How to Style a Bedside Table like an Expert

A bedside table is a staple feature in any bedroom, so much so that it is often overlooked in terms of style. However, any piece of furniture plays an important role in the overall design of a room, which is why it’s essential to choose a bedside cabinet that elevates the theme of a bedroom.

If you’re looking for design inspiration or you simply want to know more about how top designers put the finishing touches to their work, read on to find out how the experts style their bedside cabinets and how you can incorporate their processes into your own redesigns:

1. Extend Your Colour Palette

It goes without saying that the bedside cabinets you choose should complement the style and colour palette of the room as a whole, but don’t stop there. The pieces you use to style your bedside table should be an extension of your chosen colour palette.

There’s no doubt that function is important when it comes to styling a bedside table, but versatility and function don’t have to come at the cost of style. If you want to illuminate the area with a bedside lamp, for example, choose one that uses materials that are present in other features of the room. Similarly, choose hues that are represented in other pieces to create a calming, cohesive environment.

2. Use Height

Using varying heights creates a dynamic and interesting design, rather than the somewhat flat and dull appearance that a single height line offers. Take a look above at how Shalini and her team used to inform the design of the master bedroom in the first London edition of Holiday House.

If you don’t have the space to incorporate multiple bedside tables, there are alternative ways you can use varying heights to alter the proportions and maximise the impact of your bedside cabinet. Adding a tall, elegant bedside table lamp, alongside a smaller vase and miniature alarm clock or bedside tray incorporates three different heights without overcrowding the space, for example.

shalini misra design holiday house master bedroom bedside table

Image Credit - Shalini Misra

3. Add a Personal Touch

Your bedside cabinet may be the last thing you see at night and the first thing you see when you wake up in the morning. As a result, the pieces you choose to put on your bedside table can promote a restful night’s sleep and help to shape your mood for the day. Adding a personal touch to your bedside décor is one way of ensuring it has a positive impact.

Photographs of loved ones or beloved artwork can be ideal for a mid-size addition to your bedside cabinet, while a valet tray is a perfect place to keep sentimental trinkets or jewellery. Alternatively, position a vase filled with your favourite blooms or a luxury candle with your favourite scent on your bedside cabinet. All of these elements can be enhanced by choosing frames, materials and colours that complement your interior design while adding a unique and personal touch to your bedroom décor.

st johns wood family home living room bedroom side cabinet

Image Credit - Shalini Misra

4. Keep It Simple

When it comes to styling your bedside cabinets, less is definitely more. It can be tempting to over-style a bedside table, particularly if you want to increase its functionality. However, crowding the space can detract from your carefully chosen design.

If you have a habit of filling your bedside table with books, phones, headphones, or other paraphernalia, choose a cabinet that provides extra storage while keeping items hidden out of sight. This ensures you have the space and functionality you need, without detracting from the design. The top of your cabinet can prioritise decorative pieces, while hidden storage provides the extra space you need.

holiday house master bedside table detail

Image Credit - Shalini Misra

5. Use Subtle Symmetry

Styling two cabinets in the same way and placing them on either side of the bed can look spectacular but aiming for perfect symmetry may be unrealistic. Instead, focus on subtle symmetry when you’re styling bedside cabinets. Matching colours or accents achieve cohesive styling, for example, while using the same materials to enhance each cabinet ensures features will complement each other, as well as other pieces in the room. Similarly, using twin lamps or frames can be a great way to create ‘mirror image’ symmetry or can be used as the basis of subtle symmetry styling.

6. Add Depth

A bedside cabinet doesn’t have to be positioned directly against a wall. In fact, moving it away from the wall and using additional features to add depth can have a striking impact. If you’re opting for a bedside table that doesn’t feature extra storage, you can enhance the space by positioning artwork directly behind the table, for example.

An oversized piece that frames the table and its contents does double duty by adding height and depth to your interior design, for example. With complementing colour themes, this can be a spectacular way to achieve a bespoke look that’s understated yet impactful.

Alternatively, choose pieces that incorporate different textures and finishes to create more depth. A metallic bowl alongside a stone or ceramic lamp creates a fabulous aesthetic while using varying textures to increase the depth and effect of the design.

7. Soften the Space

Many people automatically choose bedside cabinets that are square or rectangular in shape, but these aren’t the only options out there. Choosing a circular bedside table or a cabinet with curved legs adds an interesting dimension and softens the space. Bedroom furniture is often angular, but this is one area where it’s easy to incorporate different shapes and silhouettes.

Add the Finishing Touches to Your Bedroom Design

The right styling can ensure that your bedside cabinets complete your room design but don’t overlook the challenges this area can bring. Often situated in a small space, bedside tables need to combine form and function to effectively fulfil their purpose and enhance your décor.

