Before and After: A “Cream and Boring” Bedroom Gets a Colorful, Upcycle-Packed Makeover

published Nov 10, 2023
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If you’re looking to add a pop of color to your bedroom, try one of this year’s trendiest DIYs — adding colorful paneling or trim to the walls. For example: Floor-to-ceiling paneling in light blue makes this room look taller and more vibrant, light green adds a cottagecore pop to this bedroom, and orange picture frame molding zaps some energy into this one
In a fourth example, Claire Myers (@chaos_at_leitrim) adds a teal to her bedroom on the walls, doors, and more. Before, “The room was cream and boring,” Claire says. “It needed a refresh. We wanted color and a comfortable bedroom.”

Credit: Claire Myers
Credit: Claire Myers

Teal wall molding makes the room feel more complete. 

Claire and her husband had installed paneling on one wall before, but never an entire room — and never one with this many different-sized walls. “This took more skill to measure around windows and doors,” Claire says. They got a bit of help with cutting MDF from a pro woodworker, but they attached it to the wall, primed, and painted it themselves. 

“Even if it took about 4,000 years to complete, we are still delighted with it,” Claire jokes on Instagram. She says they painted the doors and trim, too — “to ensure the room flowed well.” The deep teal paint they went with was Little Greene Paint Co.’s Tea with Florence.

Credit: Claire Myers

Three furniture upcycles add personalization.

Claire used the same teal on a four-drawer IKEA MALM chest she got for free. She added MDF pieces in a chevron pattern to the front of it, primed it, painted it, and added gold hardware —  a “great way to upcycle and create storage and an impactful piece of furniture,” she says. 

The second furniture upcycle in the space is the chair, which was a hand-me-down from Claire’s great-grandmother. She had that (and the footstool, which isn’t as old, but still pre-loved) professionally reupholstered in a bright pink and floral velvets.

Credit: Claire Myers
Credit: Claire Myers

Rearranging the furniture made the room flow better.   

One of Claire’s favorite things about her bedroom to begin with was how spacious it was, so to make it cozy and roomy all at once, she moved the bed to the shorter wall where it tucks neatly and allows for more floor space — plus, the new wall paneling looks great behind the headboard there. 

Claire says she loves the new layout, and the refreshed bedroom all together. “The simplicity of it means it is easier to keep tidy,” she says. “We are a busy family and this space is relaxing and colorful. We love the feel of it.”