20 small bedroom ideas — clever design tips to make the most of yours in style

These expert, small bedroom ideas deliver on style, functionality and best use of your limited space

Two small bedroom ideas on a peach gradient. The left one has white walls, textured cream bedding and wooden furniture, and the right one has a painted checkered pink and puple headboard and flower shaped pillows
(Image credit: @sundayharris + @theintrovertedition)

We love a fresh start and these small bedroom ideas will make every inch of your room work for you — with plenty of style to boot. If you're feeling the pinch on space and design, our expert tricks will turn your bedroom from drab to dreamy.

From clever lighting, subtle textured wallpaper, and the perfect color schemes for your small bedroom, our expert-approved tips will help you make the most of whatever square footage you have to play with in style.

These 20 small bedroom ideas will kick off your transformation, whatever your budget, taste or DIY skill.

1.  Small bedroom ideas with Scandi inspired touches 

Neutral small bedroom with Scandi touches like this bedroom shot with white walls and bedding, natural materials on lampshade, side table materials, headboard and warm accents

(Image credit: Fiona Murray)

If you're after quick small bedroom ideas then paint is your go-to. Changing up the color of your small bedroom can make a big difference to its perceived size, and a pale color scheme in a light-starved space will make it look instantly larger. Consider going for light-colored bedroom flooring, too, to complete the airy look. 

”The cool, calm Scandinavian-styled interior isn’t going anywhere, and it's the perfect small bedroom idea,” suggests Sue Kim, senior color designer at Valspar.

“White can open up even the smallest of spaces and combines easily with existing decoration. When used in a small bedroom, it’ll help you take a step back from your busy schedule. Use white as an accent wall and pair with fashionable dusty pastels to complete a soft and welcoming space.”

We love this neutral Bistro White paint from Valspar for our small bedroom walls. For more tips on nailing the inviting Scandi look, these cosy Scandinavian bedroom ideas are just the ticket.

2. Choose deep shades to make a small bedroom inviting

Dark small bedroom with four poster framed black bed, gray sheets and dark paint on panelled walls with white ceiling

(Image credit: Richard Gadsby)

Right on trend, deep colors can prove to be a really successful small bedroom idea, making it feel warm and cozy. When lit by a pair of moody bedside table lamps such as these from Amazon, adding ambiance in the evening, and elegance by daylight. 

Ramp up the intimate atmosphere with a four-poster bed frame (we like the simple lines on this black metal Wayfair four-poster bed), which work surprisingly well in small bedrooms as they draw the eye up, making the space look bigger, whilst cleverly creating a zone within the room.

”Be brave and go bold, even in small spaces, using deep and moody shades. Combine with light, bright accessories and lots of light for a striking room that’s completely on trend,” says Kasia Wiktorowicz of Valspar. 

If dark bedrooms aren’t for you, there are plenty more bedroom color ideas to help your color decisions. 

3. Add texture to a small bedroom with wallpaper

Tree bark wallpaper on a slanted ceiling in a bedroom with wooden floors and orange accent blinds, cushions, table and nightstand

(Image credit: Francis Dzikowski)

A very effective and underrated small bedroom idea is to experiment with wallpaper. Choose a design with a subtle receding pattern to create dimension and texture (like this renter-friendly peel and stick wallpaper in four colors from Wayfair). 

It's a subtler approach than picking out a wallpaper with a bold or repeating pattern, which can end up making the room feel smaller. And, if you're feeling daunted by the idea of putting up wallpaper, learning how to put up peel and stick wallpaper in six simple steps will wick away the fear and open up a whole new world of decor.

4. Invest in a bed that does the hard work

Ikea Hemnes daybed frame with large drawers underneath

(Image credit: IKEA)

As with any small space, each item of furniture you choose needs to work hard. Picking something that will double up as storage is a big win.

Perhaps the most effective solution to decluttering a small bedroom is to choose a bed with storage, like this twin wooden daybed with storage underneath from Wayfair. After all, the dead space under the bed is being wasted, so why not put it to work? 

5. Or add your own under bed storage

Freestanding wooden underbed drawers on rollers

(Image credit: Grillo Designs)

And if you don't want to buy a new bed, you can find drawers that roll away under your existing bed. This really is the perfect way to utilize that space under the bed and a great place to store spare towels, bed linen, out-of-season clothes (we love these jumbo vacuum seal bags to squish clothing and maximise your storage space from Amazon) and shoes. 

There are plenty of underbed storage drawers too on the market (we like this sturdy duo from Wayfair) , but if you can't find some you like, why not have a go at making them yourself? We love these simple but effective drawers by Medina Grillo of @grillodesigns which are made with a few planks of wood and some castors.

