A place to unwind, let your hair down and put up your feet-all very casual and private activities. For all the time spent and the intimacy it demands, a bedroom takes very careful and detailed planning. Not because it is the most personal room in a house but because it is a room WHERE YOU DREAM !
What is life without dreams? And what is a better place to dream in than your own bedroom? So that is what a bedroom really is a place to rest and relax, to share a few quiet moments with yourself, to sleep away the weariness of a long, hard day.
As the most private, personalised space in a home, the bedroom must necessarily reflect its user's lifestyle, his practical needs, aesthetic preferences and also his dreams, and this is exactly why a bedroom decor poses a challenge to interior designers.
To design an ideal bedroom for a client, the designer must get to know the client's innermost thoughts and ideas, his cultural background and upbringing, his temperament and his personal conception of a dream bedroom; besides the more tangible factors such as his needs in terms of the storage space provided or his taste in terms of the colour scheme he would like best. All these diverse factors govern aesthetic decisions, which explains the high degree of subjectivity involved. That is why one can't really set up aesthetic byelaws; nor can these byelaws find an easy acceptance, if indeed they are made.
The first thing to do when your home starts feeling cramped is to analyse the way you are using available space. All too often, there is too much unrequired furniture. Even clearing out stacks of old magazines, empty bottles and worn out clothes, will make you realise how much space you have and how incorrectly you have been using it.
The basic principle of not breaking up a room into little bits is equally applicable to the floor. This is why a room with a wall-to- wall carpet looks much bigger than a one with rugs scattered all over. However, given the Indian climatic conditions, maintaining carpets and rugs requires a huge effort; and can only be risked in air-conditioned and dust free environment. The latest option is laminate flooring, and it does seem to have a lot of advantages, while also being aesthetically appealing, and free from the hassles of ordinary wooden flooring. It should be noted that the same flooring sweeping through several rooms gives a better, more spacious effect.
Lighting in a home must do more than dispel darkness. Most rooms benefit from a combination of functional and decorative lighting-relying on the former to set the scene and the latter to add interest. So every room must have primary as well as secondary lighting. The primary lighting fixtures (tubelights) are essential for daily household chores like cooking and reading; but for dramatic effects, shades and shadows, secondary lighting (spotlights, dimmers, up-lighters) is extremely important.
Bright colours and bold patterns advance and make up the space look smaller; while pale colours and small, all-over patterns recede, reflect light and make the space look bigger. Contrasting colours and textures in a room break it up into several different areas and make it seem smaller.
The way a room is decorated has a major effect on how spacious it looks. Even though you have not actually pushed out the walls or raised the ceiling, you can use colour, texture and pattern to create that effect. The colours for walls and ceilings, the choice of flooring, the treatment of windows and design of the lighting system are all important aspects of decor. Also, there are a few other aspects specific to bedroom decor such as bedspreads, quilts and cushions which must be given due consideration.
For centuries, sumptuous bedspreads, coverlets and quilts have been important elements of bedroom furnishing. These accessories should be seen as a part of the whole bedroom scheme. Cushions, although small, have the potential to pull a scheme together with accents of pattern or colour.
Windows let in light and are usually a prominent focal point of the room. Decorative window treatments can lend style to rooms that have no distinct character of their own or accentuate architectural details that already exist. Curtains, which give life to any room , comes in unlimited colours, designs and fabric. Only the heaviest tapestries and weaves are unsuitable because of their weight and bulk.
The master bedroom should be in the south-west area of the building. This room can be used by father or the eldest son in the family. The central south portion is also recommended for the eldest son.
Beds should be placed so as the head of the person should be in south or west direction. The bedroom should not be constructed above porch, car parks and kitchen.
The bedroom should never be constructed on four pillars with no construction under the bedroom. The room should not be in the central portion of the building or in the basement; as it may lead to mental instability in person using such bedrooms.
When it comes to the placement of beds, Vaastu lays clear rules for the placement of bed in the room. According to Vaastu, the beds should never be placed under the joint in roof or under a beam. The beds should always be kept away from the walls.
If any cabinets of almirahs are constructed/placed in the bedroom, which contain valuable documents, cash, jewelry etc., it should be in the south-west of the room opening towards north.
