The bedroom is the most personal space in our home. This is where we begin each new day with renewed energy, ready to face the world. It's also where we end our day, tired but wrapped in the comfort of our familiar surroundings.
In my home the bedroom is the catalyst for some of my strongest family memories: lying in bed with a new baby, toddlers making the early-morning climb onto the bed, and teenagers sharing conversation and their many worries. We begin our birthday celebrations all crammed on the bed surrounded by wrapping paper, gifts from the grandparents, and cups of tea. This room is where I have read to my children, from their first simple stories to helping them appreciate the classics.
The bedroom should convey warmth and comfort. In my home any elements that distract from this, such as a work desk or even a television, are kept in another room. But we all have our own approaches, different space parameters, and varied budgets. I hope that you will discover a special setting, a new paint technique, or an inspirational furniture fix-up among the beautifully eclectic variety of bedrooms in this book. We all need a place to dream.
We begin this book with a look at the elements that go into planning a bedroom. Each room becomes more than the sum of its parts, more than a bed to layer, or a window to lavish with swags of toile, or a dresser to paint. When completed success- fully, the colors, fabrics, and furnishings speak to one another, and join together to accentuate a mood and carry a style. The bed is the focal point and its main function is comfort. Buying the right mattress is crucial. There is much to learn about what kind of mattress is right for you, and how to mix this comfort with the style you like. The mattress is the first and most important building block of the bed.
You may already have a bed frame, a hand-me-down wooden headboard from your family, or a wonderful wrought-iron or brass bed. If you prefer, these can be reinvented to suit today's mood, and I have also offered many techniques for creating your own headboard.
You will need luscious layers of sheets, duvets, and blankets. In the first part of this book I'll share tips on what to look for and what questions to ask when shopping. Careful attention should be paid when choosing bed linens. Buy the best you can afford. Good-quality linens will last many years and numerous washes. They will envelop you in luxury and will save you money in the long run.