Your bedroom should be your haven – the place you escape to after a long day, free from stressors and completely calming. So, how do you create your very own sleep sanctuary? You use your senses to guide your interior design.
Our senses help to determine how we receive and process information, and how we interact with people and spaces. When we decorate with all five senses in mind, we can create interiors that illicit desired emotional and behavioural responses (such as resting or feeling and acting energised) and, subsequently, homes that feel well-balanced and tend to our very individual needs.
My book, The Sensory Home ® (which is available to purchase now) teaches you how to use your senses to create a home environment that works for your family’s unique needs – including neurodiverse individuals. It’s full of styling tips to help every room feel warm, inviting, safe, and fit for purpose.
Keep reading for a flavour of what to expect from the book, and to learn how to style a bedroom that offers a harmonious sensory experience.
3 Top Tips for Designing a Sensory Bedroom
1. Keep your bedroom a device-free zone
Studies suggest that increased technology use around bedtime can impact sleep quality and quantity. This is, in part, is because the lights, sounds, and so on, stimulate the brain and delay tiredness, and the blue light emitted by many devices throws off our circadian rhythms. Plus, phones that flash and ping and vibrate during the night can cause sleep disturbances.
To give yourself the best chance at getting a sound and revitalising night’s sleep, I recommend enforcing a no-device rule in your bedroom. That means no TV, no iPad, no laptop, and no phones in your sleep sanctuary. Though, you may like to have a speaker on hand to play soothing music and sounds pre-bed.
Not sure how you’ll manage your morning routine without your phone alarm? Try a wake-up light, such as Lumie.
2. Rid your sleep space of clutter
Clutter reduces our ability to focus on the task at hand, whether working or relaxing. Clothing spilling out of drawers, stacks of papers, overflowing laundry baskets, and accessories without allocated homes all cause visual distractions that lessen our ability to concentrate and increase feelings of overwhelm.
It’s particularly important that your bedroom feels free from all things stress-inducing, so storage should be a key focus when designing your space. If you have the luxury of being able to store clothing and accessories elsewhere in your home, I recommend doing so. If not, choose enclosed storage solutions which comfortably accommodate your belongings. Also, schedule regular clear-out sessions to ensure you don’t accumulate more things than you can store.
3. Think: texture, texture, texture
It goes without saying that we want to feel comfortable everywhere in our home but in the bedroom, where we spend the most time resting and recovering, it’s especially important. This means that it’s crucial to choose a mattress and pillows that suit your very individual needs. Similarly, you should prioritise natural and breathable bedding which ensures you feel snug at bedtime.
Elsewhere in the room, window dressings and flooring options, such as carpet and area rugs, help to soften the space, and make it feel safer and cosier to sleep in. You may find that metal bed frames and other furnishings feel a little cold and harsh in the bedroom, so consider shopping for wood or upholstered options instead.