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Decorating Ideas: Beautiful Neutral Bedrooms

Bedrooms with soft and soothing colors

Written and produced by Lucy Fitzgerald
  • Paul Dyer

    Who says a neutral palette has to stop at beige? These soft and soothing hues make any bedroom look timeless and sophisticated. And with a color scheme so versatile, it’s easy to pair fabrics and furniture. Whether a bedroom is modern or classic, lofty or compact, these palettes can transform it into a space of serenity.

    Clean lines and fresh colors make for a serene master bedroom. The Japanese screen behind the bed establishes scale consistent throughout the space; the spherical pendant light lends a bit of dimension. The linen-upholstered headboard gets a graphic boost from the Greek-key patterned pillow from Trina Turk.

    Photograph: Paul Dyer
    Design: Lindsey Brier

    See the rest of this gorgeous San Francisco home here.

  • Peaceful Bedroom with Dramatic Drapery

    A peaceful palette with gold-leaf accents and dramatic drapery form a luxurious master bedroom, designed by Russell Minion and Juan Carlos Gutierrez for the Stately Homes By-The-Sea Showhouse. “We wanted to reflect a soothing yet dramatic livable space,” explains Juan Carlos Gutierrez. “In doing so, the key elements were the canopy bed and floating wall panels with custom wallpaper inset into gold-leaf molding.” Adding to the lavish scene is an assortment of textures, including silk draperies, old-world damask bed linens, a velvet-upholstered Turkish divan, and a Persian rug atop flooring from Shaw Floors.

    Design: Russell Minion and Juan Carlos Gutierrez

  • Luca Travato

    Lofty Bedroom with Blue Accents

    A loose-patterned De Gournay wallpaper adds casual blue highlights to this white-and-clay-colored master bedroom. The indigo accents are echoed in the drapery and custom bolster pillow from designer Natasha Baradaran. The architectural angles in the ceiling lend contemporary details to the space.

    Photograph: Luca Travato
    Design: Natasha Baradaran

    Take a look at the rest of this elegant home.

  • Werner Straube

    Spacious Bedroom in Airy Metallics

    Luxurious linens from Leron in cream, ivory, and gray bring together the trio of hues that harmonize beautifully throughout the rest of this spacious bedroom in the Lake Forest Showhouse. The early-20th-century four-poster features a fretwork headboard and silver-leaf finish for added shine and texture. Wool sateen drapery panels decorated with geometric borders and backed by ivory shades hug the matching bedside tables.

    See more of this room on the following slide.

  • Werner Straube

    Spacious Sitting Area in Airy Metallics

    The bedroom’s sitting area faces the bed and glass-topped coffee table. A small work area is centered behind the custom-designed sofa, piped in gray. A slipcovered armchair sits beside the classic fireplace. “We wanted the room to be sophisticated without being too formal,” notes designer Joan Craig of the metallic finishes ranging from the silver-leaf bed to mirrors and glass bedside lamps that enhance the room’s quiet chic. “They accessorize the space like the right piece of jewelry accessorizes a couture outfit.”

    Photographs: Werner Straube
    Design: Joan Craig and Gemma Parker-McKeon

  • Jonny Valiant and Joseph St. Pierre

    Creamy Toile Bedroom

    Sepia-toned “Harwood Toile” from Cowtan & Tout covers the walls and curtains in this European-inspired guest bedroom. The homeowners’ collection of German Black Forest carvings includes the vintage table lamp, a charming detail that is echoed in the toile’s pastoral scenes.

    Photograph: Jonny Valiant and Joseph St. Pierre
    Design: Nancy Gould

    Explore the rest of this mountain getaway here.

  • Reid Rolls

    Cool Neutral Master Bedroom

    This master bedroom is cocooned in serene neutrals and loaded with rich textures. The bed from Lee Jofa is upholstered in nickel-colored fabric with a marble-like pattern. Drapery and a framed sketch above the bed lend interest; a fluffy Flokati rug at the foot of the bed adds a touch of playfulness.

    Photograph: Reid Rolls
    Design: Roger Higgins and Ann Shipp

    See the rest of this home here.

  • Joe Standart

    Neutral Bedroom with Floral Patterns

    A large-scale floral wallpaper designed by Ted Taylor adorns the walls of this master bedroom in shades of muted gray. A velvety ottoman and love seat are upholstered in lovely beige tones, while the custom headboard from Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams injects a sophisticated powder blue into the scheme.

    Photograph: Joe Standart
    Design: Mariette Himes Gomez and Brooke Gomez

    View the rest of this Manhattan apartment here.

