Design as a Mood Enhancer: Symmetry as a Shortcut to a More Serene Bedroom

updated May 4, 2019
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(Image credit: Jessica Isaac)

Is your bedroom’s design just feeling off these days? Rather than a restful retreat from the world, do you feel stressed and hectic when you’re in your bedroom thanks to some of your design choices? You might need to pull out the big bag of design tricks and employ this tried and true design principle to restore some balance to your bedroom and bring your sleep space to serenity.

Of the many design principles there are to choose from when designing your bedroom, none are as easy to employ —or potentially as powerful to turn your bedroom into a potently restful place — as the principle of symmetry. Here are three reasons why you should consider getting a little symmetrical in the bedroom.

(Image credit: Jessica Isaac)

1. It’s super easy to pull off

Even the most design challenged can pull off a symmetrical look. The end goal is deliriously easy to create: simply do on to one side of your bed the same design things you did to the other. Draw an imaginary line down the center of the wall your bed is on (preferrably centered on, as well) and then create mirror images on either side of the line.

So if you have one art piece above the bed, center is on the imaginary line. If you have several, make a uniform pattern of hanging art pieces that straddle the imaginary line. Buy or DIY a pair of matching nightstands. The same goes with lamps and other large decor items. Now, you don’t have to go so far as a printing out identical framed photographs of your spouse to make each side match (and one small vase of fresh flowers on only one side isn’t going to throw the entire composition into randomly matched madness). For an even more symmetrical look, make the bed’s top dressing — throw pillows and covers and more — balanced and matched as well.

(Image credit: Kim Lucian)

The great thing about going symmetrical is that you don’t have to do a lot of design deciding — design one side the way you like it and then just simply match it on the other side.

(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

2. It brings instant balance and harmony to the space

Going with a symmetrical design quite literally brings a visual balance and harmony to the space. When the eyes see the same things on either side of a big focal point (like a bed), it makes visual sense immediately. This instant understanding of the surroundings means your brain can slip into calm faster than if your eyes were darting around a room looking at a lot of different design elements.

The other thing symmetry does in a space is symbolize order and control. It’s a less easier thing to put one’s fingers on, but when a room features a symmetrical design scheme, a sense of control over the environment comes through strongly, and this too can lead to a sense of calmness and peace.

(Image credit: Jacqueline Marque)

3. Changing the design is easy as changing both sides

Not only is creating a symmetrical design easy — changing a symmetrical room up when you get bored is easy, too! Simply make the same decor changes on one side when you do on the other. Sick of symmetrical after living with it for too long? Switch to an asymmetrical look when you fuss with one side of the design equation (and be able to switch back again when you want more harmony).