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November 11, 2013

The Shiniest, Happiest Bedroom Makeover

by Alla


Get ready for that moment we’ve all been waiting for – the moment we get to see the final results of the Shiny, Happy Makeover contest!  We set out with a mission – to bring a bit of sunshine to one family and help them beat the winter blues. I’m happy to say that Emily Henderson has definitely made this mission a successful one!

Last week, we introduced you to the winners of the Shiny, Happy Makeover contest as the Décorview installers and Emily Henderson worked like mad to finish up the makeover (not one but two rooms in under two days!).  Emily and Gary S. are like a lot of us – so busy with parenting and work that they just haven’t had time to really focus on decorating their bedroom.  With three small boys and limited resources, their own room simply couldn’t be a priority. Dark Ikea furniture, clutter and dull window treatments combined to make the space feel chaotic, mis-matched and drab. It was definitely not a space that invited relaxation.

Bedroom makeover - before

Before the happy makeover

The window treatments in the bedroom were mismatched leftovers from the previous owners. What’s worse, they weren’t even functional. The blinds over the bedroom were flimsy and awkward to adjust.  The curtains were not only unattractive, you couldn’t even open them all the way – they bumped in to the dresser! And that curtain rod! It looked like it would fall down at any second.

Inspecting the window before the big makeover

The first step is always to figure out what the family wants and needs out of their room.  Little things can make a big difference – the depth of the window sill, furniture placement, whether they like a little bit of morning light or prefer to sleep in total darkness, and of course, the family’s personal style and color preferences.


Browsing the window treatment samples

Emily S, Emily Henderson, and Henderson’s lead designer Gina were wonderful to work with.  Everybody was so excited!  The family wanted something for their room that was both sophisticated and practical.  Once Emily Henderson said she was thinking of a vintage modern look, I knew roman shades would be an excellent fit for the window over the bed.  When I showed them the fabrics I wanted to use, they both lit up.

The great thing about bringing actual product samples is you can really see what it’s going to look like in your home.  I think we’ve all had the experience of purchasing something at the store, but when we got home it just didn’t fit the way we had envisioned.  That can be really expensive and frustrating when it comes to window treatments.

It's always best to have measurements taken by a professional.

Once the style, color and fabric were chosen, we got to measuring.  There’s a lot that goes in to this – you have to account for the size of the window sill, whether you’re doing and inside or outside mount (we chose outside mount for this window to make it look bigger), what kind of headrail you’re using, the pleat size, etc.  Since everything is custom made for each window, we really take the time to measure everything – twice.

After that, things got really busy. Emily spent the next 10 days shopping and getting everything ready for the makeover (wallpaper, furniture, new bedding – the works) while the window treatments were being made.  The really great thing is that all of our soft treatments (drapery, shades, blinds) are custom-made here in the US.

Finally, the big day arrived, along with the installation truck that makes the process go so smoothly.  Inside this truck is everything the installer needs to make sure the window treatments fit absolutely perfectly, without needing to re-order anything. (Isn’t that better than hauling back and forth from the store?)

Decorview's installation truck

Décorview installation truck

I want to take a minute to give the installers credit – they often work behind the scenes and don’t receive as much notice as the designers, but without them our jobs would be significantly less enjoyable.  Thanks to them, there’s no need for me to stand on ladders or mess with drill bits – they’ve got it covered.  When they’re done, we’ve got beautiful, perfectly aligned window treatments.

And voila! The window that used to look like this…

Bedroom window before

Now looks like this:

Room makeover - after with roman shades

Emily Henderson wanted to go with a creamy, coral, mossy green color pallet, with gold accents.  We chose flat-panel Ryland Mist roman shades to complement the neutral tones and add to the bright feeling of the room.  The horizontal pleat in the roman shades adds texture to the room, whether they are open or closed.  Note how mounting them on the outside of the window does make the window seem larger, and minimizes light gaps around the edge of the window treatment.

For the sliding glass door, we went with slightly textured drapery in the same color as the roman shades to make the room feel cohesive. The fabric has a simple pleat to give it some fullness and life without being over-stated. We wanted to avoid something really heavy, so we used a medium-weight liner to provide effective light control while still being lightweight.

Pleated drapery with custom headrail

The fabric softens up the room and helps to create that light, happy mood we were going for.  The drapery rod is very aptly named “Rustic Elegance” and works really well with the textured gold accents in the wallpaper. It adds a modern, natural look to the room.

Rustic Elegance custom headrail

Rustic Elegance headrail

From wallpaper to accents, Emily Henderson really brought the light in to this room. You’ll definitely want to check out Emily’s blog for more details about the makeover (including how she transformed those Ikea dressers from bleak to chic with minimal expense).  Working with both Emilys was so much fun, and the two rooms are so beautiful. I’m happy to have helped make someone’s dream room come to life.

Happy makeover mission, success!

Check back for details of the kids’ bedroom makeover and the video of the whole process!


All before photos by Tessa Neustadt and all after photos by Zeke Ruelas.



Alla strives for simple elegance and timelessness in design. She enjoys using her passion for textiles and years of experience to help others transform their dream vision into reality.

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