How to Create a Relaxing Bedroom

Designer Lauren Oviatt says you need to key in on three design principles and thoughtful accessories.

Lighting. We must have light control to relax in the bedroom! Dimmers, three-way bulbs, candles – even correctly-applied rope lights — can work to set the mood.

Color theory. Light colors will always be relaxing, but don’t underestimate the power of a dark wall color. Instantly darkening to a room, deeper wall colors invite immediate relaxation. Tip: Pair deeper tones with light, fresh tones for more interest.

Texture. Surround yourself with soft fabrics and textures that are conducive to relaxation. Think silks & satins, just-washed cottons, sateen sheets, velvet throw blankets. There are so many options these days, and most of them are now machine washable!

Accessories. Gather some simple, sentimental, and calming nightstand accessories. Things you love, and make you comfortable. Some ideas:

• Candles are an important source of alternate lighting and are especially useful in the bedroom.

• Sheet spray can be used right after sheets have been laundered and you’re making the bed, or, spray the pillows and top of the sheets while you’re getting ready for bed… the scent will settle before you climb in.

• Throw blankets & quilts are great for cuddling up for an afternoon read or for “winding down” after a long day. With the great cashmere, bamboo, and other ‘green’ blends these days – it’s an affordable luxury!

• Framed photos help us relax and make us smile! Use a family photograph, a photo of your dog, or a picture of your favorite scenery. It doesn’t have to be a large piece but is a great accessory that is functional by way of being sentimental.

• Fresh flowers are an inexpensive way to make a glamorous and lovely statement. Their aromas calm and rejuvenate and give off just a hint of scent right near the pillow.

• Music can be one of the quickest and easiest paths toward relaxation. Try to find a stereo or alarm clock that is small and sleek so it won’t detract from the design of your space.

• Reading is a great way to relax wherever you are! Choosing uplifting reading material, whether in the form of a novel or a small book of quotes can put you in a sleep-ready state.

• Use a lamp with a dimmer or try alternate forms of light. Twig lights are a great alternative to candles and offer a soft, sparkly light in the evenings. Turn off the lamp and use the twig lights for wonderful mood lighting.

• Hand lotion or body cream can relax the mind through its scent and the body through its texture. Keep a small bottle of it nearby to keep you from being without!

• Keep a notepad on your nightstand to help clear your mind before you sleep. Write down things you can’t seem to get off your mind, including your ‘to do’ list or things you want to be sure to remember. Get them off your mind and on paper… this trick works!

Lauren Stimpson Oviatt
Oviatt-Pratt & Associates
Interiors & Design


Lauren has always had a love for interior and landscape design, floral décor, and all things beautiful! Having lived in the South and also on the west coast before settling in Utah, her design instinct is to combine traditional elements and furniture with updated style and current color palettes. She is constantly looking for ways to infuse glamour into her projects while bringing a fresh perspective and an eye for tasteful, classic design.

Oviatt – Pratt is a full-service design firm in business for over 25 years, specializing in high-end residential and commercial design. The scope of their projects ranges from simple home renovations to large scale construction projects where design is implemented from the first wall color choice to the final finishing touches. With direct access to over 50 upholstery, accessory and furniture lines, Oviatt-Pratt’s designers are able to provide each client with pieces that are particular to his or her taste and style. Their showroom is open to the public Monday through Friday.