before and after

Before & After: Bedroom Makeover

by Kate Pruitt

This is an exciting bedroom makeover for me. You know I love a good DIY project, and there are almost too many homemade solutions in this room to count! To keep costs low and achieve the look she envisioned for the space, interior designer Shannon Kaye made many of the elements herself: She painted the chevron ceiling, built the upper portion of the bookshelf and refinished the dresser. The transformation is dramatic — I love the rich, dark tones and gilded accents and the mix of luxe patterns and textiles. The resulting look is sophisticated without being overly feminine and a great example of how far you can go with patience, creativity and a true DIY spirit. Nicely done, Shannon! — Kate

Read the full post after the jump . . .

Cost: $1500

Basic Steps: The basic steps to achieving this look start with the most efficient traffic pattern and storage for this small house. Next, I focused on rich, dark paint colors for the walls with bright warm accent colors. I generally painted the walls first then painted artwork and furniture pieces to stand out from the wall colors.

Start with rich, dark paint colors that make you feel comfortable and cozy. Then focus on two to three bright accent colors that will be used in every room. For me, bright pink accents are in every room, but none of the rooms read as [having] a pink theme. I also use repetitive shapes and patterns [for] depth: my Good Fortune fabric for the window treatments, cabbage stencil on the bedroom window treatments, chevron stripes, etc. — Shannon

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    • victoria

      you definitely can. not everyone is tired of them (though i admit i’m ready to let them go for a while, at least in their most basic form) so we try not to cut things out so extremely.


  • what a fun change. i love the ceiling and the curtains. the dresser I would have left in it’s original state – the black laquer – I agree with Victoria.

  • Wow! what a great transformation job! I am trying to slowly transform my own bedroom, and this has given me so much inspiration!!!

  • well, I could only get better with that “before” room. Nonetheless, a great makeover, I love the dark walls!

  • Is that dropcloth fabric for the curtains? The cabbage stencil is unexpected and fun. (ditto on chevron; for me, stripes are a classic that never date, but chevron is an “of the moment” pattern, like flame stitch decades ago)

  • I do love the after. However without a headboard, the bed looks a little underdressed for attending such a classy bedroom party complete with that beautiful chandelier.

  • Wow! What a transformation from the fusspot, geriatric original. Please give us some specifics on the paint. And I can’t read the writing on the pillow shams.

  • Geometric shapes and strong lines add depth, movement, rythm, strength, stability to a room. A chevon is just another shape and they never go out of style.

  • That big thick carpet is killing me. Who needs a bed, I want to curl up on the floor..in front of a fire…

  • Oops. My last comment had grammar errors. Geometric shapes add stability, movement, rhythm, power, depth to a room. A chevron is a classic shape that never goes out of style. I

  • Nooo! The world is a better place because of chevrons ;)

    I love this Before/After, thanks for sharing – wish I could live there!

  • Love the chevron on the ceiling – it adds so much movement and a hint of sheen. Not crazy about it on the dresser. I love that they restored the wood on the sides and I think the whole thing would have been beautiful that way, or with maybe a darker tone or something on the drawers. The pattern seems a little off with the placement of the drawers. The bedding also seems a little unfinished sans headboard.

  • Good answer Grace! Sometimes you can see something so often in magazines (and online) it seems like we are all big copycats with no imagination. But I don’t know anyone who is really using chevrons in real life . . . and I look at for sale houses all the time so I see real homes. It seems like it’s mostly white paint, brown tiles and dirty beige carpeting. What I like about this is that they approached the whole project at one time, reused what they had and thought about the outcome. It is a finished room now. The shape of the dresser is beautiful, the chandelier is fantastic, the leather chairs are beautiful – and most of us could accomplish this is real life even though I’d have to save up to get their budget of $1,500. Good work.

  • I have a question about the painted ceiling. Why don’t any of these ceilings have fire alarms on them? Also, mine all have air conditioning vents. Do you think it would look bad to have a design on the ceiling interrupted by fire alarm units and air vents?

