The Bedroom is…a Bedroom!

For the past couple of months, my bedroom has been in that “almost done” state, which is where that last 5-10% of finishing work often goes to die. Once the walls were painted and a bed was assembled, I was honestly kind of sick of working on it…and so…I didn’t. I got distracted with something else. Sometimes you gotta move on to something that feels exciting, and then circle back when the spirit moves you.

I’ve also been traveling a bit so time at my house has been stretched thin, but last week I finally circled back around to the bedroom! Over the course of a few hours, I used Rejuvenate on the beat-up and heavily scratched floors (I don’t know what to expect in terms of longevity, but at least for now it’s made a HUGE difference! It’s also extremely easy to use and dries quickly! I’ll refinish the floors for real someday, but not today), sanded a couple little patch jobs, touched up paint, hung stuff on the walls, and…now it actually feels like a room! There’s still work to do on a few important things, and lots I’d like to change, but that’s how I roll. When it comes to my own spaces, it usually takes me a year or two after the renovation part is done to feel good about the decorating part. I’ll keep ya posted.

For some reason I seem to have neglected to take much in the way of real “before” photos of this room, which makes me want to go back in time and kick myself! Obviously this is poor blogger form, but I think at the time it felt like the room wasn’t likely to look very different after renovation than it did before renovation.

Then shit got real.

We’ve been through this, but all the walls got stripped down to bare plaster, then that wall to the right in the photo above got demo’d out entirely, then a new window got installed as part of restoring the side of the house (a project that I can finally finish now that the weather is getting nice!), plumbing and electric and insulation got upgraded, and then it was a matter of drywalling, skim-coating the plaster, and trying to replicate the original moldings for the new window!

Of course then there was a ton of scraping and prepping and patching and caulking and priming and finally painting and cleaning (what a concept!) and then I was pooped.

SEE?! It’s a room! A real room!

I love this picture because if you had shown me this four years ago when I was in the process of buying this house…I don’t even know. I would have cried? I would have run? This room seemed like such a straightforward renovation, but the decision to add a fourth window made it a significantly larger undertaking.

But a few months later and it’s hard to even remember that crazy day when you could walk through my wall and plummet to the ground outside. YAY!

The new window sashes still need the interiors painted (and the exteriors cleaned up—I painted them but didn’t scrape the paint off the top sash before it got too cold to remove the sashes and deal with it!), but this fourth window! It changes the room SO MUCH and I’m so glad I did it. It might be hard to appreciate in photos, but it just adds so much balance to a room that felt nice before, but awkward to arrange furniture in. When I’ve had the bed on this wall before, it looked so strange because you wouldn’t really want it overlapping the window on one side to get it more centered in the room, but shoving it over looked weird too and left this space on the side of the bed really narrow. And that was a full bed, which as a grown-ass man I’m happy to leave behind for a larger queen size. Since this is the nicest bedroom in the house, the fact that it can now even gracefully accept a king-sized bed feels like a huge deal. Now, it’s a master.

Speaking of beds, I got the alchemy bronze queen bed from CB2! I loved this glamfabulous thing as soon as it was introduced, and now it’s mine. My thinking was that it would work well with this situation, where the best placement for a bed overlaps the windows a bit—it’s there, but light and transparent enough that it doesn’t feel like it’s dominating or covering up all my hard work. I…think? It’s tricky and I’m not sure I made the right call, but I do really love the bed and I’ll figure it out! I will say that the quality of the bed is really great—I was worried that it might be a little flimsy, but the metal is thick and weighty and the construction is super sturdy. Assembly was really easy—two people are suggested but I got by on my own no problem.

I’m NOT showing off the bed very well because…I don’t have a mattress yet! This is my old full-size mattress which I plopped on there in the meantime. LIKE I SAID, GLAMFABULOUS. I’ll very likely go with one of those newfangled mattress-in-a-box-Internet-miracle companies. I know I love a Leesa, but I’ve never tried any of the others and now there are so many options that it almost defeats the purpose of making mattress shopping simple! Traditional mattress shopping is the actual worst thing in the world, though, so…not complaining.

As for what I don’t love…

  1. I’ve tried to love this rug for years after I bought it off Craigslist back when I lived in Brooklyn, and I just…don’t. I love old oriental rugs, but this particular style has never been my favorite. So I’ll be keeping my eye out for a good 8×10-ish perfectly old rug for the foreseeable future!
  2. I love Bubble lamps but the right light fixture could easy persuade me to swap this out and move it elsewhere. That’s always a fun game.
  3. I like that IKEA floor lamp (discontinued now, sorry!) but not here. Also once I figure out my bedside lighting situation, I won’t need a lamp there. But I will need a plant. I killed mine.
  4. Speaking of bedside lighting, I’d like some.
  5. And they need something to sit on top of, so I need bedside tables. I bought these little Scandinavian numbers a few years ago from a lady on Craigslist and threw them in here for now, but I’m a person who likes to have a drawer or two next to the bed. And also a person who’s never felt good about a mismatched set of end tables—I like a pair. Incidentally good nightstands, at the right size, with storage, and within my price range is potentially impossible? We shall see.
  6. Shades! This one I actually already figured out—I hope! I ended up ordering simple solar shades (I’m predictable!) from Blindsmax.com in a color called “bone,” which is sort of a warm off-white, a bit darker than the trim. Blindsmax seems to be the least expensive option around for simple, customizable solar shades (along with a ton of other window treatment options!). At about $120 per window (for my sizes + custom options—it varies a lot depending!) they certainly add up, but considering most everywhere else seems to be about double that, it’s OK. I currently have some very busted IKEA shades (the predecessors to these, I believe, but mine appear to be discontinued to which I say GOOD RIDDANCE) on two of the four windows, so I’m excited for those leave the premises. I love IKEA but those shades are such garbage.

Back to what I do love…my dresser with its new set of matching repro glass knobs! Also the little concrete and brass table lamp by Menu, which I also loved at first sight and then received from my mommy for my birthday. Thank you, Mommy! The brass knob dims the light up and down, and it lets off such a nice warm glow. I live in terror of breaking it.  It might end up living somewhere else in the house, but ya know. Having something there is nice.

