purple and grey bedroom

A year or so ago, I had a vision of starting an interiors blog and one day being an interior designer. Some people I knew sniffed at this idea... 'another project in a series of creative things she's tried her hand at' they thought (or quite literally said to my face). In just over a year I've won two awards for my blog, launched my first online digital product and now have just completed my first private interior design job. And here it is in all its glory. My first ever project! ARRRGHHH!

This family initially found out about me through twitter and asked me to help them update a few rooms in their house. We started with their teenage daughter's bedroom first, which had been a little neglected over time. Now that she was growing up, she needed a beautiful and cool space that would suit her changing needs and eye for style!

The first thing I did was get a list of things that were to be kept in the room and any additional requirements. They were as follows:

  • A colour scheme that incorporated Silver and Purple (her favourite colours)
  • Something quite chic, not too girly, no over the top patterns
  • Curtains needed to be above radiator height
  • Needed a desk for her studies
  • Wall colour was to stay
  • Bed needed to have a trundle that could accommodate another mattress so that friends could sleep over
  • Furniture needed to be solid wood
  • Shelves would stay
  • Room layout to stay
  • Budget of under £1500 for everything including any works

Here's how it looked before I made-over the room!

bedroom makeover
interior design before after
bedroom before after
grey and purple bedroom
interior design before after

The main thing that struck me when I came into this room was that the orangey-wood colour of the bed, desk style and curtains were making the room look a lot smaller and they also looked dated. These needed to go and be replaced. The client even saw the same curtains on Eastenders in a man's caravan so that was a clear signal that they were going (as if it was even a question, haha!)

Other than that the rest was superficial works that would add a little more of a grown up style and a touch of colour here and there. My main was to create a more sophisticated and glamorous space. Think hotel chic. The girl I was designing for was very grown up for her age and I could tell she had a refined eye. I went away and worked on a moodboard.

Moodboard take 1

grey lavender purple moodboard

I took the client's love for the deep purple and took a lighter shade of it. I also had been really keen to try out a grey and soft lavender palette and thought this could be the perfect place to do it. However! The client came back to me after this first moodboard and really didn't like the inclusion of the more pastel colours, so I set about creating a refined version which focused more on the deeper purple. 

Moodboard take 2

purple silver grey moodboard

This is the one that hit the spot! I envisioned using a few shades of grey with that deep purple as the secondary colour with some brass accents.

I set about sourcing the right furniture and choosing fabrics and wallpaper. The curtains were being custom made so I visited the family for a second time with fabric and wallpaper samples and options for furniture. I came away with some solid choices and started ordering!

A few weeks later I headed over to the home to dress the room and finish up.

So... drumroll please!

Here is how it looks now...

purple and grey bedroom by sarah akwisombe
Grey and purple bedroom makeover
bedroom makeover
bedroom makeover

Here's what I did...

Got new textured silvery grey pencil pleat curtains. I forgot to take a close up of these but they're a lovely material they looks quite flat on first look but has some metallic silvery threads running through it underneath. They're finished off with a pair of purple tiebacks which will be hooked onto brass curtain hooks (I didn't do those on the day as was waiting for the man of the house to do some drilling). These curtains really stressed me out as they don't come pre-hung, you have to gather and dress them yourself. I think I'll share all of my learning from my first job in another post but yeah - let's just say I was sweating for a few moments! I had these made at Fabric World Croydon, which happens to be practically below my flat. Trés handy! They were £204 as luckily there was a discount on the fabric at the time I ordered. The purple rope tiebacks were £.5.49 each from Dunelm.

galerie metallium wallpaper grey purple bedroom

We chose the Metallium wallpaper in 5801-31 from Galerie. I love this wallpaper so much, it looked great in the sample but even better on the wall in person. It's got such a subtle texture to it that looks different when the light hits it and just adds a little pop of something unexpected. It's so sophisticated and glam. I'm already thinking about where else I can use it. 

grey and purple bedroom makeover

I chose the Denver guest bed from Time4Sleep to start off the new brighter white furniture that would suit the room's new palette and the work with the built in wardrobes that already existed. It also had the trundle that the client needed and at £229 it was a great price. The bed was finished with soft pinstripe linens from The White Company at a cost of around £60 in total for an Oxford pillowcase, single duvet cover and single fitted sheet. I've also suggested to the client to have a white or darker grey pillow in front of this one to break it up a little and add some more contrast.

purple and grey bedroom makeover

The Bouji chair from Made.com was sourced as the new dressing table / desk seating. It provided that great pop of pansy purple and gave a lovely sophistication to the room with its button back, brass studs and warm dark wood legs. That was £169. Underneath I added another soft grey with some textured sheepskin under foot. This one is the 'Ludde' from Ikea for £25. The carpet was professionally cleaned but in the summer I think they family will look at removing the carpet and getting some dark wooden flooring similar to the chair legs put in. This will look great in my opinion!

purple and grey bedroom makeover

This white desk gave enough space to work as both a study desk and a dressing table, and was £245 from Oak Furniture Solutions. I dressed it with the beautiful marble arch table lamp from M&S at £99. In person it was a little more grey that 'antique brass' which was a tad disappointing but overall I think it still works well. 

purple and grey bedroom makeover

I dressed the table with a brass tray, tealight holder and scented candle all from H&M. The round monogrammed boxes were a home DIY project. I took a pair of sugar pink gift boxes from Bombay Duck London and gave them a makeover. I'll share details on how I did that very soon so stay tuned :)

I then added a tall cylinder vase from Ikea and a faux cherry blossom from Graham and Green for £12.95 to add a little pop of colour. 

brass cornered frames DIY

Lastly, the coloured clock made way for a more sophisticated quad of black and white fashion images in black and brass frames. These were also a DIY job using IKEA Ribba frames and upgrading them with some metal tape on the corners (I used this tape, great quality and easy to use). The Black and white postcards were sourced from Rockett St George for £12.

I styled the shelves still keeping a lot of the client's pieces as I didn't want to completely remove all traces of her childhood! I just neatened them up a little and added a couple of stylish accessories, like a resin white coral and a lovely little room diffuser.

What else?

purple colster cushion

I am still missing the perfect purple bolster cushion for the bed, so I may order something slightly different just to get that purple over onto the left side of the room too as right now it looks a little too plain for my liking! This is what I am after but haven't found it just yet, so if you see anything like it hit me up!

I chose this gorgeous gold lined lightshade and black cord from Love Frankie. It wasn't up in time for the photos, but I'll come back and add photos of it once it's in. I think it's going to be the finishing touch!

purple and grey room

I'm also after a wire brass bin that I keep seeing go in and out of stock at H&M so I am keeping my beady eyes open. 

brass bin

Doing this project has taught me so much and it really is true that the best way to learn is 'on the job', for me at least. I can read and write about techniques and processes all day long but nothing refines your art faster than having a real life client to work with. It's been an amazing learning process and I've already improved the way I do so many things since commencing this job back in Januray. As I said, I'll share more of my learning in a separate blog post sometime in the near future. 

Overall the client and her parents were really pleased, which was really uplifting. They've even asked me back to do their dining room, so that'll be featured here as well when it happens in the summer!

So... what do you think of my first interior design job EVER?! Did I do a good job? If you're thinking about revamping a room in your home then feel free to drop me a line for a free consultation.

See more of my before and after's HERE!

S x

P.S - Download my list of over 70 cool online home retailers that I recommend by clicking here. It's my go to list to source the best pieces for your home!

*The Galerie wallcovering was kindly gifted.*