14 small bedroom ideas – how to decorate a small bedroom stylishly

Keen to make the most out of a small bedroom? Consider these points when it comes to creating a practical and welcoming space
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  • Looking for small bedroom design ideas? Our small bedroom ideas can turn a tiny cramped space into a must-see retreat with practical storage solutions and enviable interior design schemes. Even the most humble of box rooms has the ability to serve as a comfortable small bedroom, and clever use of furniture can turn it into a multi-functional space too, incorporating useful study and storage areas.

    For more bedroom design inspiration, see our bedroom ideas

    Careful planning and a dash of inspiration are all that’s needed to maximise a small bedroom’s potential. Take a look at these small bedroom and single bedroom ideas before you start decorating.

    1. Use your headboard for storage

    Image credit: Simon Whittaker

    If space is in short supply, ditch the usual style of headboard for one like this with a gap for storage and a surface area, where you can place things. This means you can do away with bulky bedside tables, as you’ll have a convenient spot to stash your bedtime reading. Go one better and install wall lamps too.

    2. Double up your dressing table

    Image credit: David Brittain

    It’s not ideal to work or have your computer in the bedroom, but can your dressing table double up as a writing desk? Even if it’s just somewhere to peacefully gather your thoughts and write your to do list, it’s worth keeping the surface area clear rather than cluttering it with lotions and potions.

    3. Take storage off the floor

    Hanging a storage unit on the wall instead of having a bedside table that sits on the floor will instantly free up space and one with a drop down desk will give you somewhere to sit and do your make up or place your morning coffee. Find something similar to this at made.com.

    4. Step things up

    Image credit: David GilesLadder storage is a great way to achieve the benefit of wall shelving whilst having the flexibility to move it when you want to change things around. This one perfectly suits this tight space in the bedroom but it could just as easily work in the bathroom or a small sitting room.

    5 Create a cool work zone

    In a kid’s room, take over part of the wardrobe space to create a cool work zone. Installing a wall lamp and hanging a pin board where you can fix pots for pens and other knick knacks will keep the desk space free for focusing on the important stuff.

    6. Buy a wardrobe with a sliding door


    Image credit: The Cotswold Company

    Barely have space to move in your bedroom, but have lots of clothes that need a home? Try a wardrobe with a sliding door. This piece features a full-height rail on one side, together with five drawers and a half-height wardrobe above with removable shelves.

    Buy now: Malvern mink wardrobe with sliding door, £999, The Cotswold Company

    7. Swap your bed for a sofa bed

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Carolyn Barber

    When square footage is at a premium, try incorporating a wall bed instead of a traditional sofa bed. It takes a standard mattress, offering greater comfort, and can fold away to look like a wardrobe or cabinet, freeing up valuable floor space for a desk and chair.

    Ensure that the surrounding furniture is lightweight so that it can easily be moved to accommodate a pull-down bed. If you have adequate ceiling height, look at bespoke options, such as a simple mezzanine incorporating a sleeping area on a raised platform with a wardrobe or shelving below.

    8. Put storage in high places

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Simon Whitmore

    Like any small space, the key to a successful compact bedroom is to create adequate storage within a functional layout. Often in a small guest room, a couple of large, hard-working pieces of furniture will create a less cluttered look than several small pieces.

    When square footage is at a premium, try incorporating floating shelves, or (if your budget allows) bespoke fitting above the bed for a streamlined look that won’t compromise your space.

    9. Pick a theme for your small space

    Pick a theme

    Make a small bedroom appear larger by choosing a predominantly white look and peppering it with a specific decorative motif such as flowers and leaves.

    Combine neutral flooring with crisp white walls, delicate florals and minimal accessories for a chic, life-enhancing bedroom. This scheme is a masterclass in using complementary colours to make a space sing.

    Keep furniture pale and lightweight rather than dark and solid, going for a metal bedstead and cafe-style bedside table.

    10. Repeat a single motif

    small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Colin Poole

    Keep the decorative elements of a small room pared back by choosing a single motif – such as the heart – and running with it.

    Use it in two or three forms, such as artwork, accessories and soft furnishings, and in varying scales and the cohesive, contained scheme that results will free your space of clutter and confusion.

