Bedroom Colour Schemes: Choosing The Right Palette For Your Lifestyle

There are a myriad of ways to spruce up a bedroom, but they all pale in significance when compared to a complete colour makeover. Getting that colour scheme right is an important but difficult task and can require a good degree of thought and planning.

Whether you’re undergoing a complete bedroom renovation or simply keen to freshen it up, one of the first questions to ask yourself is: which colour?

This doesn’t need to be a gruelling process of poring over colour swabs and galleries, at least not at first. In fact, it can and should be an exciting experience that leaves you delightfully scheming, not screaming.

Why You Need The Right Colour Scheme

Unless you’re clinophobic (scared of beds), you’ll probably spend more time in the bedroom than any other room in the house. It’s the first and last room you see every day and for this reason alone, getting the colour right is vital to suit your lifestyle.

For a room that looks like it’s come out of a magazine, understanding how colours work together is critical. High priced furnishings and the permanence of a fresh paint job is enough to scare anyone away from experimenting for fear of getting it wrong. For this reason, we see many drab interiors, but it doesn’t have to be!

  Aesthetic Benefits

Take a moment to work out your favourite colours and styles of your existing artwork and furnishings. What typical styles do you gravitate to when you flip through an interiors magazine? It might be that you are attracted to a contemporary palette with dark colours that are accented by pops of colour here and there. Maybe you like more of a country feel with whites, pastels, wood with reminiscent trinkets. We could write about bedroom colour schemes and designs until our fingers fall off but essentially it’s about what colours you like.

No doubt you’ll have a few generic colours in mind. That’s a great start because it helps you narrow your search from the get-go.

An important consideration in picking your colour scheme is to look at what furnishings and feature items you already have. If your bedroom is full of pink, feminine items, it’ll look a little strange to paint it a bright yellow or dark brown. Make sure your shortlisted styles fit the overall look and theme you’re going for. Do you want your bedroom to be invigorating or relaxing?

“Think about colours you like to be surrounded by and energy levels you want to create. Visually brainstorm by collecting paint cards, bedroom images and fabrics that appeal, put these into an ideas folder or online mood board and you’ll soon see your colour scheme emerging!”
– Susie Miles, Founder at Susie Miles Designs

Psychological Benefits

Colour can play a huge role in your mood. For example, it’s been scientifically proven that red makes you hungry, hence why McDonalds and most fast food chains (KFC, Burger King/Hungry Jacks, Pizza Hut etc.) use red in their brand logos.

For bedrooms, most people want a calm colour. As a guide, here are some popular bedroom colours and the moods they may induce:

  • • Yellows are cheerful and warm
  • • Greens are tranquil and healthy
  • • Blues are calm and serene
  • • Whites are innocent and spacey

Softer colours tend to promote sleep and relaxation, while bolder colours can energize the occupant. Lighter colour schemes work better for morning people, whereas dark colours are suited to night owls. Colour is very much a personal choice and can affect everyone in different ways. It’s like art; people love a piece or hate it. Generally speaking, tonal blues and greens are a safe bet in bedrooms since their restful colours to the eye and encourage relaxation.

Check out the BBC’s helpful Psychology of Colour page for more info.

“A muted palette is often invoked because we want to feel restful and calm in our bedrooms – making it easier to fall asleep or simply to retreat after a long day. Choosing to go for bold colour makes us feel more energized, awake and yet also cosy especially in a smaller space. If the bedroom is doubling as a work space, a pop of colour can help one feel energized.”
– Khristine Holterman, Interior Design expert at Revuu

What’s Trending

 

The plethora of colours on offer can seem incredibly daunting, even with their cutesy names like Bright Delight and Atlantic Mystique.

To narrow down this inexhaustible search, take a look at these current trends.

Neutral palettes: a word from the pros

By far the most popular choices for bedroom decorating are neutral, pastel colour tones. And judging by our expert guest contributors, it’s all about cool blues, greens and greys. This trend is down to a deep love and inspiration of nature, which has good application in the bedroom, promoting relaxing qualities of sand, grass, sea blues and so on.

Blues are a great choice due to their ability to produce a sense of calm and restfulness. There are so many variations of blue shades and the deeper indigo hues have been popular in recent times.

Other trending bedroom colours are “very pale greens, light blues, greys and off-white/tan; as well as saturated colours like dark navy, dark purple, pink and even black colours which are especially great for very small rooms with good natural light, because they can feel cosy yet fun.

