Bedtime Stories: Rituals for Relaxation

A bed piled high with lofty pillows and layered in luxury often paves the way to a journey into dreamland.

A luxurious bath, a good read, and a cup of chamomile tea have long been praised as soothing preludes to the perfect slumber. Sacred are the rituals for retiring each evening—the quiet ceremonies that nurture our circadian rhythms are almost as blissful as a good night’s sleep.

A bed piled high with lofty pillows and layered in luxury often paves the way to a journey into dreamland.

A bed piled high with lofty pillows and layered in luxury often paves the way to a journey into dreamland. Choose from silky sateens, percales, and piqués for exceptional sheeting that is soft, crisp, and cool to the touch. Embroidered with heirloom-quality monograms and made from fine Irish linen and Egyptian cotton, this boutique bedding is produced by some of the most esteemed weaving mills in the world. Mix separates in blue and white for a fresh summer update.

A cup of chamomile tea is a soothing prelude to the perfect slumber.

Quiet activities enjoyed in solitude, such as reading or writing, have a calming effect that often invites slumber. Pair these leisurely pursuits with a cup of hot tea to relax both mind and body. An antique mahogany writing slope embellished with mother-of-pearl inlay features a leather top and several compartments to hold all the necessities.

To create a cozy atmosphere of elegance and refinement, simple creature comforts should be kept bedside for ease of use.

To create a cozy atmosphere of elegance and refinement, simple creature comforts should be kept bedside for ease of use. Essentials include a small water carafe with drinking glass, a well-dressed bolster pillow, and a leather-bound anthology of classic literature.

Other sleep-inducing accompaniments include a monogrammed blue-and-white seersucker bathrobe.

Other sleep-inducing accompaniments include a monogrammed blue-and-white seersucker bathrobe, as well as lingerie drawers lined with scented paper and topped with stacks of lavender-filled sachets.

A deep layering of pillows provides gentle comfort in a sumptuous nest of color, pattern, and texture.

Render a still life of peaceful beauty by bringing fresh flowers to the bedroom. A deep layering of pillows provides gentle comfort in a sumptuous nest of color, pattern, and texture. Solid hues, blue stripes, and monogram-enhanced designs merge harmoniously with neutral linen Euro shams and a “petaled” white-rosette accent cushion. For quick warmth, drape blankets and throws of cashmere, mohair, or cable-knit cotton at the foot of the bed.

Photography Marcy Black Simpson 
Styling Mary Leigh Fitts 

To learn more about a beautiful bedtime ritual, see “Bedtime Stories” on page 54 of the May/June 2012 issue of Victoria. 

2 COMMENTS

  1. Your articles in Victoria make us dream and enhance our
    lives with enchantment and beauty.

    Thank you for your continuance.

    June Emmert

  2. Whether it’s an afternoon nap or a full night’s slumber, there is nothing more relaxing than having fresh and clean vintage embroidered linens of white to make a true welcoming bed. A cup of mint tea and a good book is all I need to fall peacefully to sleep. I also am blessed with a natural waterfall near my house which lulls me to sleep with its falling waters.

    The addition of my purring three cats all cuddling with me make it perfect!

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