  • Thanks for all the amazing comments, all! Vanessa- I feel like you totally get the space. Those chairs are actually upholstered and I painted them with black satin on the inside and a stylised flame stitch on the back. Gillianne- Yes, I bought 2 heavy duty dropcloths, designed and stenciled the cabbage pattern (it reminds me of hanging out with my grandfather in Portland OR), and Azure- I do have a smoke alarm on the ceiling, but took the photo so it wouldn’t show. I actually like painting through these types of things because it distracts your from those ugly details drawing your eyes towards something far more interesting. I painted the ‘lips’ piece that I call Rockstar with a journal entry about an amazing weekend I had years ago. Adding personal art, oversized photos, and unusual collections to your walls gives your rooms a personal look that goes way beyond trend. Lastly, I’m over chevrons myself, actually have been for such a long time, but they really make me happy in this space. Trust me there won’t be any more in my house :-) Thanks, All!

  • The room looks fantastic. Very rich looking and cozy but still with a vintage feel.
    I get everyone is “over” chevron but obviously the client likes it and wanted Chevrons. The client is the only person sleeping there and the only one who matters. If you like something even after it’s “last year” then stick with it. Look at the color combinations, fabrics and textures of the room for inspiration instead of picking out the one item you dislike.

    I don’t have Chevron’s in my house but I have birch trees (how passe) and I have a herringbone pattern on one wall. I’d rather be out of date and like my own decor than decide not to do it because a bunch of people on a design blog thinks it’s unfashionable.

  • I guess my last comment didn’t get approved ;) The room looks great. It feels rich, warm and inviting. The texture and colours work really well together and it still has a vintagey feel to it. Well done.

    Chevrons aren’t everyone’s cup of tea but I think they work well in this space.

  • Despite what others have said, I like the fact that the bed is kind of understated. Would you mind sharing source information about the bedspread? The built-in is also great.

  • Great “after”! I love the chevron ceiling and I’m always a big fan of dark walls. The dresser was nice but boring and it certainly wouldn’t have matched the new look. The makeover turned it into a fantastic focal point. I am curious where the $1500 was spent since it appears much of the contents were repurposed– to my eyes it looks like an under $500 job for a DIYer (including linens, curtains, paint). Do the chairs make up the bulk of the price? They look amazing– I wish there were some close-up pics.

  • Thanks Grace! I realized after I had posted that it was probably due to delay (I’m on the west coast and forgot it was later where you guys are) sorry about that!

  • Do you mind letting us know the paint colors you used? I love all the colors, especially that fabulous wall color! I have some new ideas about how to re-d0 my small powder room thanks to this post!

  • Chevron still works, it isn’t fair for something to be SO COOL one year and so lame the next, who can keep up with the redecoration? I recently moved my chevron curtain from my room into the girl’s room, it totally updated their decor, and allowed me to realize the style my bedroom should have.
    This before / after is gorgeous!

  • This is probably the 4th time I’ve come back to look at this. It is amazing. I love the chevron ceiling. On the ceiling, in understated colors, it is unexpected and adds a fun quirk to the room. This room will be my inspiration for my bedroom Reno project.

  • I love chevrons overall, but they are getting to be like that wonderful song that is played to death on the radio — great but it is getting to be too much. I’m starting to feel that way about re-decorating projects that are basically “paint everything white and buy a bunch of mid-century modern wood furniture” as well. I love it, but it seems like that’s all I see.

    I’d also love to know the wall paint color.

  • omg. I just about had a heart attack when I saw the before. I was terrified she was going to get rid of the chandelier. LOVE the chandelier and actually think it looks great with the geometry of the, apparently much debated, … dum dum dum dummmmm … chevron.

  • I’m probably the only one who likes the colors in the before pic better than the after. lol I especially loved the colors of the curtains together with the chandelier. The after is lovely too! I’m just not a fan of the colors (but that’s just my taste).