8 Interior Design Ideas for Bedrooms – Plus, a Bathroom Tip!

K Tyler, Allied ASID

K Tyler, Allied ASID
Partner - Interior Design at Award Winning Chicago Architects, Morgante Wilson

Jun 3, 2024 - 5 min read

8 Interior Design Ideas for Bedrooms – Plus, a Bathroom Tip!

Of all the bedrooms our interior design team has had the pleasure of working on over the years, one of our favorites has to be our “Traveler’s Retreat,” tucked away on the third floor of Chicago’s Adler on the Park Showcase House. The home – a historic gem designed by famed architect David Adler in the 1920s – was landmarked, architecturally significant, and ripe for updating. Morgante Wilson was proud to be among the 39 design industry firms who took part in the project to raise money for charity.

Formerly servants’ quarters, the bedroom we chose to tackle was an all-white box when we first saw it. True, it boasted Adler’s trademark architectural character. But it lacked personality. We needed a muse. And we found one in Emily Ryerson.

Ryerson – the original owner of the home, and the woman who contracted Adler to build it – was a colorful personality with an equally colorful history. A survivor of the Titanic disaster, she was an avid philanthropist, artist, and world traveler. The bedroom we conceived in her honor mirrors the exotic life she led. Let’s take a deep dive into the elements that make it so unique – and share some inspiration for your own bedroom!

1. The walls

We knew we wanted to create a space as dramatic as Emily Ryerson’s life, and what better way to establish the mood than to envelop the room in a deep, dark, peacock blue color? The foundation of our design, the hue reflects Emily’s adventurous history as an ocean voyager. High gloss “Seaworthy” paint from Sherwin Williams clads walls; chenille paper-backed wallcovering from Phillip Jeffries is applied inside panels. It’s impossible to understate the impact of the color and texture they provide.

2. The ceiling

Often ignored, the ceiling – the fifth “wall” in any room – begged to be noticed. We chose to accentuate its trayed design with gold leaf wallcovering, which not only draws the eye but also acts as a reflective juxtaposition to the room’s moody ambiance. This room would not have been nearly as interesting if we’d ignored the ceiling and left it white. Maybe your own bedroom ceiling would benefit from some attention!

3. The bed

Not every bed requires a headboard for a finished look. Here, we highlighted the bed’s “sultan-esque” design by incorporating custom, laser-cut panels to anchor it instead. The panels are backlit with LED lighting for memorable ambiance. (This is just one way to create an interesting bed without using a headboard. Our website offers many more examples.)

4. The light fixtures

Believe it or not, the bedside macrame rope pendants come from Etsy – proving artisan-made, hand-crafted pieces contribute one-of-a-kind soul you just can’t find at mass retailers. Laced with leather, these can be hung with a simple ceiling hook, and plug right into the wall.

5. The rugs

Texture underfoot is important in a bedroom. There’s nothing appealing about getting out of bed in the morning and touching your toes to a chilly floor. That’s why most of us opt to put a rug in our bedroom. But why stop at just one when you can layer several? That’s what we did here, to great effect. Plus, the rugs we chose (from Oscar Isberian Rugs) nod to bohemian opulence, and are wonderful decorative vehicles for telling Emily Ryerson’s story. The top rug features crocheted tassels, which reminded us of Middle Easter souks – places she likely visited. The rug on the bottom is woven of silk sari remnants, evoking Indian bazaars.

6. The furnishings

We know Emily would have brought home with her many reminders of her worldwide travels, including important antiques and objets d’art. That’s why we incorporated this Hungarian Art Deco bar from Golden Triangle, as just one example. We can easily imagine her reading her travel diary, sherry in hand, before turning in for the night.

7. The etagere

We’re huge fans of furniture that does double duty as both storage and display, and this turquoise goatskin leather etagere is one of our favorite examples. Filled with Indonesian carvings and antique bibelots, it speaks volumes about Emily’s experiences. Bookshelves and wall-mounted shelving can do the same in your bedroom, too.

8. The bathroom

Who says the only way to achieve privacy in a bathroom is with curtains? This photo proves otherwise. Because collecting plant specimens was all the rage in Emily Ryerson’s day, we referred to her probable pastime by installing glass ledges that showcase “her” collection, while also providing a privacy screen that allows natural light to flow into the space.

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K Tyler, Allied ASID

K Tyler, Allied ASID

Partner - Interior Design at Award Winning Chicago Architects, Morgante Wilson