    Restrict colour to accessories and the room will be easy to update whenever you feel like it.

    Love these small bedroom ideas but want more ideas for other rooms? READ: Small bathroom ideas to optimise your space

    11. Love symmetry in your small bedroom

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Jason Ingram

    A simple, perfectly balanced design scheme can be the saving grace of a small twin bedroom. Metal bedsteads are good space savers – but ring the changes with an unusual finish such as polished brass. Dress the beds in pure white linen and pastel-coloured wool blankets with a neutral/patterned duo of cushions to finish. Fit wall-mounted lamps to free up space on a shared bedside table.

    12. Create a feature wall

    small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Malcolm Menzies

    Be bold with a striking wallpaper and eye-catching artwork and turn a single wall into the main focus of a small bedroom. Opt for a restricted colour palette with crisp white bed linen and furniture made from reclaimed wood.

    Stick to mostly white bed linen so the look isn’t overly busy and introduce a splash of colour to liven up the scheme a notch.

    13. Paint a small bedroom white

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Brent Darby

    Decorate walls and ceilings in white to visually open up a small space and free you to use colour and pattern in a controlled way elsewhere.

    Then go to town with cottage garden florals – against the plain background they won’t overpower a small bedroom.

    Let colourful fabrics take centre stage with a bold, red patterned bedspread and cushions that contrast with the rest of the room.

    Love painting with white? READ: The best white paint – how to choose the right shade for your walls

    15. Duplicate a pattern

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Simon Whitmore

    Don’t be afraid to use pattern in a small bedroom. Pick one design, such as polka dots, and assign it to walls and soft furnishings for a smart, tightly controlled decorating scheme.

    Where space is at premium, choose your furniture with storage potential in mind: bedside cabinets over tables; an end-of-bed blanket box over a sofa.

    15. Keep it cream

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Rachael Smith

    Create a restful feel in a guest bedroom with chalky cream walls, a pale upholstered headboard and a luxurious off-white satin throw.

    Stick to neutrals for as much of the room as you dare so that items don’t compete with each other for attention and the space appears less cluttered. But do feel free to add in the odd warmer tones to prevent the scheme from feeling cold and clinical.

    16. Make it minimal

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: David Woolley

    Symmetry is your friend when you need to strip back to essentials in a small room. Double up on bedside cabinets and lighting for an uncomplicated, easy-on-the-eye scheme. Use hits of duplicated colour to create visual balance and add definition and energy.

    Pick a pale colour palette as a fail-safe space enhancer. Here, soft neutrals add just the right amount of warmth, while the minimal wall decorations draw the eye to the bed and keep it there.

    Are you still in love with grey schemes? READ: Grey bedroom ideas – from the super glam to the ultra modern

    17. Think outside the box

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Dominic Blackmore

    If you love bold prints or texture, don’t shy away from your favourite pattern in a small bedroom.

    Whether it’s on walls or soft furnishings, make a feature out of a strong design: papering one wall with flocked or floral wallpaper will stop the pattern from taking over the small room, but will still achieve the desired finish.

    18. Look to furniture with form and function

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Dominic Blackmore

    Most homes suffer from bottlenecks so think laterally too about how to free up space. Can a small bedroom have wardrobes in the hall outside, with dressing room appeal? Challenge your preconceptions, but do make sure any solution is practical.

    Another option is to go for a statement bed and little else, as we’ve done here. If you follow this route, use a bed that offers plenty of in-built hidden storage, or space underneath to store boxes and vacuum bags.

    Need more storage tips and tricks? READ: Bedroom storage ideas to bring tranquillity to your sleep space

    19. Luxuriate in colour

    Small bedroom ideas

    Image credit: Richard Powers

    Think you can’t add colour to a small bedroom? Think again! Tight spaces are a great for experimenting with colour, texture and design.

    Combine petrol blue and aqua tones for a near-combustible mix; choose sumptuous silks and rich velvets for tactile bedspreads, cushions and curtains. But amidst these deep, rich shades, hold back a little white for ceilings and window frames.

    Love these small bedroom ideas? READ: Small children’s room ideas – to create a space your child will love

    Will you be using any of these small bedroom ideas to decorate your compact space?

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