Q. What special considerations should be kept in mind when furnishing a master bedroom?

A. Most people decorate the public rooms of a home, such as the living room, first, saving the more private master bedroom for last. I feel that the bedroom is the most important room and should be done first.Your surroundings in the morning set the tone for the day. If you wake up in a beautiful space, it puts you in a happier frame of mind, better able to cope with the day's problems.

When choosing furniture for the room, first determine your needs. Do you pay bills here and need a desk? Do you eat in the bedroom or play backgammon and need a table? Do you want a chaise for reading and relaxing?

Once you know what you need, work out a floor plan and establish a mood for the space. Do you want a romantic room with a four-poster bed or do you prefer a more practical look? Should work areas be hidden behind a pretty screen or out in the open? Should the TV go into a cabinet or stand free at the foot of the bed with a remote control device on the night table?

Next, choose a color scheme, taking into consideration the personalities of the inhabitants, the light in the room and the size of the space. Any color can work here.

When selecting fabric and carpeting, be aware that blues fade a lot. Red and coral will fade in a sunny room, and white turns yellow over time. Whatever the color, silk is a fragile fabric that won't hold up well in a sunny space.

Make the room as luxurious as possible, so it becomes a refuge from the outside world.