Let’s Design a Dark and Moody Master Bedroom: One Room Challenge Week 1

If you’re anything like me I’d venture to guess that your master bedroom is the last place you bother decorating. I’m a grown-a** woman in my third home and I’ve never done anything beyond the most basic of basics to decorate a master bedroom.

No more!

The One Room Challenge is the absolute best motivation to tackle a nagging space that needs some love and I’m leaning in. Hard. The plan? Design a dark and moody master bedroom that will take us into winter and beyond.

As you may or may not know, I looove a moody color scheme. For my first ORC I transformed a never used dining room into a darkly stunning library, and even when I tried to go light and bright for my second round, I ended up with a black accent wall in my artsy graphic home office.

This time will be no different. Let’s get into it.

Previous One Room Challenge Rooms:

Fall 2018 | Spring 2019 | Fall 2019 | Spring 2020

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The Dark and Moody Inspiration

Every room needs a jumping-off point. A gorgeous rug, a treasured heirloom, a beautiful fabric. This room begins with the art:

I found this unmarked painting in the back of a thrift shop about a year ago. The colors and movement really spoke to me so I snapped it up, knowing I’d find a place for it someday. And that day has arrived! It’s the perfect jumping off point for color and tone.

Admittedly, the composition as a whole was only OK, so I took a high resolution scan and cropped it down to the best piece. I’m working with WhiteWall again to print and frame the art — it’s going to be amazing.

The Color Scheme

Our walls are already in my signature black. So you’d think yay cool. Done!


They are suuuper scuffed. And I’m lazy with a captial L. So I’m thinking to minimize cutting in (at the ceiling at least), I’ll do a cool color block treatment on the bottom two-thirds and maybe layer in a handpainted pattern at the top in a few spots.

Bedding and Curtains

Per usual, I’m a little fuzzy on those details. I tend to work piece by piece and adjust course as I go. What about you?

For this room, I know colors, vibe, and some of the furniture, but the bedding and curtains are TBD. Right now, the curtains are laughable!

I grabbed some too short light blocking curtains on clearance from the Family Dollar out of necessity. They actually aren’t terrible, just too small for the room. And the curtain rod? No, I didn’t hang it crooked — one of the screws is popping out of the wall. Must have missed that stud! Whoops.

In a nutshell, we’ll all be surprised with the curtains! I may design the fabric, I may not. I’m keeping it loose. Same with bedding. As long as it’s squishy and cozy I think it’s a win.


Fun fact: these aren’t the actual before pictures. The bed is new, but I reshot these photos today for a more accurate before and after experience (thanks to Avery for the tip!).

However, the only furniture in here is the bed! I have a random filing cabinet in the corner, but that’s going back where it belongs next week. I’m not planning to go nuts with furniture, but the long wall in front of the bed definitely needs a dresser of some sort. And I’m thinking a full length mirror next to it.

I have a loose plan for a DIY dresser/IKEA hack so I can get exactly what I want without spending thousands. Keep your eye out for that post in a few weeks! I’ll probably break out my sprayer again.

Lighting and Accessories

Our bed has built-in nightstands, which drew us to it in the first place. It’s a big slab of wood though. Huge.

I’m working with my friends at RevealHome again to source the perfect bedside lamps. These sleek marble beauties will be a refreshing counterpoint to all the dark elements.

I should also replace that icky ceiling fan. Whether I’ll have enough time and budget remains to be seen, but fingers tightly crossed…

Getting a rug though? That’s a non-negotiable. There’s a whole lotta wood in here. It needs some breaking up. I’m leaning towards cool tones and nubby texture.

As far as the decor that brings it all together? It will be equal parts beauty and function. Matt’s an avid guitar player and I’d like to incorporate 1 – 3 of his guitars into the decor so he can just grab them off the wall and start playing when the mood strikes. I also plan to add some pops of color with preserved flowers and greenery.

Yes, I basically just admitted I plan to fill this room with dried flowers like an ’80s grandma. It all comes back around, right?

And what you’ve all been waiting for… the mood board!

That’s all for this week, folks. Be sure to head over to the ORC link-up to check out all the other amazing participants, check in every Thursday for progress updates, and get excited for the big reveal on November 7!

One Room Challenge