6. Find a wardrobe to work with your small space – and style

Bedroom with small white and peach walls

(Image credit: James Balston)

There are plenty of design options for wardrobes in a small bedroom. You can go for an open storage unit with a clothes rail (such as this highly rated by shoppers heavy duty one from Amazon), or a traditional wardrobe, albeit a small one. 

Open storage systems come in several sizes and configurations, making them customizable to the proportions of your room, and are great for a relaxed look. 

Don't worry though - an exposed clothing rail (such as this collapsible rolling clothes rail with 250lbs capacity from Amazon) does not have to mean  your bedroom will be untidy. Style it with nice jewelry and hats, and you’ve got yourself a boudoir! 

If having your clothes on display isn’t your thing, save space with wardrobes with sliding doors in a white or mirrored finish to make your space feel larger still. This  small white sliding door armoire is highly rated by shoppers on Wayfair). 

Otherwise, there are plenty of slimline wardrobes out there, too (we like this easy-to-assemble black slimline wardrobe with mirror and drawers from Amazon) with the added benefit of a full-length mirror.

7. Opt for multi-tasking desks and dressing tables

Decorating with Danish-designed pieces, natural materials and lots of tactile textures has put heart and soul into Katie and Russell’s stylish home

(Image credit: Colin Poole)

A small bedroom with a desk is not a contradiction in terms. If you like the tranquility of your bedroom for getting some work done, work from home or live in a shared apartment, fitting in a compact desk in your small bedroom makes sense. It’s even better if the desk can double up as a dressing table, so that you don’t end up overloading a small space with too many furniture pieces. 

8. Up the comfort factor in small bedrooms with seating

Green bedroom with pink armchair

(Image credit: Katie Lee)

Choosing the right armchair for a small bedroom design can be tricky; too small, and any daily activities such as making up become uncomfortable; too large, and there will hardly be room for anything else. 

Either choose a statement stool (we love this velvet ottoman stool in three colors from Anthropologie). It is small in size, but big on comfort and personality. Alternatively, you can still enjoy the enveloping comfort of a bigger chair, if the rest of the bedroom furniture is kept to a minimum.

9. Accessorise a small bedroom to add character

Bedroom with gallery wall of mirrors

(Image credit: Rebecca Hughes Interiors)

This small bedroom idea will add heaps of character. A small space has its advantages; one of them is being able to really zoom in on accents and detail that could be lost in a bigger room. Elaborately patterned textiles and floral arrangements can add personality and even a touch of exoticism to a small bedroom.

You can also accent your small bedroom space with a gallery wall made up of mirrors  – and they don’t necessarily have to be large. Even a small mirror can create an illusion of a larger space, especially when grouped with others of a similar size. 

10. Splash on great bedlinen in a small bedroom

Loft bedroom ideas

(Image credit: Chris Snook)

Some bedrooms are so small that there is not much room for anything other than the bed itself. This is where the best quality bedding you can afford is worth the spend, as they make your small bedroom cozy, comfortable, and inviting. 

Crisp, white cotton bedlinen with a high thread count is guaranteed to refresh the look and feel of a small room and will reflect light. 

For even more oomph, why not try linen bed sheets for a more relaxed look They will add a distressed, lived-in texture to your bed, and a touch of Bohemian chic to the overall look of your bedroom. 

11. Use visual tricks to make a small bedroom feel bigger

Bedroom painted with Farrow & Ball

(Image credit: Farrow & Ball)

Proof that you can visually alter your small bedroom design to make the room feel taller. If you've got a small bedroom with a low ceiling (the two often go together), painting the lower half of the wall with a darker shade and a light shade above the dado height will make the room seem taller. Add to that vertical bedroom panels or subtle vertical stripes and the effect will be exaggerated.

12. Be clever with space and install a window seat

Interior Fox basement bedroom with white built-in seating under the small window

(Image credit: Interior Fox)

A window seat is a great addition to a small bedroom. It can allow you to introduce seating where there might otherwise not be space, plus it can be built with hidden storage beneath a lift-up lid. 

13. Use shelving as bedside tables 

Bedroom with shelves as side tables

(Image credit: Malcolm Menzies)

If your bedroom is on the really, really small side, you might not have room for bedside tables on each side, so copy this small bedroom idea and instead wall-mount some shelves. You could have two or three down the side of your bed to create just as much storage as a bedside table would.

Top tip: Learn how to put up shelves and DIY ones to fit perfectly in the space you have. Look out for things like furniture boards, and planks of timber, or get yourself a nice piece of wood and cut it to fit the space beside your bed. Then use some good-looking shelf brackets to mount them to the wall. 