I still have to paint all three of the doors in this room, which I’ll get around to…at some point. It’s not like it’s a huge deal to paint a door, but I like to take them down and strip down the hinges and knobs and stuff, and these all hang a little funny so getting them to open all the way and actually close ends up making it kind of an ordeal.

Also, my mirror! You might recognize this mirror from my old kitchen—I bought it at a junk shop shortly after buying the house, and it’s still one of my favorite things. I have such a problem with old mirrors. It goes without saying, but AS IF this room needed more natural light (it can get VERY bright in here!), it bounces light around nicely. And now it’s hung at a normal height, so it also reflects my face back to me when I look at it! Isn’t that something.

Over the newly-painted radiator (which is holding up perfectly!), I hung a print from my friend Anna‘s Society 6 shop, K is for Black! This is the “Watermelon” print which I just love, in a simple RIBBA frame from IKEA. The print itself has that white border, so you don’t even need to mat it. The paper/print quality of Society 6 stuff is really excellent and I’m so pleased to FINALLY have one of Anna’s pieces hanging up in my house!

That’s kinda it! Even though this room underwent a big renovation, doing the vast majority of the work myself and using stuff I already had kept costs really low. If you discount the cost of the new window ($350) and the installation (maybe another $300, since Edwin helped me with that part—but I’d factor those costs into the exterior renovation), there’s basically no money in here! The insulation and drywall was leftover from other projects, all of the wood used for the window casing was salvage, I bought exactly one gallon of paint for the walls (Benjamin Moore Oil Cloth—matte!) but already had ceiling and trim paint…there’s maybe $100 dollars or so of materials here, purchased specifically of this room? Something like that! Like I always say, hoard with purpose and it pays off. I find that I need to break up bigger and more expensive projects (like the exterior restoration, or the upcoming kitchen) with getting rooms like this out of the way…and I’m so glad the bedroom is finally out of the way!


144 Comments

  1. Hi Daniel….well that’s progress…looks good and I do love that wall colour.
    I’m also glad to see a bed between two windows because that’s what I’m dealing with in our new house and I’ve decided to just go with it…we want a king bed and it will over lap but I figure..hey…it’s not the end of the world…I’ll make it work…so thanks for showing me I’m not nuts.

    • Thanks Debbie! Sometimes it’s really the best/only option (no idea how they would have arranged this room originally, since I think there was also a mantel on the wall where the bed is in the photo from when we started stripping down the walls), but it’s definitely a challenge! These windows sit so low and have such ornate molding that this frame seemed like a good fit, but sometimes I wonder if a more solid but simple upholstered frame would be better. Hmmmmmmm.

  2. Daniel, I’ve been using rejuvenate on the hardwood floors in our 1939 Sears kit house since we bought it 10 years ago. It needs to be redone every few months to a year depending on how much traffic the rooms get (I do our kitchen probably every 3 months or so), but it’s an amazing product that’s easy to use so it’s not a big deal to reapply it. Your bedroom is looking great, and I love the paint color!
    Diane

    • That’s good to know! That’s about what I expected—but yes, it’s not difficult to reapply as needed! Of course in my filthy renovation zone house, the hardest part is just getting the floor clean enough beforehand to apply it in the first place!

  3. The rug may not be your fave, but its color with the floor and wall colors = wow.

    Also, I really hope someone at Leesa reads this and send you a mattress to review. You deserve it!

    • HAHA, from your lips to god’s ears! C’monnnnn, Leesa! :)

      And yes, I agree—I like the red with the walls, but I think a more exciting but predominantly red rug would be even better!

    • We just bought a Leesa, and I love it! We’ve been sleeping on it for about 6 weeks now. Also, if you are ever looking for a buyer for that rug, send me a message. I probably can’t afford it, but I can LOL or shake my head in dismay. (Seriously though, keep me in mind. I might be surprised!)

  4. *swoon*

    That looks like a cozy room to wake up in.

    It’s perfect.

    xx

  5. It looks wonderful. Furnished (not bare) but not crowded. Just right.
    Re bedside lighting, we like sconces. Nothing to knock over in the middle of the night, more space on the nightstand. Rather than have a switch that you have to find and feel for, we have switches within easy reach below that can be turned on by a flailing hand. However, I doubt you will want to make new holes in the just-finished walls.

    • I love sconces, but there are a couple of windows in the way! I guess I could put them between the windows (or I thought about one larger one that could pivot, if that makes sense), but that feels kinda…funny. It’s a challenging room!

      • IKEA has some cute worklight-style lamps with clamps, I have a pair (RANARP) clipped to the sides of my headboard!

      • One with two directional lights, so you can point either one as desired? It depends on whether you want a light for reading in bed or just a soft light if you have to get up during the night. If it’s just for a night light, you could do a light pointing up toward the picture, or one above the picture pointing down at it.

      • I was thinking two of those little lamps attached to the wall on retractable flexing arms would work best here, because your nightstands are so small, and I like a decent size lamp for reading in bed. (That was before I saw that you want to get new nightstands.) I don’t think ones with a slim feeling would look bad next to your windows at all. And the bed, with the spaces in the frame so you can see through to the window moldings, is perfect – better than an upholstered bed in front of windows, I think – that would look light it was blocking, fighting with really, the windows – and what you have doesn’t.

        A third option besides wall mounted or on the nightstand lamps that might work well for your here are not very tall floor lamps – the kind made for reading with a not large shade that points the light downward. Once you get your nightstands figured out, you can see what will fit in behind them. Many floor lamps have a slim base that will fit largely under rate nightstand (if the bottom of the nightstand is raised from the floor a bit on feet or leg) so that the top part of the lamp would be exactly where it would be if it was on your nightstand, but it wouldn’t be ON the nightstand, taking up valuable real estate there.

      • I’ve been eyeballing these babes, and they’re pretty skinny. I could see them fitting around your painting, although I’m generally super optimistic when it comes to space issues :D

        https://www.rejuvenation.com/catalog/collections/cypress-medium-sconce-plug-in/products/5727cecfd5593027c700257c

        Our bedroom is tiny, and we don’t have a lot of wall space either because of paintings behind the bed. I’m convinced these will solve all my problems, but haven’t pulled the trigger because I don’t know if I can really convince myself to pay that much for a lamp. Maybe I’ll just put $1 in a jar every time I sigh over them and see how long it takes to cover itself.

