The surprise lesson learned from decorating a girl’s room

Let’s get the bad news out of the way first: The room I was most excited to decorate turned out to be the hardest.

The good news is that it’s done now. Yippee!

Here’s a photo of the my daughter’s bedroom when we bought the house.

Here it is all clean and fresh with floors refinished, walls painted, and new windows and trim installed. It’s such a fun size and shape, and it’s easily the biggest bedroom in the house.

All three of my boys share a slightly smaller room that has an exposed brick chimney; I wasn’t saving the bigger room for my daughter because I like her more, but the brick seemed so fun and masculine for the boys that we just went with it.

Anyway, her room feels almost like two rooms connected—a main part of the room with a smaller cased-in space at one end. The smaller space has two enormous closets, a real oddity in a house like ours. Her room adjoins the bathroom. I’ll be honest, she has a pretty sweet set-up.

Before we started remodeling (a whole year ago—wow, time flies!), I knew I wanted that smaller space to be wallpapered. I picked out this wallpaper well in advance and couldn’t wait to hang it.

via Hygge & West (this colorway is discontinued)

My daughter loves pink, but I didn’t want to do an all-pink room, so we painted the walls SW Alabaster and the ceilings SW Aristocrat Peach, a perfect warm pink that casts the coziest glow.

So that’s what I was starting with: One space wallpapered in super-saturated colors and one space with white walls and a light-pinkish ceiling.

Then the difficulty began. All along I thought I’d use white bedding. You can’t go wrong with white bedding, right? It’s a classic. I planned to use an old, beautiful blanket that belonged to my great-grandmother. But when it was on the bed, the whole room just seemed … out of balance.

That was the whole problem, and it took me a few weeks to figure out: The room was lacking balance. Too much white on one side and too much color on the other.

The wallpaper wasn’t going anywhere, so if I wanted to make the room work, I needed to add some of that saturated color to the white part of the room.

I stitched up a peach-polka-dot pillowcase. I added a coral herringbone blanket to the foot of the bed. And I used a beautiful embroidered linen from an estate sale to make a lumbar pillow that feels a little edgy and bohemian. Now the room was working better.

I also added a light-beige tufted settee to the wallpapered part of the room and added a light-pink pillow. With a mirror hung above it, that part of the room lightened up visually.

Now the room was balanced. The saturated portion had lighter accents, and the lighter portion had saturated accents.

Baby Girl seems to approve.

Photo by Casey James Photography

Okay, I’ll admit I’m happy with it too.

Photos by Casey James Photography

I’m like most of you. I never took a design class, I binge-watch HGTV, and I want to create a cozy and pretty house for my family. So this whole lesson on balance came as a surprise to me, and I think I’ll be able to use it for the rest of my life as a homeowner. Hope it helps you too. Cheers! •


One thought

  1. What a great lesson learned. Balance is truly key. With not just color, but texture, patterns and more. Sometimes people get so caught up in trying to be different and add tons of texture and dimension that it flops big time. It’s about small doses that balance and still give the eye relief. Looks perfect!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s