Bedroom Tell-All: 5 Things to Remove, 5 Things to Add

February 24, 2024

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This week, we’ve covered all things bedrooms, from how to create a dark, moody, romantic environment to tips for renters upgrading their bedroom. I wanted to cap off the week with a fun little post on what you should remove from your bedroom and what you should add to your bedroom to make it an even more serene retreat. Let’s dive in!

5 Things to Remove From Your Bedroom

Rug | Bedding | Bed (similar) | Nightstand (similar) | Lamp (similar)


We can extend this item out to all work-related materials and even mail. Let’s not put that stressful energy into a space where we’re meant to unwind from our day! It’s easy to bring your laptop into the bed to finish up an email or check in on a project. But it’s just a slippery slope to going back on the clock. Not to mention that the blue light emissions from technology are known to negatively affect your sleep.

Old-School Digital Clocks

This is not to throw shade at the Alexa, Google Home and other smart devices — those can be incredibly useful and will often adjust their brightness with a simple request. No, we’re talking about those red block-number clocks that everyone bought for college back in the day. There’s no aesthetic gain to be made with these dinosaurs. Plus, there are so many better options available now. Everything from aforementioned smart clocks to sunrise alarm clocks to a simple, beautiful analog clock.

Anything Broken

Whether it’s a damaged knick-knack or cracked piece of furniture, you have two choices: either repair it or toss it. Let’s be honest, that headboard with a cracked leg? It might be time to replace it. A cute trinket box with a broken clasp? Let it go (channeling my inner Idina Menzel here.) I think there’s a psychological shift when we let go of things that are broken. It lets us find something better suited to our home and our lifestyle.

Photos of Your Kids

Ok, I admit this one is controversial. Those adorable little munchkins always have more photos than we know what to do with. But hear me out: If you’re trying to create a serene retreat, the bedroom is not the place for displaying a collection of your child’s portraits. These are instant mood-killers for any romance. Plus, it’s nice to have a little break sometimes, am I right?

A Mattress Over 7 Years Old

The Sleep Foundation says that on average, a mattress lasts between 7-10 years before it loses supportive capabilities. The Better Sleep Council recommends replacing your mattress every seven years. It all depends on how you’ve cared for your mattress (proper cleaning, rotation) and the individual manufacturer’s recommendations, but you’ll likely know when it’s time to start shopping. Also sheets! Each sheet set has a lifespan of around 2-5 years, depending on the quality of your bedding. Linen sheets tend to last longer, while microfiber and polyester blends have shorter lifespans. You spend about 1/3 of your life in bed, so it’s worth it to make the investment in something that is quality.

5 Things to Add to Your Bedroom

Shop All Bedroom Sources | Artwork: Caleb Mahoney

Blackout Window Treatments

Motorized Blackout Roller Shades

This should go without saying, but you’ll sleep better in a dark, cozy room. From adding an inexpensive blackout liner to your favorite curtains to a splurge-worthy electronic system, you have options. I’ve done the full gamut, and now we have the blackout roller shades in our primary bedroom. I love them!


I spoken about it many times, but it’s important to have 2-3 sources of light in your bedroom that are not your overhead lighting. I love a good small table-side lamp next to the bed for reading and waking up. We also have a floor lamp by our sitting area that gives off another dimensional effect to the room. As an added bonus, you can have an electrician put these on the same wall switch or use a smart light or outlet with your smart home device. Voilà! Instant serenity.


Art (Original Caleb Mahoney) | Picture Light | Rug | Vase | Faux Peonies | Bedding | Leather Armchairs | Velvet Bench (similar) | Chandelier | Curtains

It’s time to swap out that unframed art or posters for something more refined. (Plus if you removed the photos of your kids above, you may have some blank wall space ready for a refresh!) I love adding a focal piece of art to a bedroom — something larger that draws the eye. Choose an oversized abstract painting or impressionist-style piece to evoke calm. I prefer that to a collection of smaller framed pieces, which can sometimes feel cluttered.


Coasters Under $50

So you have the perfect nightstand. Now you need to protect that beauty! I always have a cup of protein hot chocolate before bed, and the coaster gives it a home. Usually a water bottle or cup is a nice thing to have by your bed. So keep that wood table dry and add your personal style with a fun coaster. Not much else to say about it — they’re just helpful!

Area Rug

Judy Natural/Sky Rug | Greta’s Room Sources

I think this one item may be the most impactful on the list of things to add to your bedroom. From vintage to geometric patterns, an area rug can make all the difference in upgrading your space. If you have hardwood floors, an area rug helps soften the room and floor. And if you have carpets, don’t sleep on this tip! I love layering area rugs over wall-to-wall carpet to add coziness and section off the bed. I’ve even put together a guide to mixing and matching area rugs and throw pillows if you’re ready to take the plunge.

I hope this helps you rethink your bedroom. There are so many functional and aesthetic elements you can add to create a restful space. And remove some of those things that are not serving you. It’s a new day (or night)!

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