9 modern small bedroom ideas that are actually down to earth

Give your room an update with these modern small bedroom ideas

Trio of three small modern bedroom ideas.
(Image credit: Future | Feat: Life Created, @highboyla, Life Created)

When you think of modern small bedroom ideas, it's fair to say that different looks will spring to mind for different people. There is one thing we can agree on, however, small bedrooms need to be cozy, and cool, in the best way possible. 

To some, modern might equal stark, with too much white, and not enough personality; but to others, it could mean all the bright vibes of Y2K aesthetic coming together. Just like interior design trends come and go, our impression of what is modern will move and flux with the times and our tastes.

Either way, refreshing your space with the decor that is fresh out of the lookbooks is a big job. Naturally, we called on designers for the latest inspiration.

Modern small bedroom ideas

So what does a small modern bedroom even mean nowadays? Thankfully, it's not just one look that will tick this box. There are lots of modern aesthetics that work in a small bedroom, whatever your interior design spirit may be. Keep scrolling to find the latest inspiration from designers.

1. Fresh and cozy earth tones

Terracotta painted small modern bedroom with pinstripe bedding in blue

(Image credit: @highboyla)

We love planet earth, and as a memo, play hommage to nature's tones in your small bedroom like @highboyla. Plus, Lauren Lerner, designer and founder of Living with Lolo told us it is bang on trend: "For small bedrooms, the current trend is to choose muted earthy tones such as terracotta, sage green, or muted blush. These colors create a contemporary and cozy ambiance." 

For a touch more detail, feel free to accent a muted color palette. "Additionally, incorporating darker tones like navy or charcoal as accent walls or in furniture pieces can add depth and sophistication to the space."

Lauren Lerner, Living with Lolo
Lauren Lerner

Lauren Lerner is the principal designer and founder of Living with Lolo, the interior design firm based in Scottsdale, AZ, since 2017. Fueled by her love for clean lines, mixed metals, colors, and timeless pieces, Lerner thrives on bringing a client’s home to life from the very beginning.

2. Free-flowing artistic waves

Bed against blue cloud accent wall with architectural table lamp and woven rug on the floor

(Image credit: Life Created Photography by Living with Lolo)

Using curves in a small room will give the space momentum, and we love how the accent wall in this modern bedroom space is accentuated by the shape of the table lamp too. Together, they bring layers of interest.  

"The top three ways to bring contemporary flair to a small bedroom are decluttering and simplifying, adding an accent wall, and adding great statement lighting," continues Lauren.

3. Apricot vintage charm

Floral bedroom with single bed and matching fabric headboard with burl nightstand

(Image credit: House of Hackney)

Who said vintage home decor couldn't be modern? This is an interior design style that we will never lose touch with, and it presents very beautifully in a small bedroom space. As we can see here in the bedroom styled in House of Hackney, a petalled apricot on the wall pulls out the same tones in the floral detailed bedding

It's rich and sumptuous, but not without edge. "Striking a balance between vintage and modern aesthetics is a timeless way to elevate any space," says Maggie Samson, resident design consultant for House of Hackney New York. Side note, we love the HoH Ananas Lampstand in quartz pink, it adds modern glamour and dimension which can help lift a small bedroom lighting scheme instantly.

White woman with red hair in long floral dress in dark floral room is Maggie Samson from House of Hackney
Maggie Samson

Maggie Samson thrives as House of Hackney's resident design consultant in the vibrant landscape of New York City and the go-to expert for all things color, print, and texture.

4. Repeated color and pattern

Small bedroom with accents of yellow and blue bed coverlet

(Image credit: @domandecors)

Still in a floral mood, the sunny demeanor of this small modern bedroom space created by @domandecors is enough to give everyone a dose of Vitamin D. 

Bold, repeat patterns expand a space, and the clever use of the same yellow hue on the wallpaper, throw pillows, and area rug, gives a collected finish. You can't deny that the linear design of the area rug visually stretches the floor space too...

5. Sky-high, fine design

Modern bedroom with gray walls, neutral bedding, large table lamp and mirror behind

(Image credit: Life Created Photography for Living with Lolo)

Small space or not, quality always wins. Be thoughtful with material choices and try to include at least one item that feels truly iconic for a modern vibe that will last for years.

"Investing in high-design items can have a significant impact on the overall aesthetic of your bedroom," says Lauren. "Consider adding a pair of stylish bedside tables with sleek designs and unique materials or finishes. Another option is to upgrade to high-quality, modern bedding. Opt for crisp linens, a stylish duvet cover, and coordinating pillowcases to elevate the look and feel of your space." 

6. Fresh furniture tracks

Pink room with large piece of abstract are on the wall

(Image credit: Lauren Engel for Victoria Holly Interiors)

Modern looks are all about embracing function too. Enough of 'empty' or single-use furniture. Victoria Holly, principal and founder of Victoria Holly Interiors recommends investing in furniture that has more than one purpose. "For example, a bed with built-in storage drawers, a fold-out desk, or a sofa bed can help you save space and make the room more functional without the need for additional items." We're digging this modern storage bed from Wayfair complete with four shelves in the headboard.

It could be that you already have what you need in your home. See how this dressing table doubles up as a nightstand? Genius. "Sometimes, simply rearranging your existing furniture can give your room a fresh, contemporary feel. Experiment with different layouts to see what works best." Get it right and you might even let you fit a chair into your small space bedroom as a result...