  6. ps your rejuvinate link links to rejuvinate face cream… haha

  7. Good gravy, Mekko’s face. Seeing the room all put together makes me love your paint color even more! Teach me things!

  8. I think the rug color looks great with the walls! Also, mattresses: after EXHAUSTIVE research, I bought a Saatva mattress (the plush version) and I REALLY love it. I felt like I was lying on a sack of sand with all the foam mattresses and am really happy I went with the coil on coil which is different than the old inner springs and doesn’t really really transfer a lot of movement. Anyway, my 2 cents. I love my new mattress!

    • Ah, good to know! Thank you! The mattress in these photos is actually a tempurpedic that I’ve had since high school, so I’m very used to the sack-of-sand feel that you’re talking about. I kind of…like it now? But I remember there being a HUGE adjustment. The Leesa that I’ve slept on is totally different than that though, even though it’s foam…I guess with the many different layers (I think my tempurpedic is basically a 10″ thick block of memory foam) they’ve figured out how to give it some bounce like a traditional mattress? I’ll check that one out though! Keeping cool when I’m sleeping is kinda my biggest source of concern, which makes the foam mattresses feel like a gamble.

      • Keeping cool was the other big issue for me and the Saatva is great for that. I’m not trying to sell you, I just really like it and just spent forever trying to narrow it down when I was shopping, so I had to tell you. Also, if you go to a Room and Board, they have a bunch of different types you can try side by side. The Saatva is similar to their plush coil on coil but is cheaper which I’m happy about. I got the low profile height which looks a little more modern.

      • Thank you Christine! This is all really helpful! Low profile (especially with this bed frame, but also just in general) is a big deal to me too, so this might be a great option!

      • If you like the sack of sand feeling (I get that, I like firm beds), you may want to consider a more traditional futon, the slim kind filled with cotton, not the newer thick ones with a foam core – can’t get more low profile that that.

      • Another way to go low profile is to get a regular coil mattress without a box spring.

        You said you hate mattress shopping, but the one time I did it (I had only hand me down, free cast off hard old cotton futons or crappy coil mattresses with or without box springs until I was past 40), I found it was really easy – IF you know what you like. I knew I liked (and needed for my back) something really firm, so it was very easy to find the firmest mattress in the store, and go with that – I didn’t like the springy ones or the ones with pillow tops (though I did add a cheap thin Ikea memory foam mattress topper to it some years later as it settled), and the plain firm one was way cheaper that everything else. It’s a Simmons Beautyrest “burdock” – and has held up really well – but they likely aren’t using that name anymore as they change them all the time. I do wish that when I bought my wood bed frame a few years earlier that I had gotten the futon platform option, rather than the box spring and mattress option, as I find my box spring really unnecessary, and my bed would be lower with just a mattress, and I could consider a cotton futon, or even just a foam mattress, when this one needs to be replaced.

        Foam can be comfortable, and need not be as expensive as those newer mail-order models – I had a very comfortable firm foam one from Ikea for my guest bed – not their cheapest, but not their thickest, most expensive, one either – maybe the second most expensive then – and it was great – I wanted something I could sleep on if I ever used it as my main bed in the future – my guests loved it, even those who said they didn’t like firm beds. The problem with the Ikea foam mattresses and toppers (at least 6-12 years ago when I bought my two) is that they really offgas bad stink for a long time till they are finally done offgassing – don’t know if Ikea that has changed since – and I think latex foam doesn’t have this problem, but that the other kind of foam (including my tempurpedic pillow and the American Leather sleeper sofa bed with not springs or bars but a firm foam mattress that I later got for my guest room) always does. Ikea has latex mattresses, now, too, I believe.

    • We have a Saatva too, and we’ve only had it a few weeks, but it’s super comfy so far. We knew after the first night that we definitely wouldn’t be returning it.

  9. Hi Daniel!
    I’m a longtime reader, but first time comment-er :)
    I was wondering what size Ribba frame and K is for Black print did you use? Did you have to trim the print at all to fit into the Ribba frame? The room looks beautiful!
    Thanks!

    • Thanks Angie! The print is the Large size, and the frame is the 19.75 x 27.5 size. I think IKEA recently made minor adjustments to the size of these frames (ANNOYING.) so I did have to trim it down a teensy bit…not so hard with a straightedge and a blade, but kind of irritating since S6 prints used to fit perfectly in these frames!

  10. It looks gorgeous and so relaxing!!! I love all the natural light in there.
    I’m gonna have to look into that Rejuvenate stuff for our floors. I think they were refinished at some point not too long ago (I’m coming up on my 2nd anniversary in the house) but not very well. Hmmm.

    Also, I guess you already have tested out a Leesa mattress but for another plug… we just had our two-year anniversary with ours and we still loooooove it! (it also was our first upgrade from a full to a queen… people thought we were so nuts and weird as two adults sharing a full size bed for that long, but we’re cheap and it was fine… now I’m never going back!!!) I used to think beds at nice hotels were so comfy… now I was in a Hilton for a week at the beginning of the month and I COULD. NOT. WAIT to get back to my own vastly superior mattress. I think you should totally get one if you already know you like them! Who needs more decisions to agonize over?! ;)

    • I know, I used to kind of scoff at the idea of upgrading from a full to a queen since the actual size difference is so small, but it makes such a huge difference!! My BF has a king size which is just BEYOND lavishly huge, but I’m not sure I’m ready for all that. At least this way I can keep my comforter and duvet covers!

  11. This is just the perfect room. Good job boy!

  12. That dog! So cute.
    We have a strict “no paws on the bed” rule for our 40kg monster labrador, but he has learnt to stretch his neck out to get the maximum of himself that we will allow onto the bed. It sounds odd but is also really adorable in person when paired with beseeching puppy eyes.

    I’m with you on the matching beside table thing. This trend for mismatched nightstands makes my need for symmetry twitch.

    • I feel like it would be next to impossible to train Mekko to stay off the bed and other furniture! She’s funny…she doesn’t want to sleep the night in bed, but she wants to be there until it’s really sleepy time and comes back for cuddles in the morning. I can’t resist it!

