Freshen Up Your Bedroom for Spring  

hf-lockhart1By Jane Lockhart

As the long dark days of winter finally fade, the bedroom is one space that can benefit from a reboot—a breath of new life for a personal room that we embrace each day. We often drag ourselves to bed after busy and emotionally charged days. So having a pleasant bedroom space is a definite pick-me-up that can help to enhance both health and happiness.

Evidence shows that creating a bedroom full of comfort and relaxation aids longer and better quality sleep. This, in turn, helps to reduce anxiety and improve overall well-being. Interestingly, even weight-loss studies have shown a positive impact of better sleep.

To refresh your bedroom décor, consider all five senses as touch points. Managing light and darkness in the bedroom is key to optimizing your space for a good night’s sleep. Adding drapes that fully close to minimize random light leaks at night is not only functional, but also a beautiful way to add soft textures and colour. Think of silk for its unique sheen or linen for its casual earthy feel. Even synthetic versions of these fabrics offer excellent variety and mimic the drape of the originals, but with, of course, less cost and maintenance.

If you feel a clock radio is necessary, consider swapping to an iPod docking station to reduce the constant electronic light at night, which is thought to be detrimental to circadian rhythms. Program melodic sounds or music you would like to hear as you wake, rather than a loud alarm. Switch to potentially stressful news programs only after you have completely woken up, so your body and mind have a few moments of peace before the daily grind begins.

Dress your bedhf-lockhart3
The bedding is an easy area to refresh and a simple way to capture the essence of spring. Pull off heavy, dark sheeting and blankets and relish the bright colours of the season. Look for strong florals and softly layered textures to bring spring into the room. This year, nature is playing an ongoing role in linen design, as we see birch tree motifs, feathers, dandelions and large floral blooms covering the tops of our beds.

White is always a favourite as it adds energy to any room. Mix solid bright colours of sheets and pillows with a white bed cover to create a snappy contrast, or layer white-on-white for a heavenly, whimsical feel. With an all-white theme, you can toss coloured accent pillows onto the bed. For cooler spring nights, add a quilted coverlet or a matelassé in a light pastel for a whisper of colour. This can complement strong hues and retain a quiet overall feel.

From the floor up
If your bedroom has hardwood flooring, either add a carpet for a warm, squishy feel underfoot or swap out an existing rug for a fresh texture. A light-coloured floor covering will brighten and add renewed softness in both sight and sound. Even exchanging heavier wool winter carpets for woven cotton mats can soften a space.

And of course, spring is the perfect season to paint. Select pale green-blues for a relaxing, ethereal feel or buttery yellows for energy. Soft whites with hints of grey add a neutral character, while pale blush pink is warm and charming, perhaps even familiar?

The bedroom is often the last room to be decorated, or redone. This spring, it’s time to put it first for a change. Give the same energy and resources to your bedroom redesign as you do to your “public spaces.” After all, you should be a priority this spring, and your most personal and intimate space is something you can enjoy each night and look forward to each morning.

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