The stylish way to sleep

REBECCA BOWERING
Last updated 05:00 24/01/2013
bedhead

DREAM WEAVER: Miranda headboard by Nero Furniture, $679 from Harvey Norman.

Sahco bed
AND SO TO BED: Sahco bed textiles, price on application from atelier.co.nz.

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Once upon a time, bedroom furniture all matched perfectly. Now though, the fashion is to have bedroom furniture that has more character, that exemplifies your own style and how you want to rest and recuperate.

Probably one of the defining pieces is your bed and bedhead. Obviously the bed should be comfortable and supportive. If it is old, maybe it is time to invest in a new one.

From a decorating point of you there is so much choice. But one thing is for sure, a bedhead is a must. Local manufacturers have many styles to choose from, and it may be time to browse the internet to check out your options.

A soft and romantic look may be an antique (or reproduction) French style, reupholstered in your favourite fabric. Traditionally this would have been a damask, small floral design or small scale check, trimmed with gorgeous piping or braid. However, now, the world is your oyster.

If you are tall and your head rests on the actual board choose fabrics that are easily cleaned. For a more modern effect you may consider something more sleek, or with a buttoning detail. Tone on tone, this is restful and will create a zen-like haven.

You could also want to have a simple headboard and a few slip covers to pop over when you change your bedding style. This is practical too, as the covers can be washed or dry cleaned, and is a great choice for children.

Consider TradeMe - a great source of wooden headboards - or browse through many antique and secondhand shops over the holidays. Painted funky colours, stripped stained and waxed, or reupholstered they will look absolutely gorgeous. Alternatively, try making your own.

Mattresses and their bases come in many sizes, but can also be made to order. I sleep on a Sleepyhead one made for my old French bed and it is divinely comfortable.

I love four poster beds: the traditional European antique ones, but also the many rustic versions available new. Hang them with soft linen sheers which add softness to the room and can double as wonderful mosquito nets. Or make a true boudoir with interlined silk taffeta curtains.

If you don't want an actual bedhead it may be an idea to cover the wall behind the bed with an exciting wallcovering or fabric. Many stunning bedrooms have padded fabric panels; buttoned, top stitched or varying shapes behind the bed and look very chic.

Once you have established the bed, the valance is also important. This should coordinate with the bedhead, and preferably take the darker or stronger of its tones. This will effectively 'ground' the bed in the room, and make it look as if it belongs. Your interior designer can have these made in any fabric and design you would like. My personal preference at present is a simple look; flat with pleats on the corners.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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