Are you looking to furnish a bedroom but it feels overwhelming to choose all the furniture? If that describes your frustration, I will help you with a formula that makes furnishing your bedroom easy.
The primary purpose of a bedroom is to have a place to rest and recover. Even if you have a small room, you can still choose furniture that makes you feel comfortable and relaxed every time you walk into the room. This is true whether it’s a master bedroom or a guest room.
There are only four steps to the process. I’ve decorated a LOT of bedrooms since I used to own a B&B. You can have your new bedroom furniture on its way in no time flat. But before you begin, ask yourself these questions. How many people will sleep there? Does the bedroom need to be used for a purpose beyond sleeping? Once you know the answers to these, you are ready to start shopping.
Step 1: Narrow down your style
This is the most important step to make sure you get the right furniture for YOU. The first step to choosing furniture is to decide what kind of style you want the room to have.
There is no right answer, it’s all personal preference. It’s a good idea to use your favorite app (Pinterest, Tiktok, Instagram) and search for the phrase “bedroom decor”. In any of these apps this will give you a bunch of pictures to peruse.
Find THREE (not 23) pictures that you love, regardless of the budget they probably had. Now read the description that goes with each photo. People that post beautiful pictures know how to write descriptions with the key design phrases you’re looking for. These descriptions help you identify your style.
Here are a few examples of different descriptions you might see: boho bedroom, coastal bedroom, modern bedroom, minimalist bedroom, farmhouse bedroom, etc. These descriptors will make shopping for furniture 10x easier.
Step 2: Find a bed frame in your frame
Once you know the style you like it’s easier to find a bed frame or headboard. I’ll go more into different sources for furniture below. Let’s say you’ve decided you really like the Coastal style. Go to the Google shopping tab and type in “coastal bed frame less than $1000”. This is what you get.
You can also add the bed size if you have a full bed or king bed, etc. You can also search for the type of frame you want if that’s important to you. Examples of this include four-poster bed, platform bed or even bunk bed.
It’s a great way to discover retailers that you might not have heard of. I often see companies I’ve never shopped from (like Living Spaces in the photo above).
Your bed frame is a focal point, it’s one of the most essential furniture pieces in any bedroom. It’s important to decide what your style is and get a bed in that style. If you limit your search to a specific style and price range suddenly the world of choices is a lot smaller. Sometimes the worst thing is to have too many choices, it’s too overwhelming.
Step 3: Bedside Furniture
The next essential thing in a bedroom is a table on the side of the bed. It doesn’t have to be a traditional bedside table. I don’t recommend buying a matching bedroom set. Choose something you like with the frame you’ve chosen but that isn’t from the same furniture line. There is such a thing as looking too cohesive.
Even a really small bedroom needs something next to the bed. If you don’t have room for two tables, a great option is to use a floor lamp on one side.
For this example, I will show you what a search using a “farmhouse bedside table under $200” looks like.
Use the same technique in google shopping. You don’t have to buy through the links you find. You can even click on the shopping link and the retailer will show similar items. You can also shop Facebook Marketplace and ETSY using your style and what you’re looking for.
Depending on your timeframe you can also shop yard sales. This is a great way to find bargains on small pieces.
Step 4: Find a Dresser for Storage
Unless you are lucky enough to have a giant closet, most bedrooms need a chest of drawers or a wardrobe for additional storage. The best option for inexpensive storage s IKEA. Most IKEA pieces can be altered to fit your style. If you have a little more in your budget you can use the same google trick for dressers.
This is what I get when I looked for a “modern bedroom dresser < $500”. You can see that Google is actually pretty good at matching up the words with the correct style. Google is never going to put interior designers out of business, but if you don’t have the budget a really focused search is really helpful.
These three pieces of furniture (bed, side table, and dresser) can change the vibe of any bedroom. If you have more spacious bedrooms, you can add an accent chair or two. Even one chair is nice to have. If you don’t have the space, you can add a small bench to the foot of the bed.
What If I Need More Help Choosing Furniture?
Sometimes the amount of options available is so vast that actually pulling the trigger to make a choice is hard. Rest assured that you can’t mess up that badly if you choose furniture that fits your personal style. If you hate the way it looks in your room, you can always resell it, paint it or live with it and keep looking until you find what you love.
Think about how long you’ve been living with what you have that you probably don’t love. This is my problem when it comes to furniture.
I will get a “gift” that DOESN’T fit the style I like, but it was free and I just hang onto it forever. You deserve to really like the furniture that is in your bedroom. It’s the one room that is really just for you. There’s never a FINAL DECISION, you can always change it over time.
If you’re completely at a loss there are services like Modsy Design (see my review here) or email me. I’d love to chat about bedroom furniture.
What’s the Next Priority for a Bedroom?
After you finish choosing the furniture, the next investment is a rug. Rugs make bedrooms feel so much cozier. You can figure out which color palette works best in your space using this method. Make sure you get a rug that is large enough for your bedroom (get tips here).
You also need to make sure that your bedroom has lighting beside the bed. Every room needs three sources of light. In a bedroom, this can be an overhead light and two bedside lamps.
Some people might prioritize a television in a bedroom, but I’m not one of those people. If you need a TV for your bedroom to feel complete, make sure you consider this when you choose your new furniture.
Online Buying Tips
Be sure if you are buying furniture online that you read reviews. It’s also really important to understand the return policies before you order. It can be really difficult and expensive to ship a piece of furniture back.
I only buy from companies that have good customer service. In my experience, these companies have good customer service: Wayfair, Target, Ballard Designs, West Elm, Crate & Barrel. I LOVE buying furniture on ETSY. I’ve talked about that before. It’s a good option because you can get one-of-a-kind pieces and you’re buying from a small business.
Amazon is not on this list because they don’t really offer customer service.
2 Misconceptions About Transforming A Bedroom
You do not have to paint your bedroom to redecorate. You can bring in different colors with a rug or drapes.
You don’t need a lot of furniture in your bedroom to have it look complete. There are only a few key elements. In fact, if you read my post about European bedrooms, you will see that they tend NOT to have much more than a bed, bedside tables and a dresser or wardrobe. You can have chairs, but you don’t have to.
Read more about Bedroom decorating mistakes to avoid.