“To create a soothing space, opt for cool colours – think blue green all the way through to grey. These hues are perfect because they tend to recede, producing a calming and relaxing effect. On the flipside, since you want your bedroom to be restful, steer clear of high-energy colours like bright green, deep red or bold hues.”
– Clare Hillier, creator at Checks and Spots

Clashing prints and monochrome

For the bold bedroom designer, do a bit of research on clashing prints or monochrome.

Clashing prints, as the name suggests, are deliberate contrasts that somehow work well together. It’s all about opposites, pairing a neutral print with a bold one, a small print with a big one, a textured print with a smooth one.

Inspired by 1960s black-and-white fashion photography, the confident monochrome style has endured due to its classic look that never goes out of fashion. The versatile combination works well with other colours and allows you to play around with colour more easily.

Monochrome walls mean you can add a splash of colour through your sheet sets or furnishings, like these Brosa chest of drawers or a bedside table.

Both Susie Miles and KR Moehr don’t write off strong colours. Susie says, “If richer deeper hues are your thing, try adding a pop of a stronger colour.”

They’re both a fan of Marsala, a rich red wine hue which global colour authority Pantone declared the 2015 colour of the year.

How To Choose Your Colour Palette

“Playing with colour in a bedroom can be daunting. A trick that stylists use is the 60:30:10 rule where 60% of the room is one colour, 30% another colour and 10% an accent colour.”
– Gina Ciancio, Style Curator

OK we’ve told you about the aesthetic and psychological benefits of bedroom colours, as well as the current trends. Now it’s time for the fun part … to actually choose the right colour palette.

We suggest adopting a holistic approach, based on a number of factors like those provided above:

  • • Observing current trends to gauge what’s hot
  • • Considering psychological and aesthetic benefits of certain colours
  • • Thinking about what vibe you want the room to give off
  • • By personality: artistic, outgoing, organised etc.

 

Colour Combinations And Experimenting With Colour

Step 1: Choose your base colour

This can be as simple as ‘off-white’ or ‘green’ but helps you to narrow down your search.

Step 2: Make use of technology

There are an increasing number of nifty interactive tools like Adobe Colour Wheel or Paletton to explore colour themes and combinations. Commercial outfits like Resene and Bunnings also offer helpful colour wheels and planners. Pick a few of your favourites.

Step 3: Go and get some paint samples

While these online colour wheels can be immensely helpful, there’s nothing like the real thing baby, as Marvin Gaye might say. Go to your favourite paint provider and pick up samples of your favourite colours.

Step 4: Observe

Khristine stated earlier that a colour can change based on different times of the day as the light changes. Go into the bedroom a few times during different times of day and monitor which colours you like and why. Maybe even jot down your findings in a notepad.

Step 5: Match with your desired fittings

Think about what furniture and styles will go with your shortlisted colours and if you have the furnishings already, place them side-by-side with your splash of colour.

How To Style Your Colour Palette

Remember it’s not just colour on the walls that makes a difference. It’s also about choosing things like:

  • A bedframe
  • Furniture like tallboys and bedside tables
  • Lighting to set moods and add focal points
  • Floor colours such as a carpet, floorboards and rugs
  • Throws and cushions
  • Personal trinkets and accessories

Here are some tips from the various industry experts we’ve interviewed:

“I love using beautiful textured grasscloth wallpaper, a luxurious upholstered bedhead or adding colour through the soft furnishings on the bed such as pillows or a throw.”
– Belinda

fixed-size

“Color is often brought in with accessories and art. This is where you can update easily and inexpensively after the original design becomes tired!”
– KR Moehr

fixed-size

“Stick to neutral tones and simple patterns for furniture and larger items and add colour with accessories and bedding. This is easier to get right and will save you money in the long run.”
– Gina

fixed-size

“Layering bed sheets in neutrals such as soft greys, charcoals and whites, then combining pastel shades like turquoise and particularly salmon pink in cushions and throws … To finish off your bedroom, style it with trending highlights in metallic accents of copper and bronze using accessories like table lamps and collectables.”
– Susie

The Importance of Sleep: Top Tips That Will Help You Sleep Better

We all lead constantly busy lives: whether it be work, family or the never-ending to-do list, it seems there never is enough time to a day. Among these priorities (work, family, commitments) that form the pillars of our lives, sleep becomes less of a priority. The way we sleep dictates our mood during the day, our sense of productivity and our overall quality of life.

 

According to a recent study by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and Sleep Research Society, it is recommended adults snatch seven or more hours of sleep per night. This golden seven-hour rule should be no secret to us. But with a third of the study’s population getting six hours or less, it’s clear our actions don’t reflect this knowledge.

 

If you knew how much this sleep deficit impacts on our quality of life, you may be more inclined to grab a few extra hours. A recent survey involving over 28,000 subjects showed those whose sleep time was outside the seven-hour mark had substantially worse quality life, associated with physical illnesses.

