A couple's bedroom should be their place for romantic escape, but too often this is not the case. Bedrooms frequently do double duty as offices, laundry folding areas and catch-all junk rooms. Start your romantic makeover by removing all the clutter and chore paraphernalia and cleaning the room. Talk to your lover about what feels good and looks good to each of you, then concentrate on creating a nest that will stimulate the senses.
A Private Oasis
If your bedroom has become a second family room, get the word out to the kids that from now on that room is off-limits. Use the lock on the door; if there isn't a lock on the door, buy a sturdy dead bolt and install it right away. Rearrange the furniture so that you can fit a small table and two comfortable chairs into the room; this will make it possible for you to linger together over very early coffee and bagels -- or very late champagne and cake -- without getting crumbs on the sheets.
A Marvelous Bed
The bed is the centerpiece of your bedroom, but it is also probably the centerpiece of your love life. It is worth saving up to splurge on your dream bed. Take a few trips through furniture stores together and browse online until you find a style you can agree on, whether it's a Scandinavian water bed or a Victorian sleigh bed -- then buy at least a queen-sized version. Complete it with a divinely comfortable, top-quality mattress.
The idea of a romantic room usually conjures up visions of soft, pastel colors, but that's not the only option. Certainly, using soothing blues or greens with lots of cream accents will provide a soft, calming background that can be very romantic. Alternatively, you can give the room a feeling of richness and mystery by using jewel-toned shades such as emerald, ruby or gold.
Avoid harsh overhead lighting in a bedroom. Opt instead for shaded table lamps, indirect lighting and candlelight. Use parchment-lined shades for a romantic golden glow. Double up curtains with sheers under light-blocking draperies so that you can block light completely or filter it gently. Use pin-spots to illuminate a framed picture, a fountain or a piece of artwork; they can also serve as a nightlight.
Stimulate the Senses
Flowers are romantic in a bedroom -- keep vases of fresh-cut bouquets throughout the year, or silk flowers if either of you has allergies. A scented candle or potpourri can also lend a delightful scent to the air, but be careful not to overwhelm. Toss a fuzzy afghan over the foot of the bed, and put some suede or leather-covered throw pillows on the chairs for contrast. Install a small stereo system with speakers in every corner of the bedroom and keep it well-stocked with your version of "mood" music.
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- luxurious bed image by Pavel Losevsky from Fotolia.com