Monthly Archives: December 2016
It’s hard to imagine a design more simple than a basic straight line. Stack two or more straight lines, and you have stripes: clean, easy on the eyes, and infinitely variable. Perhaps that’s why the most common patterns used to decorate interior walls are stripes in all their glorious variations. Horizontal, vertical, one stripe, lots of stripes, jagged stripes, colorful stripes: whether you choose to adorn just one accent wall with straight-edged fun (as in the beautiful bedroom from CDA Interior Design shown here), or go all-out and encircle the entire room with stripes, it’s a reasonably easy DIY project that will add a hefty dose of wow to your bedroom. Painting basic stripes on the wall is easy enough; just decide how thick you want the stripes to be, use painter’s tape to mark off the borders, then fill in the lines with your desired color of paint. If you’d rather not be bothered with a paintbrush, there are many striped wallpapers, and with today’s easy-up, easy-down wall coverings, you can even decorate a rental’s walls with your favorite pattern. Need some inspiration? Here are 25 bedrooms that show off the range and versatility of geometry’s most basic design.
This gorgeous contemporary room from Atelier Interior Design shows off the most common orientation of wall stripes: horizontal. It’s easy to paint horizontal stripes, and as a plus, they make a small room look larger. While the soft stripes here are wallpaper, you could achieve the same effect with crackle glaze and paint. For the best appearance, keep your stripes between five and ten inches wide.
If you want to add a statement, yet not an exclamation, try one oversize horizontal stripe wrapping around the center of your walls, as in this room by Ragan Corliss of Decorating Den Interiors.
Your bedroom. It’s your own personal refuge at the end of a long, hectic day. It’s the most private area of your home; after all, guests use the bathroom, gather in the kitchen, and visit in the living room, but few guests will wander into your bedroom. It’s the place where you fall blissfully into your comfortable bed at night to dream away the hours peacefully, and then awaken refreshed and ready for a new day.
And believe it or not, it’s also just as important as the gym when it comes to maintaining a healthy weight.
It’s not just the kitchen that’s out to get you when it comes to putting on the pounds; many studies have concluded that the bedroom — or more specifically, the bedroom’s major purpose: sleep – plays a significant role in weight gain, appetite control and health eating. You already know that a lack of good-quality sleep is linked to several health problems, including:
- High blood pressure
- Wrinkled, dull skin
- Lowered immune system function
- Reduced sex drive
But now there’s a new health buster to add to the list — routinely sleeping five hours or less each night can make you fat. And it doesn’t have to be years of insufficient sleep, either; even a few nights spent burning the candle at both ends is enough to skewer your diet goals. A study done at the University of Colorado found that test subjects who slept only five hours per night for one week gained an average of two pounds during that time.
That means a rough week spent working overtime, a sick toddler, or too many nights spent binge-watching your favorite show might show up on the bathroom scale.
When You’re Tired, You Snack
A foggy brain is a brain in search of quick energy, and also prone to making poor food choices. That explains why you find yourself standing in front of the office vending machine, money in hand, every afternoon when the “three o’clock slump” strikes, or even worse, pulling that carton of Ben and Jerry’s – the one you swore was for the kids – out of the freezer shortly before bedtime.
And worst of all, when you are exhausted and barely able to drag yourself out of bed because your wakeup time is far too close to your bedtime, it’s nearly impossible to pass by those luscious donuts in the lunchroom, or resist the lure of pulling through Starbucks for a Venti Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappuccino. The inevitable result? Pants that are too tight, and no, it’s not because they shrunk in the wash. In the University of Colorado study, the participants particularly craved carbs, and lots of them. Sound familiar? Then get to bed early tonight.
It’s a Hormone Thing
Your desire to eat is far more complicated than, “Mmm, chocolate cake and ice cream sound pretty good right now.” In fact, an intricate dance of hormones helps keep your appetite under control, and the two most important of those hunger hormones are ghrelin and leptin.
Ghrelin hangs out in your stomach, reporting on food intake to your brain. It’s a hungry hormone; when your stomach is empty, ghrelin levels rise drastically, telling your brain, “Hey, we need some food in here!” In response, you feel a desire to eat.
Leptin is produced by your fat cells, and along with other food-related functions, it’s in charge of letting your brain know that you’re full. That sends the signal that it’s time to set your fork down.
When you’re well-rested, these two hormones are better able to maintain balance, and you are far likelier to make wise food choices. Your willpower and clear thinking are strong, and it’s far easier to resist the siren call of, “Just one more slice of pizza.”
The bed sizes available in the United States are Twin, Single, Double, Full, Queen, King, California King, Western King, and Eastern King.
How in the world is anyone supposed to know the difference between all the bed sizes on the market today? Even the sales person in your local department store bed department might not have all the facts. It can be a very overwhelming decision. So, what exactly is the difference between the different sizes of beds available?
Read on for help understanding the sizes of beds on the market, and how to decide which one is right for your needs.
Some manufacturers will custom-cut beds larger or smaller than standard sizes, but beware of these custom made beds. While it may seem appealing to have a custom size bed, you may have trouble finding bedding to fit.
Twin, Single, and Extra-Long Twin Beds
- Twin beds are also known as single beds. They’re the most common choice for children’s rooms or multi-use guest rooms. These beds are narrow and fit easily into the smallest bedroom. Often twin beds have a “trundle” underneath to accommodate a sleep-over or second guest. Twin beds are used for bunk beds too.
- Overall dimensions: 39″ wide x 75″ long”
- Width per person: 39″
- Pros: Because of its small size it will fit easily into smaller bedrooms. Twin sheets are the least costly of all sheet sizes and are available in lots of patterns. It’s easy to make a twin bed.
