Here’s what you can expect in the bedroom of the future, and what you can do to revamp your present one.
In some of the most well-known opening lines of a book, Charles Dickens wrote, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times… it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light.” This holds true as much today as it did in the eighteenth century France.
With progress that technology is making, insidiously working its way into the most sacred of our spaces, from our work-areas to our bedrooms, it brings with it unexpected benefits and some unwelcome surprises. Design and sleep experts the world over have been imagining the future of bedrooms and it’s of little wonder that our bedrooms will be far smarter and sleeker than their ancestors.
In 2014, Bettaliving, a UK based home improvement firm, forecast bedroom trends for the future. The year before that, The Sleep Council, an advisory organisation that promotes the importance of sleep, did extensive research surveying over 2000 Britons, using computer graphics to simulate future bedroom trends. While recapping their findings and predictions, we make a few of our own recommendations as to what you can do style your current bedroom while you wait for the future to get here.
Sleeping on Cloud Nine
Tired of cramped bedrooms which leave little floor space? The state-of-art bed of the future will cleverly relieve such complaints. It will either be cantilevered up to the ceiling or it will float in space with the help of magnetic forces. It may even disappear into the subfloor. Any which way, it will free up precious flooring real estate leaving your bedroom quite roomy. Without access to such shape-shifting magical beds in the present, let’s settle for ways to declutter to make it look more spacious.
The golden rule for making an area look bigger is to keep maximum wall and floor space visible. You can achieve this by centering elements in your bedroom. Place that statement chair close to your bed, or that bench at the foot of it. Free up those corners of any low-lying furniture or any items not in use. If your corners are filled with clutter, you room can seemingly shrink in size. Freeing these up will visually make your bedroom seem big.
Light Up to Open Up Space
Bringing natural light in through large welcoming windows is another trick to open up a space. Curtains, too, can be effectively used to create the illusion of space or drama. Choose curtain fabrics that speak to your décor sensibilities. While gauzy sheers like tulle and voile are great for a whimsical or fairytale aesthetic, solid fabrics like silk and velvet spell genteel sophistication. Floor-length, satin-soft curtains can lend a sense of depth and definition to your room. Snap up these window dressing ideas fast though as the curtains may be coming down on windows and drapes in the future. Clear window panes will be replaced by smart screens whose display can be changed at whim.
They will have the ability to be configured to look like scenery of your choice, show up as blinds or be transparent, even functioning like interactive screens of our personal devices. Curtains as we know them may also go out of the window. They will move closer to the bed, as imagined by IKEA Talismans. They will become bed canopies of cotton and polycarbonate that will ‘minimise non-essential networks’, enabling deeper and better sleep.
Illusions by the Window, Flooring for Fun
Windows and walls of the future will not be the only ones embedded with screens that can change. Flooring will also be changeable to match our preferences. Imagine creating an illusion of grass or flowing water or an image of floor covering of your choice. Till such time such imaginations become a reality, use flooring to create the illusion of another kind. Whether in porcelain, ceramic, vitrified, stone or hardwood, consider laying your flooring diagonally to elongate your room. Diagonals stretch longer than lengths and without your room’s corners squaring off floor design, one can trick the eyes to travel farther.
Mood Enhancing Lights
Fulfilling our desire for health, bedroom lights of the future will do more than just shed light. Instead, they shall be designed to be smart – with those above the bed turning on in dark winter months to help you wake up every morning. They shall positively enhance your mood and affect your well-being.
In the absence of lighting solutions so committed to our health, let’s work with our current arrangements to inject new life into the room. Easy to design and execute, clever lighting can do wonders to brighten up a room. Consider a multi-level lighting display, with dimmable light sources staggered across levels. Look at integrating ambient, task and accent lighting into a cohesive whole. Bedside lamps, wall sconces and a statement chandelier are some options you can play with in your future bedroom.
Magic Carpet Ride
On the subject of light, fixtures of the future shall have energy-harvesting properties. Think of carpets that absorb light and convert it into energy that can be used. Current day carpets may not be intelligent energy generators but they possess other magical properties. If used well, they can counterbalance sharp lines of a bedroom with tactile character. An oversized rug, for example, can provide a heartwarming finish to the room. To maximise the effect, make sure the carpet is large enough to form a border of at least sixteen inches around your bed. This will allow the bed to stand out as a centrepiece while adding soft and sensuous layers to the room. How’s that for a master bedroom trend?
Three Dimensional Decor
Lending a touch of warmth and personalisation to the bedroom of your future will be accessories designed and produced with 3D printers. 3D figures of our family members will replace their photographs that currently have pride of place. Don’t be surprised if holograms of our loved ones, even of celebrities, carry out your wishes– for example, reading a bedtime story aloud. While awaiting 3D printers to spin our opulent fantasies into reality, settle for artwork that lends your room the style you desire. Create an art gallery frame around your headboard or devote another smaller wall for a subtle display of artwork. Choose such that you compliment your bedroom palette and allow for your bed to continue to be your room’s hero!
From smart lighting that knows when to switch on, to beds that mysteriously disappear, as well as walls and windows we can interact with, the future bedroom trends may soon be upon us. However, there is a lot you can do to make your bedroom look spacious, opulent and sensuous. Why wait when you can innovate? We’ve spilt the beans with these bedroom design secrets!