WELCOME to CAROLINA PANACHE! I believe our homes should be a haven, a place of beauty and peace that reflect who we are and what's important to us. I'm on a journey to add personality and panache to every corner of my house. For me, good design evolves, grows and changes with the needs of one's lifestyle. I want my home to be creative, to be stylish, to be entertaining, to be real. I hope you will join me on my journey. It's always more fun to travel together.
This blog is all about bringing style and elegance to the home. The art of dressing your home goes beyond hanging a few items on the wall and arranging furniture. Much like a fabulous set of earrings or a new stylish handbag may take your little black dress from fine to fabulous, home accesories and key furnishings can take your rooms from ho-hum to singing the Halleluiah Chorus! Join with me as we discover new ways to add panache to every room of the house.

10 "Must Haves" for the Master Bedroom

This week we are focusing on the Master Bedroom. What better time than Valentine's Day to spruce up your most personal room and add a little romance and glitz? So today we are going to talk about "10 Must Haves" for every well appointed retreat. Regardless of your personal style; traditional, eclectic, country, cottage, modern or contemporary, these 10 things are the foundation for a comfortable haven to take you away from the hectic world outside and wrap you in the warmth of your own private cocoon.1. Comfortable Bed - I know, this might seem like a no-brainer but get the best you can afford. Invest money here. My husband and I purchased a top of the line mattress that really stretched our budget at the time but it has been well worth every penny! The bedroom is all about comfort so when shopping for your bed, get the best. It is better to do without something else for the short term and splurge on a top quality mattress. You can always add to your room's decor later on.

2. Make a statement with your Bed Frame - The next best thing you can do is find just the right bed frame that will provide the focus for your room and help define your personal style and taste. Whether you go Full, Queen, or King, the bed is the main attraction therefore let it take center stage.

3. Side Tables - Break out of the "everything must match" phase by adding side tables that complement your overall style. Matched sets were a marketing tactic created to sell more furniture. An elegant chest or console table on one side flanked by a soft draped table on the other adds much more style and panache!
4. Chests or Armoires - These lovely pieces provide function as well as design savvy. Next to the kitchen and bath, the bedroom takes third place for storage needs. Chests provide ample storage for bulky seasonal clothing such as sweaters or additional storage for blankets and extra quilts. The Armoire is the perfect solution for audio visual equipment.

5. A chair and ottoman - Every Master Bedroom should have comfortable sitting other than the bed. Even if your room is tight on space, carve out a small area where you can place a chair and ottoman or recliner for those evening when you want the privacy of your bedroom but you're not quite ready to go to bed.
6. A desk - Some rooms may not have enough space for a desk but if you are lucky enough to have the room, a small writing desk is an elegant appointment for the Master. Even if your home has an office or study, I recommend adding space in your Master Bedroom where you can sit, sip your morning coffee or tea and peruse correspondence or the morning paper.

7. A soft, warm Floor Covering - This is essential for those cold wintry days or those crisp Spring mornings when the chill is lingering. Most bedrooms are carpeted but not all. My home in FL had parquet wood flooring. Area rugs can provide function and style by adding color and pattern as well as warmth.
8. Luxurious Fabrics - Use imagination and flair when it comes to your bedroom. This is the place to go all out with incredible fabrics that will soften and envelope you in richness. You don't usually have to worry about "kid-friendly" materials here, so layer on the luxury. For us women, luxury is all about feeling pampered. Beautiful surroundings evoke feelings of romance and relaxation. Think beyond a basic comforter set and include fabulous window treatments. Not only will they provide privacy but the softness they add will up the luxury quotient . Canopies and bed crowns draping fabric over the head of your bed is another way to add grand style to your Master.

9. Lighting - Overhead lights in a bedroom are fine but to achieve that private retreat feeling, you need mood lighting. Nothing can create ambiance in your bedroom better than soft lamp light. Of course candle light should not be forgotten. The soft glow of a well placed wall sconce can provide illumination while adding instant romance to your room. I use 3 lamps, 2 wall sconces and a slew of assorted candle holders throughout my room and bath.
10. Music - Any Resort Spa that you go to pumps in soft, relaxing music. So why not add this element to your own retreat? Housing the equipment inside an armoire hides it away when not in use but provides easy access when you want to set a calming or romantic mood.
(All photos from Better Homes and Gardens design gallery. For more inspiration log on to www.bhg.com)
Remember, this is your private, restful sanctuary. A get-a-way that is just a door away. Make this room a haven where you can escape to relax and rejuvenate. On your journey to creating this intimate space keep in mind the "Golden Rule for Master Bedroom Decor - "It's your room and you don't have to please anyone but yourself and your spouse". That is if you have one.
If you are planning a master bedroom re-do, spend time looking through magazines or on-line galleries for inspiration. I tell potential client they should put together a "look book" of rooms that inspire them. Then look for common elements in each picture. Try to identify why you like the room, whether it be the color, layout, style or fabrics. Once you have done this, make a list of things that you "must have" in order to pull the look together.
I offer "FREE" consultation and ideas as well as color analysis. For more details about this service, you may e-mail me at the address associated with this blog.
Tomorrow is Wednesday and I will take a break from Bedrooms to post my weekly Cook's Corner as well as an Outdoor Wednesday feature. Thursday is TABLESCAPE day and I will posting a very special and romantic sweetheart of a table. I'll pick back up on Friday with a post featuring my personal bedroom and bath re-do. I hope you will join me. Until then,
Happy Decorating!


Susan @ A Southern Daydreamer said...

Great tips.. you left out one... scents... candles, potpurri,etc



Alisa Lucas-Brown said...

You are so right! Fragrance is so important when creating a spa like retreat! Good catch, Susan!

Blondie's Journal said...


I really liked this post. At first I thought it was going to be another bla, bla, bla magazine article thing that I've read 1000 times before but I was really, really impressed with the information, your idea's and how well written it was. You gave suggestions for rooms of all sizes which is nice because I live in a large old house with small rooms!

Thanks so much, I look forward to seeing what you have done with your own master!!


Kathleen Ellis said...

Great bedroom posts, Alisa! Lots of wonderful tips that guide one through the process of creating a bedroom retreat...tis the time of year to do so...I've got my own bedroom posts scheduled for later in the month, too!
You found lots of great pics to represent what you were suggesting...love that "before and after" pic. Looking forward to seeing your own re-do!
I'm having a Valentine give-away you may want to come register for!
Have a happy week!

Carolina Mama said...

Love this post. Sooo agree and we add the candles too. :)

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