Decorating Dilemma: Karen’s Guest Bedroom

Decorating ideas for a French-inspired guest bedroom

Decorating Dilemmas is a weekly column in which our stylists answer your design questions, so you can tackle your home decorating project with complete confidence.

Dear How to Decorate,

My guest bedroom has potential, but it needs your beautiful ideas! I’m happy to start from scratch, but the one item I love in the room is the duvet cover. My favorite color is any shade of purple, and the duvet has a soft aqua background with lavender ivy. The scroll matches the wooden door and window frames too!

The room is small at 11’6″ x 11’6″, and the wall color is Sherwin Williams Kilim Beige. The carpet is a cream short shag.

I like a European feel, especially French and Italian. I also love finishes with patina, crystals, mercury glass, mirrors, gold leaf, and painted furniture. Simply said, anything Ballard Designs!

Thank you for your thoughts.


window view
Wall opposite bed
Wall left of window
wall between doors

Dear Karen,

What fun to help you with your French Fantasy Guest Room!

Add drama as you enter the room with the large Louis Mirror in Gold hanging on the opposite wall, accented below with an X-Bench in Suzanne Kasler 13oz Signature Linen in Lavender.

We love the Claudette Headboard in Wood for a grand statement. Paired with Custom Euro Sham in Suzanne Kasler Signature 13 oz. Linen Lavender, Signature Velvet Pillow with Tape Trim in lavender and your animal print pillow, the duvet cover will sing. Bring the luxurious look onto the walls by flanking the window with Signature Velvet Drapery Panels in Lavender. Tuck one or two Kubu Round Baskets at the end of the bed filled with extra blankets and towels — ready for the unexpected guest!

Updated bedside tables, such as the Louis 3-Drawer Side Table and the Olivia Side Table in Antique Brass, will add welcome storage and glamour. Adding a Paulette Table Lamp, dressed up with a 16” Couture Tapered Drum Shade in Ivory Linen, will add to the French flair.

Any luxury hotel room has a surface for writing, so let’s create your luxury with a small Juliette Desk placed against the wall that faces the bed. Add a Louis Oval Back chair in Suzanne Kasler’s 13oz Signature Linen in Sky/Blanc Stripe to continue the French influence and to bring out the blues in the bedding. Hang the Tranquil Pond Giclée above the desk, bringing all of the colors of the room together. A Sophia Table Lamp will add warm lighting on this side of the room.

Add some crystal and mercury glass accents, like a candle, and your room will be guest ready.

Happy Decorating,

The Design Team

Decorating ideas for a French-inspired guest bedroom

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How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.