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Decorating & Furniture/Victorian bedroom finishing touches


My home is partway underground, so my bedroom has no windows. As you stand facing the room, the door is on the south wall approx 8" from the east wall, the east wall goes about 5' before a closet causes it to jag two feet out and then straight to the back wall about 7'. The closet door is halfway along the closet wall, about 3' from the back wall. There are no doors or windows in the north (back) or west walls. The room is slightly narrower (because of the closet) than it is long. I have an ornate Victorian-style mahogany-stained queen sleigh bed with the headboard centered on the back wall. The matching ornate dresser with mounted mirror faces it on the south wall. I have a dark-oak antique two-shelf tea cart as one bedside table, and a round silk-draped table on the other side. Against the west wall close to the south wall, I have a wing chair and small round walnut stained side table and a floor lamp. Above it is a muted multi-colored floral tapestry, and further down the west wall toward the back wall is a large (3'5"x4') very ornate gold-framed mirror. Old-gold toned lamps are on each side of the bed. In the recess along the east wall is a 6' tall shallow secretary with shelving and glass doors on top. I have old books and a gold-framed print in it. All the trim in the room - doors, door facings, baseboard, ceiling - are winter white and must stay that way (rental).

I want the room to feel warm, embracing and Victorian. I have painted the walls a medium toffee color, with slightly lighter solid silk duvet cover on the bed. The side table is draped in a medium old gold faux dupioni with fringe. The Queen Anne wing chair is upholstered in a slightly paler gold and cream stripe. The carpet is about the same color as the duvet cover. I have put matching framed prints of leopards on either side of the dresser mirror, with an elaborately beaded sconce in shades of amber above each. I've ordered a faux leopard throw for the bed. I have varying styles of ornate photo frames on the side tables.

My questions: I can't decide what's best for finishing off the bed - what colors for pillow shams and decorative pillows to make it rich and warm without being too monochromatic or too bold? And what about area rugs? Should I get an oriental or similar rug to carry out the Victorian theme? I have velvet curtains slightly darker than the walls, used in another home. I was considering hanging these behind the headboard and hanging a large gold-framed print (major tones the same colors as the room but not boringly so) in front of them. Is that a good idea?

I could use some advice! It just feels that it needs... something. Plants? I don't have windows and don't want to use silk. Am I doing too much? Too little? How to make it Victorian but not jumbled? Help!

Hi Susanna - wow!

Sounds like quite an amazing room to me.

To me, Victorian colouring suggests rich red/burgundy, forest green and navy blue.  You could use any of those colours quite successfully with the colours you have already used.

You mention having some leopard print already and you could of course use black as your accent colour instead.

It is not perhaps traditionally Victorian but certainly stylish.

We used that colour scheme for our holiday home in Florida and you can see a picture of that here:

I'm not sure that the picture hanging on the curtains would look quite right but that is hard for me to say without seeing the room myself so I think you just have to trust your own instincts with that.

Plants - whether real or fake - are always a good finishing touch and for a Victorian look I would suggest you stick with palms.

Kind regards


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Andrea Elliston


I am happy to answer questions regarding decorating, use of colour, soft furnishings ideas etc. I love quick and easy ideas that help people like me - short of time, money and sewing skills! I own and run the website Decorating Vacation Property for Profit


I have been involved in the decoration and preparation of a number of vacation rental properties where making a property look a million dollars whilst only spending a few pounds is very important.

I have had a number of articles printed and have been prolific on various vacation home owner forums. A lot of my ideas are featured on my website Decorating Vacation Property for Profit

My whole career has been in the travel industry working everywhere from UK travel agencies and London Heathrow Airport to a 5 star European resort - La Manga Club. I have extensive experience with vacation rental property and own and run the website Decorating Vacation Property for Profit

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