Let's do an experiment. Navigate over to Pinterest, type the phrase "cozy bedroom" into the search bar, and see what comes up. Pretty specific, right? It seems the internet has decided there's a clear-cut formula to having a beautiful-but-cozy bedroom, and it involves lots of texture, a lack of housekeeping and copious amounts of tea. If you're after this look for yourself (I don't blame you, it is lovely), hang around while I break down this blueprint.
Don't make your bed
Hear me out. You might be used to making the bed every morning—you may even have formed this keystone habit purposely. But a haphazard approach to bed-making is paramount to a cozy space, according to the Internet (and the above photo from My Scandinavian Home). Sure, it's a choice between life happiness or a having ready-to-hop-into-bed bedroom, but if you have to ask which is more important, you might be reading the wrong article.
Forget vibrant brights and dramatic darks. If it's cozy you're after, Pinterest says to stick to whites and mid-tone grays, as seen in this lovely room from oh.eight.oh.nine's Instagram. Occasionally a darker gray or inky blue will crop up, but for the most part sticking to lighter walls keeps the focus where it belongs: on the bedding. Which brings us to my next point...
Okay, maybe you're not ready to forgo making the bed entirely. I get it! Appropriate the casual, thrown-together look by layering textures and rumply fabrics instead. Sfgirlbybay nails the look here. Nix cotton sheets in favor of stonewashed (but not pressed) linen: the crinkly texture is cool and comfortable, and gets better with age. To that base, pile on pillows in neutral tones and various textures; more linen is always great, faux fur even better. Top the look with a chunky knit throw, trailing just slightly on the floor for maximum cozy points.
Light up your life
Get ready to embrace your inner youth, because it seems that fairy lights are essential for a cozy bedroom. Strung up over a headboard, around a mirror or in a corner, they give the perfect warm glow to a room, minus the high school angst this time around. If you can't quite get behind the slightly frenetic-looking fairy lights, try more grown-up globe lights, multiple small pendants or simply a cluster of candles. The goal is simply to have many sources of warm, low light. (Image via French by Design)
Have a green thumb
Fairy lights may not seem that adult, but keeping things alive definitely is! So it's great that the cozy bedroom formula seems to include a lot of plant life, either on the bedside table, the floor or hanging from the ceiling a la the above image from The Jungalow's Instagram. Whether you go fiddle fig, fern or succulent, add a spot of green to make sure your bedroom can say "I'm adulting (in a cozy way)".
Caffeine is queen
The final ingredient in a Pinterest-worthy cozy bedroom appears to be a breakfast tray, laden with tea or coffee, and perhaps an impractically flaky croissant, as well. Perhaps it's intended to keep you awake all night, so you'll enjoy your bedroom all the more? I for one hate eating in bed, but I suppose in the name of a good photo op, I can come around to the idea. (Image via Bolig DK)
How "cozy" is your bedroom, measured against Pinterest's criteria?
If you prefer a crisper, more refined look, here are 6 ways to get the look of a 5-star hotel.
*Re-edited from a post that originally appeared 2.20.2017. - AH