Sleep More – Improve Your Quality of Life

 

1. Physical Health

According to the Restorative Theory of Sleep, shut-eye time allows our body to repair and rejuvenate, through repairing tissue, boosting muscle mass, synthesising proteins and releasing growth hormone.

These processes are essential to developing the strong immune system we need to operate optimally on a day-to-day basis. Indeed, a study that exposed a cold virus to its subjects after monitoring their sleeping habits, showed that subjects who had less than seven hours of sleep were three times as likely to get sick than those with eight hours of sleep.

2. Maintaining your weight

One of the lesser known benefits of sleep is better weight control. A 2005 study by Archives of Internal Medicine showed that overweight participants sleep less than participants of normal weight.

Why?

In our bodies, we have a hormone called leptin – key to making us feel full. But when you don’t sleep enough, leptin levels drop. This causes you to feel hungrier than usual, making you reach for those high-fat and high-calorie foods you know you should avoid.

 

3. Good sleep = good mood

Getting enough sleep won’t instantly flick on your happy switch, but it’s true that when you’re tired, you’re more likely to be cranky.

 

Lack of sleep negatively affects the way your emotions regulate, often increasing your stress levels through amplified moodiness, anxiety and aggression. While sleep won’t eliminate all your stress, it will increase your readiness to cope with it.

4. Improved memory

We all have two types of memory: the declarative “what” (e.g. what is the capital of Australia?) and procedural “how” (e.g. how do you open a door?). Both of these are key to our day-to-day lives.

Studies show that while we sleep, our brains process and consolidate memories — both declarative and procedural. Safe to say, when you don’t sleep enough, these memories may not get stored properly, or worse, get lost altogether.

5. Mental clarity

Sleep affects the way you think. When you lose sleep, you’re far more likely to make silly mistakes (e.g. leaving your phone in the fridge) and become worse at solving problems than if you’re well rested.

Why?

When you don’t sleep enough the night before, the neurons in their brain are not able to function optimally the next day. Your ability to focus and decision-making abilities are significantly impaired.

More importantly, our safety is compromised when sleep is disregarded. The Institute of Medicine highlights that one out of five auto accidents in the U.S. is a result of drowsy driving, resulting in 1 million crashes a year.

How to Sleep Better

 

Allow quiet time before bed

Whether it’s the latest episode of Game of Thrones or the last few outstanding emails in your inbox, we understand the struggle. “Just five more minutes!” you reason with yourself. But it’s essential you spend these last five minutes up to half an hour before bedtime away from stimulants.

 

Doing work close to bedtime stimulates your brain and may cause you unnecessary stress, making it hard to sleep. In fact, bright lights from the TV and laptop can hinder the development of melatonin – the hormone that actually helps you sleep.

 

Take a hot shower.

Hot showers help you fall asleep, by relaxing your muscles. But do make sure you don’t take one too close to your bedtime. This can lead to overheating and sweating, making you uncomfortable and preventing you from falling asleep.

Try to keep the same bedtime over weeknights and weekends.

Staying up late and sleeping in at different times across your week disrupts your body clock’s circadian rhythm. It’s good to wake up and go to bed at the same time every day, allowing your body to learn the optimal time to sleep.

 

OK, being practical, we understand that social events over weekends mean this is not always possible. While it’s okay not to follow your bedtime down to the minute, try to allow no more than an hour’s difference.

Sleeping Tips for Expectant Mums

 

Getting a good night’s sleep is one of the hardest things about pregnancy. Sweats, aching hips, heartburn that gets worse as you lie down — these side effects of pregnancy make the whole sleeping process difficult.

With the increased size of your abdomen, you wonder, what is the best sleeping position for both you and your baby? Is sleeping on your back okay, or is that bad? It’s important to find the right sleeping position and conditions for both you and the baby growing inside you.

 

Pregnancy: Finding the right position

1. Sleeping on your tummy

Certainly, this is OK to do during the early stages of pregnancy. As you move deeper into your pregnancy, you should avoid this sleeping position and will inevitably find you can no longer do this anyway.

2. Sleeping on your back

Much like sleeping on your tummy, it is OK to sleep on your back during your first trimester, but best to avoid in the later months of your pregnancy.

When you sleep on your back, your growing baby puts pressure on your spine, back muscles, intestines and, more importantly, major blood vessels that circulate blood to your heart.

So this position could restrict the amount of blood and nutrients that reach your placenta and baby. It could also cause your blood pressure to drop, leaving you feeling dizzy and nauseous, not to mention muscle aches and pains when you awake the next morning.