- Cons: A standard size is too short for many adults.
- Twin Extra Long beds are 5″ longer than a standard twin. They’re often used in college dorm rooms to accommodate tall teens.
- Overall dimensions: 39″ wide x 80″ long
- Width per person: 39″
- Pros: The longer length is good for taller teens and adults. It’s easy to make since it’s narrow. If you need flexibility in a guest room, two extra long twins are a good choice. They can be used as singles or pushed together to form a king size bed.
- Cons: Bedding is difficult to find and not available in every pattern.
Note: What is considered “standard” is occasionally changed by some manufacturers. Before you go shopping for bedding, be sure to know the exact measurements of the bed you have purchased. Some standard fitted sheets may not fit.
Double, Full, or Queen Size Beds
Any of these sizes fit in a normal room, but many couples feel that a Full or Double bed (they’re essentially the same thing) is definitely too narrow for anything more than an occasional night’s sleep. A Queen size bed gives each one a bit more room without taking up too much more floor space.
Here’s the main difference between Full and Queen beds:
- Double or Full beds are 15″ wider than a Twin, but if two share the bed, each has only 27″ of personal space — much less than a twin!
- A Queen bed is 6″ wider than a Double bed, allowing more room for each person, but still 9″ less than a twin bed.
- Double beds (also known as Full) were the most common for two to sleep in until the 1960’s. They’re only 15″ wider than a Single bed, leaving only 27″ of sleep space for each of two adults. At 75″ long, a Full-size bed may be too short for some taller adults.
- Overall dimensions: 54″ wide x 75″ long
- Width per person: 27″
- Pros: Fits into smaller rooms. Might be just right for a single sleeper who is under 5’5″ tall. Sheets are less expensive than queen or king size.
- Cons: Many people find a Double bed too narrow for 2 adults and too short as well.
You’ve been sharing your hearts for a while, and now you’ve made the decision to share your home as well. When it’s time to take the plunge and move in together, there are many decisions to be made: how will you handle finances? How are you going to divvy up housework? How much time will you spend pursuing individual hobbies, and how much time will you spend together? And of course, you’ll also need to decide how to decorate your shared bedroom.
It’s often said that the kitchen is the heart of the home, but it can also be said that the bedroom is the heart of your relationship. Get that heart beating in a healthy rhythm with these tips to decorate your shared space.
Paint the Bedroom Walls a Color You Love
If you’re renting, you probably can’t permanently change the wall color (although there are plenty of non-paint ways to decorate walls), but if you purchased your home, nothing says new start like a fresh coat of paint. Go creamy white, pale gray, or soft sand if you like a neutral or traditional style; choose something brighter if you share a sense of drama; or go dark and deep if you both prefer an elegant, slightly moody look. The actual color isn’t as important as the process of choosing the paint together. If possible, tackle the paint job yourself (painting a single room is a fairly easy DIY project for a weekend) as a symbol of the new life you are starting together.
One of the biggest decorating decisions you’ll have to face together, particularly if you both had fully furnished living quarters prior to cohabiting, is which furniture to keep, which furniture is unnecessary, and which furniture should be replaced. Luckily, while these can be complicated decisions in the living room and entertainment area, they are usually not as difficult in the bedroom.
First of all, don’t think you have to have matching furniture in the bedroom (or in any area of the home, for that matter.) Matched sets can actually be boring, so feel free to go eclectic with a mix of looks. If the two of you are bringing very diverse styles of furniture into the bedroom – for example, you have black lacquered contemporary pieces and he has knotty pine country style – don’t despair. A coat of paint and perhaps matching drawer pulls and knobs help create a complementary compromise. If your tastes in furniture are closer in style, then you might not have to make any changes at all.
You’ll also want to consider the size and function of your bedroom furniture. Two people sharing a room generally means two nightstands, two dressers or chests of drawers, one bed with headboard and perhaps footboard, an armchair or comfortable spot to sit, and a selection of lamps. Out of your pool of furniture, choose the pieces that are suitably sized and in the best condition for your new digs.
Your shared bed is the most intimate spot in your home. Because of this, many couples like to start fresh with a brand new mattress selected together. If your budget simply will not allow such a luxury, then choose the mattress that is in the best condition, or is the newest.
But whether or not you buy a new mattress, do make it a point to purchase new bedding together. After all, when two people slip into the same bed each night, both deserve a say about the color, design, and feel of the sheets, blankets and duvet or comforter. Plus, it’s always nice to know there is no “past history” with any prior partners and the bedding in your new home.
Accessories Mean Compromise
The decorating area that generally requires the most compromise is artwork and accessories. After all, your bed and furniture are mostly functional, but the frills and extras in the bedroom are just that: extras that serve little purpose beyond looking decorative (not that that isn’t important!). Typically, you’ll want at least onelarge piece of artwork over your headboard or over a dresser, so if one of you has a suitably sized piece, that might be reason enough to give it a place of honor. But if one of you really hates the other’s taste in artwork or decorative accessories, you’ll need to work out a compromise. That might mean agreeing to each select one piece of artwork out of what you already own, and then purchasing a few new items together. Another solution is to use one partner’s accessories in the bedroom and the other partner’s artwork in another room of the home. When reaching a compromise, consider the sentimental or emotional value of the object, its monetary value, and its suitability to the space where you intend to use it. But remember – what’s most important is creating a happy new life together. Arguments over décor simply aren’t worth the strain on your relationship. Flexibility is the key when moving in with your significant other, whether in finances, parenting or decorating. After all, a relationship is for a lifetime, while just about everything else comes and goes.