Due to this, you’ll want to think outside the box and be as creative as possible when styling your bedside cabinets. By doing so, you can ensure that your bedside tables are a central element of the space and add the ultimate finishing touches to your bedroom design.

shalini misra next to bookcase

How to Pick the Right Interior Designer

shalini misra next to bookcase

Whether you’re focusing on one room, your entire home, or a commercial project, it’s vital to pick the right interior designer who can inspire your creativity and bring your ideas to life. The materials, structure, and character of a property might provide a foundation to work with, but it’s the interior of any building that really brings it to life.

Choosing to hire an interior designer gives you the opportunity to truly make the most of your interior space. Unlike other professional services, however, you can’t select an interior designer based solely on their professional qualifications or experience. While these are undoubtedly important, finding the right interior designer requires a more nuanced approach.

To help you make the right choice and to streamline the selection process, take a look at these five important things to consider when choosing which interior designer to work with:

1. What to Expect from an Interior Designer

An interior designer can provide a variety of services. From redesigning your space and creating a new layout to selecting the materials, colours, and themes that will encapsulate each room, there are lots of possibilities to explore. You may want to give your designer a vague brief and free rein to transform the interior of your property, for example. Alternatively, you may prefer to work closely with your interior designer and be involved in every decision.

There’s no right or wrong way to work with a designer, but it’s important to ensure you’re both on the same page when it comes to working methods and expectations. Some designers prefer to work on projects where they can take the lead, while others are happy to bring a client’s vision to life. Being upfront and honest about exactly what you want your designer to deliver will help you to find the right person for the job. Furthermore, clarifying your expectations at the outset will facilitate a good working relationship and enhance the outcome of the project.

2. Previous Interior Design Work

Interior designers are adept at working with a range of styles to deliver an interior that meets the client’s needs and reflects their tastes. However, all designers have their own style too, so taking a look at their previous work can give you an idea of what to expect. If you’re a fan of their earlier projects, for example, it’s a good indication that you’ll be happy with the service they will provide.

Conversely, if you can’t find anything in their portfolio that you love, they’re probably not the right designer for you. Most designers will showcase at least some of their work on their website, so it’s easy to see what styles a designer is most noted for. By taking the time to look through a designer’s work, you can create a shortlist of potential professionals you’d like to work with on your own project.

3. Scale of Projects

Many designers are happy to work on projects of various sizes, from single room redesigns to whole property renovations. Of course, this isn’t the case for every designer, so you’ll want to ensure that your upcoming project matches the scope and scale of the projects they typically work on.

If you’re planning a single room redesign and you can only see whole property transformations on their website, don’t let this put you off. It’s always worth pitching a project to a designer, particularly if you like their previous work and the style of their interiors. The work showcased on their site will only be a fraction of their portfolio, so get in touch to determine whether they would be willing to undertake your project too.

4. Interior Design Budget

Establishing your budget before reaching out to interior designers is always a good idea. If you have a budget of £10,000 but a particular designer usually works on projects with a value of £1 million+, it might not be the right fit. While a meticulous redesign doesn’t necessarily require an unlimited budget, it is important that you and your designer are on the same page when it comes to the financial scope of a project.

No matter what your budget is, let prospective designers know in advance so that they can determine what services and options are most suited to your needs. This will ensure you can get the professional interior design expertise you require, as well as the best outcome for your property.

5. Deadlines

Top interior designers are in high demand, so there may be a waiting list for their services. If you have a particular timescale in mind, ask potential designers whether they can guarantee their availability in advance. If not, you’ll need to decide if you’re willing to adapt your schedule to match their availability or whether you’d prefer to work with someone else.

However, it isn’t only the designer’s schedule that you’ll need to consider. If you want to take a role in the decision-making process, rather than giving your designer ownership of the project, you will need to confirm your availability too.

If a one-of-a-kind piece becomes available, for example, your designer may need your input swiftly. Similarly, if a bespoke piece is being crafted according to your specifications, you may need to provide feedback partway through the process. Confirming your availability and average response times in advance will help to create a good working relationship with your designer and enable them to manage the project effectively.

Why It’s Worth Holding Out for the Right Designer

The right interior designer can transform your property and help you to create your dream surroundings. With an eye for detail and a talent for redefining interior space, your designer will elevate your home and create an interior that combines form and function.

However, the right designer will achieve this, as well as creating an interior that reflects your personality, tastes, and style. By taking the time to identify and understand your goals, the right interior designer will work with you to unleash your own creativity and use to shape an interior that’s tailormade for you.