Home Decorating Every Detail Counts: The Trained Eye Guide to Designing a Guest Bedroom

Every Detail Counts: The Trained Eye Guide to Designing a Guest Bedroom

A serial renovator who knows how to make any space more beautiful – and more livable – Annie Selke shares her tips and tricks for a successful space. As she embarks on a full-house renovation of her bougainvillea-covered home designed by Hollywood Regency architect John Elgin Woolfe in Palm Desert, California, we’ll go room by room to share her expert insights and product picks:

Start with a statement fabric. When you use a bold pattern in a big way, it makes a room feel like a destination. Annie chose to upholster Bernhardt’s Bayford Bed in our own linen Botanical Fabric. At nearly 8 feet tall, the headboard is the focal point of the room. She repeated the fabric on the curtains, so the botanical print envelopes the room.

Pick one color and run with it. It’s a bit of a tradition in formal houses for guest rooms to have a dominant or single-color scheme. Not only does the monochromatic look instantly make the room feel more designed, the color scheme transforms the space from “guest room on the left” to “The Green Room,” a nice shorthand for your visitors.

Help guests stash their stuff. The most beautiful bedroom will quickly feel like a mess if your guests don’t have proper places to unpack. In addition to the usual bureau drawers and hangers in the closet, make sure you have a few places to hide everyday essentials like laptops and other electronics, like Bernhardt’s Helios Entertainment Console. And don’t forget to leave a space in the closet for them to stash their luggage!

Bethany Nauert Photography


Give visitors a place to kick back. Your guests will be happiest if they can retreat to their room at all hours of the day, not just for sleeping. Make sure to include plenty of comfortable seating like a small sofa or an upholstered occasional chair. Annie paired Bernhardt’s Lumen Sofa with their Calista Chairs for a luxuriously relaxing seating area.

Bethany Nauert Photography

Don’t skimp on the essentials. The guest bedroom should be as comfortable as your own. Never skimp on things like mattresses or bedding because it’s “only” the guest room. A great way to find out if the room is truly comfortable? Annie suggests you spend a few nights sleeping there yourself! The Stearns & Foster Lux Estate Mattress ensures that guests will be able to get their best rest.

Light it right. Don’t forget to give the guests plenty of control over the lighting: They should be able to adjust the brightness for their needs, and it is essential to have a bedside lamp on both sides of the bed. The milk glass shades on FLOS’s Glo-Ball 31.1″ Table Lamps and IC Reading Floor Lamp offer soft, diffused light and the dimmer controls provide fully customizable lighting.

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