An attached bathroom to the room can be to the north-west or south-east of the room.
Entrance door to the bedroom may have a window opposite to it.
If there are more than one floors, the head of the family (elder person) should have a bedroom on the upper floor and in the south-west corner. This room should never be used as a bedroom of young children, or unnecessary quarrels are likely to occur in the house.
Southwest corner of the bedroom should never be left empty, always keep heavy things, furniture etc. in this portion in every room as a general rule of Vastu. The southwest side of the house and all the rooms inside the house should always be heavier than the east and northeast side. Maximum open space should be left in the northeast side of the rooms and house.
Avoid keeping a TV in the bedroom. If a TV is kept, it should never be in front of bed, as it works as a mirror and keeping a mirror in front of bed generates negative energy. Keeping a up-lighter in the south-east is good.
The dressing-table in the bedroom should be kept north direction. Reading and writing activities can be carried out in the west or east of the bedroom. The door of the bedroom should be in the east, the west or the north. Having windows in the east and north and smaller windows in west is beneficial.
What we see effects our mind, both in good ways and bad. The kind of paintings etc. in the house also effect the thinking of the inmates. The colours you see when you wake up define you day. As a general rule in Vastu light colours in house are always better than dark shades. The colour of walls in the bedroom should be light rose, blue, green, gray, etc for they encourage intelligent thinking. Yellow and white coloured marble stones should not be used in the bedroom.
Vaastu allows sleeping with head in any direction except north. The detail of the direction of head while sleeping and its effects is as under:
East: East is the direction of knowledge. Sleeping with head in the east improves health, increases knowledge and increases a liking for spiritualism. Children should always sleep with head in the east.
West: Sleeping with one's head in the west causes bad dreams, illness, disturbed sleep and violent nature.
North: Sleeping with head in the north causes fear and sleeplessness and major illness.
South: South is the best direction for sleeping. Sleeping with one's head in the south brings happiness and sound sleep. It also leads to increment in wealth and prosperity.
The bedroom is usually a smaller room which can be seen in its entirety with just one glance, for this reason it is important.
that the furniture matches, and if all the pieces are not the same style they should at least have uniformity of colour and texture.
The walls and the lighting should be tenuous and not be concentrated around the head board.
The essential function of the bed is to provide a surface which is neither too hard nor too soft for the back and body to response in the correct position.
Choosing the right mattress is also complicated as there are many different types to choose from: foam, latex, spring and combinations, with one side for summer and the other for winter, anti-allergy, traditional wool ones and a sybaritic tendency to place several mattresses one on top of other, one spring and other latex.
Wardrobes and beds are usually combined in the bedroom and are designed to make the most of the space available, they incorporate comfortable details such as doors which open with just a light touch and the indispensable interior lighting.
Wardrobes are usually from 1.90 to 2m high and 55cm deep and have interior steps for adjusting the shelves. If the wardrobe has only two doors it is a good idea to put mirrors on the inside to be able to see oneself from behind as well as the front.
When deciding how to finish the walls and the ceiling in the bedroom one must know the kind of atmosphere desired and how to maintain it. Normally it is recommended to paint the headboard wall a more outstanding colour than the other three which should all be the same relaxing, warm colour. So if the furniture and the upholstery has already been chosen, the walls and ceiling should be their appropriate background.
Carpeted walls are another alternative for the bedroom which normally is considered when the floor is carpeted as well, very appropriate for colder, more humid climates for their insulation and warmth.
Bedroom lighting should have a special treatment, the tone of the light should be warm and cozy, to achieve this, apart from the ceiling light and the lamps on the night table, we recommend that the light intensity might also be adjustable. The regulator of light intensity, also called a dimmer, is a mechanism which permits, apart from the normal function of a light switch .gradual control of intensity of the light, allowing one to choose the exact level desired between the total lighting and the total darkness of the room.
Interior door frames should be as decorative as the doors, highlighting their design and quality. If the frame should expand or contract due to wood's movement it will have to be carefully planed, checking the measurements regularly, re-hanging the door to check the progress until it is correct, remembering that there should always be a little pay.
When decorating one's bedroom one usually mixes and matches coordinating fabrics, in the curtains, bedspreads, pillows, lampshades, headboards, walls but avoiding overdoing it.
