The Ultimate Bedroom
While the trials of everyday life are relentless, one source of ready respite remains constant. When worries approach the boiling point, forget the vodka and chocolate and head to the go-to place of refreshment and insulation from the daily routine: The Bedroom. Not all sleeping quarters have curative powers, but those that have been thoughtfully furnished deliver potent therapy. Here, three design professionals with plenty of experience creating great escapes share their savvy as to which building blocks are essential for an under-roof Shangri-la.
No matter what clouds loom on the horizon, it’s always a sunny, peaceful Florida afternoon in the bedroom that Ron Lundin, of Lundin Interiors, designed for a home in Bay Colony.
"The owners wanted a Mediterranean ambiance with a Florida feel," he recalls. "My concept was to use a mural that represented local scenery along with the balustrade detail that was integral to the home’s design."
A Chicago artist was commissioned to create the three-part mural on canvas and fine-tune it in the room, so that the colors would be true to the natural outdoors.
"The mural is recessed in niches, like a window," Lundin says, "and we bordered it with faux keystone to suggest window frames. The illusion we created is that only a pane of glass separates the viewer from the winding path, birds and gazebo outside."
To meet the clients’ desire for continental elegance, Lundin accented the custom-made, rolled-end, gold silk-tufted sleigh bed with an empire-style bench of antiqued, carved wood and raw silk. Window treatments include gold-fringed silk panels crowned with gold, blue and coral swags and jabots. The same colors are reprised in the custom-made silk duvet and ornamental pillows.
"We chose marble-top, crackle-finished bachelor chests for the nightstands and an antique marble-top table to go between the gold chenille chairs," Lundin says.
He adds that the colors in the bedroom are a softer variation of colors used throughout the home. "People who have homes of this caliber in Naples often have several homes, and they are seeking something very different for their Florida residence," Lundin observes. "The plan for this bedroom continues the formal elegance of the Mediterranean style, but delivers a visual surprise with a mural that is soothing, tropical and at the same time consistent with the main theme."
Out of Sight
They love guests, but the owners of one Naples penthouse wanted total seclusion from the rest of the household when they occupy their master suite. They requested that Kim Collins, of Collins & DuPont Interior Design, create a space that was not only a private haven, but a self-sufficient living area.
"There were also other considerations," Collins says. "Since the clients have global business interests, they wanted their private space to convey a subtle Asian theme. And they wanted it to have a personal component."
Collins built the Asian mood with a Maya Romanoff floral-and-vine grasscloth on the wall behind the bed. Chinese wood grillwork panels with custom-built top frames hang over the reed and leather-trimmed nightstands, and opposite, on a window wall, a grasscloth shade is paired with silk side panels.
"The reed-trimmed four poster has woven leather strapping on the headboard and footboard," she says, "and the silk, damask coverlet is done in shades of green and celery."
Collins says the man of the house asked that the television set be placed overhead, and that was arranged in the pattern of the cherrywood coffered ceiling. The TV panel closes to conceal the TV.
"Two paintings add to the visual interest, and we arranged for a display of photos, books, collectibles and other personal items in built-in cabinetry on the wall opposite the entry to ‘his’ study," she says. That entry consists of Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired stained-glass doors. "Her" study is accessed at the other end of the suite.
"There’s a summer kitchen just outside the bedroom area," Collins says, "and a pair of deep-cushioned reading chairs within, so the suite, with the master bath, is a well-equipped retreat."
Functionality, drama, comfort and a personal element were all incorporated into the design, and the clients enthusiastically agree, she says.
When Deborah Kreye of Vogue Interiors undertook the design of a Fort Myers penthouse bedroom, she faced a challenge. "My clients were furnishing the rest of the home with a high degree of elegance," she says. "The trick was going to be to come up with something a little more casual for their personal living area, still contemporary and sophisticated, but without surrendering any of the distinctive personality we had already established."
One of the first issues was how to treat the bed wall. "Because of its nature, I thought it was best to do the whole wall in tufted taupe silk, with squares set in alternating grain patterns. That eliminated the necessity of a separate headboard and expanded the opportunity to create a focal point."
Kreye suggested a cocoa silk coverlet with black embroidered leaf pattern for the bed, paired with a solid cocoa silk bedskirt accented with black gussets. "We used purples in other rooms," she explains, "but here, we used more of the neutral shades and used light lavender in subtle accents."
There’s nothing subtle about the bold, rolled wood, cream-glazed armoire and matching nightstands, and there’s nothing shy about the window treatments of fringed, solid cocoa silk panels and leaf-embroidered silk valances. The valances’ gusset pleats and side sleeves are also accented with black.
"We used black for the rolled-end lacquer bench at the end of the bed and for the pearl trim on the shams," she says, "and we upholstered the super-comfortable reading chairs in a soft, putty-colored fabric."
With off-white carpeting carved in a scroll design and lighted soffit bordering the room, the full effect is sophisticated and restful simultaneously. "Elegance doesn’t have to be complicated," Kreye says. "The right fabrics and a few bold pieces can deliver the desired result."