Furniture is usually an afterthought when it comes to a dressing room, with the focus on storage and shelving, but enclosing clothing within furniture protects them from dust and sunlight and gives the room a much more serene, less cluttered ambience. Equally important in a room designed to aid dressing is the provision of space for a full length mirror- planning an outfit or taking stock of wardrobe contents when having a clear out is best done in front of a mirror within the space. To this end, mirrored doors not only serve a functional purpose but also add glamour, reflect light in what is sometimes a room without windows, and give the illusion of a larger space.
Adding an elegant dressing table and a contemporary chair (Phillipe Starck’s ghost chair works brilliantly in a dressing room as it virtually disappears) will make the room multi-functional and extra luxurious. The main consideration for such a piece is lighting, as this is always critical when applying makeup, so this option best suits a room with natural light.
Another consideration is storage and easy access to jewellery and accessories and this is where an island unit with glass topped upper drawers really comes into its own. Providing a clear view of your jewellery portfolio at eye level, with more traditional drawers for the storage of belts, scarves, and even handbags below, a dressing room island is critical for anyone wanting a truly luxurious space. Many islands incorporate seating at the end for putting on shoes or providing seating for girlfriends as they offer their advice!
Adapt your interior design style to your clothing style. If you wear a lot of vintage clothing, a vintage style could work brilliantly in your dressing room. Adding vintage pieces such as a hat stand, mannequin or a clothes trunk will offer storage that sits well with your own personal style. Equally, if you have a lot of tailoring or more formal clothing, a more refined space with clean lines and neutral tones may be more to your taste.
Shoe storage is an essential part of dressing room planning. You can have long shelves for a line-up of shoes, or go for individual boxed shelves to organise your treasured collection. Remember to vary the height of your shoe storage to make room for boots and high heels and leave space for future acquisitions as well!
When it comes to storing men’s shoes, remember that whilst there may be fewer of them, they will require larger spaces for their storage and can therefore often take up comparable space to their feminine counterparts.
His and Hers
If you have a ‘his and hers’ dressing room, look at the suitability of the storage rather than simply opting for symmetrical spaces. Women may need some longer storage for maxi or formal dresses, whilst men will typically need more short or double hanging (2 rails, one above the other) for shirts, trousers and jackets. Try to avoid turning a dressing room into a locker room, as many men may be tempted to store beloved, and often expensive, sports equipment in the dressing room. One good rule of thumb is, if you can’t wear it, don’t store it here!
Lighting is a really vital part of decorating a dressing room and needs careful consideration. A good level of warm background lighting will simulate daylight and provide a comfortable light level for dressing. A chandelier is often a good source of such light and does a great deal to set the tone of the dressing experience- either traditionally glamour or more modern aesthetic. Ensure that the interiors of closets are lit to allow a clear view of the items of clothing and so you can tell the difference between blue and black, for instance, as well as judging colours with clarity. More focused lighting around jewellery and lit drawers for accessories are critical in a dressing room without natural light.