Guest Bedroom Update: $1,000 Makeover

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I’m incredibly excited to share this room reveal! I’ve finally completed phase 1 of our guest bedroom makeover, and I’m really happy with the way it turned out. Quarantine has been driving me nuts and so I wanted to keep myself busy at home and have something nice and new to marvel at – it only made sense to finally tackle the guest bedroom!

I admit that painting the exterior of our home was actually before touching the guest bedroom, but since Jun has been burnt out from work as well as taking a break from home improvement projects (the hallway bathroom really did a number on his stress levels, unfortunately), I decided to go with the guest bedroom because it was a project that I could do on my own and wouldn’t take months to complete.

But can we first reflect on some photos of what it looked like before, though?

Eek. What an eyesore. Glad that’s gone.

We’ve been in this house for 1 1/2 years now, and aside from the storage room, the guest bedroom is the only room that was left completely untouched. We have a lot of guests that spend the night, so I was feeling a little sheepish that this room only had a bed and a light, but nothing else. It didn’t feel very accomodating at all. This room needed a touch of “home” that was way overdue.

My $1,000 Budget

I also wanted a small and relatively inexpensive makeover that wouldn’t break the bank, and I was looking to stay under $1,000 for this room. To make sure I wasn’t getting carried away, I created a mood board to plan out all of the furniture, colors and prices so that I could curate a room that was cohesive and thematic.

I also had to be creative and work with what I already had that could better function in this space. I wanted a new bedframe for this room, but since it’s a larger piece of furniture, a bedframe could quickly blow me over budget. We already have a metal bed frame on casters along with a low-profile boxspring, so instead of spending a few hundred on a new bedframe I just went ahead with a $20 bed skirt to hide the bed frame. Voila, you would have never known!

I also had a cream-colored shag rug that was originally for the living room, but I moved it into this bedroom because it wound up working perfectly here.

Choosing a Paint Color

Our home originally had matte beige walls, so I painting everything in a neutral grey just to cover up that ghastly beige. However, grey feels so boring to me now that I have neutrals throughout the entire house (the carpet is beige, too). So I wanted the guest bedroom to be different.

I wanted to do something darker and moodier, but there’s only one medium-sized window in this room that also faces north, so with the lack of available sunlight I had to go with something lighter. I went through about 6 paint samples and finally settled on this gorgeous seafoam green color called “Nile River” by Behr. It fit perfectly with the emerald furniture and gold accents!

The Gallery Wall

The ceiling in this room is vaulted, so the wall adjacent to the head of the bed is really tall and has a lot of overhead space, which makes it perfect for a gallery wall. This room is also really small so I was limited to furniture options; however, maximizing the wall space definitely gave the room a focal point of visual interest.

Gallery walls are a really great way to make the room feel more decorated by taking advantage of the wall space, but unfortunately, it can get really costly. With large prints, frames, anti-glare plastic, and many more options, you can look up to $50 – $200 per picture frame, depending on the options. When I did the gallery wall in the living room, I spent a lot of time and energy hunting for posters, prints, and frames that were affordable and were still cohesive with the entire theme. It was an exhausting process, so I wanted an easier time curating a gallery wall this time around.

Poster Store was the most amazing solution for me that came at the perfect time: not only is this selection gorgeous, but it’s also affordable. And their collections are curated, so if you’re pinched on time or don’t want to bother with hand-picking specific items, you can simply shop one of their gallery walls, add everything to your cart, and check out. I actually shopped from one of their curated gallery walls for our guest bedroom and by doing so I’ve probably saved endless hours trying to source a bunch of matching items.

My gallery wall is from this Poster Store collection, but instead of wood-tone frames I went with gold frames to match the gold accents of this room. The emerald photos served as accents to the emerald bedding, so I’m really glad that I went with this collection! I really love that they make it so easy to swap out any choices and make the entire process painless and smooth. If you want to make your own gallery wall from Poster Store, make sure to use code “aileen35” at checkout for 35% off all posters (except Selection Posters and frames; not combinable with other discount codes).

Bedding Makes a Huge Difference

Trust me on this! I’ve gone through so much bedding in my life, it’s not even funny. I know that a lot of bedding sets out there can get really pricy, but as long as you have a mood board, it becomes much easier to find what you want within your budget. The emerald green quilt set matched the gallery wall perfectly, and it looks expensive, but it wasn’t! I got it on sale at Kohl’s.

Bedside Lamps and Tables

One of my favorite aspects of this room is the bedside lamps! They are understated but have so much to give – they even have a USB port so guests can plug in their phone charging cable. And an added bonus: you can fill them up! I bought black tourmaline in bulk from this really awesome Etsy store and filled them up – black tourmaline has energetic properties of grounding, safety and protection, which made sense to have in a guest bedroom. I want my guests to feel grounded and safe, even if they aren’t home.

Ideally, I would like for them to be filled up, but I used 14 lbs of black tourmaline and would probably need another 20 to fill them up… which would be too much weight on the glass (even though it’s pretty thick). I could have probably used tumbled stones to prevent the edges from cracking the glass under the weight, but I like the look of raw stones more.

As for the tables: I didn’t want to invest in heavy-duty bedside tables because since they are in the guest bedroom, they would not be subject to regular use. I figured that having drawers wasn’t necessary either as most people already use the wardrobe to store their clothes and the bathroom for their toiletries, so I felt like we could forego that altogether. In the end, I saved a lot of money choosing these end tables instead of traditional bedside tables.

Dressing the Window With Curtains

The one thing that I splurged on for this bedroom is the curtains, and I have no regrets. In fact, if there’s anything I recommend for anyone to splurge on, it would have to be the curtains. Our home had really flimsy outdated 90’s-style blinds on every window with no trim, so I had to cover up all the windows with curtains, stat. Buying so many curtains meant I had to go with cheaper ones, and I deeply regret that decision.

My favorite home improvement bloggers Chris Loves Julia always recommends these gorgeous velvet curtains from Half Price Drapes, and I finally caved and got a pair. They are gorgeous, and for the quality, they would probably cost more elsewhere! They have a good weight and texture to them, which makes them feel like expensive curtains, but they’re actually reasonably priced (when we compare to the other super-cheap curtains that flood Amazon). They’re also blackout curtains and do a great job of blocking out both the light and heat, which is essential for us since we live in Southern California, where it’s hot for almost 8 months of the year.

I seriously love these curtains so much that I’m planning on changing all of my curtains in my house to these ones (and definitely getting the double-wide curtains for the larger rooms).

Overall, I’m very pleased with the way our guest bedroom turned out! This is only phase one of our guest bedroom makeover: for phase 2, we plan on replacing the ceiling and flooring throughout the entire house, and phase 3 involves replacing the existing sliding door closet with a custom Ikea PAX wardrobe.

I linked all of the items I used in this bedroom below. Does this makeover inspire you to makeover one of your rooms? Let’s chat in the comments below! And if you want to make your own gallery wall from Poster Store, make sure to use code “aileen35” at checkout for 35% off all posters (except Selection Posters and frames; not combinable with other discount codes).

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