Japanese design and culture has now entered bedroom decor. This is for good reason: Many people find its simple lines soothing. Since your bedroom is your innermost retreat, your sanctuary, it should offer you comfort as you enter the room. By utilizing sparing, but luxurious, Japanese decor and design, you can create a relaxing, meditative, bedroom. How do you go about creating a Japanese styled bedroom? Let’s find out.
Start from the bottom up, and consider your flooring. Would you like traditional tatami (tightly woven straw) mat flooring? It is very comfortable to bare feet. Traditional Japanese design requires a certain mat layout that dictates certain room dimensions. Modern Japanese-inspired decor may use a traditional tatami mat layout as a floor insert surrounded by other flooring or one tatami mat on top of hard flooring to use as a yoga mat.
Next is the central feature of a Japanese-style bedroom – a futon or platform bed. In Japanese design, this bed does not have a footboard or, sometimes, a headboard. It has an extended platform on which the mattress sits in the middle. It usually does not have box springs. It sits low to the ground and sometimes well away from all walls. Use all silk bedding in a single rich color to continue the Japanese theme (and to pamper yourself). Add several silk pillows to your platform bed to complete the effect.
Add shoji-style lamps for lighting. Their translucent panels are especially good for creating warm, diffused lighting. Put one on a dimmer switch on either side of the bed and have bright enough light for reading or soft, romantic lighting from the same lamps. Shoji doors could replace French doors leading into your bathroom or out onto your deck. Skylights also look classy framed to appear shoji-style.
Remember to keep bedside tables and other tables in the bedroom area low. Keep them in proportion to the height of your bed. If your bedroom also has a sitting area, consider keeping the Japanese theme and use a low table and zabuton (the seating cushions).
You should also consider adding a tokonoma, which is a small, raised alcove in which you might display a wall scroll, and other decorative features. A sliding-door wall closet can be opened up and trimmed to make a deep tokonoma. A shallow alcove can be framed out and set in the wall. If you are displaying a tall, narrow object, you can even put a tokonoma between studs. Traditionally, the decorations are changed every month or so. Small geisha dolls, a bonsai tree, or a Buddha statue are other ideas for your tokonoma decorations.
So there you go.
When you are ready for a soothing bedroom makeover, consider Japanese design ideas. Whether you go completely traditional with a tamaki room, and all the proper accents or whether you choose a lighter impact, only incorporating a few Japanese-inspired items in with your traditional bed and flooring, a bedroom with Japanese style elements is a mentally soothing retreat that you will look forward to visiting at the end of a stressful day.