Story: Diane Carroll |
Ornate raffia-covered ottomans and a sleek Italian-designed bed are equally at home in designer Cynthia Smiley’s bedroom, a space she describes as cottage meets contemporary. “I lean toward the homey, comfortable feeling of a cottage,” she says, “but with an edge of sleek, shiny and simple.” When she and her husband, Dennis, purchased an under-construction new home in Fayetteville, she put that mix into practice and converted the bare bones bedroom into an inviting oasis of tranquility.
Professional Advice from Cynthia Smiley
Your bedroom has to be highly functional as well as pretty. Design it to fit your life: in our case, the bed is easy to make, we prop up on the pillows and they’re all washable, plus we have places on our bedside tables for stacks of books and baskets underneath for the overflow.
Her step-by-step tips for how she did it:
Begin with a soothing shade: Benjamin Moore’s Coastal Fog
Define the key design elements: In this room, a pair of windows created an ideal space for a bed in between. “The symmetry of the windows influenced me to use pairs of furnishings—bedside tables, lamps, ottomans at the foot of the bed,” says Smiley, “which is a look I find orderly and calming.”
Choose a focal point: A contemporary platform bed in cherry wood stays fuss-free, with no box spring or bed skirt needed. The bed’s lower height creates space for a large mirror above. “The area over a headboard can be awkwardly empty if there’s not enough room to hang art,” says Smiley.
Add texture: Elements that appeal to the senses abound, including woven bedside tables, a mix of quilted and smooth silk bedding, a shimmery silk shag rug, raffia-covered ottomans, a rugged wood lamp and a sleek silver-leaf chest.
Dress with details: Fabric shades screen sunlight while sheer draperies hung at ceiling height emphasize the windows. An acrylic on board painting by the Smileys’ son, Joe, adds color and texture. “And, of course, it’s our favorite element in the room,” she adds.
Builder McMahon Brothers Construction, Fayetteville
Designer Cynthia Smiley, Fayetteville
Armchair, lamps, ottomans, pillows, rug Lighting Emporium, Springdale
Bed Lacuna Modern Interiors, Fayetteville
Bedding Dillard’s, locations statewide
Chest Hank’s Fine Furniture, locations statewide
Draperies Interior Fabrics & Design, Fayetteville
Floor Wood Floor Gallery, Springdale
Lamp-wood I.O. Metro, locations statewide
Paint Benjamin Moore, locations statewide
Window shades Glinda Avey, Springdale