3. Sleeping on your side

Sleeping on the side, otherwise known as SOS, is the best. But which is the best side to sleep on – left or right?

The answer is your left. While sleeping on your right-hand side is much better than sleeping on your front/back, it’s still not as good as sleeping on your left. Sleeping on your right puts pressure on your liver while sleeping on your left prevents this.

Recommended by doctors and midwives, sleeping on the left allows your baby to receive the right amount of nutrients and oxygen through the placenta. It also helps your kidneys efficiently eliminate waste products and fluids from your body.

Make use of pillows: positioning a pillow under your body keeps you on your side, preventing you from rolling onto your stomach or back.

While sleeping on the left is the best, don’t panic if you wake up on your back or your right-hand side. Staying in one position all night isn’t comfortable, so it’s okay to turn from side to side; though, of course, favouring the left side is best.

 

Strategies to sleep better during pregnancy

 

Apart from honing the right sleeping position for both you and your baby, many mothers-to-be struggle with falling asleep. Below we have a few suggestions to help you ease your way into a good night of sleep.

1. Skip late night snacks

Consuming food and drink within two hours of bedtime will increase the likelihood of reflux or heartburn, so it’s best to avoid this.

 

2. Prop your body

Get a firm pillow and prop your head and upper body a few inches higher. This will put less pressure on your diaphragm, helping you breathe easier during the night.

 

3. Make your bed comfortable

As your spine will suffer more pressure than normal due to the extra weight of your stomach, try arranging different sized pillows in a way that would elevate your body and relieve back pain. A mattress pad is also handy in providing more support for your back.

 

4. Turn down the temp

The right sleeping environment is key to a good night’s sleep. As your body heat does increase during pregnancy, experiment with your room’s thermostat and find a temperature that is right for you.

5. Unplug well before bedtime

This is the golden rule most of us forget about in today’s tech-savvy day and age, but so important when it comes to getting a good night’s rest.

Be sure to remove any external stimulation from your presence fifteen minutes before bedtime. This includes social media, books, laptops, newspapers, television. Allowing your mind and body to unwind and relax at the end of the day will help you fall asleep better.

Getting a good night’s rest with a baby growing inside of you is no easy feat, but there are ways to make it easier on yourself, such as finding the right sleeping position, following a nightly ritual and creating a comfortable sleeping environment.

Sleeping with Back Pain

Back pain is common and affects most of us at some point in our lives. Recent estimates from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that about 1.8 million Australians suffer from back problems. It has also been estimated that around 70-90% of people will suffer from lower pack pain at some point in their lives.

As sleep is a time for repairing tissues and boosting muscle mass, it makes sense to look at how you can reduce back pain through sleep. Your sleeping position itself may even be causing the back pain, instead of repairing it! Today, we look at the best and worst sleeping positions specifically for back pain:

 

Worst Sleep Position for Back Pain: The Freefall

Freefall sleepers, you may want to think about changing up the way you sleep. As sleeping on your stomach can flatten the natural curve of your spine, this may put additional strain on your back muscles — thus, making your back pain even worse. As your neck is crooked to the side while you sleep, this results in back pain between your shoulders.

If you’d like to continue with the same freefall sleeping position, the next best thing would be to put a pillow under your lower abdomen and pelvis. This is to support the natural curve of your spine.

 

Best Sleep Position for Back Pain: The Log

In the Log position, you lie on the side with both arms by your side. This position keeps the spine straight, which would help ease your back pain. Aside from this, side sleepers can also draw their legs slightly towards the chest with a pillow between their knees to further alleviate pain.

For Back Sleepers: Put a pillow between your knees – this is to allow your spine to maintain its natural curve.

 

Creating the right sleep spot

When it comes to sleeping, creating the right environment is just as essential as your sleeping position. Comfort differs from person to person. You may prefer a hard mattress or a soft one, or vice versa.

It’s important to choose a mattress that fully supports your back; so do some research beforehand and try sleeping on various mattresses in-store when you select your mattress. A firm or medium-firm mattress is usually the best option.

Aside from this, it’s also helpful to use a contoured pillow to alleviate neck strain. Alternatively, you can sleep on just one pillow, instead of a stack of pillows, to keep your body level.

While the log is the best sleep position for back pain, it’s fine to move around a bit while you sleep – don’t literally be a log! In fact, if you maintain a sleep position for too long, this may actually amplify your back pain.

Back pain is not fun, and unfortunately, it doesn’t stop when you go to bed at night. So it’s important to find the right support for your back when you sleep. You can position pillows unique to your sleeping position, or altering your sleeping position to alleviate the pain.

We hope the above suggestions will help all of you with back pain in getting a better night’s rest and some back pain relief.

