The Inspired Room

Refining Your Home for Authentic Living™

Style Tips: The Unmade Bed Look April 15, 2008

Filed under: Domesticity,Style Tips — Melissa @ The Inspired Room @ 1:40 am
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One of my mentors is Alexandra Stoddard, as many of you know by now (click here for more info on that little tidbit about me). One of the things I remember her saying in one of her books is that she is an advocate of the “unmade bed look.

What this means is not necessarily that you don’t make your bed, but that you allow the layers of your bedding to show in some way. Allowing the details of the sheets to informally peek out from a coverlet or fold over a quilt is simply more inviting and welcoming than covering it all up with a bedspread. Not only does the bed look like it is ready to crawl back into (good idea), but it is not so stiff and formal that it feels untouchable.

  • Showing the layers, including pillows and pillow shams, gives you the opportunity to showcase your personal style through the pieces you have selected.
  • Conversely, the details you like in bedding provide clues to your style personality.

Do you like ruffly sheets? Flowered ones? Striped top sheets and solid bottom sheets? Or all matching yellow sheets? Bright or pastels? Are you drawn to fluffy down blankets or do you prefer coverlets? Stiff pillows or squishy ones? Lots of pillows or few pillows?

Each detail reveals something about you. Even if you aren’t a fan of the “Unmade Bed Look” having a formal bed with relatively stiff covers and few wrinkles allowed says something about your style!

So tell me, how would you describe your style, based on YOUR bed’s look (or better yet, the DREAM look if you could have the look you want?) I can’t wait to find out!

My own unmade bed.

I actually DO make the bed every day. I just like the more casual look of a less formally styled bed when it is made.

I’ll go first with an assessment of myself, based on my current bedding. Because I know you are all dying to know. I’d say my bedding says I am practical (as I do not own multiple sets of fancy patterned sheets, just one set of high thread count plain soft cream colored sheets that I wash and put right back on!). But I am not too practical as my matelasse coverlet is soft cream colored too. A creamy neutral like that is a bit risky with kids and dogs climbing all over it. Also, I could have several sets of inexpensive sheets but I would rather have one expensive higher quality set. Hmmm, sheet snob. My coverlet, shams and pillowcases have a subtle pattern and texture. This shows I like detail but not over the top detail. I like detail to surprise you and unfold rather than always screaming out for attention. That is my personality too, I have my moments of exuberance but I also have my quiet subtle side.

My choices show that I need a soothing environment for the bedroom without too much pattern on the bed. But, I do have a boldly striped sham on the bed so I guess that shows that I like a punch of color in a sea of creamy ones. Again, I see that tension between my practical side and my more daring side. I have two European shams for the back of the headboard, and the one striped sham and one accent pillow. Not a ton of pillows but enough to make it cozy and soften the hard edges of the bed frame. I’m a cozy person, but a restrained cozy! My coverlet and shams are not foofy but my bed is an old fashioned iron bed, so I guess I am a more tailored romantic. I make the bed with some perfection (I like the coverlet to be straight, for instance), but I never iron my sheets.) Perfectly imperfect is a good description of my style preference.

My description of my style based on my bedding also shows that I am a very WORDY person. I talk a lot. See how much we can learn from this exercise?

Now, how about you?

Photo: Coastal Living online William Minarich