Design Master Class Tips and Tricks from The N&O Design Team: Design Master Class Alison Crawford Roane

Design Master Class: Adding drama to a small bedroom

May 9, 2014 

  • About the Designer

    Alison Crawford Roane, a North Carolina native, owns ACR Interiors in Raleigh. She holds a bachelor’s degree in interior design from Meredith College and opened her eco-conscious, contemporary interior design practice in 2011, focused primarily on residential projects.

  • Design Master Class

    N&O Design Team members who share their expertise twice a month in Home & Garden are all members of the Alliance of Interior Designers, a group of Triangle-area professionals. Learn more at

The Challenge

The owner of this 14-year-old Raleigh townhome wanted a new look for this small master bedroom. With a limited budget and tight deadline, we had to work with the existing furniture and layout, changing up only the wall color, bedding and decor. See how the finished space came together on page 4D.

Super Space

The owner is fun, vibrant and fluent in Spanish. As she marked her 30th birthday, she was looking to make her first home a place where she could settle down. We set out to create a master bedroom that would be a comforting and romantic refuge.

We were working with a queen-size bed that had to be positioned off-center in the space due to the placement of doors and flow from the hallway to the en suite bath. We began with a foundation of dark navy and grays, then added pops of citrine yellow to draw the eye around the room.

We gave the walls a coat of Sherwin Williams’ Denim, which provides a calm backdrop for the contemporary-style furniture and elegant accessories. We introduced our slate gray with a pintuck duvet cover, pillow shams, throw pillows in ikat and felted wool and faceted candles that give off a warm, romantic glow. Above the bed, a vibrant canvas of flowers brings in the yellow, a lighter blue and a dash of red and orange – a perfect complement to the navy walls. The white cotton, grommet-topped draperies are backed in black-out fabric that create a restful refuge.

Yellow accents include the small, glass Perch lamp from West Elm on her dresser, a labyrinth throw pillow, a knitted throw and the shower curtain and accessories in the en suite bath. Yellow also figures in the custom artwork, which was inspired by a quote from Pedro Calderon de la Barca, written in the 1600s: “Cuando amor no es locura, no es amor,” which translates to “When love is not madness, it is not love.”

Terrific Trick

We printed out a favorite poem in a distinctive font with serifs called Elephant, and placed the prints inside white frames with white mats. Used as a small grouping, this original artwork adds weight to the left side of the bed and draws attention away from the off-center placement of the bed on the wall.

(Not) by the book

Not all colors have to be repeated. The navy color on the walls was not used anywhere else in the room, but it works because the navy and gray have the same weight and saturation of color. They don’t match, but they go together well.

ACR Interiors

8232 Belneath Court, Raleigh

919-817-8771 or

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