This is an ad feature created with IKEA UK – while the wardrobes and duvet set were kindly gifted, we purchased the wardrobe accessories and smart lighting ourselves.
When we moved to our new house, storage was a big issue – there were no built-in cupboards or wardrobes in any of the rooms. We had cupboards in the hallway and the loft for storing things like suitcases, old Christmas decorations and what not, but no where to hang our clothes. I dreamed of beautiful, bespoke wardrobes, carefully hand-crafted, but that didn’t really marry well with our budget… So, that’s where IKEA‘s PAX wardrobes come in – a customisable wardrobe system that comes in all sorts of sizes, colours and styles, with hinged or sliding doors, and almost every conceivable fitting to cleverly sort your clothes into a picture of organised bliss. Really, they are so smart these designers at IKEA.
Now, we have a minimal row of white wardrobes designed for our space, which could easily be mistaken for the more expensive, fitted version. Everything has its place and can be neatly hidden away with a series of white sliding doors. With a few other smart updates and the start of the new year, it has been so satisfying de-cluttering, sorting things out and putting things away, making for a clear mind and a calm bedroom.
If you saw my soft blush pink bedroom makeover, then you might have noticed that there was one wall, opposite the chimney breast and by the opening into the room, that escaped the camera’s gaze. It’s a long expanse of space, but with the door at one end and a big sash window at the other, we didn’t have much depth to play with.
Luckily, IKEA’s PAX wardrobes come in two depths (44cm and 66cm) and two heights (201cm and 236cm – remember you need about 10cm clearance at the top to allowing for raising after the assembly). We went for the shallower depth, which could slot into the space without jarring with the window or stopping the door from opening. It meant that we could fit four wardrobe units in, meaning two each. There’s a space leftover at the end, which we’ve been using to store the ironing board, but it could easily be filled in with a panel for a more seamless look.
IKEA lets you plan out your wardrobe using their handy online planning tool. You can measure out your space, then drop in units, before playing around with clothes rails, shelves, drawers, shoe racks and trouser hangers. We decided on a white wardrobe frame and HASVIK white sliding doors. All the shelves and drawers are called KOMPLEMENT.
The only thing with the shallower depth is that we had to have a rail coming out instead of going across. But, with two units each, and lot’s of drawers, we find it more than enough for the both of us.
Having drawers built into the wardrobes frees up space for the rest of the room, as we don’t need bulky chest of drawers taking up much-needed floor space – everything is in one place (although I do still have one in the opposite corner for bed linen and towels, and it’s nice to have one surface to style up with objects…).
My boyfriend Olivier has lots of shoes (far more than me!) so he went for shoe racks and a longer hanging space for jackets in one unit, and white drawers in the other. I chose the same drawers for one of mine, with mesh baskets in my second unit, for organising shoes, bags and jeans.
Notice that the full height of the space has been utilised to the max, there’s no wasted space. Each unit has a shelf at the top for the things we don’t use everyday, with SKUBB shoes boxes to compartmentalise hats, scarves and summer clothes.
The little pre-drilled holes allow you to add on extra accessories, like this KOMPLEMENT pull-out hanger, that helps you easily see and reach for belts, scarves and ties, instead of them all getting in a tangle if they were in a box or a drawer elsewhere.
My favourite, geeky bit is the organisation of the drawers though – things like this makes me so happy. We’ve used SKUBB boxes to separate out t-shirts, jumpers and trousers, folding them so they face upwards. This maximises space and makes it a lot easier in the mornings to pick out what to wear as everything is on display, rather than only seeing the t-shirts on the top, which you invariably put on everyday, over and over again. As you can see my wardrobe is like my interior – grey, monochrome and striped!
Now everything’s organised, I don’t mind if sometimes the doors are left open, because I can use the middle shelf to arrange some of my favourite things.
We’ve also been trying out something else – sleeping the Swedish way with two single duvets instead of one double duvet. In January, IKEA launched a new ‘TOG-ether’ bundle, so each person can choose a tog rating that suits them when buying a pair – say if one person likes it cooler or another warmer. It’s been a bit of a revelation really – no more stealing the duvet covers and no more cold patch in the middle when one rolls over, win win!
Another little update we’ve added to the bedroom is smart lighting. Last year IKEA launched a new range that aims to make complex, and often expensive, smart lighting solutions simpler, and more accessible and affordable to everyone.
We’ve swapped all our bulbs for their energy-efficient LED bulbs, which can be managed through one small remote control or via an app that allows you to personalise your lighting and control the settings. Light sources and steering devices come pre-paired, so there’s no need for new wiring or getting out an electrician.
If you read my post this week about better sleep, then you’ll know how damaging blue LED light can be for our circadian rhythm and sleep cycle. With the remote and the app, you can alternate between bright blue light during the day and softer, warmer light in the evenings.
The MENU Bollard pendants we have by the bed don’t come with switches on the wire, so it makes such a difference not having to reach under or behind the bed to turn them off at the wall each time. And the best bit – it also means we can lie in bed and say ‘Siri, turn off the light’, without arguing over who will jump out of bed to turn the main light switch off.
And all of that – neatly arranged wardrobes, a cosy bed and smart solutions – makes for a lovely, calm sanctuary to escape to. All it takes is a bit of clever organisation and a few simple updates to make the bedroom a space ready and waiting for a good night’s sleep. I’ve listed everything below, but let me know if you have any questions in the comments.
PAX wardrobe frame, £45 each
HASVIK sliding doors, £85 for a pair
KOMPLEMENT shelves, £5.00 each (I haven’t put links because there’s so many options, but the planning tool is the best place to start)
KOMPLEMENT drawers, £16.00 each
KOMPLEMENT pull-out rail, £8.00
KOMPLEMENT mesh basket, £10.00 each
KOMPLEMENT pull-out multi-use hanger, £5.00
SKUBB shoe boxes, £7.00 for pack of four
SKUBB drawer boxes, £6.00 for set of six
White BUMERANG hangers, £4 for pack of eight
Black velvety STRYKIS hanger, £3 for pack of three
Bedside pendant lights, MENU Bollard lamps, Clippings.com, £67.96
Smart lighting TRÅDFRI smart kit, £65 gateway kit
J77 Chair by HAY, Clippings.com, £114.75
Striped cushions, IKEA from a few years ago
Wall colour, Peignoir, Farrow & Ball
All images Cate St Hill