Whites and creams adapt to both classic and modern styles and are found in fabrics made of cotton, polyester, wool and embroidered linen.
Fabrics with a natural design create a bucolic atmosphere, with light lovely colours, with fabrics like cretonne, polyester and cotton chintz, silk, faille, taffeta.
One romantic finish is to cross two embroidered muslin blinds held open with two wide velvet bands.
There is nothing better than a wooden rug to warm up a room, placing one at the end of the bed is not only a basic decorative element but also an object which adds warmth, calm and intimacy. The choice of a rug depends primarily upon the floor, furniture, walls, upholstery, luminosity, space and if the bedroom has a specific decor, one will be obliged to choose a coordinating rug which is essential to create the right atmosphere.
Bedspreads, sheets, blankets, quilts, comforters and pillows all enter into the play in the decoration of the bedroom. One need only know the decorative style and have bit of extra fabric to combine walls, curtains, canopies, headboards, lampshades etc. with the indispensable bedding.
The fabric is the body and soul of the bedroom set, such as jacquard, tapestry inspired, elegant and noble lines which shine through somber tones.
If the bedroom is in the south-east direction of the main building, it results in unnecessary quarrels between the husband and the wife. Wasteful expenditure increases and one has to face one kind of trouble of the other.
If the plot is big and spacious, leaving the north-west part of the north side and adjacent to the living room the bed room should be located.
Due to the northern bedroom the morning sunrays are available to some extent.
If in the north side bedroom, you sleep with your head towards the east or the south, you can enjoy a sound sleep.
The bedrooms of the head of the family should be in the south-west corner of the west side. If there are more than one floor, the head of the family should have a bed room on the upper storey in the south-west corner of the west direction. This room is also good for adult married children. But under no condition it should be a bedroom of the younger children. There are clashes and unnecessary quarrels in the house. A bedroom in the south direction can also be tolerated.
A west side bedroom is the best for children. An eastern bedroom can also be used for unmarried children or for guests. But under any condition a newly web couple should not be allowed to use this room.
The north-east is the direction of the deities therefore, no bedroom should be in this direction. Otherwise, one has to face many calamities, sickness increases.
Nobody’s bedroom should be exactly in the middle of the building. There should be no slope to the roof. The shape should not be pyramidal. The colour of walls should be light rose, gray, dark blue, chocolate, dark green etc. Marble stones (white and yellow coloured) should not be used in the bedroom. White marble is used for maintaining the austerity of the temple.
In the main south-west corner of the south-west side bed room, heavy articles should be kept. The bed in this room should be to the south or the west of the south-west corner of this room.
Sleeping with legs towards the east gives name, fame & prosperity. Sleeping with legs towards the west gat mantle peace & increases a liking for spiritualism. Sleeping with legs toward the north, increases wealth and prosperity. However, if you sleep with legs towards the south, you will not have a sound sleep. There are dreams, bad thoughts crop up in the mind. Heavyness in the chest is felt sometimes. The south is known as the Yamasthan ( place of Yama). Dead body’s legs are kept towards the south. Mental sickness increases and there is a likelihood of reduction in the life span.
Some buildings do not get proper east-west and north-south directions. They get the corners only. In bed rooms of such buildings, for getting the proper direction, one should not put his bed in an oblique position.
The dressing table in the bed room should be to east of the north direction. The reading and writing work should be done in the west of the bedroom. It can also be done in the east.
T.V., heater and electrical appliances should be in the south-east corner of the bed room. The wardrobe should be in the north-west or the south-west of the room.
The door of the bedroom should be of one shutter as far as possible. It should be in the east, the west or the north. There is no harm in having small windows in the east and the north. Almirahs, showcases etc. should be in the south or the west walls.
The south west corner should never be kept vacant.
If bathroom, tub bath, toilet, change room etc. are to be attached to the bed room, they should be in the west or the north side.
As far as possible, the safe should not be in the bedroom. If it is, it should be placed in a way leaving the south-east, the north-east, the south-west and the northwest corners as well as the east and the north directions. If the safe is kept in the south and opens in the north, it is very auspicious.
Engineer Rameshwar Prasad
(B.Tech., M.Tech., P.G.D.C.A., P.G.D.M.)