Three Beautiful Bedrooms: Minimalist, Spacious and Asian Decor

Want to give your bedroom a makeover? These beautiful bedrooms will inspire you.

| November/December 2006

  • In Allison O’Neall and Scott Allen’s expanded bedroom suite, the new sitting area is under vaulted ceilings while the bed remains in the room’s original footprint. “I like the cozy sense of sleeping under the lower ceiling,” Allison says.
    Photographs by Povy Kendal Atchison
  • A lifelong seamstress, Allison loves fabrics. She layered her bed in shades of purple with a mix of purchased linens and handmade pillows, including a sham made from a tea towel and a bolster she crafted from a skirt. The vibrant, embroidered silk curtains are Indian imports.
  • When she purchased a new dining set, Jennifer remade the chairs from the old set by covering them with Lulan silk fabric and creating a cozy seating area in her bedroom. The table was created by Steven Hensel, a Seattle artisan who works with reclaimed metal scraps.
  • This intricately detailed bamboo chaise perfectly ties into the room’s theme. Another plus: Bamboo is a rapidly renewable resource.
  • A small alcove in the reading nook holds personal mementoes. The organza purse is from Holly in Hanoi, a socially responsible Vietnamese co-op (
  • Richard and Jennifer Lennon have a sizable collection of Asian art. Above their bed is an 1850s shop sign imported from Hong Kong. “We have no idea what it says,” Jennifer says. “Hopefully it isn’t a sign for a funeral parlor!”
    Photography y Susan Sully
  • Airy cotton gauze curtains frame the magnificent view of Puget Sound from Ann and David Knight’s recently remodeled bedroom. The room’s eastern exposure floods the space with morning light.
    Photographs by Michael Shopenn
  • A down comforter and decorative pillows top the Knights’ cozy bed, the centerpiece of their private retreat. “It’s my sanctuary,” Ann says. “I can close the door and read or sleep, and no one will bother me.”
  • A small teak chest and a painting by British Columbia artist Gloria Massé decorate the hallway that leads from the bedroom to the living room. Down the hall is a new pine console topped with antique boxes that Ann purchased on a trip to Teragren’s manufacturing plant in China.

Peace Accords
A Vietnam vet and his wife sleep easily on fair-trade Vietnamese silks.

Shortly after they relocated from Seattle to Charleston, South Carolina, Richard and Jennifer Lennon spent a sunny afternoon exploring their new city. While strolling around downtown, the couple stumbled across Lulan Artisans in a moment of serendipity. The home décor retailer sells contemporary textiles that are handmade in Southeast Asia. Its holistic approach to textile design honors the centuries-old traditions of its weavers-many of them located in Vietnam-who use nontoxic, natural dyes and are paid a fair wage.

The company's emphasis on sustainability and social responsibility was a new concept to the Lennons, but it struck a personal chord for Richard, a Vietnam War veteran. "This was something brand new to us, but we really got into the philosophy," Richard says. "Having been to Vietnam three times and having an affinity with the Vietnamese, it rang a bell with us."

As the couple began decorating their new Charleston Colonial home, an Asian theme emerged. In their master bedroom, the Lennons chose a duvet cover, pillows and a throw made from handwoven, hand-dyed silk. These perfectly complement their other decorative choices, including a bamboo chaise; a pair of Korean nightstands; a framed, hand-painted, Japanese scarf; and a collection of Vietnamese water puppets, an 800-year-old folk art form.

Socially responsible decorating may be a new concept to the Lennons, but it's not a fleeting one. "I got emotionally attached to the sisterhood of Vietnamese women who are doing this," Jennifer says. "These people are survivors, and I think it's really important to support that."

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