After such a lovely reception to my first sustainable decor and homeware post, it’s great fun to bring you another one again today. While it has been frustrating at times, overall I’ve loved the process over the last few months of putting together a home just for myself. Despite a slightly smaller budget I gave myself a lot of time and patience to find pieces that would work for me, resulting in a somewhat eclectic space that I absolutely love.
And so, on to the bedroom today. I look at it very differently from a living space, which houses a range of activities varying from hosting friends, watching Netflix, or working, and so works well with some bold colours and cosy touches. My bedroom, however, is more muted and neutral overall. I’m not the easiest sleeper, so I worked hard to create an environment that’s not distracting or overwhelming, helping me unwind and end the day calmly as I read, and then hopefully find a good night of sleep.
My mental health is definitely affected when things are cluttered and messy, so I like to keep everything organised in my bedroom in order to remove any unnecessary stressors. Unlike flat sharing, where almost everything you own ends up in your room and I constantly felt overwhelmed, I finally had the space and agency to do this properly. For me this looked like prioritising solid, durable storage solutions that are aesthetically calming too. Now everything in this room has a place, and so everything works as easily and simply as possible. Basically you do what you gotta do in order to calm an anxious mind, and I think I’ve really achieved it in a way that works for me. Here’s how I did it sustainably.
Bed, mattress, and cushion secondhand. Bedding by Living Fresh, Ferah Blanket in Taupe by Luks Linen
This bed was nothing short of a miracle purchase. Before I even found a place to live I had found this bed and mattress on Facebook marketplace for £30. That’s right, £30!! I’d been looking on Facebook for a good few months before I moved, just waiting for the right thing to come up, and then it did. Because the frame is metal I was able to rope in a friend with a jeep, take apart the bed, tie the mattress down, and keep it in its deconstructed form in my current room until my own home was found. After moving it took about 10 minutes to put the frame back together again, making it possibly the easiest (and cheapest) steal of my life. This also of course makes it an incredibly durable and sturdy bed frame made from a natural material, that could easily one day be repaired or recycled at the end of its life. I also really like the little floral details on the bed knobs, but if I wanted to I could paint these in future too.
I also do want to clarify that secondhand mattress shopping is not for everyone! It’s a risky game, and at this insanely low price I was definitely nervous that something may be wrong with the mattress. But my budget was extremely low for this house move, and it was the most sustainable and practical option for me at the time. Luckily it turned out that the previous owner was simply relocating to Devon and looking to sell things as quickly as possible so, while I did encase it to be on the safe side, this mattress is totally fine. It’s definitely a shorter term solution, as I want to make sure I have a mattress that properly supports me for sleep and isn’t going to offgas into the air, but it’s working well for now. In the longer term I probably plan to get a Leesa mattress, which is made in the UK and has been independently tested and verified for its safety, and because they have a social impact program that involves tree planting (they plan to plant one million trees by 2025), tackling homelessness, and giving back to the local community.
When it comes to bedding I sleep with sustainable tencel bedding from Living Fresh, one of my favourite materials of all time, but I’d also recommend anything from my ethical and sustainable bedding list. My cushion was secondhand, bought from a friend who no longer wanted it, and my blanket, aka the cosiest thing I own, is another wonderful piece from Luks Linen. It’s handwoven by family ateliers in Turkey from 100% locally sourced cotton, using traditional craftsmanship and a return to slow, traditional production practices. I’ve had this blanket for about 18 months now and, although Luks Linen do offer a 20 year guarantee where they will repair or replace products that don’t live up to standards, it is showing absolutely no signs of even general wear. Because it is conscientiously made to the highest quality standards it looks good as new, and every time it starts to get a bit nippy it’s the perfect blanket to keep me snuggled through the night. I absolutely love it.
Wearing Asquith London camouflage yoga clothes and organic cotton Sublime Sweatshirt
Other items in this room are an interesting mish mash of things, which I really like, all of it secondhand of course. Even my wicker laundry basket was secondhand, another find for £15 from Cornwall Hospice Care’s charity shop. I found my grey chest of drawers, and matching side tables, on Facebook Marketplace. I paid £100 for all three, as they were sold as a matching set by a local upcycler. They’re made of solid wood which was been painted dove grey and, though a little stiff at first, they work easily and are really spacious. I also love how versatile and unassuming they are, making them ideal for my more neutral ‘oasis of calm’ vision.
