For the past six weeks I have worked on turning our plain and boring rental condo bedroom into a modern boho oasis. This project has been so much fun to execute! With a generous timeline of six weeks I’ve been able to take my time with the decisions and really focus on what I needed for the space. In case you’ve missed any of the previous One Room Challenge posts make sure to catch up on them first!
This time the One Room Challenge was very different for the featured designers as they were working on making virtual design renderings instead of actual renovation projects due to the pandemic situation. You can find all of the 20 featured designers and their virtual room designs here. Make sure to also check out all the other amazing guest participant reveals for some more amazing home decor inspo.
Before & Afters
Like I already mentioned I had so much fun with this makeover project. For the first time I was able to just enjoy the ride without stressing too much or worrying about every little detail being perfect. In fact, there were quite a few details that ended up being different than in my original plans (more on those details later). But that’s perfectly okay! Just because the One Room Challenge is coming to an end it doesn’t mean that further changes and upgrades can’t be done for the space. On the contrary, every space will always evolve after the initial furnishing and decorating is “finished”. It’s completely normal and more than acceptable to continue the decorating journey afterwards.
As you can see from the before photos our rental condo bedroom was very plain and boring to begin with. There was no textures, no art or any kind of home decor in the space. Just the bare necessities. Before I started this project our bedroom only had a bed frame and two old vintage nightstands and nothing else. So I started with a clean slate.
The challenges and how I addressed them
The main challenges that needed to be addressed with this makeover were lack of sufficient storage space and finding a way to have a TV without having to attach it to the wall (due to our strict landlord). Of course I also wanted to make the space feel more cozy and intentional by addressing the lack of textures, art and decor.
The real challenge with addressing these issues was that the space around our queen sized bed is very limited on all three sides. That means a standard size dresser wasn’t going to fit. The only spot for any kind of storage unit was against the wall facing the foot of our bed. The total depth between the bed and the wall is only 28″. With a standard 20″ deep dresser the remaining 8″ would not have been enough to walk past it. Blocking the walkway was not an option because the balcony door access would have also been blocked. It’s equally important to be able to access both sides of the bed without having to climb over the bed.
Custom storage solution
Here is where the custom storage solution that I wrote about in my week four post comes into play. With the Ikea Billy bookcases we get extra storage (both hidden and visible) and it still leaves 17″ of walking space between the bed and the wall. I know 17″ is not the most comfortable amount of space for walking by. Ideally you would want to have a minimum of 24″ of empty space around your bed. But 17″ is definitely something that we can live with. The photo below shows the distance pretty well and proves that you can somewhat easily squeeze by whenever necessary.
Now, you might also notice from the pictures that there is in fact no TV on top of the storage unit. That’s because we actually haven’t purchased our second TV yet. We decided to hold off on buying one until we find a really good deal. Since it’s just going to be our secondary TV we don’t really want to spend a lot on it and we might even consider getting one used. We will see. But the important thing here is that now we actually have somewhere to place it. I can’t wait for cozy winter nights under the covers in bed watching a movie!
The changes made to the space during this challenge includes new (old) DIY nightstands, planning and buying a new storage unit, adding window treatments, making DIY art, creating a basket wall, changing all the lighting and adding tons of textured textiles in the form of an area rug, cushions and throws.
What I didn’t get to finish was the wood top planned for the top of the bookcase. The reason I wasn’t able to finish it was supply issues with the oak lumber that I want to use. But that’s okay I can easily just add it later once the oak boards become available again.
Another project I decided to postpone for a later date is a headboard that I really want to DIY to get a custom one made to my exact measurements. The reason behind this decision was purely budget. The materials for a headboard can easily cost a ton of money.
I was also planning a DIY project for the window treatments for two toned white & linen 9′ tall curtains. I wasn’t able to get my hands on the fabric needed for the project so I ended up buying affordable sheer curtains instead. They have a cute pompom type of texture (see photo below) and I’m very happy with them.
The only drawback is that they aren’t long enough to reach the ceiling which means the top window isn’t covered. Functionally, it doesn’t make a difference because we have roller blinds but visually it would look better if they were longer. Ideally in general you would want to hang curtains as high as possible. It’s not a major issue for us and we can definitely live with it. Sometimes compromises are a necessity and that’s okay.
Budget & Spending
When I’m doing these projects my goal is always to keep the spending as low as possible. I’m all for low budget decorating. That’s why I always choose DIY projects over purchasing expensive furniture pieces. You can often achieve a similar look by using same colours and materials in your DIY version. For example, I chose to paint my old nightstands rather than spending hundreds of dollars on new ones. I always want to be transparent and open about how much these kind of home decorating projects cost. So below is the breakdown of all expenses for this project (I’ve also included items I already had before the project to give a more realistic idea of the real cost).
- Bookcases $50/each
- Pendant lamp shade & cord $29
- Basket $15
- Cushions x3 $53
- Table lamp $69
- Dollar store art canvases & supplies $10
- Oak veneer sheet $5
- Curtains $29
- Vase $35
- Area rug $25
Total cost: $370
I ended up spending just over $300 with using some items I already had from old projects (vase, rug, oak veneer, white paint) and after some discounts I was able to get for some of the products I purchased. I saved a lot of money by DIY’ing our nightstands as well as by making DIY art instead of buying frames and prints.
I couldn’t be more happy with our new modern boho retreat bedroom space and I’m looking forward to spending cozy winter mornings under the covers in this relaxing space!
Thank you for following along – I hope you’ve enjoyed this journey with me!
Bed frame, bookcases, light fixture, bedding: Ikea
Decorative cushions, rug & curtains: Structube
Plant pedestal, round marble tray, table lamp: Structube
Vases, round rattan tray: H&M Home
Line art print: 88 Prints/Etsy
Are you new to The One Room Challenge?
The One Room Challenge is a design challenge that’s sponsored by High Point Market and Better Homes and Gardens. Twice a year 20 featured designers are selected to transform a space. During the six weeks of the challenge they share their progress with weekly updates.
Also, anyone can join in on the fun as a guest participant and transform a space in six weeks. The progress can be shared in blog posts as well as on Instagram.
For more information about The One Room Challenge visit the official website here.