  • John Bessler

    Serene Bedroom with Delicate Patterns

    Soothing neutrals and comforting patterns give this master bedroom a restful ambience. Bedding from Chelsea Textiles is delicately embroidered with a floral pattern to reflect the gingham bed curtains and headboard fabric. Wallpaper from Cowtan & Tout lends subtle color.

    Photograph: John Bessler
    Design: Sallie Giordano

    See the rest of this historic home here.

  • Tria Giovan

    Light and Bright Neutral Bedroom

    Crisp linens from Matouk dress the custom bed by Leonards. The painting by artist Kerri Rosenthal is evocative of a windswept coast and includes a similar palette of blues and grays.

    Photograph: Tria Giovan
    Design: Lynn Morgan

    Explore the rest of this home here.

  • A beautiful canopy cascades down to meet a plush waffle weave bedspread. An elegant chandelier and parquet flooring add gravitas to the stately space.

  • A beautiful canopy cascades down to meet a plush waffle weave bedspread. An elegant chandelier and parquet flooring add gravitas to the stately space.

  • Crisp chartreuse and cool blues on the bed pillows make a statement against the fair backdrop.

  • Earth Tone Bedroom

    In this showhouse bedroom, unique patterns lend interest on the bed sheets as well as the base of the flowing wool felt drapery. A satiny bedspread and upholstered woven-rope lounge chair cushion introduce a pleasant sheen.

    See more from this room on the following slide.

  • The natural hues continue at the fireplace, which is surrounded by stone, seashells, and bleached-wood walls.

  • Serene Guest Suite

    Draperies fashioned from a blue-green and ivory linen fabric from Carleton V inspired the color palette of this beautiful suite.

    See more from this bedroom on the following slides.

  • Warm wood tones are introduced through the serpentine bedside table. The pair of tables is from elFurniture, a Chicago-based business that uses sustainably harvested woods and non-toxic finishes.

  • Serene Guest Suite

    In the sitting area, plush armchairs upholstered in organic cotton-and-bamboo fabric provide an inviting space for relaxation. Behind the mirrored doors of the Hickory Chair armoire is a mini-bar.

  • Soothing Canopy Bed

    A canopy bed offers a luxurious nest in this master bedroom. The rich wood of the bed frame and neighboring furniture complements the caramel hues of the satiny linens.

    See details on the following slide.

  • A small portrait of the homeowner as a child hangs above the bed. Its colors blend with the soft oranges and golds throughout the bedroom.

  • Light-Filled Master Suite

    Wheat-colored bed curtains add height and drama to this master suite. Coffee tones balance bright whites in the light-flooded space. A painting by Christina Marie Long mirrors the color palette.

    See details on the following slide.

  • Intricate patterns enliven the bed pillows, while sweet button details lend casual elegance to the bed curtains.

  • This showhouse bedroom offers a breathtaking view of San Francisco Bay, inspiring designer Cathleen Gouveia to model the bed after the Golden Gate Bridge. She suspended the bed using manila ropes fastened to the ceiling. “I wanted guests to feel immediately relaxed and experience the serenity of sitting on a dock—feeling the tactile, organic surfaces, the movement of the sea, the waves, and the kinetic forces of nature,” Gouveia explains.

  • Lofty & Natural Master Bedroom

    When designing a room, James Mohn asks “how light, air, well-edited space, and an eclectic mix of objects” can be used to shape a room. In James’s own home, a shaggy wool throw on the bed, woven basket chair, and sisal carpet all add rich texture to this master suite. Light pouring in from an oversize apex window, along with golds, camels, and other buttery colors, also make for a restful space.

    Details on the following slide.

  • Delicate details on the pillows, a studded silver table lamp, and a waffle bedspread all contribute to the textural variety that homeowner Keith Recker was aiming for. “I’m much more of a texturalist,” he admits. “Actually, I’m a textile freak.”

  • A California home inspired by the architecture of Florence and Tuscany is filled with classic lines and timeless palettes. In the remodeled master bedroom, the muted pink bedspread blends seamlessly with the creamy taupe walls and velvet upholstery. An antique stone fireplace surround is accented by a custom-made fire screen.

  • Here, clean lines, a restrained palette, and antiques create a restful haven. The custom headboard features Grey Watkins fabric. Signed Murano glass lamps complete the bedside symmetry. Schumacher silk goblet-pleated draperies on gold-leaf traverse rods from J.L. Anthony add quiet pattern. Artist Kelly Cutter’s quartet of tulip paintings hangs over the bed in mirrored frames by Trowbridge Gallery in England. An antique crystal chandelier illuminates modern chairs by TRS Furniture & Textiles.

