How to Upgrade Your Bed and Bedroom On a Budget - Broke in London

How to Upgrade Your Bed and Bedroom On a Budget

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Simple hacks to transform your bed and your bedroom but not your wallet

Guest post by Lochansi O’Donnell

A bedroom should be a sanctuary, your sanctuary.

And like most things in London, a great bedroom doesn’t happen overnight. That’s why it’s worth taking it step-by-step and focusing on the details to get your bedroom just how you want it.

From budget bed frames, to headboards to lighting here are few tips to help you start upgrading your bed – and your bedroom.

If you’re really Broke in London or dare to go custom-made – we’ve also thrown in some DIY tips too.

The Bed Frame

The focal point of any bedroom should always be the bed itself.

If the focal point of yours is an 82” Ultra-HD TV or a shrine to Crystal Palace consisting of every matchday program since 1997 and a flower-framed photo of Roy Hodgson you’re probably confusing your bedroom with a lounge or in the wrong relationship. Or both.
There are three basic styles of bed frame:

1 Divan. Essentially just a base, either pocket-sprung or hard top upon which you can add a mattress and headboard.

Simple and cost effective.

How to upgrade your bed —and bedroom— on a budget


2 Bedsteads. Wood or metal – consisting of a base, legs and a headboard. The mattress then rests on slats.

Perhaps the best all-in-one option.

How to upgrade your bed —and bedroom— on a budget


3 Storage Beds. Choose between an ottoman-style bed that you lift up or storage drawers to hide your stuff inside.

Good for getting rid of clutter.

How to upgrade your bed —and bedroom— on a budget

Storage Beds

If in doubt, just go for a simple, wooden bedstead. Like this from Harmony Beds Buckingham from Bedstar. At just under £200 – it’s well within most budgets.

DIY Options…

When you think about it, all you need is a base or platform, something that just lifts the mattress up off the floor to get some air to it.

You could just go really minimal and find four robust supports to form the legs and attach them to a single piece of wood or metal to make the base for the mattress to rest on. Industrial is cool, remember.

If you have low ceilings or window frames trying pairing a fully-extended simple futon wooden frame and put a mattress on top. Job done.

The Mattress

There are only two types of mattress:

Spring. Choose from the cheaper open coil or a pocket sprung mattress.
Foam. Will either be memory foam or latex – depending on whether you want the mattress to mould to the shape of your body or not.
There is a mattress out there to suit all budgets but the cheapest (yet best quality one) we found was around £100.

Therefore, you could get yourself a perfectly good bed frame and mattress for close to £200. Or even less if you do a bit of DIY.

Here are some tips to help transform the room in which you go to sleep in – into the room of your dreams.

The Headboard

Another way to build your new bedroom bit by bit is to get a simple base then add a more stylish headboard at a later date.

Whether it’s wooden, metal, fabric or leather – a good headboard can make the world of difference to the quality of your life and the style of your bedroom.

If you’re a bedtime bookworm you’ll probably want a padded upholstered headboard or one that’s at a comfortable angle for you to read at.

A budget headboard will likely set you back somewhere between £25 and £50.

DIY Options…

If you’re feeling adventurous and looking for a DIY option why not pair an inexpensive wooden bed frame and build your own upholstered-style headboard.

You’ll need plywood to construct a headboard, batting (also known as wadding) for the insulating layer of padding and a cover fabric – something that won’t wear out easily. Or if money is really tight, just use a thick blanket for the cover fabric.

The Whole Bedroom Makeover

Here are a few tips that will help to transform your whole bedroom – and not your wallet.

Remove stuff. No-one likes clutter. Don’t add stuff to your bedroom, remove it. If space is a big issue in your place then go for a storage bed.

Mix your lighting. Begin with a showpiece overhead light in the centre of the room and then add the support lights to bedside tables and the like. Try to keep your styles consistent though.

Paint your ceiling. Not sure if you want to paint the whole room? Just start with your ceiling. But do make it light and calming. Nothing too heavy here, please.

Layer your linen. A mattress with wrinkled sheets and a jumbled up duvet on it looks exactly what it is. Invest in some new stylish Egyptian cotton sheets and perhaps a coverlet to compliment your duvet. And don’t forget a good plump pillow.

Add a mirror or two. Mirrors help create space. Or at least the illusion of it. A good full length mirror can anchor a sparse room, adding depth and yes, space.

And add artwork. But choose wisely. A calming abstract painting or a serene landscape is more appropriate than Edvard Munch’s The Scream, for example.