White woman with long blonde hair in cream suit sat on large couch is Victoria Holly
Victoria Holly

Victoria Holly Interiors is led by experienced designer Victoria Holly, who boasts an impressive reputation in the field of interior design. With over a decade of experience, Victoria Holly is known for her artistic skill, meticulous attention to detail, and exceptional talent for curation.

7. Draw the eye up with an iconic light fixture

Round wicker pendant light in neutral modern bedroom space

(Image credit: Victoria Holly Interiors)

Adding interest to the fifth wall is a great way to maximize space in a small bedroom. "A modern, eye-catching light fixture can become the focal point of your small bedroom," says Victoria. 

"Pendant lights, chandeliers, or unique table lamps can add a touch of luxury and sophistication." Choose well and your light fixture, be it a nightstand lamp or pill form sconce, can anchor the space. 

This seagrass pendant lamp from Target warms up the room and makes a real statement.

8. Quiet luxury gallery wall

Neutral bedroom with warm tones in modern gallery wall, white sheets and wicker nightstand

(Image credit: Laura Chappetto | Element Design Network)

"One of the easiest and most effective modern design techniques you can implement in a small bedroom is a creative gallery wall," suggests Laura Chappetto owner, and principal designer of Element Design Network.

Speaking of her own space, Laura uses artwork to add a cool and contemporary vibe to a quiet luxury small bedroom. 

"I have created an asymmetrical art installation above my bed and it changed the room completely. Most of us have various art hanging up around our house so go shopping in other rooms and see what you can use. Sometimes just moving items from a different room can breathe new life into them." Use a mixture of frames and prints to get the look.

White woman with dark brown hair smiling in home space is Laura Chappetto @ElementDesignNetwork
Laura Chappetto

Laura Chappetto, principal designer of Element Design Network, curates designs for her clients. From simple spaces to high-end luxury design, Laura loves creating spaces that truly reflect the personality of everyone living in the home. Highly personalized design is the cornerstone of Element Design Network.

9. Botanical reflections

Tranquil blue wallpaper in small bedroom reflecting lime green headboard,Galanthi Bed by House of Hackney

(Image credit: House of Hackney)

Mirror trends are a no-brainer to make a small modern bedroom come into its own. Choose a colorful and curved design for a unique definition and a subtle talking point. "Mirrors can make a space feel larger and more open," adds Victoria. 

You can bring in reflective touches in other ways too... "Consider adding mirror panels to one wall or choosing furniture with mirrored surfaces for a glamorous and modern touch.'" 

For a more modern take on the above, we found a round royal blue mirror from Walmart. Then, when it comes to where to put a mirror in a small bedroom, let Real Homes' own Danielle Valente tell you all the best designer secrets.


What patterns work best in a small bedroom?

A small bedroom with a modern twist needn't shy away from bold patterns. Embrace it, just be mindful of the detail. "In compact bedrooms, I embrace a sense of intimacy by selecting darker wallpapers with expansive and larger pattern repeats," says Maggie, "This approach combines the richness of deep tones with a larger scale, preventing the room from feeling overly confined." Renting? There are plenty of peel-and-stick options to try.

How can I make my small bedroom look modern on a budget?

If you haven't got a lot of cash to splash, rest assured you can refresh your small space without bankrupting yourself. Even focusing on specific pieces in the room can make a world of difference, "Instead of buying new, give your existing pieces a fresh look by repainting or refinishing them," recommends Lauren. 

Even just refreshing your bedding can reinvigorate the room, without taking up square footage. It will give you more design bang for your buck too: "If you don’t want to invest a lot, spend money on simple, neutral bedding, and accessories such as lamps," says designer Amy Youngblood.

woman with brown hair smiling and leaning on brick wall is Amy Youngblood interior designer.jpg
Amy Youngblood

Amy Youngblood creates stunning interiors that thoughtfully blend lifestyle and design preferences. With extensive experience in the Cincinnati and Dayton, Ohio markets, as well as Northern Kentucky and beyond, Amy Youngblood Interiors continues to take the design world by storm.

How can I add storage to a small modern bedroom?

Invisible fixtures are the way to go to hide away clutter in your small bedroom says Victoria. "To make the most of a small bedroom, consider installing wall-mounted shelves or floating nightstands. 

This not only provides storage space but also adds a modern touch to the room. Additionally, vertical wood slats on the walls or tall, slim furniture can create an illusion of height, making the room feel more spacious."

You don't have to start from scratch when it comes to refreshing your small bedroom for a modern look. "For a new perspective, try rearranging the layout. Sometimes, a simple change in positioning can create a more contemporary feel. Update your bedding, curtains, or throw pillows with modern patterns or textures," says Lauren. 

Tapping into small neutral bedroom colorways, or geometric designs can also help create a 'woke up like this' contemporary look, for less too. 

Let nature inspire your color palette in a small modern bedroom and use interesting forms that bring decorative function.

Camille Dubuis-Welch
Former Deputy Editor

I'm Cam, the former deputy editor of Real Homes who worked on the site from 2020 to 2023. As a renter myself, sharing a home with two friends (and my cat) in London, I know all too well the challenges that this can pose when it comes to creating your perfect setup. As someone who has always loved everything interior design-related, I cannot rest until a home feels right and I am really passionate about helping others get there too, no matter what their living situation, style, or budget may be. It’s not always the easiest to figure out, but the journey is fun and the results are so worth it.

After interior design, travel, art, and photography are my next big passions. When I’m not writing or editing homes content, I’m usually tapping into other creative outlets, exploring galleries in London or further afield, taking photos, scribbling, or drawing!