    See more from this location.

  • Designer Annie Kelly describes the design of this 1914 Los Angeles home as “true to the character of the house, but in a fresh, more modern way. We established a period—the 1940s and 50s—as the time frame that felt right.” The Art Deco mirrored table was snagged from a Pasadena antique mall. A gold bolster pillow and iridescent headboard add a touch of glamour.

  • Dark woods prevail in the master bedroom but are balanced by soft colors, delicate lines, and soaring proportions.

  • Beautiful & Serene Bedroom

    Creamy beige and soft sage play the starring role in this bedroom. The clean lines of the bed offer a tidy counterbalance to the twin bookshelves on either side. A tall headboard and matching sconces frame a cozy spot for reading.

    See more from this location on the following slides.

  • The bedroom’s sitting area introduces a touch of gold to warm the space. Tall French doors allow ample sunlight to illuminate the room, while gauzy drapery provides privacy.

  • Beautiful & Serene Bedroom Detail

    Delicate embroidery at the bed complements the golds and greens throughout the rest of the bedroom.

    See another room from this home on the following slide. Note the continuity in design.

  • The guest room takes a modern and masculine twist with dove gray and charcoal black. Crisp lines maintain a smooth, timeless appeal. Sisal carpet and corals on the window ledge create an organic feel, while bedside tables, lamps, and straw ottomans maintain symmetry.

  • Mellow Master Suite

    Bold blacks against cream and gray offer a pleasant contrast in this master suite. A soft Roman shade is made of a damask fabric from Dedar USA. Antique intaglios hang above the Lewis Mittman bed.

    Details on the following slide.

  • In the master suite sitting room, knotty pine paneling was painted charcoal gray, creating a sophisticated backdrop for the sink-in armchairs. “It’s a very peaceful room,” says designer Amy Morris.

    See more from this location.

  • Soft colors are paired with luxurious textures in this master bedroom. A close-cropped chenille fabric covers the walls, while the headboard is upholstered in velvet. A 17th-century French chair stands at the foot of the bed, lending antiquity to this exquisitely cozy space.

  • Glamorous & Sophisticated Bedroom

    Designer and homeowner Barbara Glazer says, “I’m not a cookie-cutter anything.” The same is true for her personal style, evident in the design of her own master bedroom. A luxurious throw plays counterpart to the vibrant silk bolster pillows.

    One of the most compelling design components of this master bedroom is the presentation of art above the bed. The repeating mini-squares are framed rubber ducks—a bit of humor that packs a wallop of strong graphics.

    Details on the following slide.

  • A custom chaise deepens the bedroom’s blues picked up from the antique Tibetan rug.

  • A guest bedroom is warmed by brown ticking fabric on the walls and brown toile draperies. Elegant antiques add interesting details, complementing the rich tones and classic patterns throughout: English transferware hangs above the bamboo headboard; a bronze Chinese incense burner floats on an acrylic stand in the corner; an antique magnifying glass sits on a side table.

    See more from this location.

  • This master bedroom was designed from scratch, with its palette set by the gorgeous atmospheric painting by Miriam DeHority. Silk striped curtains key into the colors of the art.

  • Julio Quiñones designed this master bedroom in a fashionable Dallas home. Michael Jon Designs mohair plush covers the custom headboard. An antique sunburst mirror decorates the grasscloth-covered wall above it. Bedding is Horchow Home. Rose Tarlow draperies are finished with trim from Samuel & Sons. Velvet on the bench is from Coraggio.

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  • Beach-Themed Bedroom

    A touch of glamour is added to this Florida showhouse master suite by the mirrored bedside tables with curvy legs that flank the bed. The bed, upholstered in a taupe cotton velvet, is positioned in a carved-out niche. The elegant chandelier with a dramatic silhouette serves as a focal point for the room. Swags of tiny beads in a gunmetal finish hang from concentric frames, creating a graceful drape.

    See details on the following slides.

  • A fireplace in the corner displays artwork both in its hearth and on its mantel. Its unblemished surface harkens to the white sand beach that lies outside.

  • Beach-Themed Bedroom

    A generous chaise anchors a sunny corner of the room that looks out on to the private veranda.

    See another bedroom from this home on the following slides.

  • The colorful upstairs bedroom has playful touches that say "all boy" while still maintaining the sophisticated tone that is featured throughout the rest of the house. Custom turtle pillows and the draperies hung with nautical rope complete the beach house room.

