Colonial-style decorating is centuries old, but this traditional approach is still used in homes today. Colonial decor is simple, yet elegant, which makes it the perfect style for a small bedroom. There is no need to clutter up your room with dark colours and unnecessary trinkets. Rich woods, mixed with soft paint hues and simple decorative accents give small bedrooms an authentic Colonial feel without using up precious floor space.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Cream colour paint
- Four-poster bed
- Small rug
Paint your bedroom walls a light colour like buff or cream. According to Don Vandervort's Home Tips, paints in the Colonial era were made from minerals in the ground and were often muted shades of sage green, grey-blue, ochre, barn red, buff and cream. Since your bedroom space is limited, it is wise to keep your walls light to give the illusion of a larger room. Wallpaper was usually too expensive for families in this era, which is why a simple paint job is the best option if you want an authentic Colonial look. If you want to add a bit of design to your walls, you can use stencils to create designs along the borders. This was a common practice among Colonial families.
Choose a few pieces of solid wood furniture, preferably in darker hues such as cherry wood or mahogany. A sturdy four-poster bed adorned with a simple quilt and matching pillow shams gives your bedroom the simple, yet elegant look that the Colonial times were all about. Maximise the space in your bedroom by adding a chest at the end of the bed. Using this chest for storage helps keep your small bedroom free of clutter. Shelving was often built-in in the Colonial era, but you can use a tall bookcase to achieve a similar look. Adorn the shelves with a family portrait or piece of pottery -- remember to keep decorations simple.
Accent the flooring in your bedroom with a small rug. Colonial rugs were often small and braided with a simple pattern. When money was especially tight, families would use a piece of painted canvas as a floor covering. Even if you have allotted a large budget for your Colonial decor, this is a great way to personalise your bedroom and make it your own. Purchase a small piece of canvas and decorate it with a simple pattern. Place the rug underneath a bookcase, a chest or at the entrance of your bedroom door.
Select modest window treatments. Colonial times were all about simplicity, so use small curtains with a floral pattern instead of the floor length curtains that are often used in modern style homes. If a floral pattern doesn't match the walls and accents of your room, choose a solid colour curtain. The material of the curtains should be light and airy. If you want to achieve the perfect look for this era, consider adding wooden shutters to the inside of your window. These were used mainly in the earlier Colonial times and give your bedroom an elegant appeal.
Tips and warnings
- Replace brass hardware with wrought iron.
- Shop for deals at yard sales instead of buying expensive antiques.
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