How to Clean Your Sofa in a Jiffy

woman lounging on sofa

Whether you’re relaxing after a long day or entertaining guests in your living room, your sofa is an integral part of your home, and a great investment given how much time you’ll probably spend lounging on it.

Before buying your sofa, consider the sofa fabric and how it will fare in your household. For example, that white fabric couch might seem like a stylish choice but it’ll be no match for a messy toddler who likes to get creative with their crayons.

Once you have your dream sofa, it’s important to ensure it stays looking good for as long as possible. Whether you have a comfy fabric couch, an elegant leather sofa or a stylish velvet lounge, you’ll want to protect and preserve it. Prevention is better than restoration!

Prevention can be anything from regularly fluffing and flipping the cushions so your sofa keeps its shape to using a protective spray. However, no matter what type of sofa you have or how much TLC you show it, you’ll have to clean it from time to time, and these tips and tricks will help you keep your couch in good nick.

How Often Should You Clean Your Sofa?

a clean Brosa sofa and cushions

Cleaning your sofa depends on how often you use it and how you use it. It also depends of the kind of sofa and the kind of material it is upholstered with. In any case your sofa should be cleaned regularly to keep it in pristine condition.

Spot-clean your sofa as needed; it’s best to remove stains as soon as they occur.

Conduct a regular vacuum of your sofa fortnightly, especially if you have pets or someone in your household suffers with allergies or asthma. Make sure to vacuum under the cushions and in crevices to avoid an embarrassing pile up of dirt and debris.

Supplement a regular spot-clean and vacuum with an annual steam clean. Steam cleaning will kill bacteria, remove stubborn stains and lift scuffs and marks.

Most sofas come with a tab or tag – check this to determine the best cleaning solution for your couch. And don’t forget to spot test any cleaning solution you’re about to use in an inconspicuous spot.

How to Clean Your Fabric Sofa

Preparing your fabric couch for a spot clean is easy.

Step #1

Thoroughly vacuum your sofa first. This will remove the main dirt and dust.

vacuum your sofa regularly

Step #2

Take a lint brush and brush your fabric sofa to remove any lint and pet hair.

lint brush is a great sofa cleaning tool

Step #3

Remove stubborn stains using white vinegar mixed with water. Use a soft, microfiber cloth to gently rub in a circular motion.

use vinegar and water formula to clean sofas

Step #4

Apply a mild laundry detergent mixed with water or a specialty upholstery product for an all-over clean and to sanitise/deodorise your fabric sofa. Be careful to avoid oversaturating and scrubbing your sofa or risk damaging the fabric.

a mild washing powder is good for all-round sofa clean

Step #5

Allow the fabric to air dry. You can speed up the process by opening a window.

open windows to speed up sofa air drying

Step #6

Now your sofa is clean, grab a specially formulated stain guard spray to protect your fabric sofa. They repel liquids and prevent stains from sticking to the fabric.

An upholstery spray protects your sofa

How to Clean Your Velvet Sofa For Great Results

grey brosa velvet sofa

Caring for your velvet sofa is a lot like caring for a fabric sofa, except that velvet is more delicate and requires a little more attention. Remember to clean up any velvet sofa spills immediately with a microfibre cloth.

Here are 4 easy steps to cleaning velvet sofas:

A soft brush or a lint brush will remove dirt and will prevent the velvet from getting matted. Roll them gently over the main surfaces of your sofa.

Test upholstery cleaners before applying them liberally. Most are effective to clean your velvet sofa, but be sure to try it on a small area first.

For stubborn stains, apply a water and laundry detergent mixture and gently dab until the stain is gone.

Dry any wet velvet sofa spots using a hairdryer or a fan. Moisture and velvet aren’t a good mix and leaving it wet can damage the velvet.

How to Clean Your Leather Sofa With Ease

clean brown leather Brosa sofa

Leather sofas are unique and require a special treatment:

Your leather sofa can get scratched by abrasive dust particles. To prevent this, be sure to vacuum your leather couch regularly. But be careful not to scratch your sofa with your vacuum.

Leather requires special maintenance. A moisturising soap is a good start but soap and water can stain the material.

You’ll need to ensure the leather gets the moisture it needs with a special leather protective conditioner or treatment. These cleaners contain healthy oils and waxes to rejuvenate the material and prevent the leather from cracking and wearing down.

You’ll be pleased to know that moisturising, polishing and taking proper care of a leather couch will actually see it get better with age.

We hope this article has aided you in your sofa cleaning quest. However, if you think your couch is too far gone to recover, browse our selection of sofas and designer furniture online to update your lounge room décor today!