The fact that there is a Wiki-how page for designing a Gothic bedroom should be enough to unsettle even the most ardent supporter of the Gothic lifestyle. The problem for the reader of this article is that we are not going to be discussing a trendy, teenage creation of the 20th or 21st century, but get into a time machine and go back to the days of the Victorian era. There are similarities, but anime was not a thing and options for the room were considerably fewer than today. Any modern teenager who hears the word “gothic” or “Goth” envisions a dark and dreary castle-like quality of a room or the surroundings. But as a matter of history, all things Gothic were not dark and dreary but actually were intended to be a respite from the cloudy and dank environment that was common back in the day. One of the keys to creating the perfect Gothic bedroom is to avoid being too modern with your selection of furniture and knickknacks that are strewn around the room.
It has been recommended that when you are working to create a Gothic-style bedroom you cannot worry about the cost of the various items you want to include in the final project. One reason is that you will probably want to pare down the number of items once the actual work begins. Another is that if you try and take a budget-conscious approach you are likely to never see the end of the project. Make a list of everything your Gothic heart desires and then take the step of actually starting on the project. A major factor that will determine exactly what goes into the bedroom and the resulting look will be the amount of space you have available. Assume the bed will take up a fair amount of space. A small bed in a huge room is visually contradictory, as is a huge bed in a smallish bedroom. But don’t just look at what goes on the floor but what on your list will decorate the walls. Since we moved over to the walls, let’s take a look at what the design elements should be.
Black walls are generally overkill in appearance because while black is very Gothic it is not a dominant color feature of the Victorian Era. In fact, the bedrooms were one of the most colorful rooms in the house. Black can be used to accentuate certain areas, but you will want to stay with a neutral color such as grey for much of the room. Continuing with the walls, back in the days of yore walls were made of stone. A modern alternative could be tile, but whichever you choose the material needs to be hard and generally unforgiving. The same goes for the flooring, though a wood floor is just as acceptable. Some critics have suggested using wallpaper to achieve the Gothic look, but at the very least that seems to be very lame. Nor will those plastic tiles that you stick on to a wall to give the appearance of stone or bricks. Stucco walls are acceptable as they are a sign of the times and not at all unusual during that historical period. A true Gothic bedroom will not only visually feel but physically feel hard and unmoving.
Speaking of hard there is the issue of what the floor coverings will be made of. Area rugs made of animal skins were the standard of the day. The reason is simple: stone floors are very cold and no one likes waking up and jumping onto a freezing bedroom floor. But a more modern and practical approach would be to add some rugs that have a Gothic-style design to them. When deciding on which rugs to purchase, keep in mind that it must coordinate with the color of the walls. One can never say enough about the importance of lighting in the Gothic bedroom. Some people prefer to stick with the chandelier which was used back in the day. Others prefer carefully selected lanterns and lamps strategically placed around the room. The lighting style you choose in a modern Gothic bedroom should always have a dimmer switch connected to it. Unless you are looking for your black cat, the dimmer switch will always be turned down and give the room that darkened look often sought after.
For the material used for the furniture of the Victorian Era Gothic bedroom, wood was the most common. Wood can be used for not only for storage areas such as dressers, but can be applied to chairs and benches as well, giving the hard and unforgiving appearance that is central to the Gothic theme. If you decide to provide a more modern convenience for your visitors, you can use pillows to provide some cushion – but not too much. Just make sure that the color of the cushions doesn’t violate the color coordination of the room. If that happens you may decide to stay with finished wood. All that is left to choose is the fabric of the bedding. Here is where you can exhibit your tendencies towards opulence. The Victorian Era Gothic bedroom has bedding that was made of any number of sensual and expensive fabrics. Among them were velvet, damasks, and brocades. For those unfamiliar with damask, it is a particular design that is made of silk, wool, linen, or cotton. As for brocade, it is even more opulent as the threads of the material are made of gold or silver. Unless visitors are familiar with the historical period, your pillows and sheets should be safe. But the price of the material belied the practical aspect of the bedding. It had to be warm enough to be worth the cost, which is why velvet was one of the most sought after materials of the time. Combining affluence with usefulness was a necessity. There are synthetics available, but that would significantly disrupt the ambiance of the room.