That being said, I’m still not totally minimalist, which is most evident in my striped chest of drawers. This was the most expensive piece of furniture I bought for this room, costing £75 from Gumtree. Another local upcycler in Cornwall was selling this, and it was too unique not to take. I love how the pastel colours match my soft furnishings but aren’t too powerful. I keep all my jewellery and make up products on top of these drawers, right by my trusty orchid, in an old biscuit tin and the tin from a mini table-tennis set I had as a child. Random I know, but a good use of old, hardy, storage resources. I’m basically like those mums who have a biscuit tin which you excitedly open, only to discover a sewing kit inside.
And of course, because it’s me, my bedroom has little bits of quirk scattered around that are meaningful to me. I have a beloved peace lily that keeps my air nice and clean, but I also have a teeny tiny cactus that lives in an old Thomas the Tank Engine egg cup, which I rescued from being sent to a charity shop by the parents of a friend. These three bottles came from a trip to the Studio Ghibli Museum in Japan this April. They housed beer and water, but I thought the label designs were so beautiful that I had to save them, and now they remind me of my visit to the museum with my dad, which is a treasured memory.
Other memories that you’ll find scattered in this room include a teacup and plate from my first trip to Tokyo in 2011 with my dad, a small perfume bottle that I bought from an independent seller from Egypt in 2005, and a plant pot that I hand built myself at a Studio Haran ceramics workshop when I first moved to Falmouth (this pot, like all the others in this room, is also filled with sustainable and peat free compost from Earth Cycle). I also have a small collection of shells that I picked up on travels in New Zealand, Dublin and Cornwall over the years that all have a meaningful connection to me and the experiences I had when I found them. I love that I have picked up these small mementos without having to buy cheaply made, unsustainable souvenirs, and they’re infused with so much more memory and personality.
Another thing worth mentioning in this room is my lamp by my bed, another secondhand steal from Cornwall Hospice Care. It’s the perfect example of seeing the potential beyond what you see right in front of you. This lamp only cost me £5 as it was tucked away, dusty and unloved, in a corner, but I knew with some TLC and the right bulb it would look great. I gave it a thorough clean and brought it home, and now I love it. It’s completely unique and versatile, while also doing its job extra well.
By my bed I also have another tiny cactus that lives in another secondhand pot from my friends parents which was going to go off with the egg cup, a few small gifts from my mum (a mati from greece and a small jewellery box), a ceramic coaster from my trip to Portugal earlier this year, and a tea light holder from a small shop in London.
For me this room is just the right mix of cosy and calm. Again I have some art that is waiting to hit the walls, but I’m really happy with how everything else has turned it out. This is my more minimal space (well, as minimal as it really gets for me), and it helps me unwind and relax at the end of the day, without too many thoughts rushing through my head. Too much clutter always affects my sense of ease, so keeping this room as simple and easy as possible has been perfect for me.
This space is also a no-laptop zone, strictly reserved for reading and sleeping, and so, of course, cosiness is key. While I often wear my Asquith London clothes around the house in order to head straight to the gym when I finish working I do also, you know, leave my house wearing other things. Often this just results in me getting home at 8pm and immediately throwing on their sustainable yoga or pilates clothes (here I’m wearing their organic cotton and bamboo yoga leggings) and nearly always layering it with this organic cotton jumper, which is honestly the epitome of soft and slouchy, in order to feel my most comfortable before I get ready for bed. Although a size XS this jumper is pretty big on me as I’m so tiny, but I really like it. It has become my ultimate go-to jumper for wearing around my house basically since the clocks went back, as it keeps me so warm and comfortable. Plus it matches the rest of the colours in this room!
Overall, once again, I’m giving myself a little pat on the back. I’ve been able to find things that work for me, get more organised, and keep things calm, all while buying secondhand and on a smaller budget. And I’ve got to say, I’m really happy with it.
Sponsored Post Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by multiple brands who I love, already had relationships with and genuinely use and want to support. All editorial direction and opinions my own, thanks for making this post possible!