Yellow NightstandYellow Nightstand

The nightstand next to your bed is one of the most essential surfaces in your bedroom. It provides a home for books photo frames and sleepy-time necessities like eye masks and earplugs. Most of us opt for the classic version: a small square table with a drawer and a matching counterpart on the other side of the bed. But this functional area doesn't have to be so well square. Swapping out that classic nightstand for a piece of non-bedroom furniture can add personality as well as function to your bedroom. Here are unique alternatives to the classic nightstand. The best part about these options? They are common enough pieces that you may already have them on hand. If not you'll be able to pick them up for a reasonable price at a garage sale or flea market.

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Nightstand With Marble TopNightstand With Marble Top

Warm modern. Keep a clean minimalist look from being too cold with a stroke of fiery red or orange. Here a wide striped bedcover echoes the color in an oversize painting. If a painting of this magnitude is beyond your current budget consider stretching a length of bold fabric on stretchers meant for canvas (find them in art stores). Choose a simple platform-style bed and slim task lamps then fill out the room with a healthy potted plant and a vase of flowers.

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Glass Top NightstandGlass Top Nightstand

Connect with the outdoors. While this might not be feasible in all climates connecting a room with the outdoors is a great way to make the space feel larger and admit more natural light. If your bedroom is on the ground floor (or is on the second story and has an adjacent terrace) adding a set of French doors can instantly increase visual space.

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Bathtub Doors FramelessBathtub Doors Frameless

The nature lover. If your dream vacation involves photographing wildlife camping on a remote beach surrounded by the sound of crashing waves and the spectacle of swooping birds — but the rest of the family would rather head to a five-star island resort with a swim-up bar — could this bathroom soothe your soul?

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Tall NightstandsTall Nightstands

Color pops. Liven up a plain bedroom with an accent wall covered in fabulously bold wallpaper. For the truly fearless choose a contrasting color (like the yellow here against the peacock blue wall) for the bedside tables and cushions. If you prefer to limit your pop to one place choose a white or wood headboard and tables and layer on neutral (but deliciously textured) bedding.

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Bathtub TrayBathtub Tray

The bold and the beautiful. Bright colors aren't for everyone but if you have a favorite what are you afraid of? Attention-getting tangerine orange in a powder room is sure to be a talking point and it will cheer up anyone who enters. When a shade of green is this juicy why not blanket your bathroom with it? The bank of mirrored cabinets amplifies the natural light coming into the space and there's just enough wood to prevent all that green from going into overload. Architect Scott Weston isn't shy when it comes to color. In fact Weston sees color as a powerful tool that can set a home apart. This all-blue bathroom is far from cookie-cutter. The frameless shower screen and minimalist sink allow the tiles to be the main event without competition. In the same project — an addition to an 1880s Victorian in Sydney — this bathroom delivers the same quirky twist through the use of another unexpected color.

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Bathtub CaddyBathtub Caddy

The self-made billionaire. Do you feel like you're living the wrong life? That really you'd be better suited to a jet-setting existence staying in top hotels across the globe and never lifting a finger to cook or clean? In the meantime why not make your own home a little more luxurious?

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Reclaimed Wood NightstandReclaimed Wood Nightstand

Reframe clearing clutter in a positive light. It's all too easy to let the bedroom become a dumping ground for all the random items that don't seem to fit anywhere else. So the first step in clearing clutter is to consider what you do want in the bedroom. Fresh sheets good lighting your current book on the nightstand? Definitely. Piles of paper children's toys and the vacuum cleaner? Probably not. Take action: Center yourself by taking a few deep calming breaths before you begin. Then start sorting through items in your bedroom piece by piece choosing those you want to keep there and removing everything else. Don't worry right now about where the unwanted items will go — separating out this part of the process can make decision-making much easier.

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