Light or Dark In The Bedroom?

There's so much to be said for a great night's sleep. You know, when you wake up rested and raring to go? As part of my research for Lagom, The Swedish Art Of Living a Balanced, Happy Life,  I interviewed a Swedish sleep psychologist who advised that before going to bed you need to prepare yourself both mentally and physically. Great pre-bedtime preparations include banishing screens up to an hour before in favour of reading a book, taking a warm bath, cuddling with family and pets or listening to calm music. Your bedroom environment also plays a key role in maximising shut-eye, with banning screens and completely shutting out natural light as well as creating a clean, calm and comfortable sphere being the key to sleep success! I was reminded of this when I saw the beautiful bedrooms Pella Hedeby styled for IKEA recently. Void of clutter, clean and simple - they are the epitome of calm.  But, I'm curious to know: which look do you prefer: the cool, white and pale grey with subtle tone on tone texture, or the darker, cosy, womb-like feel?

The Light Side

The Dark Side

I'm still so happy with my blushing peach tones, but at a push I'd go for the soothing, lighter tones (like I once had in my bedroom) because I feel it would feel lovely and bright by day (especially when the Swedish winter can get so dark and gloomy!).

How about you?

See the complete product lists for the white and dark bedrooms and read an interview with Pella (in Swedish) here.

Have a lovely afternoon friends!


Stylist: Pella Hedeby (with support from Anna Lenskog Belfrage)
Photography: Ragnar Omarsson
IKEA Livet Hemma


  1. Continue your great work!! You are an inspiration

  2. I am with you about light in the bedroom at night. Both wavelength and intensity of artificial light can suppress and delay melatonin secretion. The brighter blue spectrum, higher kelvin (3500-6500K) causes more suppression than the warm white, lower kelvin (<3000K) bulbs, however all temperature bulbs have some short wavelength spectra that can cause melatonin suppression.

    Also, exposure to typical home lighting intensity (10-30 lux, which is the total lumens divided by area of illumination) in the evening compared to a dim light of 3 lux suppressed melatonin by greater than 50% in research trials. Most lightbulbs (incandescent, LED, CFL) carry a kelvin number and lumens information on packaging or bulb in order to estimate light exposure.

    At night, we use two small bedside table lamps with special LED bulbs designed for sleep...called Miracle LED Relax bulbs. In the morning, especially in the cold, dark winter, I switch on the brighter blue higher kelvin ceiling can lights that give more even illumination similar to sunlight. I also avoid shopping at big box stores int eh evening where the lights glare like noonday sun. Seriously I think they should pay the nighttime staff more to work in those conditions, or give them blue blocking glasses.

    Melatonin is an extremely important anti-oxidant, but our modern lives and lighting habits tends to suppress it.

    1. How interesting! Thank you so much for taking the time to share this information, it has really added to the post. It also makes total sense. I once painted the main wall in my bedroom black - and I found it so frustrating - I could barely see anything in the day time, let alone at dusk! You need so many artificial lights to compensate the dark colour, even during daylight hours - unless of course, you have a a room with many large windows.

  3. I agree on the light bedroom. The darker ones look lovely, but to me it would just seem dark and gloomy, especially in winter and our very rainy west-coast autumns. Also, I think the dark ones give off a more hotel-vibe, and I know a lot of people do like that look in their homes, to me a hotel look just seems very impersonal. Hotels can be lovely, but I prefer my home to look like a home.
    Planning to do a small bedroom renovation this autumn/winter, as we haven't done anything to it since we moved in. Remove the horrible wall structure (it is painted with a paint containing small, pointy grains, trying to look like some kind of brick wall but just being ugly and pointy), paint /wallpaper over the striped lilac and grey feature wall, and paint the very yellow, cheap pine floors in a light bluish/grey. White walls, white linen and an oak bed. Think it will be great.

    1. I totally agree with you! Loving the sound of the small bedroom make-over too, it sounds spot on!

  4. I'm for light bedrooms because the dark seems masculine and impersonal. I like your peachy one though. I'm a string believer in dim light after 6, I'm always turning off bright lights at home and when I'm on call in the hospital. My patients are more settled and so are my nurses.

  5. The only thing that makes me question my love for bright, neutral, and peaceful spaces is a gorgeous boldly painted room. A deep green or navy can be so stunning. If I had to choose though, I'd always go with white, neutral tones, and light pinks.


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