A bed canopy carries a certain luxurious allure that borders on magical. No wonder kids crave the peekaboo bed accessory descending upon their beds. Grown-ups often need a bed canopy too, especially when the bedroom is also a home office.
While the history of the canopy bed can be traced back to medieval royalty, a bed canopy doesn’t have to look like something out of a princess chamber. Designers have been employing fabric in chic, not cutesy ways, making the bed the centerpiece of a bedroom. The key is to choose a fabric that can hold its own. Those not privy to a designer’s budget have plenty of DIY bed canopy ideas to play with. Here are five swoon-worthy bed canopy inspirations you can recreate.
1. Tailored blue-and-white stripe
To create a tailored bed canopy focus on structure. Los Angeles–based Mark Sikes, an AD100 designer, attached a wooden platform to the ceiling of a room, then stretched a mid-weight fabric over the platform, with the valance and the side panels draping down the sides of a four-poster bed. Sikes recommends using an anti-wrinkle spray for the valance and bed hangings. “Sometimes a steamer doesn’t cut it!”
2. Serene, sheer, and swooping
Dallas-based Gonzalo Bueno of Ten Plus Three draped fabric at the back of this canopy “to add privacy if desired, but without making it feel too heavy or too much.” The ruched panels slide directly over the bed frame, without any need for additional hooks, and gather on the floor to give the canopy bed a carefree, romantic aesthetic. Craving a similar setup? “The key is to find the perfect fabric with the right weight, and to have the panels made to the perfect size,” Bueno explains. He opted for a Perennials sheer fabric, which is not only pretty, but the ideal weight for routine use. Given that this bed canopy is a bit long, you can also explore implementing sheer draping fabric.
3. A classic canopy
For a more traditional bed canopy that just grazes the floor, designer Mel Bean created chic, neutral curtains using custom, sheer drapery that is attached to the bed with grommet style rings, chosen to match the frame’s iron finish. “We selected a pinch pleat detail for the drapes and used the same sheer fabric for the lining so it is beautiful from every angle and still lets light through,” the Tulsa-based Bean explains. To replicate this look in your own home, Bean suggests sourcing a ready-made drapery panel in a sheer fabric. “Pinch pleats add a traditional and timeless element, but a simple panel with refined clip rings can also work in a modern setting,” she says. The more fabric used, the better, so that the canopy appears full when extended. “If you never intend to close the drapery panels fully, you can save on fabric, but it does need to appear full when stacked so it’s not noticeable,” Bean adds. Note that you will still see the fabric lining from the bed, so consider how the fabric looks from both sides. Not into sheer fabric? Bean is a proponent of this white IKEA curtain set for the project too. “It’s affordable and long enough to be hemmed to the exact length you need,” she explains. “If you like to sew, you can do this yourself and even add a pinch pleat!”
4. A simple but playful pattern
Fabric paneling steals the show and gives a bedroom a decidedly contemporary twist on bed canopies. To recreate the look on a four poster canopy bed frame, Norwalk, Connecticut, designer Chauncey Boothby recommends buying a king-sized bed sheet or a lightweight coverlet in the pattern of your choosing. “You’ll likely get the length and width you need rather than seaming together expensive running yardage,” Boothby explains. Grab heavy-duty Velcro strips to secure your sheet or coverlet to the frame on all four sides of the bed. “Make sure it’s pulled taut in order to get the full pattern repeat of the fabric,” Boothby adds.
5. A regal bed crown
Make like a royal and install a wall teester, a.k.a. a bed crown, to liven up a bland headboard. Chicago designer Wendy Labrum created a purple paradise, complete with a pleated canopy, but you can easily DIY a ceiling mount canopy with ready-made curtain panels and basic tools. Start with a piece of plywood the size of your desired canopy base. Select curtain panels that fit your decor. “Unlined linen works well for a single-sided canopy,” Labrum explains. “Alternatively, two panels could be secured together using no-stitch tape.” Use fabric to wrap the plywood base for a finished underside. Then, attach the curtain panel to the plywood base with an upholstery staple gun—have fabric drape down around all three sides. Now attach a curtain panel to the top of the plywood base, much like a skirt. Take drywall anchors and a power drill to mount the canopy to the ceiling above the bed. Adjust the curtain panels around the headboard.
Originally Appeared on Architectural Digest
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