  • Designer and homeowner Skip Sroka wanted a restful and practical master bedroom. The soft bed linens are by Frette, and the ottoman at the foot of the bed is custom-designed by Sroka. The focal point is a striking fireplace with tile by Michael Berman through Walker Zanger. The strié wall finish by Monkton Studios is paired nicely with an antique round mirror.

    See more from this location.

  • Classy & Comfortable Bedroom

    Designer and HGTV host Monica Pedersen was chosen to design a guest room for the 2011 Lake Forest Showcase House in Illinois. She focused on comfort, incorporating layers of wool damask, silk fabrics, and a soft sisal rug underfoot.

    Details on the following slides.

  • Pairs of ceramic lamps, nesting tables, and lounging chairs from Baker with matching ottomans are placed symmetrically around the lavishly appointed bed to enhance the soothing space.

  • A newly remodeled master suite overlooks the home’s beautiful courtyard. “True Moss” from Benjamin Moore covers the walls, providing the perfect balance for the room’s warm woods and understated sheens. The four-poster bed and chairs are from Hickory Chair. Lamps are from Restoration Hardware.

  • Artsy & Casual Bedroom

    Lavender, cream, and seafoam make up the soothing palette for this showhouse bedroom. Chairs from Hickory Chairs sit in symmetry at the foot of the bed, reflecting the shape of the dominating poster bed. Lamps are from Circa Lighting. Bed linens and duvet are from Beacon Hill, and the quilt is from Oly.

    See details on the following slide.

  • “I like mixing collections and finishes within a space, then pulling it together with common fabrics,” says designer Ron Fiore. “It doesn’t look like it came out of a can.”

    The sitting area of the master bedroom, calm and quiet, acts as the ultimate neutral zone between the artist’s studio and the sleeping space. Fabric on the “Leigh Armless Sofa” from Hickory Chair is by Groundworks from Lee Jofa. The “Elliott Wing Chair” and “Amsterdam Dining Chairs,” both from Hickory Chair, are covered in a fabric from Beacon Hill. Wall paint is from Benjamin Moore, and the rug is from Serena & Lily.

  • Cozy Four-Poster Bedroom

    Sunlight streams in through windows dressed in a floral fabric from Clarence House. Cheerful linens from Eileen Fisher for Garnet Hill cover the bed, matching tones from the area rug.

    See more from this bedroom on the following slide.

  • A plush chaise longue sits in a corner near mirrored closet doors.

  • Serene earth tones keep this space simple and relaxed. Gauzy fabric from Coraggio Textiles cover the cloud-like canopy, while snowy linens cover the bed beneath. The room and the bed were both designed by Julio Quiñones.

  • Classic & Elegant Guest Room

    A cool palette of soft blues and blanched wood make this guest bedroom seem restful and inviting. A tufted head- and footboard keep the space looking classic, while simple walls, carpet, and draperies add a touch of modern sensibility.

    Details on the following slide.

  • A taffy-colored striped chair offsets the cool hues of blue and green throughout the rest of the guest room.

  • Rustic French Bedroom

    Designer Kay Douglass created this iron bed for the master bedroom, which is draped in white linen organza. She also fashioned the bed pillow from a French vintage burlap bag.

    Details on the following slide.

  • The subtle French details don’t end at the bed pillows. The bedside tables are antique jelly cupboards from Paris.

  • Fresh & Contemporary Bedroom

    Clean, contemporary lines in khaki and white blend harmoniously in this peaceful master bedroom. An antique mirror pulled from a French church and the dark four-poster bed bring some sophistication into the airy space.

    Details on the following slide.

  • Feminine elegance sparkles at the opposite end of the room, where a small mirrored table stands beneath a mirror and framed artwork by the homeowner’s daughter.

  • Pretty Master Bedroom

    A mélange of pretty fabrics gives this master bedroom visual interest. Silk panels over embroidered sheers at the windows, a quilted coverlet and plaid skirt on the bed, and a cut-velvet upholstered bench all work together for a serene ambience.

    Details on the following slide.

  • A sofa in tweed cotton sports soft cotton pillows.

  • In this master bedroom, highly patterned elements—the headboard, covered in "Dora" fabric by Andrew Martin, the "Richelieu" bedskirt by Holland & Sherry, and the "Damask" rug by Michaelian & Kohlberg—continue the home's blue-and-cream palette.

    See more from this location.

  • To see ideas for your bedroom windows, take a look at our presentation of Bedroom Window Treatments.