Summer House Bedroom Summer House Bedroom

Analyzing this room with the Sheffield Guidelines to Interior Design - function, mood, and harmony - let's look first at the room's function. The function of any bedroom is first and foremost to provide a restful environment for sleeping. There shouldn't be anything disturbing or jarring in a bedroom, even if you're using the most modern style of design. As students in our new Feng Shui Course learn, practitioners of this ancient Asian method for designing space even say that a bed should never be facing a mirror, because mirrors are not conducive to a restful environment.

In this room, everything is conducive to resting, so the room's primary function is completely fulfilled. But this bedroom also functions well not just for providing a good night's sleep, but also for providing a comfortable place in which to read or enjoy the view of the water.

You'll note that here the tall windows have no curtains, so that might make you think the room would be difficult for sleeping late into the morning, something we all love to indulge in during vacations. But notice the curtains around the bed itself: close these curtains and you've shut out the morning light, and you've also created a cozier and more intimate space around the bed.

The night stands on either side of the bed also function well; when a couple is using the bed, each person will have access to books, reading light, or alarm clock.

The mood of this room is a relaxed one, and the antique furniture creates an old-fashioned feeling, bringing a visitor back to a slower, simpler time. But it isn't stuffy; the antiques are arranged in a modern way, and the carpet and modern windows and doors to the balcony undercut any potential stuffiness from the old-fashioned furniture.

The swags of curtain material draped around the bed add to the mood, recalling colonialists' luxurious homes in the Caribbean islands.

Finally, let's look at the harmony of the room: Everything works together here, and nothing is out of place. The fact that pale, summery colors dominate the room makes harmonizing easy: the white bedspread sets the standard as the brightest thing in the room, since the walls are slightly more tea-colored, and the carpet is slightly darker still. The wood of the furniture, and the maroon throw pillows on the bed, further bring in deeper tones that prevent the room from appearing cold or sterile.

Most importantly, the room's interior harmonizes with the stunning water view out the window. Without that view, you might want a bit more color in the room, but in this case, the room provides a perfect neutral background against which the calming blue waters can truly stand out.

Reprinted with permission from the Sheffield School of Interior Design

Got a New Project You're Proud of?

Post it on Your Projects!