Building a room around a piece you love…

Urban Outfitters' Wild Poppy Inspired Bedroom

Yesterday as I was surfing the interwebs, I fell in love with this duvet cover from UrbanOutfitters, remember?  I loved it so much that I spontaneously starting designing a bedroom around it and I promised that I’d share the results:

Urban Outfitters' Wild Poppy Inspired Bedroom
Urban Outfitters' Wild Poppy Inspired Bedroom

Isn’t my little collage wonderful?!?!  Ok, maybe it’s not so amazing to you guys, but I was tickled pink to find out that Google’s free photo management program, Picasa, could create collages.

When I saw this duvet cover, I immediately envisioned a simple, open and airy bedroom that would be a peaceful retreat.  I know some of you are thinking… HELLO Shauntelle!… there’s all kinds of bold color in this collage of yours!  How can THAT be peaceful?  The thing is, for me, I’m looking for relaxing, but not boring.  I tend to retreat to my bedroom to daydream and a need a space that’s conducive to creating.    Plus, as we’ve seen in several “In the Trenches” interviews in the past, adding pops of color to a basically white (or neutral) background adds just enough interest to keep the room from feeling bland, but the white balances things out to keep the color from being overwhelming.

Since I knew I was starting with a mostly white base (imagine white walls, big windows with light, white linen curtains, plus the mostly white bedding), I decided that the first order of business was to find the right art work to go on the wall.  In this imaginary room of mine, this art work would go right above the bed and would be reflected back at me through the big mirror I’d have hung on the wall directly across from the bed (hey, this is my imaginary room, remember!  I can make sure the walls and windows are in the PERFECT locations to fit my design, unlike real life where you have to work with what ya got!).

Pier 1's Kaleidoscope Wall Art
Pier 1's Kaleidoscope Wall Art

I was lucky that I found this piece right away on the Pier 1 website.  It was another one of those things I just fell in love with immediately!  I loved that it pulled out the faint red from the duvet and brought in a whole range of other, complementary colors that could then be pulled into the room.

The next thing I looked for was lighting.  I read and write in bed all the time, so I needed to have a lamp right next to the bed.  I actually found a few lamps that I really liked, so I saved them all until I could decide which one would work best with the remainder of the furniture.

I felt really sure that I didn’t want a matchy-matchy kind of room… I’m artsy, ya know, so a room with a matched set of dresser and nightstands wouldn’t have the organic feel that I wanted for this room.  I looked at a variety of night stands before deciding that what I really wanted was a simple, interesting kind of side table.  When I saw this grouping of these tables on the Pottery Barn website, I KNEW they were perfect.  Even though it would be pricey to do this, I would buy all three and group them next to the bed just like they are in the picture.

Pottery Barn ceramic garden stools
Pottery Barn ceramic garden stools


I like the way they add a sculptural element to the room and the colors are a perfect complement to the art that would be above the bed.  (Ok, I know this isn’t very useful for holding the typical night stand stuff, but my solution is to keep a nice little wicker basket under the bed, perfect for storing whatever books I’m reading, my journal, some pens, and miscellany…)

With the bedside table(s) decided upon, it made it easy for me to decide on a bedside lamp… after all, can’t mar the sculptural effect of the tables by adding a table lamp, can I?

West Elm Adjustable Metal Floor Lamp
West Elm Adjustable Metal Floor Lamp (


The next thing I went looking for was the perfect mirror and dresser to situate across from the bed.  Once again, I knew that I didn’t want anything too matchy, but at the same time, the pieces needed to be complimentary.  Because of that, I looked for the dresser first.   I already had a small idea of the look I wanted… inspired  by a piece I’d seen at Pottery Barn:

Pottery Barn Andover Cabinet
Pottery Barn Andover Cabinet

I didn’t necessarily want something red, but I definitely wanted a storage piec that looked like I picked it up in a little antique shop or had it shipped home from my exotic travels (hey, this is MY daydream room, right?  Of course I have exotic travels in my daydream life!  🙂 )

This was certainly the hardest part of my search.  I looked high and low but most of the pieces I saw were just too modern for what I had in mind.  I was determined to find simple, modern lines with an aged look…

As you can see from the collage, I never did find what I wanted.  I could have settled (and almost DID) but I figure if I’m designing my dream room, I can hold out for the “just right” piece.  That’s a key part to designing a room (or home) that you truly love– being willing to wait to get that right piece at the right price.

Without the dresser, I couldn’t really decide on a mirror, so I went rug shopping instead and immediately KNEW that this soft sheepskin rug would be the perfect thing to add some additional texture and warmth to the room:

West Elm sheep skin rug
West Elm sheep skin rug


And there you have it, my vision of a personal bedroom inspired by Urban Outfitter’s Wild Poppy Duvet Cover!  Feel free to let me know what you think… what would you add?  Do you think the three ceramic stools are too outrageous?  You know I love to hear your feedback!

One last note before I go… I am furiously working to find new people to interview for the “In the Trenches” series.  If you have any suggestions, please drop me a line at snhamlett at gmail dot com!

’til next time,



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