  13. OK this is looking amazing. I know there is a lot of design stuff to do to get it perfect, but holy cow, it’s a real room!
    AS FOR MATTRESSES::: My boyfriend and I got a king miracle internet foam bed as our christmas prezzie to ourselves. We got it on amazon. The brand is ZINUS, and it was only $300ish and it’s literally the best thing in the entire world. 12″ memory foam sent straight from heaven.
    My only regret was being at work when it arrived because I really wanted to see how it was packed and how it unfolded and came to life. Seriously, though. I’ve seen the yoga beds and the Leesa beds and they look great, but they cost like 4x as much and who has the spare change for that. We’ve got a house to decorate.
    Anyway, I love your blog, I’ve been reading since your first or maybe second apt. in NYC and you entertain the hell out of me. I even bought my house around the same time you got this one in Kingston!
    XO

    • Ohhh, this is good to know! If you happen to come back and see this, would you say it’s good about staying cool at night? That’s my biggest thing. And while I’m asking questions, where would you say it falls on a scale of 1-10, firmness-wise?

      Thank you for the kind words! :)

      • hi again!
        So, I love me a squishy bed, and the boy likes a more firm bed, and this one is perfect. It’s more firm to touch and lay on, but the memory foam kind of conforms to your bod and is super comfy. Scale wise, if 1 is a pile of fluffy cottony filling, and 10 is basically laying on the box spring only, I think I’d give it a 6-7 on firmness. It’s really amazingly comfortable for both of us!
        As for coolness, I will 100% sleep in a hoodie and flannel pants in the winter, so that’s usually the culprit if i wake up hot… plus I love me layers of blankies. So going just off that and not having any problems when I’m not surrounding myself with too many layers, I’d say it’s pretty good!
        Here’s the one we got, only in a king. The 90s inspired fabric is just a bonus. ;)
        https://www.amazon.com/Zinus-Memory-Premium-Cloud-like-Mattress/dp/B012H0K93I/ref=sr_1_4?s=furniture&ie=UTF8&qid=1492640937&sr=1-4&keywords=zinus+memory+foam+mattress
        I hope this helps!!

      • I also got one of those foam beds from Amazon and I got one with the “cool touch gel” — it stays pretty comfortable for me and the two snoring snuggling (and also photobombing) dogs I sleep with :) And it cost $250. I got a firm one and it’s still firm and fine (nearly a year old at this point).

        Love the bedroom! Colors are great, windows look great, Mekko looks great.

        I’m going to look into that Rejuvenate floor stuff. I use Johnson’s floor cleaner (Johnson’s No Buff One Step Wax) that I buy at Home Depot and it makes my wood floors look nice and shiny.

        What a great room this is! It must be so nice to wake up and see all you’ve done!

      • Very helpful! Thank you!!! That price point sure is tempting!

  14. I love the color you chose for the walls :) I love the red of the rug too with the wall color.

  15. I am SO in love with that wall color – seriously. When we get ready to sell our house (good riddance…) I will be redoing some of my more “bold” paint choices with this shade – it’s really perfect! What a dreamy space you have made for yourself and your doggies! <3 (And boy howdy, if you ever want any travel prints or prints of pets or whatever – metal or canvas or acrylic – you let me know what you need. Would love to contribute something!)

  16. Have you tried Minwax floor reviver? I’ve been in my house for about 8 years and haven’t had them refinished… that’s with great danes wrestling and running all over them. I’ve been trying to decide if I should go with a cheap solution to let them go longer.

    • I haven’t tried that one! I can’t speak to that product, but at least with Rejuvenate I’d say it’s worth it! It’s really extremely easy to do, and theoretically it’ll help protect them from more damage or staining and stuff in the meantime. I’m in the same boat…dreaming of refinished floors but it just seems terribly out of order to do it before more of the house is renovated.

  17. You’re brilliant and I love it!

  18. Oh, it’s all looking SO good, Daniel! I’m really happy that you have such a calm, special place to call your bedroom now. Your house is so beautiful, and you deserve to have this oasis in the midst of the construction chaos. I’m beyond honored to have a piece of my work in there. XO

  19. Looks great! Love the colour. Just wondering, is there a reason that you don’t want the bed on the wall like the photo with max in it? Bed too big? Would sort the bedside light problem but i guess you have a good reason not to go with that way.

    • Yes, it’s hard to tell in photos but it’s very cramped with the bed on that wall. Like too little space on each side and too much space between the end of the bed and the wall with the radiators. It seems like it would be better but I’ve tried it a couple times and it just doesn’t work!

  20. Glad you decided to show us the “after” – your space is really looking good, even if it feels more like a “middle” instead of an “after.” Also, it helps me to feel better knowing that decorating takes time to get exactly right. That Mekko is sure photogenic. I’m not sure that I’d be able to leave bed in the morning with her giving me those puppy eyes!

    • It’s never-ending! But I’ve never really understood the appeal of trying to design a space in one shot, and then never change it until you, like, trash everything and start over. I can’t imagine living that way! Moving stuff around and adding and subtracting things is my favorite game!

      • Thumbs up …. where’s the fun without reinventing a space from time to time. I usually get wierd looks from everybody for frequently painting rooms in our house, or my love for bold wallpaper.
        Love the room! The light is great, the colour is amazing and works really well with the bedframe. I always was hesitant to incorporate brass finishings into my desigsn choices, but the minimalistic nature of this bedframe gives it just the right amount of glamour.
        The rug is great, but one with a bit more drama might rock the space even more.
        I am searching for something nice for our living room for over a year now and haven’t found the perfect match so far. Since I don’t want to spend money on a temporary solution we are enjoying the simplicity of our newly installed brushed white-oiled oak floors. I love them!
        Enjoy this oasis in the middle of the rest of the renovation chaos!

  21. the room looks so good! that paint color is amazing!

    just wanted to chime in to say that we have a leesa, and i do think it sleeps hot (i’m a hot sleeper and frequently wake up a bit too warm). i have also slept for a few nights on a casper at a friend’s house and didn’t find it to be quite as warm, and equally if not more comfortable than the leesa. everyone’s different, and the mattresses all have at least 30 days to try it out, so if you get one you don’t like, switching should be pretty easy at least. good luck finding the perfect one!

  22. Mekko <3 <3 <3

    Agree with you on the STYLE of rug but did want to call out that one of the first things I noticed was how nice the color of the rug went with the paint. Seriously, might be my favorite part of the reveal.

    But really, that dog is so cute.

