In her book, “Be Your Own Decorator,” Susanna Salk emboldens her readers to find inspiration in the masterfully decorated rooms of top designers featured in her book. Her design philosophy is practical: find what you love about these rooms and repeat it in your own home. But is it easy? We challenged Susanna Salk to recreate the essence of four rooms from her book using key pieces from Ballard Designs.
“Bedrooms should make you feel enveloped and luxurious, and this one really does.”
This nearly neutral bedroom is far from bland thanks to the lemony yellows that bring zest to the room, which seem to radiate from the sunburst mirror above the bed. Designer Jan Showers said she wanted to make the room “feel like it was part of a villa on the French Riviera.” We think she succeeded—and so does Susanna.
“It’s so glamorous and feminine,” says Susanna. “Bedrooms should make you feel enveloped and luxurious, and this one really does.”
An important element in this ethereal design is the gold-leafed sunburst mirror. It gives the room a focal point and tons of glam, not to mention a bit of symbolism in a room full of sunny colors. So it was no surprise that the first item on Susanna’s must-have list was a mirror with a similar look: “That will be easy to find, because I know Ballard has tons of them.”
She found a perfect match in the Sunburst Mirror. “I could put hundreds of them on a wall and be happy,” she admits. “It’s perfect. I love it.”
The headboard in Jan Showers’ bedroom is not the first thing you notice about the designer room (if you notice it at all), which is precisely the point, says Susanna. “It almost disappears, and that’s what makes the room feel really serene.”
To achieve the same feel, Susanna had the Squire Untufted Headboard upholstered in White Quilted fabric. The tall, tailored frame creates a cozy – and quiet – foundation for the colors in the room to really shine.
If there’s anything we’ve learned from Susanna, it’s that a bedroom isn’t just for sleeping. It’s important to look for ways to create a comfortable and functional environment for reading, relaxing and dressing—and that almost always begins with seating. Jan Showers designed her bedroom with two different types of seating that are not only easy to repeat but give the room more purpose.
Susanna loved the idea of our Marlow Bench tucked at the foot of the bed. “The key is beige with that creamy linen,” she said. “It gives a little bit of form and function and grounds the bed.”
For the side chair, Susanna chose the Rebecca Chair slipcovered in Super White Twill fabric. “It’s so yummy and delicious. I think every room needs some kind of chair next to the bed.”
The Curtains and Bedding
Though the room has vibrant tones, repeating the same color keeps things calm. Susanna imagined a pair of window treatments in our luxurious Queens Velvet Yellow balanced by creamy white bedding from our Casa Florentina line to beautifully capture the essence of the color scheme.
“Again, it’s trying to find elements of that gold, lemony yellow combined with the white,” she says. “It was so satisfying to see how easy it was to pick out a few key pieces and weave it back in.”