but in the past, ebay has been my friend for some decent sheets (search: threadcount + sheets) but more so, buying the standard and oft cheaper white sheets and dyeing them myself has proved interesting and rewarding. has to be cotton, launder first + a large enough vat, make sure you use hot water to make your dye, and throw in some salt to aid. after that, shock in a cold! bath before drying once and then laundering carefully (same colours) with half a cup of white vinegar in the mix.

    you could always dye in the washing machine, but I’ve never liked that option and prefer to have some tangible control on te process.

    you can also combine most dyes to make your own colour mix.

    love the site, and your aesthetic, thanks for sharing.

  44. remp3 on 08/27/2010:

    n.b.: by standard and cheaper, I didn’t mean in terms of quality, but versus the same brand/quality but in choice colours.

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