  23. Can we have more Mekko in every post? Thanks for your cooperation in this matter.

  24. Ooh that bed frame! I was considering it for our condo but my husband likes a softer headboard and comfy cozy stuff so it was promptly eliminated. I admit when I saw the first pic I was all, “oh it doesn’t look so good”, and then you said it was a smaller mattress! I can’t wait to see it with a new mattress and pillows and all styled up! Though Mekko makes it looks very comfy right now.

    Also, thanks for all these posts. I love they they are super long and detailed. I’ve been reading for years and years and get super excited when an email hits my inbox from Manhatten Nest. You’re the best.

  25. I just bought Anna’s Watermelon print on a throw pillow a couple weeks ago!! I’m obsessed with it and it looks amazing on my new navy Theo Chair from West Elm. I’m so happy to know the artwork is by your friend.

  26. I’m shamefully addicted to this house. This is one of the very first titles on my Digg list that I look hopefully to for new posts. I’ve been reading since one of the earlier manhattan apartments and I’m still hooked–and also thrilled for you and your successes.

    I second the earlier question about the other wall for the bed — is there a reason? I know the king-sized beds aren’t that far off from a square, so theoretically if there was room for it to be that way, there’d be room the other way, too? There’s probably a reason! That reason may even be dresser placement — as in, there’s not enough space for a dresser to the side of the bed?

    Anyway, everything is gorgeous, but I get where you’re coming from with that. Don’t judge it until you get the rest of the stuff in there. And if you think that it needs something more solid, there’s no reason you can’t cut a piece of MDF or something to size behind the headboard and paint it the same white as the trim. In a different room I might suggest curtains, but those windows are too gorgeous to cover!

    • Aw, thank you Mandi! That’s very kind! :)

      Yeah—the bed does fit on that wall, but with end tables it’s all very cramped particularly on the right side between the bed and the new window. And then there’s a lot of space between the end of the bed and the wall with the radiator, but not really in a good way…it just doesn’t feel good! Putting it where it is brings it close to centered in the room, and allows for the largest clearances on each side which I just think makes the room feel way more balanced.

  27. This looks like the bedroom of a happy man.

    A happy man with very good taste and absurd reno skills;).

    And I admit, I wouldn’t change anything except getting the right sized mattress. I love the sparseness of everything else. Oh, BTW, I suggest you look at Essentia mattresses? Non-toxic memory foam, and we love ours. Expensive, but, maybe since you are you they just might have some sense and give you one.

  28. Sweet dreams in your lovely bedroom!

    I also love the rug. I recently had a house (rented apt.) fire from which I barely escaped with my 2 rabbits squeezed into a too-small carrier and my phone. I lost a similar rug which I bought on ebay years ago, before the rug craze which rendered me unable to afford anything but bathmat-sized rugs, more like rags really, with more holes than rug. So if you do decide to part with yours, please keep me in mind! I’ll weave you something as part of a deal :-)

    And to all you this-will-never-happen-to-me renters out there, learn from my mistake and get renters’ insurance!
    And to everyone else, keep your pet carriers in an easy to get to spot and have an escape plan.
    You never know when a furnace in the basement will ignite or your neighbor deep-fry the building.

    • Omg I agree. We had a fire scare a couple of years ago in a building we lived in in Toronto. I could never leave my cat behind and grabbed his carrier and shoved him into it. When other renters saw me outside with my cat they panicked. We quickly found out that the sprinkler had been set off in the parking garage when the fire department showed up and it was going to be okay. The next time the alarm went off – everyone was outside with thier pets! Then we all got stickers for our doors that said “pet inside”. Animals need our help to be safe! So glad you got out with your bunnies.

    • Oh Tal, I’m so sorry to hear that!! What a scary nightmare. So awful. Good on you for thinking fast and getting yourself and the bunnies out, and thank you for the reminder to plan for the unexpected! Admittedly I haven’t done that, and I really should.

  29. Love the bed!!! Check out purple mattresses, we got one for our second anniversary and the first night I was like “eh, I dunno” and after the first week I told my husband he could pry it from my cold dead hands. I have a seat cushion that was free with purchase and I use it on a crappy kitchen chair for 9 hours a day and miraculously my ass isn’t broken at the end of the day. And I just got a pillow which I (surprise!) love. And they make funny YouTube videos, so that’s a thing.

  30. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE bedroom reveal! :D
    I know I keep raving about that Oil Cloth paint shade, but it’s such an amazing color for that space! And that bed! Everything is pulled together so fantastically, even if they aren’t all pieces that you are 100% okay with (like the rug and the floor lamp!) in that space. It looks amazing.

    As for mattresses…I’m currently sleeping on an IKEA Haguesund medium-firm mattress with a 2 inch convoluted foam pad left over from my previous mattress, and it’s pretty good? I found out the hard way that lot of the memory foam mattresses aren’t so great for my back. One mattress that intrigued me was the Purple bed. Have you seen their ads?

    • Thank you Erin! I’m really happy with the wall color too! I’d never heard of purple, but Lauren suggested it right before you, above!

  31. Love, love, love that bed. It looks wonderful in front of the windows. When you first added the second window I wondered how it was going to make the layout of the room easier, but now I see and think you are absolutely right. I have the same situation – one window on the side – and have shifted all of the furniture to the other side, which bothers me. Very nice job!

    • Thank you Diann! I know what you mean about the window—it’s totally counter-intuitive but I think it’s made all the difference! Still a tricky space, but I think way less than it used to be.

  32. I also have a Saatva mattress, and love it. Bought mine two years ago, and I have never slept better. Great company to buy from. Also, your bedroom is so bright and beautiful. Your commitment to restoration and craftsmanship is really inspiring.

  33. If you ever wanna sell that rug let me know!!!

  34. It’s beautiful! An amazing transformation, and I’ll be the zillion person to say that the paint color is perfect. ( I get the impression that Mekko likes the new room too)

    • Thank you, Kelly! And yes she does! Now if I could just get her to sleep on HER bed, which has gone untouched since I put it down, haha!

  35. YAY!! The bedroom is in “the fun part” stage–it looks so nice.

    • I know, at long last! It’s kind of surreal!

      • Oh, please – I have the idea that the most fun part to you is ripping the walls out – am I wrong?

      • Haha, it’s all somewhat equally fun and not fun! Demo is fun but clean-up is not, hanging art is fun but fretting over it isn’t, ya know!

