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Before & After: A Soft and Neutral Guest Bedroom

by - Thursday, April 21, 2016

Two posts in one day? I just couldn't wait to share... it took a while but the guest bedroom makeover is finished! It is a calm, serene and simple space. Come have a look at how we turned this nursery into a guest bedroom.

simple guest bedroom, neutral guest bedroom, farmhouse guest bedroom
simple guest bedroom, neutral guest bedroom, farmhouse guest bedroom
simple guest bedroom, neutral guest bedroom, farmhouse guest bedroom

Let's start with the bed. I knew I wanted a metal bed and this one was the exact style I was hoping for. It has a bit of farmhouse flair but is classic and will never go out of style. I love love love it so much. Assembly was easy, the frame is sturdy, and I love the deep black brown colour.

simple guest bedroom, neutral guest bedroom, farmhouse guest bedroom
simple guest bedroom, farmhouse guest bedroom

The pillows were the jumping off point for the entire decorating scheme. I've long loved this pattern, Schumacher Pyne Hollyhock, and had the lovely Hollie Cooper whipped me up a pair of covers. The fabric features tones of beige, charcoal, white, and wheat so I stuck to that very neutral palette. The walls were painted in a soft, barely-there grey, St. Paul's Cathedral P5214-24 by PARA Paints.

A few posts back I mentioned that eBay Canada had challenged to me to do a spring refresh on a budget. I still had a few dollars left so I spent them on a few key pieces for this room. First was the West Elm Ticking Stripe duvet and shams. We have the exact same duvet in our master bedroom (it's a classic!) in the black and white colourway, but the tan/wheat colour worked perfectly for this room. I love that about eBay - if a product has been discontinued or they don't have it in your size in stores, you can often find it on eBay.

crystal semi flush mount pendant

The chandelier and medallion were also from eBay. I wanted a hint of luxury (it is a guest bedroom, after all) and the crystals do just that. The medallion was a must have. It just adds that extra layer of detail and brings texture to this very simple room.

farmhouse guest bedroom, spool side table, simple guest bedroom

I also added this clear glass lamp. It came as a pair but I only have one shown in this room. I had planned to take them to the cottage, but now that I see how good it looks here, it might have to stay! This room isn't that large so I wanted most of the furniture to be light, airy, see-through. This lamp is substantial but it doesn't crowd the space because it's clear.

For artwork, I headed over to Minted. This pineapple print was just right for the space, a bit whimsical and the whitewashed wood frame contrasts nicely with the other wood and metal finishes. Pineapples also symbolize "welcome" so it seemed apropos to have it here to welcome guests.

The side table is from Wayfair and again is destined for the cottage. The spool legs are so interesting and again add some texture to this room. I love the little pull out shelf, perfect for resting a hot cup of tea.

built in window seat, hidden radiator, ikea closet built in

The built-in banquette got a bit of an update too. Here's how it looked in Chloe's old nursery. We gave the doors a fresh coat of paint and changed the silver handles for matte black ones.  The extra-long buffalo check pillow (oh, how I love you!) was courtesy of Tonic Living. Janine knows me so well and knew I would have just the spot for this pillow. Here, it plays nicely with the Lulu Leopard pillow also from Tonic Living, and a leaf print pillow from H&M Home. The simple wicker baskets were a challenge to find but I finally spotted them at Michaels (on 2 for 1 basket day, no less. Yay!)

I had originally planned to sew up new curtains and a new bench cushion cover, but when I saw everything together, I realized it all worked and I could just reuse them! Yes for budget saves!!

farmhouse bedroom, simple guest bedroom
round mirror, guest bedroom dresser, hemnes dresser

Speaking of reuse, I put the circular mirror originally hanging in our living room over the dresser. I had planned on having a piece of art there but there were some delays so for now, the mirror stays. It actually works quite well here and the brassy tones pick up on the other natural accents around the room.

I'm really craving simpler design and more breathing room in my interiors so I've dressed the top of the dresser very minimally with objects I already had. This room doesn't get used everyday so that means less to dust too ;)

neutral guest bedroom, farmhouse guest bedroom
farmhouse guest bedroom, simple guest bedroom

A basket with extra throws or pillows is always a nice touch for guests.

I'm happy to have this room done. It turned out to be a very calm and relaxing space. And super comfortable.... which explains why Chloe no longer wants to sleep in her smaller room and instead claims this bed every night! Not sure if that makes this room a success or a failure ;)

Here's a quick look back at what the room used to look like, back in its heyday as Chloe's nursery circa 2012:

nursery turned into guest bedroom, simple guest bedroom

And the other side of the room. I'm so glad to trade the yellow walls and blue ceiling for a softer palette!

farmhouse guest bedroom, simple guest bedroom

Are you ready to put together a cozy bedroom of your own? I've got some suggestions to get you started! Head over to to see my "Be Our Guest" collection of essential items for creating a comfortable guest bedroom. For more tips, check out today's Toronto Star Restyle Your Home section where I shared ideas with Vicky Sanderson of Toronto Star on how to mix patterns in a space like this.

Excuse me while I take a nap. This bed is calling my name!

feminine guest bedroom, farmhouse guest bedroom

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