14. DIY a walk-in wardrobe to max your space

Walk-in wardrobe in small bedroom

(Image credit: Ikea/Johan Månsson)

Always dreamt of a walk-in wardrobe? Oh, hasn't everyone. While we could waffle on in Carrie Bradshaw references for a paragraph or two, let's just cut straight to it – you can have a walk-in wardrobe (of sorts), no matter how small your bedroom. This amazing IKEA hack is one of our favorite small bedroom ideas to date. This ingenious tip is just about being really clever with your space, buying the right storage, and then covering it all over with a super cute curtain (we love this DriftAway Ada botanical print curtain from Bed Bath & Beyond). 

15. Turn up the comfort in a small bedroom 

bedroom-beam-timber-frame-loft-bedroom with purple throw and pink cushions on bed which is central in this shot

(Image credit: Future/Kasia Fiszer)

Small doesn't always have to be a bad thing, a small bedroom can be a thing of cozy wonder so why not embrace the tininess. Make sure you have plenty of soft furnishings, minimal bulky furniture and of course, plenty of twinkly lights. 

Take a tour of this 17th-century, Grade II-listed manor farmhouse to see the rest of this lovely small bedroom – there's even an ensuite in there!

16. Wallpaper your ceiling

Sparrow patterned wallpaper extends up from the middle of the walls and across the ceiling in this rustic cottage style small bedroom with copper ceiling lights and geometric red and blue bed throw

(Image credit: David Burton)

We tend to neglect our ceilings, but we want to put an end to that and show how well a wallpapered ceiling can work in small bedroom. By taking the wallpaper from three quarters of the way up the walls and onto the ceiling the dimensions of the room become unclear, making it appear larger and the ceilings higher.

17. Go all over with one color

Pink bedroom with green cushions

(Image credit: Heather Dixon)

Again with the ceilings. But if the idea of wallpapering your entire room seems a bit too outlandish, painting your ceiling the same color as the walls of your small bedroom can have a similar optical illusion effect.

Note how in this bedroom there's also a slightly dark pink used in the bottom quarter of the room, this gives the ceilings more height and also adds a slight contrast to ground the room. 

18. Let in plenty of natural light with semi sheer curtains

Dark wood panels the wall behind this mid height bed but the sheer white voile panels and long ceiling pendant lamp add ambiance

(Image credit: Fritz Fryer)

Natural light is key to making a small bedroom feel bigger and well, lighter. So ensure you are maximizing it with the right bedroom window ideas. Avoid anything too dark or heavy, semi-sheer light colored curtains would be the bet pick and pair them with discreet  black out roller blind for privacy. 

Spoiled for choice? Sheer voile panels are always a winner and budget-friendly like these sheer voile curtain pairs from Amazon in 23 color ways.

Another top tip is to hang your curtains high above your window and reaching all the way to the floor to create the illusion of high ceilings and large windows.

19. Go for low-slung furniture 

This former schoolhouse loft space renovation showcases original light wood floors boards, angled windows and ceiling beams in an otherwise neutral and minimally furnished small bedroom

(Image credit: Future© Fiona Murray)

If you are decorating a small bedroom that has low ceilings or maybe an attic bedroom, then choosing low-slung furniture is an easy way to make the room feel less cramped. Platform beds just happen to be bang on trend right now too and look gorgeous as part of a more relaxed, boho style bedroom. 

20. Float shelves above the bed

Ikea bedroom shelves above a blue themed bed style with twinkle lights and foliage from a creeping plant

(Image credit: Ikea/Benjamin Edwards)

Floating shelves work wonders in a small bedroom because they can add a lovely surface to decorate and take up zero floor space. We love the look of one or two mounted above the bed, almost instead of a headboard. Fill with books, frames, lighting and greenery too to add some texture and interest. 


What are the best colors for a small bedroom?

The best colors for small bedrooms, as with any small room, tend to be lighter colors that are going to reflect light around the space. White walls are always a good choice and you can bring in color in small amount through bed linen and accessories. 

That being said, a dark color palette can work in a small bedroom too, creating a cozy cocooning space that just embraces the small proportions of the room. 

With these small bedroom ideas in the bag, you will be all set for refreshing your space with clever design. If like us, you adore celebrity homes and daydream about making your space look like theirs, now you can. Our experts know just how to replicate Hilary Duff's chic Scandi bedroom, or Emma Watson's dreamy space.

Hebe Hatton

Hebe joined the Real Homes team in early 2018 as Staff Writer before moving to the Livingetc team in 2021 where she took on a role as Digital Editor. She loves boho and 70's style and is a big fan of Instagram as a source of interiors inspiration. When she isn't writing about interiors, she is renovating her own spaces – be it wallpapering a hallway, painting kitchen cupboards or converting a van.

With contributions from