  36. We have a memory foam mattress that left us dripping in sweat in the summer, until we bought a special “temperature balancing” mattress cover (we got this one: https://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/product/healthy-nights-temperature-balancing-mattress-protector/3262130) It wasn’t cheap, but it has made all the difference, and the mattress is now heaven year-round.
    (p.s. the new window is so, so worth it. Stunning match, and really balances the room. And I agree with you on matching nightstands.)

  37. Fab fab! What a wonderful space you have created!
    Checked out Anna’s site. Love the Watermelon print but, compared to the original on the site, yours is hung upside down. Since you are so meticulous I presume that was intentional?

    • HAHA! You put too much faith in me!! No, I just hung it upside down by accident! I thought Anna was just being polite in not pointing that out in her comment above, but turns out she didn’t notice either. LOL—I’ll remedy that situation today. :)

  38. Nightstand + Table Lamp combos give me such anxiety. I feel like designers always get it right, and then there I am…mulling and mulling over stuff and feeling like I never quite get there. Plus finding matching pairs is such a pain if you want to buy vintage.

    So basically, I feel you.

    • Ugh, tell me about it!! I think nightstands and coffee tables are the hardest thing to source and get right proportionally…and I feel like waiting for a vintage set that isn’t a billion dollars and actually checks all of the boxes could take literal decades. I keep looking at new stuff online that’s…close? Kinda OK? Would be OK with some modifications? So I’m thinking about going that route, but I hate buying stuff that I don’t LOVE and I also know it’s exceedingly unlikely I’ll find anything I LOVE and can also afford. It’s all one big struggle, haha. We’ll figure it out someday!

      • In the meanwhile…you more than anyone could probably do something cool to hack the IKEA Rast dresser into something that looks respectable by adding trim and painting it black, or you could cover it in black linen (Martha has a tutorial on that somewhere), and of course add amazing hardware. I mean, temporary…but black could be cool in that bedroom and you could have something cheap with storage while you wait…and wait…and wait.

      • Well, the tables you have there now are the height of the mattress, so they are perfect until you find something low with drawers. That is hard to find – I gave up looking after a decade and had Hardwood Artisans, which you may be familiar with from DC, make me some, and I wasn’t even looking for low ones like you are since I’ve got a bed frame and mattress and box spring.

        Looking at your photos, it occurs to me that you may find something like campaign chests – two drawer version – maybe in rectangular with wider drawers for more storage, and more space on top, if you want more space for either (I’m always trying to maximize storage space both inside AND surface space on top so I’m not knocking stuff over or off a small surface) – that would be the right height and would also fill out more space on either side of the bed under the windows. The ones I like best are the asian-style ones, antique or reproduction – it is not that uncommon to find them in wide low two-drawer versions – and that’s often one component of those modular step tansu chests you can find as well.

        The way I feel about matching nightstands is that they should match if they look like nightstands, but if they look like old (or even new) furniture that has drawers (or doors) and look like storage case pieces that could be used in a variety of places in a home, but you have repurposed them for use as nightstands, then they look fine if they don’t match, better even. Why does this make intuitive sense to me? – I think because if they were two matching dresser-like case pieces, no matter how small, to me they would then look too matchy-matchy, which I hate (I’d never buy two dressers or a dresser and chest that were the same exact style, or a dresser or chest with nightstands to match, would I? – no never!)

      • Anyway, get your mattress first before nightstands, so you know what height you are looking for.

        Coffee tables are easy if, like me, you need them to store stuff as well – it cuts out most of them from consideration – I need storage, which is why mine is a wood trunk.

      • You will not find a nigh table as low as your bed, unless it is a toddler size, and that will be new, not old, and most aren’t in styles you’d find suitable for an adult. The only suitable ones will be very modern in style.

        If you search on images end tables with drawers, you will find many with drawers that are only slightly taller than your bed – they tend to be 22-25 inches, made to go next to chair arms, but definitely shorter than most nightstands. You will find modern ones that have old styes in wood that you can buy in pairs, but old end tables don’t tend to come in pairs.

        If you search coffee table with drawers, you will find many the height of your mattress, as coffee table height tends to be about 17-18.” Many look like trunks, with drawers instead of a lift top. You won’t find two old ones, as they don’t tend to come in pairs, but if you lose the idea that they have to match, which they don’t really (to me, anyway) as they don’t look like nightstands, you will find some with lots of drawer space. You will find wider, rectangular ones, as opposed to smaller squarish end table and nightstands. You might find two completely different pieces that you like how they work together, and not necessarily both trunks but two different types of pieces – I like that look if they don’t look like nightstands.

        If you want something old and low, search on antique desktop files with drawers, they are low and you could add feet or have a simple iron base made to raise them a few inches. Or asian dowry chests – some have doors in front rather than a lift top. You might find other low Japanese chests, as they tended to sleep and sit traditionally on the floor.

        What I think you might be best doing is buying nice quality wood floating drawers, and stacking two and connecting them and adding feet or a base. You could attach one to the wall – though I think if you wanted two, with one right above the other, you’d be running into the trim under the window. Or have something similar to two drawers made for you (or by you), or an old piece altered to work (it will be much harder to find an old piece one that will work, easier to find modern ones to alter, as they tend to make somewhat shorter modern nightstands now to go with lower platform beds, just not as low as yours is.)

        If you get two old nightstands, they are going to be a foot taller than your mattress on each side. If you get two modern ones, they will just be a few inches (at most) shorter than that – still too tall for me, but some live with that. I think your best bet is to get really creative here and look at all kinds of furniture not traditionally used as nightstands. Or think it up and make it.

      • Yep! I’d love to avoid really making something from scratch just because I need THAT project added to my list like another hole in my head, but I have a strong feeling that I’ll at least end up having to hack something. And then feel mad at myself for spending too much money on something that I probably could have just made…ha!

      • One more (because I enjoy solving furniture problems, and I haven’t got any of my own to solve at present) – search on console tables with drawers. You’ll find lots of slim rectangular ones, with round or square straight legs that would be very east to cut down, and would still look good shortened. Most have two side by side drawers, some deeper than others, but you could put a box or basket underneath to store more stuff. They tend to be new, often fairly cheap, in traditional styling if not old (I can see cutting down a cheap new piece easy, but a nice old antique, I’d have some trouble messing with) – and being new you could do two matching ones if you choose (though I wouldn’t – just one and something else for the other side.)

