furnishing a ‘grand’ bedroom
Q. The question I have is about chairs for my bedroom. We have a large room with 10 ft ceilings. We have a king sized, very high four poster bed in the room. It is a new bed and with a thick mattress it is 37-in. high at the top of the mattress.
At first I did not like the “grandness” of the bed but I have grown to accept it. The problem is that I need seating in the room. The chairs all look too small, too short compared to the bed. Should I worry about that? Seats cannot be taller than seating height? I can be sure they are taller backed but is it okay or should I lower the bed by taking out the box spring (I really don’t want to do that). I appreciate your willingness to answer my question.—C.W.
A. A grand bed is a wonderful thing! Your ceiling height is appropriate for such a tall bed, too. I wouldn’t remove the box springs since they provide a needed function. Your bed is scaled at the very tallest a bed can be for reasonable access. Chairs tend to be scaled in the middle of a range of comfort. Go with chairs that have good mass and a tall back. The seat height needs to stay around 20-in. for safety and comfort.
Another idea is to add furnishings that provide a transition to the height of the bed. A bench or settee at the foot of the bed is terrific for this. Art work stacked above furniture, tall draperies, and architectural plaques over doorways all serve to bring the eye up to the full height of the room on all walls. If you can add a fireplace, push the dimensions for this to the tallest possible, also. The mantel can be chest-high while the firebox area remains close to standard. (Never go taller than this or the fireplace will look like a walk in oven). Tile, brick, or stone can make a fabulous transition from the firebox to the tall wood work. In all your furnishings, go for stately, inviting, and appropriately tall.
combining bright colors with aqua
Q. I like the popular aqua shades that are seen everywhere now, but I don’t like brown. Most of what I see looks too timid or too formal. I like brighter, happier colors. Do you have a suggestion about ways I can work with aqua before everyone decides it is out of style?—K.B.
A. Aqua can be paired with a limitless number of colors if you pick the right shades to go together and some harmonizing, linking colors. Try red for energy, fun, and brightness. Here is an example of a European villa-styled kitchen that uses red and smokey aqua together. The fabric is a very traditional small print, but the combination of colors is fresh and invigorating. The quietness of the cabinet finish and the cool tones of the hardware provides a luxurious harmony with the aqua.
This kind of subtle layering tends to create a luxurious and sophisticated feeling. Notice, the floral arrangement has an Eastern influence with an easy-going air about it too. This is the best example I could find for your question, but I would also consider these colors to coordinate with aqua: pumpkin and white, grape and chartreuse, navy and cream.
We welcome all questions related to home design—ask us about color, room arrangement, planning for a new home, selecting furnishings, lighting, flooring, and more. Questions are answered by Tanna Miller, allied member ASID, a well respected designer who has operated her award winning interior design practice Trends & Traditions in Nashville for 18 years. Contact Tanna at Tanna@designnashville.com or call 615-399-0661.