      • Had a similar issue and hacked two IKEA Leksvik nighstands (with one drawer). They were the perfect heigth, solid wood, but I didn’t like the finsih. Painted them in petrol blue and “aged” them and added an additional shelf in the bottom compartment. Love them im front of my exposed brick wall!

  39. It’s looking great, Daniel! I love love the beefy molding around your windows and doors.

    My husband and I ordered a king size mattress from Tuft & Needle last year, and we’ve been really pleased with it. It sleeps pretty cool, which was important for me to be comfortable during the summer.

    • Good to know! My friend Anna (who did the print over the radiator) also has a Tuft & Needle and has been happy with hers too!

  40. Your bedroom is so beautiful and serene! I love the rug and that little concrete lamp is perfection. Just lovely!

    Mattress shopping is indeed one of the worst things ever, but before you succumb to a chunk of foam in a box, may I recommend Charles P. Rogers – they’ve been making beds and mattresses since the mid-1800s and are located in New York (they make their mattresses in New Jersey).

    Leesa/Tuft & Needle etc are just foam, no coils — that’s how they can ship them in a box. But no coils mean less distributed support and “give” when you move around and very little air circulation so they can “sleep hot.” They do make ordering easier than going to an awful mattress retail store where it’s impossible to comparison shop and the salesfolk are pushy and/or unhelpful, but it’s not a great mattress for the money.

    I bought the St. Regis line mattress for our guest bed (to go with one of the cottage iron frames I got there), and it is very, very comfy. The St. Regis is the same price as a Leesa and SO much better. I tried the Leesa when it was time to replace the mattress for our regular bed and I returned it. After that, I decided to go with Charles Rogers mid-range Estate line which is a couple hundred dollars more, and it is awesome! Not too soft, not too firm — like sleeping on a cloud! I promise I don’t work for them, I’m just an extremely satisfied repeat customer. :) Way more than you wanted to know!

    Anyway, the folks at Charles Rogers are very nice and helpful, their mattresses are made in the US, and they comply with the independent certification that they aren’t using toxic foam. If you want to check them out: http://www.charlesprogers.com/

    • Thank you Alexis! That’s all great information! I’d definitely like to stay under $1,000, so St. Regis is a contender!

  41. Beautiful wall paint colour, I love it! And such a beautiful bed.
    Bravo.

  42. Great details! I love light and airy bedrooms but for some reason I feel like yours is calling out for some black details. Also I kind of wish that the rug was pulled away from the nightstands about a foot.

    I have a Leesa mattress and while it’s okay – choose something else. It’s comfortable but not as good as my last memory foam mattress and I bake like an oven sleeping on it! Because my bed frame (we also upgraded to a king like “real” adults) was on backorder for so long we missed the return window and I was so stubborn about just putting the new mattress on the floor. *head slap*

    • I just assumed the doors would be painted black as well, like the downstairs ones and radiators.

      • Yep, doors are going black!

        Sorry to hear you don’t love the Leesa! My BF has one and we’ve been very satisfied with it, but I keep feeling like mayyyybbeeee I could do better? I think I’d prefer something that sleeps cooler and is firmer, but finding that within my price range AND ticking all my other boxes is a little overwhelming! And makes me feel a little crazy since I know I’d be totally happy with another Leesa and I could just get this over with real fast if I wasn’t being such a pain, haha!

  43. Oh one more thing about the mattress – it’s alright for sleeping but as far as firmness it’s terribly uncomfortable for long periods of sitting on (edge or middle). It squishes down too much and gets really hot, seriously who like’s a hot butt?? I had planned on long periods of nursing in this bed however I just couldn’t because it was too uncomfortable. If you plan on working from bed go another route. (I had chose the Leesa bc all the reviews said it was firmer than the Casper and not as hot but it was a sort of disappointment on both of those fronts for me and I love a good memory foam bed (my last two beds were both memory foam) so I knew what I was getting into.

    • I know exactly what you mean! For me Leesa was love at first sleep, but I have noticed that it’s not good for sitting in…and I’m totally guilty of trying to work from bed, fold laundry, etc., so I’d love an improvement on that part. It doesn’t usually sleep too hot for me, but that doesn’t mean I don’t wish it was a bit cooler.

  44. I know what you mean about that rug – style matters as much as color – I find the persian rugs I’m drawn to have geometric patterns in various sizes, and borders, so the ones I have are all generally heriz style – that’s just what I’m drawn to.

    Though I’m not drawn to persian rugs in my bedrooms at all – I like a simpler, less complex style in bedrooms, like gabbehs.

    Though if I were ever to put a rug that was largely under my bed again (which I probably won’t, as I hated the dust if collected there), it would not be a pile rug – it would be something like a flat weave, like a kilim or soumak, if wool, or a cotton rag or cotton woven rug, so I could use my simple old fashioned carpet sweeper (the kind with a little brush inside a little metal box, no electricity) or broom to sweep it, because I know I’m just lazy don’t get out the vacuum that often to do the rugs knotted rugs with pile, especially where I don’t see them and have to scramble to get the vacuum under furniture to reach it all.

    I also like bubble lamps, too, but I see something less modern working better in this bedroom, eve though it is a mix of modern and old.

    • Hear ya on all fronts! I missed out on a lot of 3 circa-1900 light fixtures in perfect shape at auction a few weeks ago, and I’m still kicking myself!! For me this room is too much new and not enough old right now, but it’s a nice starting point. :)

  45. Your bedroom is looking great there Daniel and I SO need to work on mine, though I did replace the cheap light fixture with a better looking one (a 70’s or 80’s era mushroom style light, not a boob light and it’s SO much better than the cheap ones found in bedrooms of many homes from the 50’s an 60’s and the one in my bedroom was cracked…). Found both at Habitat for Humanity Restore for less than $5 each late last summer.

    I need to repaint, redo the closet and replace the cheap nylon light blue curtain on a tension rod for a closet door, stuff like that but it’s serviceable for now/. At least it didn’t need an additional window or the walls redone as it’s all sheetrock in good shape.

    I will need to replace the window eventually as it’s a slider and an earlier style insulated one with the two sliders from the 70’s most likely, and it is fogged, as is the one in my office of the same style. When I do, it’ll be a double hung unit like all the rest except for the bathroom to better accommodate the window air conditioner I was given last fall that I may need this summer if the forecast is correct for we’re due a hot summer, unlike last summer which was not hot much at all and even then, my bedroom never got all that bad despite facing in a southerly direction, more or less.

    Overall, your bedroom looks serene and wonderful and love the bed and it reminds me style wise of the 1970’s to a degree but it works in your space however.

    I agree, the color of the rug is nice in your space and works well with the paint colors chosen and would stay in that color family even if in a different style and I’m kind of looking at a similar color, but in the Bakara style of oriental rug in a runner shape for my hall when the time comes as I’m leaning to something dramatic, like chocolate brown for the walls in there so my artwork can stand out better.

    Overall, keep it coming!

  46. It’s gorgeous! I recognized that bedframe immediately (I’ve had my eye on it since it came out). If you are interested in the mattress in a box concept, you might want to try Casper. I have one; I’m a huge fan.

  47. first of all (and I’m sure no one else commented about this) that pup is everything.
    also, in re: to mattresses…I know they are expensive, but I absolutely cannot say enough good things about Sleep Number. My husband and I bit the bullet a few years ago and haven’t looked back since. (Plus, they get delivered and put together for you, and are modular…meaning you can replace a piece if it goes bad rather than the whole darn bed, and should you need to move, you can break it down and put it in a box!)

    • I love the idea of a sleep number, but it also freaks me out a little! Like the bed is a robot! I’ve never really looked into it (and I think it will fall outside my price range) but I’ll check it out!

  48. Ah! I’ve been waiting for this :)

    And I like it! It feels light, airy and calm AND cosy. Good combo for bedrooms.

    About the rug. I like it fine, but if you are looking at alternatives what about jute rugs? Missmustardseed did a post on them, let me see if I can find a link.

    https://missmustardseed.com/26902-2/
    https://missmustardseed.com/about-my-jute-rugs/
    I figure jute rugs are more neutral so they go with everything and you could combine with smaller rugs on top without it getting too busy.

    • Thank you Elin! Ya know…I’ve never loved jute rugs for myself, or gotten particularly into the layered approach! I’m not sure what my hang-up is. I’ve put them in client spaces when we needed something big and cheap and they’ve been good, but for some reason I’m not a huge fan for my own house. I think partially because I love old oriental rugs SO MUCH that buying anything else feels kinda…blah. I just found a nice big antique rug for all of $45, which makes me feel like the deals ARE still out there…and I do love the hunt!

      • Jute (and other natural fiber rugs, I can’t keep them all straight) is: 1) often not soft at all underfoot, but uncomfortably scratchy; 2) often sheds all the time; 3) impossible to clean, so essentially a disposable waste of money, compared to rugs that can be cleaned and last for decades. I don’t have pets, but to cats (and possibly dogs) they probably look like things to use their claws on.

  49. I love this room, it feels very sophisticated, but you are right you do need a plant. Every room needs a plant! (or in my case every window/shelf/corner/mantel/porch/etc) Something easy to keep alive, but bright and semi-architectural. Check out neon-pothos or spider plants, for hanging (out of reach of pets) and which are extremely forgiving. Its probably tempting to go for something more hip and gorgeous like a fiddle-leaf-fig, but they are more temperamental (and costly) I can send you a cutting if you like, I am drowning in plants!

    • Thank you Nicole! It’s funny—I’ve always had a pretty easy time with fiddle leafs! My house went through a bout of not being heated this winter, and unfortunately all my house plants died in the process—including my beloved fiddles! I’m SLIGHTLY optimistic that if I put them outside over the summer they’ll rise like phoenix from the ashes (this HAS worked for me in the past!), but also prepared to buy a bunch of new plants. LUCKILY now that I’m out of Brooklyn, house plants are much, much more affordable and we have some great local garden centers to get them from. :)

  50. Your room is a DREAM! I especially love how you’ve overlapped the windows with the bed. It definitely doesn’t block it too much.

    It totally accomplishes your “it’s there, but light and transparent enough that it doesn’t feel like it’s dominating or covering up all my hard work” thing!

  51. this is just emanating golden ratio vibes.
    http://emptyeasel.com/2009/01/20/a-guide-to-the-golden-ratio-aka-golden-section-or-golden-mean-for-artists/
    wonderful to see miss mekko enjoying her boudoir.

  52. Hello Mekko! (ear skritches!!!!!) Love the paint color, Dan!

  53. Love it all, ‘specially Mekko, such soulful eyes!

  54. LOVE that bed – I think it’s perfection! Room is sooo pretty and Mekko is just frosting. Hope Linus is well, too.

  55. Thank you for introducing me to Society 6 shop! <3 it, will be shopping there for presents.

  56. Looks fab Daniel. I love the very soothing vibes.
    I hear you, once I’m almost finished with a room and in the decorating phase, it usually takes me a bit of time to figure out what it really needs. Like we need to get used to being around each other before I know (and then I end up changing things a couple times more before I’m really done, but that’s just me, I’m never satisfied, drives my man bonkers ;)).

  57. Are the little lamps that used to be on top of our piano being used anywhere? Could they work as small nightstand lights? If not, would the one you have on the dresser work as a bedside lamp if I bought you a second one?

    • Yes, those little ones might work, but I don’t think I particularly like them with the bed. They’ll get used somewhere, just haven’t found the spot yet! (and yes but don’t do that crazy lady! I already have one!)

  58. Good deals are def out there on large Persians and antique rugs – I remember Jenny from Little Green Notebook had a good tip about finding them on EBay once… Here she talks about it and has the original

    link: http://littlegreennotebook.com/2014/11/vintage-rugs-on-ebay.html/

    Also it’s either ESale Rugs or Rugs USA (I forget which one since I rug window shop a lot) always has a sale and you can find some good deals on unique larger ones.

  59. Oh, look at the bubba so proud on his new master bed!! Outstanding as usual. I still can’t get over the missing wall. And I’m pretty sure you started that right before it started snowing. As you do.

    Re: affordable perfect height matching night stands, check out furnishgreen. You can check online daily for new stuff that comes in — all affordable vintage/used furniture.

  60. Daniel…I never see pics of the other little dog anymore. Kinda of scared to ask…but where is the little fuzzy one at?

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